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. Every art is best taught by example. Nothing
contributes more to the cultivation of propriety, · than remarks on the works of those who have • most excelled.
Dissertation upon the Epitsphs of Pope, p. 303.
EMULATION. Where there is emulation, there will be vanity; and where there is vanity, there will be folly.
Life of Shenstone. Every man ought to endeavour at eminence, not by pulling others down, but by raising himself, and enjoy the pleasure of his own superiority, whether imaginary or real, without interrupting others in the same felicity. The philosopher may very justly be delighted with the extent of his views, and the artificer with the readiness of his hands; but let the one remember that without mechanical performances, refined speculation is an empty dream; and the other, that without theoretical reasoning, dexterity is little more than a brute instinct.
Rambler, vol. 1, P- 52. • Whatever is done skilfully, appears to be done with ease; and art, when it is once matured to habit, vanishes from observation. We are there. fore more powerfully excited to emulation by those who have attained the highest degree of excellence, and whom we can therefore with least reason hope to equal.
Ibid, vol. 3, p. 10r.
- EDUCATION. .: The knowledge of external nature, and of the sciences which that knowledge requires or ip
studes, is not the great or the frequent business tof the human mind. Whether we provide for action or conversation, whether we wish to be • useful or pleasing, the first requisite is the religious and moral knowledge of right and wrong. The next is an acquaintance with the history of mankind, and with those examples which may be said to embody truth, and prove by events the reasonableness of opinions. Prudence and justice are virtues and excellencies of all times and all places, We are perpetually moralists, but we are geometricians by chance. Our intercourse with intellectual nature is necessary, our speculations upon matter, are voluntary, and at leisure. ..
i Life of Milton. • Physical knowledge is of such raré emergence that one man may know another half his life without being able to estimate his skill in hy: drostatics or astronomy; but his moral and prů. dential character immediately appears. Those "authors-therefore, are to be read at school, that supply most axioms of prudence, most priñciples of moral truth, and most materials for conversation ; and these purposes are best served by poets, orators, and historians.. . . ... .. .. . lbide
It ought always to be steadily inculcated, that virtue is the highest proof of understanding, and the only solid basis of greatness, and that vice is the natural.consequence of narrow thoughts; that it begins in mistake, and ends in ignominy. "
Rambler, vol. , p.24. The general rule of consulting the genius for particular offices in life is of little use, unless we
are told how the genius can be known. If it is to be discovered only by experiment, life will be løst before the resolution can be fixed; if any other indications are to be found, they may perhaps be very easily discerned. At least, if to miscarry in the attempt 'be a proof of having mistaken the direction of the genius, men appear not less frequently deceived with regard to themselve , .than to others; and therefore no one bas much reason to complain that his life was planned out by his friendsyior to be confident thiát he should have had either more honour or happi. ness by being abandoned to the chance of his own fancy. ..) i inner
.. . neis ?!,. i. .
. . - Ibid. p. 120" » Many wonders are told of the Art of Educa.. tion, and the very early ages at which boys are conversant in theGreek and Latin tongues, under some preceptors. But those who tell, or receive, those stories, should consider, that nobody can be taught faster than he can learn. The speed of the best horseman must be limited by the power of his horse. Every man that has undertaken to instruct others, can tell what slow advances he has been able to make, and how · much patience it requires to recall vagrant inattention, to stimulate sluggish indifference, and to rectify absurd misapprehension. is
Life of Mikon. · It vas'the labour of Socrates, to turn philosophy from the study of nature to speculations upon life; but there have been, and are, other pre.
ceptors, who are turning off attention from life : to nature. They seem to think, that we are
placed here to watch the growth of plants, or the motion of the stars; but Socrates was rather of
opinion, that what we had to learn, was how to do good, and avoid evil.
The bulk of mankind must, without the assist- · ance of education and instruction, be informed only with the understanding of a child.
.. . Rambler, vol. 3, p. 270."
Neither a capital city, nor a town of commerce, - is adapted for the purposes of a college: the - first exposes the students too much to levity and
dissoluteness, the other to gross luxury. In one,
the desire of knowledge easily gives way to the * love of pleasure; and in the otber, there is dan· ger in yielding to the love of money,
· Western Inands, p. 11.'
EMPLOYMENT. Employment is the great instrument of intel. lectual dominion. The mind cannot retire from its enemy into total vacancy, or turn aside from one object, but by passing to another. The gloomy and the resentful are always found among those who have nothing to do, or who do nothing. We must be busy about good or evil, and he to whom the present offers nothing, will often be looking backward on the past.
Idler, vol. 2, p. 113.
It is the fate of those who toil at the lower employments of life, to be rather driven by the fear of evil, than attracted by the prospect of good; to be exposed to censure, without hope of praise; to be disgraced by miscarriage, of punished
for neglect, where success would have been with. out applause, and diligence without reward..
. . Preface to Johnson's Dictiopary, p. 55.
· EVIL. No evil is insupportable, but that which is ace companied with consciousness of wrong.
Prince of Abylinia, p. 296. Estimable and useful qualities, joined with an evil disposition, give that evil disposition power over others, who, by admiring the virtue, are betrayed to the malevolence. The Tatler, mentioning the sharpers of his time, observes, “ that some of them are men of such elegance and knowledge, that a young man who falls in their way, is betrayed as much by his judgment as his passions.”
• Notes upon Shakspeare, vol. 4. p. .
It is the nature of man to imagine no evil so great, as that which is near him.
iii..... . . . Ibid. vol. 5, p., 86.
... . . : EMPIRE.
Extended empire, like expanded gold, exchangés solid strength for feeble splendour.
Irene, p. 16. . !!! in EXCELLENCE. ! , Those who attain any excellence, commonly spend life in one pursuit; for excellence is not often gained upon easier term3.
Life of Pope.