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my own life, to which time and patience have given colours very different from those they wore upon their first appearance.
When men sink into despondency or break out into rage upon adversities and misfortunes, it is no proof that Providence lays a heavier burthen-upor them than they can bear, because it is not clear that they have exerted all the possible resources of the soul.
The passions may be humoured till they become our masters, as a horse may be pampered till he gets the better of his rider ; but early, discipline will prevent mutiny, and keep the helm in the hands of reason. If we put our children under restraint and correction, why should we, who are but children of a larger growth, be refractory and complain, when the Father of all things lays the wholesome correction of adversity on our heads ?
Amongst the fragments of Philemon the comic poet, there is part of a dialogue preserved between a master and his scrvant, whose names are not gi. ven, which falls in with the subject I am speaking of; these fragments have been collected from the works of the scholiasts and grammarians, and many of them have been quoted by the fathers of the Christian church, for the moral and pious maxims they contain ; I think the reader will not be displeased, if I occasionally, present him with some specimens from these remains of the Greek comedy, and, for the present, conclude my paper with the following translation : ,
Servant. 6 Whilst you live, Sir, drive away sorrow ; it is the worst company a man can keep.';.
Master. «Whilst I live, sirrah? why there is no living without it.?
Serrant. “Never tell me, Sir; the wounds of the mind are not to be healed by the tears of the eyes :
If they were, who would be without the medicine? They would be the best family physic in nature; and if nothing but moncy would buy them, you could not pay too dearly for the purchase. But alack-a-day, what do they avail ? Weep, or weep not, this stubborn world of ours will have its way ; sighing and groaning, take my word for it, is but labour lost.'
Master. Granted ! for its use I will not contend, nor can you, as I take it, dispute its necessity : it is as natural for the eyes to shed tears in affliction, as for a tree to drop its leaves in autumn.'.
Servant. • That I deny ; the necessity of evil I admit, but not the necessity of bewailing it. Mark how your maxims and mine differ; you meet mis. fortune in the way, I let misfortune meet me: there are too many evils in life that no man's wisdom can avoid ; but he is no wise man who multiplies too many by more: now my philosophy teaches me, that amongst all the evils you complain of, there is no evil so great as your complaint itself: why it drives a man out of his senses, out of his health, nay at last out of the world ; so shall it not me: if misfortune will come, I cannot help it, but if lamentation follows it, that is my fault; and a fool of his own making, my good master, is a fool indeed.'
Master. “Say you so, sirrah ? Now I hold your insensibility to be of the nature of a brute ; my feelings I regard as the prerogative of a man ; thus although we differ widely in our practice, each acts up to his proper character.'
*Servant. If I am of the nature of a brute, because I fear the gods and submit to their will, the gods forgive me! If it be the prerogative of a man, to say I will not bear misfortunes, I wil not submit to the decrees of the gods, let the gods answer that for themselves! I am apt to think it is no great mark of courage to despair, nor any sure proof of weakness to be content. If a man were to die of a elisappointment, how the vengeance does it come to pass that any body is left alive? You may, if you think well of it, counteract the designs of the gods, and turn their intended blessings into actual misfor.. tunes, but I do not think their work will be mended by your means ; you may, if you please, resent it with a high hand, if your mother, or your son, or your friend should take the liberty to die, when you wish them to live ; but to me it appears a patural event, which no man can keep off from his own person, or that of any other; you may, if you think it worth your while, be very miserable when this woman miscarries, or that woman is brought to bed; you may torment yourself because your mo. ther has a cough, or your mistress drops a tear ; in short, you may send yourself out of the world with sórrow, but I think it better to stay my time in it and be happy.'
| MENTIONED in my seventh paper that I had a card from Vanessa inviting me to a Feast of Reason. I confess I was very curious to know what the na. ture of this feast might be ; and having been since favoured with a second invitation, I shall take the liberty of relating what I saw and heard at that lady's assembly.
The celebrated Vanessa has been either a beauty, or a wit all her life long; and of course has a better
plea for vanity than falls to most women's share ; her vanity also is in itself more excusable for the pleasing colours it sometimes throws upon her cha. racter : it gives the spring to charity, good-nature, affability ; it makes her splendid, hospitable, face. tious ; carries her into all the circles of fine people, and crowds all the fine people into her's ; it starts a thousand whimsical.caprices that furnish employ. ment to the arts, and it has the merit of opening her doors and her purse to the sons of science; in short, it administers protection to all descriptions and de. grees of genius, from the manufacturer of a toothpick to the author of an epic poem : it is a vanity, that is a sure box at an author's first night, and a sure card at a performer's benefit ; it pays well for a dedication, and stands for six copies upon a sub. scriber's list. Vanessa in the centre of her own circle sits like the statue of the Athenian Minerva, incensed with the breath of philosophers, poets, painters, orators, and every votarist of art, science, or fine speaking. It is in her acadeniy, young noviciates try their wit and practise panegyric ; no one like Vanessa can break in a young lady to the poetics, and teach her Pegasus to carry a side-saddle: she can make a mathematician quote Pindar, a master in chancery write novels, or a Birmingham hardware man stamp rhymes as fast as buttons.
As I came rather before the modern hour of vi. siting, I waited some time in her room before any of the company appeared ; several new publica. tions on various subjects were lying on her table ; they were stitched in blue paper, and most of them fresh from the press ; in some she had stuck small scraps of paper, as if to mark where she had left off reading ; in others she had doubled down certain pages, seemingly for the same purpose. At last, à meagre little man with a most satirical countenance was ushered in, and took his seat in a corner of the room ; he eyed me attentively for some time through his spectacles, and at last accosted me in the following words: “You are looking at these books, Sir; I take for granted they are newly published. “I believe they are,' I replied. "I thought so,' says he. • Then you may depend upon it their authors will be here by and by ; you may always know what company you are to expect in this house by the books upon the table : it is in this way Va. nessa has got all her wit and learning, not by read. ing, but by making authors believe she reads their works, and by thus tickling their vanity she sends so many heralds into the world to cry up her fame to the skies; it is a very pretty finesse, and saves a world of time for better amusements.' lle had no sooner said this than Vanessa entered the room, and whilst I was making a most profound reverence, 1 beheld something approaching to me, which looked like columns and arches and porticos in the perspective of a playhouse scene; as I raised my eyes and examined it a little closer, I recognized the ruins of Palmyra embroidered in coloured silks upon Vanessa's petticoat. It was the first visit I had ever paid, and Vanessa not being ready with my name, I made a silent obeisance, and receiving a smile in return, retreated to my chair: my friend said a great many smart things upon the ruins of Palmyra, which Vanessa on her part contended to be a very proper emblem for an old woman in de. cay, who had seen better days; the wit replied, that instead of Palmyra it ought to have been Athens, and then she would have been equipped from head to foot in character. Vanessa smiled, but maintained the propriety of her choice, bidding him observe, that though she carried a city upon her back, that city all the world knew was planted