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travels in the East, he hired a vessel to visit tlie Isle of Tenedos. His pilot, an old Greek, as they were sailing along, said, with some satisfaction, “ There 'twas that our fleet lay." Mr. Anson demanded what fleet? “ What feet! replied the old man, (a little piqued at the question ;) Why our fleet at the siege of Troy."--Harris's Philolog. Enquiri es, vol. ii.p. 326.
Singular Use of the Word Embrace. It is dangerous to sever a word, especially a verb, from its original combination, as it is in fact so altered as to become very awkward and ridiculous. To embrace an offer, an opportunity, or a proposition, are acknowledged and common phrases ; but we smile at the old steward wbo wrote to bis master that he was in pursuit of the purchasing some oxen; and that when be met some large, and fat ones, his Lordship might depend upon him that he would immediately embrace them.---Harris's Philolog. Enquiries, vol. i. p. 199.
A singular Anti-Climax.
Those who ascend too high may meet with sad falls. The Sophi of Persia is called a star, whose, crown is the sun, lord of the mountains Caucasus and Taurus, and of the four rivers Euphrates,
Tigris, Araxes, and Indus; the fountain of honour, the mirror of virtue, the rose of pleasure, and the nutmeg of delight.-See Howel's Letters.
Tobacco : an Anecdote from the Same Writer.
If one would try a pretty conclusion, how much smoke there is in a pound of tobacco, the ashes will tell him. Let a poand of tobacco be exactly weighed, and the ashes kept charily, and weigled afterwards; what is wanting of a pound weight in the ashes cannot be denied to have been smoke, which evaporated into air. I have heard that Sir Walter Raleigh won a wager of Queen Elizabeth on this nicety.
Conscience. This word is apt to mislead the individual, and to superinduce bad habits of hypocrisy. When a man pretends to hold a court.of conscience in his bosom, where he is judge and jury too, bis conduct requires looking after. “No man," says an eminent writer,* “ should be allowed, under the pretence of a liberty of conscience, to have no conscience at all.”
Mercy. We see daily instances of wha called niercy hel out to persons whose crimes are manifestly
Right Hon. Edm. Burke.
injurious to society, and from which much evil may accrue to others. Here tenderness of heart either prevails over the dictates of evidence or reason, or from the consideirng mercy withheld, whatever may be the case, as unjustly witbleld. But, as says the above-mentioned writer, “mercy is not in opposition to justice: it is an essential part of it, and as necessary in criminal cases, as cquity is in civil affairs to law." Our Immortal Bard hath spoken, with his usual powers of discrimination on mercy when justly or unjustly exercised
Mercy is not itself that oft looks so;
Measure for Measure.
A Parallel Case.'
Plutarch, in his life of Nicias, relates a circumstance of this commander, which will remind th reader of a similar one recorded of Oliver Cromwell, who seems to have resembled the Grecian in more points than one. “ He daily sacrificed to thể gods, and keeping a divine, or soothsayer, in his house, he pretended to be consulting always about the commonwealth ; whereas for the most part he enquired only of his private affairs, more especially
concerning his silver mines." “Nicias," adds his biographer, “is represented, by Thucydides, as a very superstitious man, and moped with godli
In other parts of his character he very much differed from the English usurper, for he seemed to be deficient in personal courage.
His great possessions,” continues Plutarch, "brought about him many bangers on of various descriptions, for he patronised those who could do hiin mischief, no less than those who deserved well of him.”Plutarch's Life of Nicias.
Taste for Medicine.
Among the most singular refuges from absolutely doing nothing which idleness regulated by whim flies to for temporary employment, is the habit of taking medicine. This propensity to think themselves ill, and knowing in nostrums, sometimes will run through a whole family, to the great benefit of the neighbouring apothecaries. Pope* relates a shrewd, though simple, observation of a country wench who lived in one of these families ; who said that she heartily “thanked God that she was not born a gentlewoman, and would not be one for all the world.”
* Letter to Miss Martha Blount,
That indiscriminate praise which some scholars, or rather pedants, bestow on the ancients, have led them to find beauties in the odes of Horace, where more inpartial readers wonld complain of irregularities and want of connection in the subject. A late writer, of taste and excellent sense, and who was himself a poet, has uttered the following strictures on some of the odes of Horace, that every sober reader will assent to.
“ In the ode, Laudabunt alii claram Rhodon aut Mytelenen, we meet with so striking a want of connection, that many have believed some of it lost. The style of the ode, 0 navis, referent in mare te novi, borders upon
the bombast; the ode to Fortune, though it has a splendid beginning, sinks in its progress ; the celebrated ode, Angustam anici pauperiem pati, falls off remarkably towards the end, and introduces a new subject, and foreign to the rest of the piece; and in the ode, Inclusam Danaen turris ahenea, we meet with some lines which are better suited to the Sermones."'-Disquisitions by Frank Sayers, M. D. 2d edit. Norwich, 1808.
Boswell's Life of Dr. Johnson. It seems wonderful (if wonder can reasonably be admitted in the history of man) that Boswell