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Flattery “ Be pleased, Sir, to repeat some other efforts in the greater kinds of poetry, (says Don Quixote to the young student,) for I would thoroughly feel the pulse of your admirable genius.” Is it not (exclaims here the author) excellent that Don Lorenzo should be delighted to hear himself praised by Don Quixote, whom he looked upon as a madman? O force of flattery, how far dost thou extend, and how wide are the bounds of thy pleasing jurisdiction ! Cevantes seems here to be apprehensive lest some critics might accuse him of ascribing uncommon folly to' the student Don Lorenzo.

Abuse of Words.
Words are certainly the sport of fancy and
wayward intellects, if they are what the learned
Wollaston defines them to be -

Words are (so Wollaston defines)
Of our ideas merely signs.

Lloyd's Fable of the Faun and Satyr. And much sport is made of them, and much controversy excited by their use and abuse. Lawyers multiply them beyond any possibility of ideas having signs for them; punsters play at battledore and shuttle-cock with them; logicians put

them into fetters; rhetoricians dress them up as gaily as chimney-sweepers of May-day; and lastly, grave commentators torture and murder thein, From slashing Bentley down to piddling Theobalds. Pope.

A Polite Commentator.

We are surprised, in reasoning à priori, that persons conversant with writers eminent for their polished diction and liberal thought should not acquire something of these properties from their favourite authors. A French critic, on reading M. d'Ablancourt's translation of Plutarch, and finding it done with more elegance than fidelity, used to call it un galant homme, the faithless Charmer.

The Difference between Mathematical and

Moral Reasoning. Though the distinction in the mental operation of these sciences may be manifest to those who have deeply considered their different subjects, yet a familiar illustration of it may suit many readers. The student in mathematics is like the learner on the harpsicord; be sits down to an instrument whose tones are made ready to his hand. The student in the science of morals is like a young artist on the violin ; he must make his own notes, and play them too. No wonder, then, that many moral philosophers now and then slur their theories, or are out of tune in playing them.

Geometry. It is a remarkable yet very true observation of Quintilian, lib. i. Institut. cap. 13, on the study of geometry,

" The use of this science commences long before the student is quite master of it. In acquiring it, the scholar finds his faculty of reflecting kept in continual exercise, and his habits of attention continually rendered more steady and fixed.” This last recommendation of this science should not be passed over, as the habit of attention is the most difficult of all our intellectual faculties to be acquired. It is the mother of memory, and the best nurse of intellect. Without this useful assistant, all toil fails of its end.

Tone and Action. Much has been written upon the gesticulation of orators in Greece and Rome, and we hear frequently of action, action,” as the most essential parts of ancient eloquence; but the effects of tone and gesture are more plainly described by the following anecdote in Plutarch: “ A certain man called upon Demosthenes, and related at large what blows, &c. he had received from his anta

gonist, ' Sure,' said the orator coolly, thou hast received nothing of all these things thou complainest. of.' Upon which, the man, straining his voice, and crying out aloud, · How, Demosthenes, have I suffered nothing ?' • Ah! now,' replied the orator, I hear the voice of one who has been beaten and injured.''

On his first entrance at the bar, Cicero had taken lessons of tone and action from Æsop the player, who was remarkable for the violence of his gesture. In the character of Atreus, meditating revenge on Thyestes, he was so transported, that with his truncheon he smote a servant hastily crossing the stage, and laid him dead at bis feet. In his latter days Cicero blamed all violent action, and deriding the speakers of his time for being so poisy in their utterance, said it was want of ability to speak that made them bawl; as lame men, who cannot walk, get on horseback.

History. Till an historian can be found, who has not conceived prejudices in favour of one particular form of government; who is not influenced by peculiar opinions in philosophy or religion; who writes under no bookseller or other patron, or for love of lucre or fame; little heed can be given to the pages of history. Truth is not to be sought in the

eloquence of Gibbon and Raynal, or to be expected in the sarcastic wit of Voltaire, or in the acute but see-saw opinions of Hume. He who writes with any motive but that of the love of truth, belies his office; misleads his readers; disgraces his talents; and subjects himself to the sarcasm on the Greek historians,

Quod Græcia mendax
Audet in historia.


It was

An obscure Sentence in the Greek Language.

a Greek saying, that no man could be accounted happy till his death. The plain construction of this would be, that only death was his happy state; but that this cannot be the meaning i obvious, as no happiness can be ascribed to a state of non-existence. The saying may be explained by considering human life as a sum composed of many evils and many pleasures. Now the balance could not be cast, till the articles of the account had been closed by death, the end of all accounts.


A Legal Sentiment obscurely expressed. When it is said in common parlance that the jury are judges of the law as well as of the fact, a man who trusts to grammatical phraseology as his interpreter of ideas conveyed by words,

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