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company, some scatterings of Seneca and Tacitus, whicis are good upon all occasions. If he reads any thing in the morning, it comes up all at dinner; and as long as that lasts, the discourse is his. He is a great plagiary of tavern wit, and comes to sermons only that he may talk of Austin. His parcels are the meer scrapings from company, yet he complains at parting what time he has Jost. He is wondrously capricious to seem a judgment, and listens with a sower attention to what he understands not. He talks much of Scaliger, and Casaubon, and the Jesuits, and prefers some unheard of Dutch name before them all. He has verses to bring in upon these and these hints, and it shall go hard but he will wind in his opportunity. He is critical in a language he cannot conster, and speaks seldom under Arminius in divinity. His business and retirement and caller away is his study, and he protests no delight to it comparable. He is a great nomenclator of authors, which he has read in general in the catalogue, and in particular in the title, and goes seldom so far as the dedication. He never tall of any thing but learning, and learn all from talk ing. Three encounters with the same men pump him, and then he only puts in or gravely says nothing. He has taken pains to be an ass, though not to be a scholar, and is at length discovered and laughed at.-Bishop Earle.
MCXIII. When you set about composing, it may be necessary for your ease, and better distillation of wit, to put on your worst clothes, and the worse the better; for an author, like a limb will yield the better for having a rag about him: besides that I have observed a gardener cut the outward rine of a tree, (which is the surtout of it) to make it bear well: and this is a natural account of the usual poverty of poets, and is an argument, why wits, of all men living, ought to be ill clad. I have al. ways a sacred veneration for any one I observe to be a little out of repair in his person, as supposing him either a poet or philosopher; because the richest minerals are
ever found under the most ragged and withered surfaces of the earth.- Swift's Advice to a young Poet.
Justice painted blind,
and truth; the judge, determine of it;
MCXV. Story-telling is not an art, but what we call a « knack;" it doth not so much subsist upon wit, as upon humour; and I will add that it is not perfect without proper gesticulations of the body, which naturally attend such merry emotions of the mind. I know very well that a certain gravity of countenance sets some stories off to advantage, where the hearer is to be surprised in the end; but this is by no means a general rule; for it is frequently convenient to aid and assist by cheerful looks and whimsical gesticulations. I will yet go further, and affirm that the success of a story very often depends upon the make of the body, and the formation of the features of him who relates it. --Swift.
MCXVI. When a man wants or comes short of an entire and accomplished virtue, our defects may be supplied by forgiveness, since the forgiving of evil deeds in others amounteth to no less than virtue in us; and therefore, it may be not unaptly called the paying our debts with another man's money.--Lord Herbert.
MCXVII. Nothing is so pregnant as cruelty; so multifarious, so rapid, so ever-teeming a mother, is unknown to the animal kingdom; each of her experimens provokes another and refines upon the last: though always progressive, yet always remote from the end. Lavater.
Butler. MCXIX. The first minister of state has not so much business in public, as a wise man has in private: if the one have little leisure to be alone, the other has less leisure to be in company; the one has but part of the affairs of one nation, the other all the works of God and nature under his consideration.--Cowley.
MCXX. It is no very uncommon thing in the world to meet with men of probity; there are likewise a great many men of honour to be found. Men of courage, men of sense, and men of letters, are frequent: but a true fine gentle. man is what one seldom sees. He is properly a compound of the various good qualities that embellish mankind. As the great poet animates all the different parts of learning by the force of his genius, and irradiates all the compass of his knowledge by the lustre and brightness of his imagination; so all the great and solid perfections of life appear in the finished gentleman, with a beautiful gloss and varnish; every thing he says or does is accompanied with a manner, or rather a charm, that draws the admiration and good-will of every beholder.—Steele.
Here's musick În this bag shall wake her, though she had drank opium, Or eaten mandrakes. Let commanders talk Of cannons to make breaches; give but fire To this petard, it shall blow open, madam, The iron doors of a judge, and make you entrance; When they (let them do what they can) with all Their mines, their culierius, and basilicos, Shall cool their feet without; this being the picklock That never fails.
MCXXII. It is as usual to see a young serving man an old beggar, as to see a light horse first from the great saddle of a nobleman come to the hackney coach, and at last die in drawing a carre. But the good master is not like the cruell hunter in the fable, who beat his old dogge, because his toothlesse mouth let go the game: he rather imitates the noble nature of our Prince Henry, who took order for the keeping of an old English mastiffe, which had made a lion run away.--Fuller.
Thou art more lovely and more temperate:
And summer's lease hath all too short a date:
And often is his gold complexion dimm’d:
By chance, or nature's changing course untrimm’d;
Nor lose possession of that fair thou owest;
When in eternal lines to time thou growest:
Shakspeare-to Mr. W. H.
MCXXIV. As nothing is more natural than for every one to desire to be happy, it is not to be wondered at that the wisest men in all ages have spent so much time to discover what happiness is, and wherein it chiefly consists. An eminent writer, named Varro, reckons up no less than two hundred and eighty-eight different opinions upon this subject; and another, called Lucian, after having given us a long catalogue of the notions of several philosophers, endeavours to show the absurdity of all of them, without establishing any thing of his own.-Budgell.
MCXXV. An alderman is a peer of the city, and a member of their upper house; who, as soon as he arrives at so many thousand pounds, is bound by the charter to serve the public with so much understanding, what shift soever he make to raise it, and wear a chain about his neck like a rein-deer, or in default to commute, and make satisfaction in ready money, the best reason of the place; for which he has the name only, like a titular prince, and is an alderman-extraordinary. But if his wife can prevail with him to stand, he becomes one of the city supporters; and like the unicorn in the king's arms, wears a chain about his neck very right-worshipfully.
When he sits as a judge in his court, he is absolute, and uses arbitrary power; for he is not bound to understand what he does, nor render an account why he gives judgment on one side rather than another; but his will is sufficient to stand for his reason, to all intents and purposes. He does no public business without eating and drinking; and when he comes to be lord-mayor he does not keep a great house, but a very great house-warming for a whole year; for though he invites all the companies in the city, he does not treat them, but they club to entertain him, and pay the reckoning beforehand. His fur gown makes him look a great deal bigger than he is, like the feathers of an owl; and when he pulls it off, he looks as if he were fallen away, or like a rabbit, had his skin pulled off.—Butler.
MCXXVI He that first started the doctrine, that bravery was the best defence against a knave, was but an ill teacher, advising us to commit wickedness to secure ourselves. But for such as presume upon our modesty, to keep them off with their own weapons, and not gratify their unreasonable impudence with an easy compliance, it is but just and good, and the duty of every honest man. Neither is it a hard matter to put off some mean and ordinary people, who will be apt to prove troublesome to you in