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crouds; but to have the approbation of a good man in the cool reflections of his closet, is a gratification worthy an heroick fpirit. The applause of the croud makes the head giddy, but the attestation of a reasonable man makes the heart glad.
What makes the love of popular or general praise ftilt more ridiculous, is, that it is usually given for circumstances which are foreign to the persons admired. Thus they are the ordinary attendants on power and riches, which may be taken out of one man's hands, and put into another's. The application only, and not the poffeffion, makes thoie outward things honourable. The vulgar and men of sense agree in admiring men for having what they themselves would rather be poffefied of; the wise man applaudes him whom he thinks most virtuous, the rest of the world him who is mort wealthy.
When a man is in this way of thinking, I do not know what can occur to one more monstrous, than to see persons of ingenuity addrefs their fervices and performances to men no way addicted to libe. ral arts : In these cases, the praise on one hand, and the patronage on the other, are equally the objects of ridicale: Dedications to ignorant men are as abfurd as any of the speeches of Bulfinch in the droll: Such an addrefs one is apt to translate into other words; and when the different parties are thoroughly considered, the panegyrick generally implies no more than if the author should say to, the patriot; my very good Lord, you and I can never understand one another, therefore I humbly defire we may be intimate friends for the future.
The rich may as well ask to borrow of the poorov as the man of virtue or merit hope for addition to his character from any but such as himself. He. that commends another engages so much of his own reputation as he gives to that person commended; and he that has nothing laudable in him-
felf is not of ability to be such a furety. The wife Phocion was fo fenfible how dangerous it was to be touched with what the multitude approved, that upon a general acclamation made when he was. making an oration, he turned to an intelligent: friend who stood near him, and asked in a surprise ed manner, What slip have I made ?
I thall conclude this paper with the billet which, has fallen into my hands, and was written to a Lady from a Gentleman whom she had highly commended. The author of it had formerly, been her lover. When all pollibility of commerce between them on the subject. of love was cut off, she spoke fo handsomely of him, as te-give occasion for this letter,
« MADAM, :I
SHOULD be insensible to a stupidity, if I could
forbear making you my acknowledgments for your late mention of ine with so much applause. It is, I think, your face to give me new fentiments; as you formerly, inspired me with the
true fense of love, fo do you now with the true 'fense of glory. As desire had the least part in: ' the paflion I heretofore professed towards you, • fo has vanity no share in the glory to which you. « have now raised me. Innocence, knowledge,
beauty, virtue, fincerity, and difcrction, are the ' constant orpaments of her who has said this of
me. Fame is a babler, but I have arrived at the. highest glory in this world, the commendation of the most deserving person in it.
X*XXX*XXX*X*XXX*XXXXXXXXXXX NO 189. SATURDAY, OCTOBER 6,
-Pariæ pietatis imago. VIRG: Æn. x, ver, 824.
An image of paternal tenderness. THE following letter being written to my book
seller, upon a subject of which I treated fome time since, I shall publish it in this paper, together. with the letter that was inclosed in it,
Mr. BUCKLEY, :MR.
R. SPECTATOR having of latç defcanted
upon the cruelty of parents to their children, • I have been induced (at the request of several of 6. Mr. SPECTATOR’s admirers) to inclofe this letter, ' which I assure you is the original from a father "to his own son, notwithstanding the latter gave • but little or no provocation. It would be won
derfully obliging to the world, if Mr. SPECTA• TOR would give his opinion of it in some of his • fpeculations, and particularly to, (Mr. BUCKLEY,)
• Your humble fervant." • SIRRAH,
are a faucy andacious rascal, and both
fool and inad, and I care not a farthing when . ther you comply or no; that does not raze out • my impressions of your infolence, going about * railing at me, and the next day to folicit my fa6-vour: These are inconsistencies, such as discover • thy reason depraved. To be brief, I never de
fire to see your face'; and, Sirrah, if you go to is 6.the work-house, it is no disgrace to me for you, s to be fupported there ; and if you starve in the * streets, I will never give, any thing underhand « in your behalf. If I have any more of your 'scribbling nonsense, I will break your head the
• first time I set fight on you. You are a stubborn • beast; is this your gratitude for my giving you ' money? You rogue, I will better your judgment,
and give you a greater sense of your duty to (I • regret to say) your father, &c.
· P. S. It is prudence for you to keep out of my « fight ; for to reproach me, that Might over
comes Right, on the outfide of your letter, I • shall give you a great knock on the scull for it.”
Was there ever such an image of paternal tenderness! It was usual among some of the Greeks to make their flaves drink to excess, and then expose them to their children, who by that means conceived an early aversion to a vice which makes men appear fo monstrous and irrational. I have exposed this picture of an unnatural father with the fame intention, that its deformity may deter others from its resemblance. If the reader has a mind to see a father of the same stamp represented in the most exquisite strokes of humour, he may meet with it in one of the finest comedies that ever appeared upon the English ftage: I mean the part of Sir Sampfon in Love for Love.
I must not however engage myself blindly on the fide of the son, to whoin the fond letter abovewritten was directed. His father calls him a saucy and audacious rascal in the first line, and I am fraid upon examination he will prove but an ungracious youth. To go about railing at his father, and to find no other place but the outside of his letter to tell him that might overcomes right, if it does not discover his reason to be de praved and that he is either fool or mad, as the cholerick old Gentleman tells him, we may at least allow that the father will do very well in endeavouring to better his judgment, and give him a greater sense of his duty. But whether this may be brought about by breaking his head, or giving him a great knock on the scull, ought, i think, to be well considered. Upon the whole,
I wish the father has not met with his match, and
Crudelis tu quoque mater :
Eci. viii. ver. 48.
Κακά κόρακG- κακόν ωον.
Bad the crow, bad the egg. I must here take notice of a letter which I have received from an unknown correspondent, upon the subject of my paper, upon which the foregoing letter is likewise founded. The writer of it seems very much concerned left that paper should seem to give encouragement to the disobedience of children towards their parents ; but if the writer of it will take the pains to read it over again attentively, I dare say his apprehensions will vanish. Pardon and reconciliation are all the penitent daughter requests, and all that I contend for in her behalf; and in this case I may use the saying of an eminent wit, who, upon some great mens pressing him to forgive his daughter who had married against his consent, told them he could refuse nothing to their instances, but that he would have thein remember there was difference between giving and forgiving.
I must confess, in all controversies between parents and their children, I am naturally prejudiced in favour of the former. The obligations on that fide can never be acquitted, and I think it is one of the greatest reflections upon human nature, that paternal instinct should be a stronger motive to love than filial gratitude; that the receiving of favours should be a less inducement to good-will,