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Year chases year, decay pursues decay,
Still drops some joy from with’ring life away;
New forms arise, and diff'rent views engage,
Superfluous lags.the vetran on the stage,
Till pitying Nature signs the last release,
And bids afflicted worth retire to peace.

Vanity of Human Wishes.

AGE AND YOUTH. The notions of the old and young are like liqnors of different gravity and texture, which never can unite.

Rambler, vol. 2. p. 89.

In youth it is common to measure right and wrong by the opinion of the world, and in age to act without any measure but interest, and to lose shame without substituting virtue,

ibid. vol. 4, p. 198. Such is the condition of life that something is always wanting to happiness. In youth we have warm hopes, which are soon blasted by rashness and negligence, and great designs, which are defeated by inexperience. In age we have knowLodge and prudence, without spirit to exert, or otives to prompt them: we are able to plan

emes and regulate measures, but have not time SC" aining to bring them to completion.

Ibid. . ' ARTS. art cannot be taught but by its proper - but it is not always necessary to teach

motive schemes reinaini

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Every art is improved by the emulation of competitors. Those who make po advances towards excellence, may stand as warnings against faults. Preliminary Discourse to the London Chronicle, p. 155.

ANGER. · Mén of a passionate temper are sometimes not without understanding or virtue, and are therefore not always treated with the severity which their neglect of the ease of all about them might justly provoke. They have obtained a kind of prescription for their fölly, and are considerelt by their companions as under a predominant fluence that leaves them not master of their conduct or language, as acting without conscioasness, and rushing into inischief with a mist beim · fore their eyes. They are therefore 'pitied rather

than censured, and their sallies are passed over as the involuntary blows of a man ugitated by the spasms of a convulsion, - ::: ...id

It is surely, not to be observed without. in dignation, that men may be found of minds mean enough to be satisfied with this treatment; wretches who are proud to obtain the privilege. of niadmen, and can without shame, and withont regret, consider themselves as receiving hours ly pardons froin their compavions, and giving thein continual opportunities of exercising their patience and boasting their clemency. ...

Rambler, vol. 1, po 676 It is told by Prior, in a panegyric on the Duke of Dorset, that his servants used to put themselves in his way when he was angry, because he was sure to recompense them for any indiynities which he made them suffer. This is the round of

a passionate

a passionate man's life-he contracts debts when "he is furious, which his virtue (if he has virtue) obliges him to discharge at the return of his reason. He spends his time in outrage and acknowledgment, injury and reparation.

Ibid. p. 65. Nothing is more despicable, or more miserable," than the old age of a passionate man. When the vigour of youth fails him, and his amusements pall with frequent repetition, his occasional rage sinks, by decay of strength, into peevishness; that peevishness, for want of novelty and variety, becomes habitual ; the world falls off from around him; and he is left, as Homer exprésses it, to devour his own heart in solitude and contempt.

Ibid. p. 66. The maxim which Periander, of Corinth, one of the seven sages of Greece, left as a memorial of his knowledge and benevolence, was, “ Be master of your anger." He considered anger as the great disturber of human life; the chief enemy both of public happiness and private tranquil. lity, and thought he could not lay on posterity a stronger obligation to'reverence his memory, than by leaving them a salutary caution against this outrageous passion. Pride is undoubtedly the origin of anger; but pride, like every other passion, if it once breaks loose from reason, counteracts its own purposes. A passionate man, upon the re. view of his day, will have very few gratificari.. ons to offer to his pride, when he has considered how his outrages were caused, why they were borne, and in what they are likely to end at last.

' Rambler, vol. 1, p. 60 & 62.


· There is an inconsistency in Anger, very conmon in life; which is, that those who are vexed to impatience, are angry to see others less disturbed than themselves; but, when others begin to rave, they immediately see in them what they could not find in themselves, the deformity and folly of useless rage.

Notes upon Shakespeare, vol. 6, p. 372.

AVARICE. . It is no defence of a covetous man, to instance his inattention to his own affairs--as if he might not at once be corrupted by avarice and idle


Life of Sheffield. Few listen without a desire of conviction to those who advise them to spare their money.

Idler, vol. I, p. 144. Avarice is always poor, but poor by her own fault.

Ibid. vol. 2, p. 126.

Avarice is an 'uniform and tractable vice; other intellectual distempers are different in different constitutions of mind. That which soothes the pride of one, will offend the pride of another; but to the favour of the covetous bring money, and nothing is denied. :

Prince of Abyssinia, p. 232. ..., ' THE ANCIENTS.' Such is the general conspiracy of human nature against contemporary merit, that if we had inherited from antiquity enough to afford employment for the laborious, and amusement for


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the idle, what room would have been teft for modern genius or modern industry ? Almost every subject would have been pre-occupied, and every style would have been fixed by a precedent from which few would have ventured to depart: every writer would have had a rival whose superiority was already acknowledged, and to whose fame his work would, even before it was seen, be marked out for a sacrifice.

.. i Idler, vol. 2, p. 776 · Antiquity, like every other quality that atracts the notice of mankind, has votaries that reverence it, not from reason, but from prejudice. Some seem to admire indiscriminately whatever has been long preserved, without considering that time has sometimes 'co-operated with chance. All, perhaps, are more willing to honour past than present excellence; and the mind contemplates genius through the shades of age, as the eye' surveys the suu through artificial opacity. 1:19.5

Preface to Shakspeare, p. 95. ....

6 ADVERSITY. .. i .- Adversity has ever been considered as the state

in which a man'most easily becomes acquainted with himself; and this effect it must produce, by withdrawing flatterers, whose business it is to hide our weaknesses from us, or by giving loose to malice, and licence to reproach; or, at least, by cutting off those pleasures which called us away from meditation on our own conduct, and repressing that pride which too easily persuades us that we mesit whatever we enjoy. 178. - ,: ?

Rambles, vol. I, p. 172. ... ... .. . : "


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