« ПретходнаНастави »
well, perhaps better, than when invested with his els.” “No,” replied the other; "but you have let authority. He could command flatterers in a pri- me look at them, and that is all the use you can vate station, as well as in his public capacity, and make of them yourself; so there is no difference indulge at home every favourite inclination, uncen- between us, except that you have the trouble of sured and unseen by the people.
watching them, and that is an employnient I don't What real good then does an addition to a for- much desire." Adieu. tune already sufficient procure? Not any. Could the great man, by having his fortune increased, increase also his appetites, then precedence might be attended with real amusement.
LETTER LXV. Was he, by having his one thousand made
From the Same two, thus enabled to enjoy two wives, or eat two dinners; then, indeed, he might be excused for un- THOUGH not very fond of seeing a pageant my. dergoing some pain, in order to extend the sphere self, yet I am generally pleased with being in the of his enjoyments. But, on the contrary, he finds crowd which sees it: it is amusing to observe the his desire for pleasure often lessen, as he takes effect which such a spectacle has upon the variety pains to be able to improve it; and his capacity of of faces; the pleasure it excites in some, the envy enjoyment diminishes as his fortune happens to in others, and the wishes it raises in all. With increase.
this design, I lately went to see the entry of a Instead, therefore, of regarding the great with foreign ambassador, resolved to make one in the envy, I generally consider them with some share mob, to shout as they shouted, to fix with earnestof compassion. I look upon them as a set of good-ness upon the same frivolous objects, and particinatured, misguided people, who are indebted to us pate for a while in the pleasures and the wishes and not to themselves, for all the happiness they of the vulgar. enjoy. For our pleasure, and not their own, they Struggling here for some time, in order to be sweat under a cumbrous heap of finery; for our first to see the cavalcade as it passed, some one of pleasure the lackeyed train, the slow parading pa- the crowd unluckily happened to tread upon my geant, with all the gravity of grandeur, moves in shoe, and tore it in such a manner, that I was utreview: a single coat, or a single footman, answers terly unqualified to march forward with the main all the purposes of the most indolent refinement as body, and obliged to fall back in the rear. Thus well; and those who have twenty may be said to rendered incapable of being a spectator of the show keep one for their own pleasure, and the other myself, I was at least willing to observe the specnineteen merely for ours. So true is the observa- tators, and limped behind like one of the invalids tion of Confucius, that we take greater pains to who follow the march of an army. persuade others that we are happy, than endea- In this plight, as I was considering the eagertouring to think so ourselves.
ness that appeared on every face; how some bustled But though this desire of being seen, of being to get foremost, and others contented themselves made the subject of discourse, and of supporting with taking a transient peep when they could: the dignities of an an exalted station, be trouble. how some praised the four black servants that were some enough to the ambitious; yet it is well for stuck behind one of the equipages, and some the society that there are men thus willing to exchange ribands that decorated the horses' necks in another; ease and safety for danger and a riband. We lose my attention was called off to an object more exnothing by their vanity, and it would be unkind to traordinary than any I had yet seen ; a poor cobbler endeavour to deprive a child of its rattle. Ifa duke sat in his stall by the way side, and continued to or a duchess are willing to carry a long train for work while the crowd passed by, without testifying our entertainment, so much the worse for them- the smallest share of curiosity. lown his want of selves; if they choose co exhibit in public, with a attention excited mine : and as I stood in need of hundred lackeys and mamelukes in their equipage, his assistance, I thought it best to employ a philofor our entertainment, still so much the worse for sophic cobbler on this occasion.' Perceiving my themselves: it is the spectators alone who give and business, therefore, he desired me to enter and sit receive the pleasure; they only are the sweating down, took my shoe in his lap, and began to mend figures that swell the pageant.
it with his usual indifference and taciturnity. A mandarine, who took much pride in appear- “How, my friend," said I to him, "can you ing with a number of jewels on every part of his continue to work, while all those fine things aro robe, was once accosted by an old sly Bonze, who, passing by your door ?” “Very fine they are, following him through several streets, and bowing master," returned the cobbler, "for those that like often to the ground, thanked him for his jewels. them, to be sure; but what are all those fine things " What does the man mean ?" cried the manda- to me? You don't know what it is to be a cob sine: "Friend, I never gave thee any of my jew. bler, and so much the better for yourself. Your
bread is baked, you may go and see sights the “ The first three years we used to quarrel about whole day, and eat a warm supper when you come this every day, and I always got the better; but home at night; but for me, if I should run hunt- she had a hard spirit, and still continued to hide as ing after all these fine folk, what should I get by usual: so that I was at last tired of quarrelling and my journey but an appetite, and, God help me! getting the better, and she scraped and scraped at I have too much of that at home already, without pleasure, till I was almost starved to death. Her stirring out for it. Your people, who may eat four conduct drove me at last in despair to the ale-house; meals a day, and a supper at night
, are but a bad here I used to sit with people who hated home like example to such a one as I. No, master, as God myself, drank while I had money left, and run in has called me into this world in order to mend old score when any body would trust me; till at last shoes, I have no business with fine folk, and they the landlady, coming one day with a long bill when no business with me." I here interrupted him I was from home, and putting it into my wife's with a smile. "See this last, master," continues hands, the length of it effectually broke her heart. he, "and this hammer; this last and hammer are I searched the whole stall after she was dead for the two best friends I have in this world; nobody money, but she had hidden it so effectually, that else will be my friend, because I want a friend. with all my pains I could never find a farthing." The great folks you saw pass by just now have By this time my shoe was mended, and satisfy. five hundred friends, because they have no occasion ing the poor artist for his trouble, and rewarding for them: now, while I stick to my good friends him besides for his information, I took my leave, here, I ain very contented; but when I ever so and returned home to lengthen out the amusement little run after sights and fine things, I begin to his conversation afforded, by communicating it to hate my work, I grow sad, and have no heart to my friend. Adieu. mend shoes any longer."
This discourse only served to raise my curiosity to know more of a man whom nature had thus formed into a philosopher. I therefore insensibly
LETTER LXVI. led him into a history of his adventures : "I have From Lien Chi Allangi to Hingpo, by the way of Moscow. lived,” said he, "a wandering sort of a life now five-and-fifty years, here to-day, and gone to-mor- GENEROSITY properly applied will supply every row; for it was my misfortune, when I was young, other external advantage in life, but the love of to be fond of changing." “ You have been a tra- those we converse with : it will procure esteem, and veller, then, I presume," interrupted 1. “I can not a conduct resembling real affection; but actual boast much of travelling," continued he, "for love is the spontaneous production of the mind; no have never left the parish in which I was born but generosity can purchase, no rewards increase, nor three times in my life, that I can remember; but no liberality continue it: the very person who is then there is not a street in the whole neighbour- obliged, has it not in his power to force his linhood that I have not lived in, at some time or gering affections upon the object he should love, another. When I began to settle and to take and voluntarily mix passion with gratitude. to my business in one street, some unforeseen mis- Imparted fortune, and well-placed liberality, may fortune, or a desire of trying my luck elsewhere, procure the benefactor good-will
, may load the perhas removed me, perhaps a whole mile away from son obliged with the sense of the duty he lies under my former customers, while some more lucky cob- to retaliate ; this is gratitude: and simple gratitude, bler would come into my place, and make a hand- untinctured with love, is all the return an ingenusomne fortune among friends of my making: there ous mind can bestow for former benefits. was one who actually died in a stall that I had left, But gratitude and love are almost opposite affecworth seven pounds seven shillings, all in hard tions; love is often an involuntary passion, placed gold, which he had quilted into the waistband of upon our companions without our consent, and his breeches."
frequently conferred without our previous esteem. I could not but smile at these migrations of a We love some men, we know not why; our tenman by the fire-side, and continued to ask if he had derness is naturally excited in all their concerns; ever been married. “Ay, that I have, master," we excuse their faults with the same indulgence, replied he, "for sixteen long years; and a weary and approve their virtues with the same applauso life I had of it, Heaven knows. My wife took it with which we consider our own. While we en into her head, that the only way to thrive in this tertain the passion, it pleases us, we cherish it with world was to save money, so, though our comings- delight, and give it up with reluctance; and love in was but about three shillings a-week, all that ever for love is all the reward we expect or desire. she could lay her hands upon she used to hide away Gratitude, on the contrary, is never conferred, froro me, though we were obliged to starve the but where there have been previous endeavours to whule week after for it,
excite it; we consider it as a debt, and our spirite wear a load till we have discharged the obligation. wisdom. “ Mention not the name of man,” cries Every acknowledgment of gratitude is a circum- the hermit with indignation ; "here let me live restance of humiliation; and some are found to sub- tired from a base ungrateful worl; here among mit to frequent mortifications of this kind, pro- the beasts of the forest I shall find no flatterers : claiming what obligations they owe, merely be- the lion is a generous enemy, and the dog a faithful cause they think it in some measure cancels the friend; but man, base man, can poison the bowl, debt.
and smile while he presents it!"_“You have been Thus love is the most easy and agreeable, and used ill by mankind,” interrupted the philosopher gratitude the most humiliating affection of the shrewdly. “Yes," returned the hermit, "on manmind :
1: we never reflect on the man we love, with- kind I have exhausted my whole fortune, and this out exulting in our choice, while he who has bound staff, and that cup, and those ruots, are all that I us to him by benefits alone, rises to our idea as a have in return."-"Did you bestow your fortune, person to whom we have in some measure forfeited or did you only lend it ?' returned Mencius. “I our freedom. Love and gratitude are seldom there- bestowed it undoubtedly,” replied the other, " for fore found in the same breast without impairing where were the merit of being a money-lender ?"each other; we may tender the one or the other “ Did they ever own that they received it ?” still singly to those we converse with, but can not com- adds the philosopher. "A thousand times,” cries mand both together. By attempting to increase, the hermit; "they every day loaded me with pro we diminish them; the mind becomes bankrupt fessions of gratitude for obligations received, and under too large obligations; all additional benefits solicitations for future favours.”—“If, then," says lessen every hope of future return, and bar up Mencius smiling, "you did not lend your fortune every avenue that leads to tenderness.
in order to have it returned, it is unjust to accuse In all our connexions with society, therefore, it them of ingratitude; they owned themselves obliged, is not only generous, but prudent, to appear insen- you expected no more, and they certainly earned sible of the value of those favours we bestow, and each favour by frequently acknowledging the obliendeavour to make the obligation seem as slight as gation.” The hermit was struck with the reply, possible. Love must be taken by stratagem, and and surveying his guest with emotion,—"I have not by open force: we should seem ignorant that heard of the great Mencius, and you certainly are we oblige, and leave the mind at full liberty to give the man: I am now fourscore years old, but still a or refuse its affections; for constraint may indeed child in wisdom; take me back to the school of man, leave the receiver still grateful, but it will certainly and educate me as one of the most ignorant and produce disgust.
the youngest of your disciples!" If to procure gratitude be our only aim, there is Indeed, my son, it is better to have friends in our no great art in making the acquisition; a benefit passage through life than grateful dependants; and conferred demands a just acknowledgment, and we as love is a more willing, so it is a more lasting have a right to insist upon our due.
tribute than extorted obligation. As we are uneasy But it were much more prudent to forego our when greatly obliged, gratitude once refused can right on such an occasion, and exchange it, if we never after be recovered: the mind that is base can, for love. We receive but little advantage from enough to disallow the just return, instead of feelrepeated protestations of gratitude, but they costing any uneasiness upon recollection, triumphs in him very much from whom we exact them in re- its new-acquired freedom, and in some measure is turn : exacting a grateful acknowledgment, is de- pleased with conscious baseness. manding a debt by which the creditor is not ad- Very different is the situation of disagreeing vantaged, and the debtor pays with reluctance. friends; their separation produces mutual uneasi :
As Mencius the philosopher was travelling in ness: like that divided being in fabulous creation pursuit of wisdom, night overtook him at the foot their sympathetic souls once more desire their for. of a gloomy mountain remote from the habitations mer union; the joys of both are imperfect; their of men. Here, as he was straying, while rain and gayest moments tinctured with uneasiness; each thur.der conspired to make solitude still more hide- seeks for the smallest concessions to clear the way ous, he perceived a hermit's cell, and approaching, to a wished-for explanation; the most trifling acasked for shelter : "Enter,” cries the hermit, in a knowledgment, the slightest accident, serves to efsevere tone, "men deserve not to be obliged, but it fect a mutual reconciliation. would be imitating their ingratitude to treat them But instead of pursuing the thought, permit me as they deserve. Come in: examples of vice may to soften the severity of advice, by a European sometimes strengthen us in the ways of virtue.” story, which will fully illustrate my meaning.
After a frugal meal, which consisted of roots and A fiddler and his wife, who had rubbed through rea, Mencius could not repress his curiosity to life, as most couples usually do, sometimes good know why the hermit had retired from mankind, friends, at others not quite so well
, one day hapthe actions of whom taught the truest lessons of 'pened to have a dispute, which was conducted with becoming spirit on both sides. The wife was sure | attachments, and steadfast in enmity, he treats she was right, and the husband was resolved to every creature as a friend or foe; expects from those have his own way. What was to be done in such he loves unerring integrity, and consigns his enea case? the quarrel grew worse by explanations, mies to the reproach of wanting every virtue. On and at last the fury of both rose to such a pitch, this principle he proceeds; and here begin his disthat they made a vow never to sleep together in appointments. Upon a closer inspection of human the same bed for the future. This was the most nature he perceives, that he should have moderated rash vow that could be imagined, for they still were his friendship, and softened his severity; for he friends at bottom, and, besides, they had but one often finds the excellencies of one part of mankind bed in the house: however, resolved they were to clouded with vice, and the faults of the other go through with it, and at night the fiddle-case was brightened with virtue; he finds no character so laid in bed between them, in order to make a sanctified that has not its failings, none so infamous separation. In this manner they continued for but has somewhat to attract our esteem: he beholds three weeks; every night the fiddle-case being impiety in lawn, and fidelity in fetters. placed as a barrier to divide them.
He now, therefore, but too late, perceives that By this time, however, each heartily repented of his regards should have been more cool, and his their vow, their resentment was at an end, and hatred less violent; that the truly wise seldom their love began to return; they wished the fiddle-court romantic friendships with the good, and case away, but both had too much spirit to begin. avoid, if possible, the resentment even of the wickOne night, however, as they were both lying awake ed : every moment gives him fresh instances that with the detested fiddle-case between them, the the bonds of friendship are broken if drawn too husband happened to sneeze, to which the wife, as closely, and that those whom he has treated with is usual in such cases, bid God bless him: “Ay disrespect more than retaliate the injury; at length, but,” returns the husband, “woman, do you say therefore, he is obliged to confess, that he has dethat from your heart?” “Indeed I do, my poor clared war upon the vicious half of mankind, withNicholas," cries his wife; “I say it with all my out being able to form an alliance among the virheart.” “If so, then,” says the husband, "we had tuous to espouse his quarrel. as good remove the fiddle-case."
Our book-taught philosopher, however, is now too far advanced to recede; and though poverty be the just consequence of the many enemies his con
duct has created, yet he is resolved to meet it withLETTER LXVII.
out shrinking. Philosophers have described povertv in most charming colours, and even his vanity is
touched in thinking, that he shall show vi Würld, Books, my son, while they teach us to respect in himself, one more example of patience, fortitude, the interests of others, often make us unmindful of and resignation. “Come, then, O Poverty! for our own; while they instruct the youthful reader what is there in thee dreadful to the Wise? Temto grasp at social happiness, he grows miserable in perance, Health, and Frugality walk in thy train; detail
, and, attentive to universal harmony, often Cheerfulness and Liberty are ever thy companions. forgets that he himself has a part to sustain in the Shall any be ashamed of thee, of whom Cincin concert
. I dislike therefore the philosopher who natus was not ashamed? The running brook, the describes the inconveniencies of life in such pleas- herbs of the field, can amply satisfy nature; man ing colours that the pupil grows enamoured of dis- wants but litre, nor that little long.* Come, then, tress, longs to try the charms of poverty, meets it O Poverty! while kings stand by, and gaze with without dread, nor fears its inconveniencies till he admiration at the true philosopher's resignation." severely feels them.
The goddess appears; for Poverty ever comes A youth who had thus spent his life among at the call; but, alas! he finds her by no means the books, new to the world, and unacquainted with charming figure books and his warm imagination man but by philosophic information, may be con- had painted. As when an Eastern bride, whom sidered as a being whose mind is filled with the her friends and relations had long described as a vulgar errors of the wise ; utterly unqualified for a model of perfection, pays her first visit, the longing journey through life, yet confident of his own skill bridegroom lifts the veil to see a face he had never in the direction, he sets out with confidence, blunders on with vanity, and finds himself at last
• Our author has repeated this thoughnearly in the sanna undone.
words, in his Hermit: He first has learned from books, and then lays it down as a maxim, that all mankind are virtuous
Then, pilgrim, turn, thy cares forego; or vicious in excess; and he has been lung taught Man wants but little here below, to detest vice, and love virtue : warm, therefore, in! Nor wants that little long.
From the Same.
All eartn-born cares are wrong:
seen before ; but instead of a countenance blazing! In other countries, the physician pretends to with beauty like the sun, he beholds deformity cure disorders in the lump; the same doctor who shooting icicles to his heart; such appears Poverty combats the gout in the toe, shall pretend to preto her new entertainer; all the fabric of enthusiasm scribe for a pain in the head, and he who at one is at once demolished, and a thousand miseries rise time cures a consumption, shall at another give up on its ruins, while Contempt with pointing drugs for a dropsy. How absurd and ridiculous! finger, is foremost in the hideous procession. this is being a mere jack-of-all-trades. Is the ani.
The poor man now finds, that he can get no mal machine less complicated than a brass pin? kings to look at him while he is eating; he finds, Not less than ten different hands are required to that in proportion as he grows poor, the world make a pin; and shall the body be set right by one turns its back upon him, and gives him leave to single operator? act the philosopher in all the majesty of solitude. The English are sensible of the force of this It might be agreeable enough to play the philoso- reasoning; they have, therefore, one doctor for the pher while we are conscious that mankind are eyes, another for the toes; they have their sciatica spectators; but what signifies wearing the mask of doctors, and inoculating doctors; they have one sturdy contentment, and mounting the stage of doctor who is modestly content with securing them restraint, when not one creature will assist at the from bug-bites, and five hundred who prescribe for exhibition! Thus is he forsaken of men, while the bite of mad dogs. his fortitude wants the satisfaction even of self-ap- The learned are not here retired, with vicious plause; for cither he does not feel his present modesty, from public view; for every dead wall is calamities, and that is natural insensibility, or he covered with their names, their abilities, their disguises his feelings, and that is dissimulation. amazing cures, and places of abode. Few patients
Spleen now begins to take up the man : not dis- can escape falling into their hands, unless blasted tinguishing in his resentments, he regards all man- by lightning, or struck dead with some sudden diskind with detestation, and, commencing man-hater, order. It may sometimes happen, that a stranger seeks solitude to be at liberty to rail.
who does not understand English, or a countryIt has been said, that he who retires to solitude man who can not read, dies, without ever hearing is either a beast or an angel. The censure is too of the vivifying drops, or restorative electuary; severe, and the praise unmerited; the discontented but, for my part, before I was a week in town, I being, who retires from society, is generally some had learned to bid the whole catalogue of disorders good-natured man, who has begun life without ex- defiance, and was perfectly acquainted with the perience, and knew not how to gain it in his in- names and the medicines of every great man, or tercourse with mankind. Adieu.
great woman of them all.
But as nothing pleases curiosity more than anecdotes of the great, however minute or trifling, I
must present you, inadequate as my abilities are to LETTER LXVIII.
the subject, with some account of those personages
who lead in this honourable profession. From Lien Chi Altangi to Fum Hoam, First President of the Ceremonial Academy at Pekin, in China.
The first upon the list of glory is Doctor Richard
Rock, F. U. N. This great man, short of stature, I FORMERLY acquainted thee, most grave Fum, is fat, and waddles as he walks. He always wears with the excellence of the English in the art of a white three-tailed wig, nicely combed, and frizhealing. The Chinese boast their skill in pulses, zed upon each cheek, sometimes he carries a cane, the Siamese their botanical knowledge, but the but a hat never. It is indeed very remarkable, that English advertising physicians alone, of being the this extraordinary personage should never wear a great restorers of health, the dispensers of youth, hat, but so it is, he never wears a hat. He is and the insurers of longevity. I can never enough usually drawn at the top of his own bills, sitting in admire the sagacity of this country for the en- his arm chair, holding a little bottle between his couragement given to the professors of this art: finger and thumb, and surrounded with rotten with what indulgence does she foster up those of teeth, nippers, pills, packets, and gallipots. No her own growth, and kindly cherish those that man can promise fairer nor better than he; for, as come from abroad! Like a skilful gardener, she he observes, “Be your disorder never so far gone, invites them from every foreign climate to herself. be under no uneasiness, make yourself quite easy : Here every great exotic strikes root as soon as im- I can cure you." ported, and feels the genial beam of favour; while The next in fame, though by some reckoned of the mighty metropolis, like one vast munificent equal pretensions, is Doctor Timothy Franks, F. dunghill
, receives them indiscriminately to her O. G. H., living in a place called the Old Bailey, breast, and supplies cach with more than native As Rock is remarkably squab, his great rival nourishment.
Franks is as remarkably tall. He was born in the