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duct ordinary business; and therefore persons who are nurtured in office do admirably well, as long as things go on in their common order. When the Ligh roads are broken up, and the waters out, when a new and troubled scene is opened, and the file affords no precelent, then it is that a greater knowledge of mankind, and a far more extensive comprelension of things, is requisite than ever office gare, or than office can give.” To these observations let us add, that personal courage is seidon found amidst the habits of service ; and in public danger, that quality most wanted is not there to be sought, wherein, as the poet describes such a state,
" Rich men look sad, and ruffians dance and leap."
Richard II. scene 6.
The Retort Valiant, or Hints to Jokers.
An indifferent author, but of high self-value, described a person in company as
6 A reader “Of all such readings as were never read." The gentleman heard the accusation very plainly; and turning to his next neighbour, and looking at bis accuser, calmly replied, “ that gentleman is very much mistaken, I never read any of his publications."
Then leave to low buffoons, by custom bred,
Essay on Conversation, Dodsley's collect. vol. i,
Travellers. A true Englishman is often disgusted with the imported manners and the speeches of many of his countrymen, who have visited France and Italy. In the former, they ape the foreigner, and by their tongues disgrace themselves, by their preference of other nations to their own. My Lord Bacon very wisely guards young persons against this vice. and folly. “Let his travel rather appear in his discourse, than in his apparel and gesture; let him rather be advised in his answers, than forward to tell stories ; and let it appear that he doth not change his manners for those of foreign parts, but only in some flowers of that he hath learned abroad into the customs of his own country.” We find great truth in the following picture of a traveller, by a satiric poet in Queen Elizabeth's time.
This is that Colar, that from foreign lands
The reserve of silence is frequently the offspring of dulness and pride, and often the trait of conscious inability to command attention equal to its wishes. The former character did not escape
the notice of “nature's prime secretary.”
“ There are a sort of men, whose visages
Do cream and mantle like a standing pool,
“ Of wisdom,” &c. This reserve of the vain and foolish will remind the reader of a story of a poor but proud man, who always kept a strong lock on one of his largest chests, which at his decease was discovered to be empty.
Modern Composition and Oratory. The ultra-metaphorical style in writing and speaking, which is at present in vogue, cannot be described better, or more forcibly ridiculed, than by the following passage in Hudibras:
His ordinary rate of speech
The ridicule of this description is rendered more poignant when it applies to an ignorant man, as was the hero of Butler.
“ One of the greatest faults in this poet,” says Bishop Newton, in a note on this passage, “ is an excessive ostentation of learning.” The following passage proves that it was not always correct :
Anon, out of the earth a fabric huge
With golden architrave, Here this illustrious poet wrote without book, or he would have known that a pilaster is a flat square, projecting out of the walls; and over Doric pillars the plainest architrave was raised, as that was the simplest order of all the three.--Sec Essai sur l'Architecture, by Le P. L'Augier. A Paris, 1755.
Friendship. That which subsisted between Henry IV. of France and his Prime Minister Sully, conferred the greatest honour on both personages. The following Epitaph on the Duke de Sully is written with a classical brevity and elegance, which are not often seen in the poetry of the French :
Souverains, adorez la cendre
Ye Sovereigns all o'er Sully's grave
The following elegant Epitaph on
a Westminster Scholar will delight any classical readers who have either not seen it before, or have fora gotten it. Time is supposed to speak it, and who is represented by a small statue with a tablet in his hand, and is worthy of the classical taste of the lines which he recites.
Quid breves te delicias tuorum
Vulnere plangit !
En puer, vitæ pretium caduce,
Audies, clarus pietate, morum