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SEPT. 1739 I
Entirely approve of your design: but venture to affirm, would he have glowed Enthusiasm thus fuccessfully attacked in warmed with less enthusiasm. I am her ftrongest and most formidable holds, - persuaded indeed, that nothing great or I would claim your mercy for her in an- glorious was ever performed, where this other quarter; and after having expelled quality had not a principal concern; and her from her religious dominions, let me as our passions add vigour to our actions, intreat you to leave her in the undisturb- enthusiasm gives spirit to our passions. ed enjoyment of her civil poffessions. To I might add too, that it even opens and own the truth, I look upon enthusiasm, enlarges our capacities. Accordingly in all other points but that of religion, I have been informed, that one of the to be a very necessary turn of mind; as great lights of the present age never sits indeed it is a vein which nature seems down to study, till he has raised his imato have marked with more or less strength gination by the power of music. For in the tempers of most men. No mat- this purpose he has a band of instru. ter what the object is, whether business, ments placed near his library, which play pleasures, or the fine arts; whoever pur- till he finds himself elevated to a proper fues them to any purpose must do fo con height; upon which he gives a signal, amore : and inamoratos, you know, of and they instantly cease. every kind, are all enthusiasts. There is But those high conceits, which are suge indeed a certain heightening faculty gested by enthusiasm, contribute not which universally prevails through our only to the pleasure and perfection of species, and we are all of us, perhaps, the fine arts, but to most other effects of in our several favourite pursuits, pretty our action and industry. To strike this much in the circumstances of the re- fpirit therefore out of the human constinowned k night of La Mancha, when he tution, to reduce things to their precise attacked the barber's brazen bason for philosophical standard, would be to Mambrino's golden helmet.
check some of the main wheels of socic. What is Tully's aliquid immenfum in- ty, and to fix half the world in an use. finitumque, which he professes to aspire lels apathy. For if enthusiasm did not after in oratory, but a piece of true rhe- . add an imaginary value to most of the torical Quixotism? Yst dever, I will objects of our pursuit; if fancy did not
give gite them their brightest colours, they tress, who never exerts her magic but to would generally, perhaps, wear an ap- our advantage, and only deals about her pearance too contemptible to excite de- friendly fjells in order to raise imagifire.
nary beauties, or to improve real ones.
The worst that can be faid of her is, that Weary'd we should lie down in death,
the is a kind deceiver and an obliging This cheat of life would take no more;
flatterer. Let' me conjure you, then, If you thought fame but empty breath, i Phillis but a perjur'd whore.
good Clytander, not to break up her PRIOR.
useful enchantments, which thus sur
round us on every fide; but spare her In a word, this enthusiafin for which harmless deceptions in mere charity to I am pleading, is a beneficent enchan- mankind. I am, &c.
of the beautiful nurse with the young I
interval to interrupt our correfpon. Aftyanax. dence, if my expedition to Euphronius I was so much pleased with the design had not wholly omployed me for these in this uncominon family-piece, that I fait fix weeks. I had long promised to thought it deserved particular mention; (pend some time with him before he em- as I could wish it were to become a gebarked with his regiment for Flanders; veral fashion to have all pictures of the and as he is not one of those Hudibrastic fame kind executed in fome fucà manner. heroes who chuse to run away one day, If, instead of fornilhing a room with sethat they may live to fight another; I parate portraits, a whole family were to was unwilling to truit the opportunity of be thus introduced into a fingle piece, seeing him to the very precarious con- and represented under tome interesting zingency of his returr. The high ens historical subje&t, saitable to their rank joymenis he leaves behind hini, might, and character; portraits, which are now indeed, be a pledge to his friends that lo generally and so deservedly despised, his caution would at least be equal to might become of real value to the public. bis courage, if his notions of honour By this means history-painting would were less exquisitely delicate. But he be encouraged among us, and a ridicuWill andoubtedly act as if he had nothing lous vanity turned to the improvement to hazard; though at the same time, of one of the most instructive, as well as from the generous sensibility of his tem- the most pleasing, of the imitative arts. per, he feels every thing that his family Those wiso never contributed a single can fuffer in their fears for his danger. benefit to their own age, nor will ever I had an instance, whilft I was in bis be mentioned is any after-one, might boufe, bow much Euphronia's appre. by this means employ their pride and henfions for his safety are ready to take their expence in a way, which might hlum upon every occasion. She called render them entertaining and useful both me one day into the gallery to look upon to the present and future times. It a picture which was just come out of the would require, indeed, great judgment painter's hands; but the moment the and addrels in the painter, to chule and carried me up to it, the burit out into a recommend subjects proper to the variflood of tears. It was drawn at the le- ous characters which would prefent quest, and after a design of her father's, themselves to his pencil; and undoubt. and is a performance which does greatedly we should see many enormous abhonour to the ingenioys artist who exe- Lurdities committed, if this tathion wele cited it. Euphronius is represented un- univerfally to be followed. It would dep the character of Hector when he cei tainly, however, afford a glorious parts from Andromache, who is person- fcope to genius; and probably fupply us, ated in the piece by Euphronia; as hier in due time, with fome productions whah Alter, who holds their little boy in her miglit be mentioned with those of the aims, is thadowed out under the figure moit celebrated schools. I am pursuad,