« PoprzedniaDalej »
those, whom we wish to awaken and allure. A very concise moral or grave essay, which we may occasionally introduce, shall appear, we pledge ourselves, in a garb so elegant, as the Episcop ins may say, or so neat as the Quakers may say—that even rambling Impulse, giddy Indiscretion and desultory Heedlessness may pause, for a moment, to profit by a serious lucubration. The following essay will not be contemptuously slighted even by men of business and the world; not merely because it is not inelegantly written, but because it forcibly vindicates the utility of an habit to which we are largely indebted for more than a moiety of this world's comfort and consequence.
Industry is indispensably necessary to the well being of man. To industry we are indebted for all the necessaries, the comforts and conveniencies of life. By industry nations are enriched and aggrandized; and without it they are sunk in penury and barbarism. Industry may, in general, be denominated the strenuous application of our active faculties whether inental or corporeal to that end for which they were designed, or to wliich God intended them to be subservient. Thus the words industry and industrious are commonly used by us in a good sense; we do not call a wicked man industrious, who employs his active powers in a direction diametrically opposite to that of his duty; for, in this case, we might call every thies, or cheat who is vigilant in prosecuting his nefarious purposes, industrious. But we justly call a man industrious who is diligent in his proper calling; who spares no pains, and omits no excrtions, in executing the particular duties which are annexed to his situation in life. We call a tradesman industrious who pays a strict and unremitting attention to his business; a labourer industrious who, instead of wasting his time in gayety and dissipation, is constantly at his work, when he is not prevented by sickness or other infirmities. And, as we apply the praise of industry to the right use of the mental as well as the corporeal faculties, he is industrious, who is diligent in those studies, which are suited to his station. The divine, who reads intenscly the works of the greater theologians, and who composes eloquent homilies; the lawer who laboriously studies his precedents and then makes the forum vocal with the tones of reason and of rhetoric; the physician who meditates Cel. sus and frequents many a sick chamber; the lexicographer, who piles word upon word with all an architect's assiduity; even the Editor of a Journal, if he fulfil his humble task, avith or with
out straw, all, all are entitled to the commendation of Diligence, and are honoured by mankind, in proportion to their exertions.
To be truly industrious it is necessary that we not only strenuously exercise our faculties, but that we exercise them to that end and for those purposes, which are suited to our condition in life, for every situation in which we are placed has its proper relative duties, which we cannot morally be called industrious if we do not use the most assiduous endeavours to fulfil. A man whose circumstances are such as to render it necessary for him to seek support for himself and his family by the labour of his hands and the sweat of his brow, cannot be called industrious, if instead of employing his active powers in manual labour, he be active only in roaming about the country, in frequenting fairs, going where any diversion calls or any frolic invites. In the same manner, he, who is placed in such a situation that. it behoves him to labour to communicate instruction to others cannot morally be termed industrious, if, instead of employing his time in the acquisition of knowledge, and the improvement of his mind, he consume it in corporeal exercise, sordid pursuits and frivolous diversions. True industry, such as God requires, and such as is most conducive to the well being of society, is the vigorous exercise of our active powers, in those objects and those pursuits, which are most suited to our situation in life. Industry, therefore, means constant, diurnal, unremitting exertion in some particular pursuit. True industry, which is morally acceptable to God, and most conducive to the interests of man, will seldom be found compatible with that volatility of mind, which is constant only in inconstancy, which is continually shifting from one occupation to another, without employing any patient or persevering industry in any. Industry, therefore, in the way in which it is here considered, must often be disagreeable and ad. verse to the disposition of the individual; for it requires him to be active against his inclination. Men often find most pleasure in those desultory and ever varying employments, whether of the mind or body, whether confined to literary studies, or mechanical operations which, however grateful they may be to the individual by the variety, which is ever supplying fresh stimuli to attention, or fresh incitements to curiosity, do by no means VOL. v.
tend so much to the good of society or to our own improvement, as those more fixed employments, which are followed with more perseverance, and from which the person is not continually de. viating to go in search of extraneous pleasures or amusements. This persevering industry, whether of mind, or body, as far as it opposes the wayward inclinations of the individual, will often be found attended with vexation; but our conduct is then most praise worthy, when we act in conformity to God's will, though it may happen to be contrary to our natural inclinations.
FOR THE PORT FOLIO-MY BROWN STUDIES.
In the following imitation of a favourite author, one may easily discern all the spirit of the original. Neither Francis, nor Duncomb, nor Lord Chatham, nor Dryden himself has ever in the form of free paraphrase, exhibited so much of the spirit and genius of Horace. The softness, tenderness, and delicacy of the first stanzas; the vivid description in the third and fourth, the arch allusion in the fifth to the animal Andrews, as des
cribed by Fielding; the whimsical simile, in the sixth, . which is of the very essence of Genius, the caution
and the description in the closing lines are all of a character so intimately allied with the spirit of the Roman bard, that we should be ashamed, if we did not strive to perpetuate one of the luckiest imitations of his glorious original.
HORACE IN LONDON-BOOK III. ODE VII.
Quid files, Asterie, &c.
TO A LOVING WIII.
Jay, Fanny, check that falling tear;
The northern circuit over,
And live with thee in clover
Though forc'd from town to town to rove,
For thee he wears the willow; True, as the mild, mate widow'd dove, And nightly, with the tear of love,
Bedews a sleepless pillow.
Lais, meanwhile, with flirting skill,
Would fain with thee change places, With Cupid's shaft attacks him still, Hoping to clasp thy constant Will,
In contraband embraces.
With many a sad and sly remark,
She moves him to compassion; Tells him of Osmyn, Moorish spark, Thrown in a dungeon, deep and dark,
For slighting Zara's passion
She tells of Joseph Andrews, dead
To pleasure, senseless looby!
The love-sick Lady Booby.
Vain her endeavours to create,
A matrimonial riot!
And eats and drinks in quiet,
But, Fanny, pray beware of Jack,
For Gallantry his trade is,
Than suits with married ladies.
Though none like him can dance a reel,
Head, knees and elbows shaking,
Ice bending, Sabbath breaking.
Shut, shut your door, at eight o'clock,
Nor walk down Piccadilly: Firm, as the surge repelling rock,
His rude assailing passion mock,
And think on absent Willy.
Of all the odes of Horace, we remember, with juvenile enthusiasm, that the subject of the following perfect parody, had, and deserved, all our praise. It is impossible for us to enhance the merits of the original; and, in justice to the recent imitator, we must declare that if he and Horace had met at the same banquet with Augustus, the monarch would have pronounced them par nobile fratrum!
BOOK I. ODE XVII.
Velox amoenun Saepe Lnicretilem, &c.
The wood nymphs, crown'd with rernal flowers.
And sport in gambols antic
A region more romantic.
Green pastures, girt with pendant rock,
Which through the scene meanders.
In sylvan beauty charm the eyes,
Of misery or anger;
Or trumpet's brazen clangour.
If sleeping Echo start to mark
Or sounds of early labour;
The shephrd's pipe and tabor.