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çular occasions, and especially the case of going abroad, where you wish to be admitted among genteel strangers, or even well treated by the common people; I am apt to believe, that a polite address and engaging conversation will, with a plain bat becoming habit, seldom fail to procure both notice and respect in every company where a fenfible man would desire to be the object of either. On this article, indeed, persons of condition pofsess, when they are known, a fingular advantage : they may often go plainer than many of their inferiors. Their rank is sufficient to recommend them in most places, with very little aslistance from other circumstances, as far at least as exterior regard extends. To say the truth, it frequently excites in vulgar fpirits an admiration, and a reverence, 'merely for its own fake, which are due only to superior virtue and capacity. Meanwhile I am always pleased in a certain degree, when I observe people of station disposed to dress as often as possible with
with simplicity; and yet more when their deportment is of a piece : nor should it be forgotten, that many of them are agreeably distinguished by their ease, their unassuming manners, and their unoftentatious appearance. What pity but the same perfons were always equally marked out by their principles, by their talents, and a. laudable imitation of their illustrious and truly noble ancestors !
It is not to be denied, that numbers who have neither quality to justify at times extraordinary splendor, nor affluence to support it, are yet more devoted to show, and the luxuries usually attendant on it, than many who are much above them. The extravagance, indeed, which spreads like wild-fire through the lower walks of society, and produces such havock of fortunes and of morals, struck at first every sober eye with astonishment and grief, but is become now so common, and consequently so familiar, as to make very little impression-save on those who personally
fuffer by it. On what multitudes has ruin, like a deluge, rushed from this source !
. I know it has been repeatedly and confidently pleaded, that the unusual prevalence of public diverfions, which the present effeminate system of nurture concurs with other causes to promote, is a mighty advantage to trade and manufactures. Were those diversions frequented only by such as could well afford the requisite expence, the argument might hold. But is there not ground to suspect, that the epidemical pasfion for costly assemblies and other inodila entertainments, beyond the limits of real ability, is the chief occasion of the distress incurred by so many persons who furnish the necessary preparations, and of course by their connexions, as well as the individuals and families immediately concerned ?
Let us suppofe, however, that manufactures and trade were on the whole gainers, and that the persons who indulge without controul to fuch pleasures were not deep losers in their pecuniary interests, which it is yet certain they often are, not only from the immoderate fums actually expended, but from neglects of business, habits of indolence, and a growing propension to every kind of prodigality; I will still asky Were not the community in general happier, much happier, without this excess? Or will any reflecting man, who is conversant in history, and friendly to virtue, maintain that opulence or grandeur, at whatever height they may arrive, can compensate to a nation the loss of its good order, wife economy, and masculine spirit ?
To proceed in our survey; the Effeminacy of the times, though extreme, will furprise us yet less if we next attend a little to the style in which the majority of our young gentlemen are bred, after their nurses and mothers have done all in their power to render them infignificant. How feldom are they, when placed under the care of masters, instructed in any thing more important or valuable than the means
of knowledge, or the forms of business, with a few exterior and subaltern accomplishments, of which the main intention is to confer a little smartness and gentility! How few teachers, in comparison, have the inclination, or the talents, to “ prin“ ciple them in Virtue's book;” to indame them with the love of truth, of temperance, of divine philofophy; to exalt and direct their aims for life, and for immortality; to animate their bosoms with those benevolent affections, and liberal views, which comprehend the whole circuit of social good, of a commonweal, of universal humanity, and which, when afterwards called forth in different situations, will impart a luftre to existence, by proving the sources. of extensive usefulness, and the ingredients. of a conspicuous character! To train. young minds in this manner, supposing them capable of such culture, what various attainments and generous ideas are requisite! what extent of erudition, what powers. of persuasion, what insight into the heart, what unwearied assiduity and unextinguish