Page images
PDF
EPUB

SELF-IMPORTANCE. EVERY man is of importance to himself, and therefore, in bis own opinion, to others; and fupposing the world already acquainted with all his pleasures and his pains, is, perhaps, the first to publish injuries or misfortunes which had nhever been kuuws unless related by himself, and at which those that hear him will only laugh; for no man sympathizes with the forrows of vanity - Life of Pope.

OBSERVE one of these persons, who fwells to an unnatural size of telt consequence, from the emptiness of his head and th pride of his heart, entering a coffee-house or public room at a watering place. To hew his contempt of all around him, he begins whistling, orb eating a tune with his fingers or with a ftick on the table. He stands with his back to the fire, holding up the fkirts of his coat, protruding his lips, picking his teeth; adjusting his cravat, surveying his buckles, and turning out his knees or toes; fhewing. by every sign he can think of, his high opinion of his own importance, and his fovereign contempt for the company.-Spirit of Despotism.

SECRETS. TO tell our own fecrets is generally folly, but that folly is without guilt. To communicate those with which we are entrusted, is always treachery, and treachery for the most part combined with folly.--Rambler.

THE vanity of being known to be trusted with a secret, is generally one of the chief motives to disclose it ; for, however absurd it may be thought, to boast an honor by an act which Meus that it was conferred without merit, yet most men stem father inclined to confess the want of virtue than importance, and more willingly fhew their influence, though at the expence of their probny, than glide through life with no other pleasure than the private confcieufnefs of fidelity, which, while it is preferved, nult be without praise, except from the fingle person who tries and knows it.Idrin.

SOCIETY. FROM the earliest dawnings of policy to this day, the invention of men has been farpening and improving the myflery of murder, from the Grit rude essays of clubs and itones,

to the present perfection of gunnery, cannoneering, bombarding, ming, and all these secies of artificial, learned, and Seduaion.-Secker.--- Sufpicion.-Spies. refined cruelty, in which we are now so expert, and which make a principal part of what politicians have taught us to believe is our principal glory,

li is an incontestable truth, that there is more havock made. in one year by men, of men, than has been made by all the lions, tygers. panthers, ounces, leopards. hyenas, rhinocerofes, lephants, bears, and wolves, upon their feveral species, face the beginning of the world ; though these agree ill enough with each other, and have a much greater proportion of rage and fury in their compolition than we have.--- Burke.

SEDUCTION.
THERE is not perhaps in all the stores of ideal anguish,
a thought more painful than the consciousness of having p.opa-
gated corruption by 'vitiating principles; of having not only drawn
others from the paths of virtue, but blocked up the way by
which they should return ; of having blinded them to every
beauty but the paint of pleasure ; and deafened them to every
call, but the alluing voice of the fyrens of destruction.
Rambler.

SECKER ( Archbishop of Canterbury )
WHILE Secker liv'd, he shew'd how feers thould live;

While Secker taught, heav'n open'd tu our eye;
When Secker gave we knew how angels give;

When Secker died, we know e'en fainis muft die.

[ocr errors]

SUSPICION. SUSPICION is no less an entmy to virtue, than to happi. ness. He that is already corrupt is naturally fufpicious; and he that becomes suspicious, will quickly be corrupt.-Rambler'.

HE that suffers by importure, has too often his virtue more impaired than his fortune. But as it is neceflery not to invite Jobbery by lupineness so it is our dury not to suppress tenderness by fufpicion. It is better to fuffer wrong than to do it ; and happier to be sometimes cheated, than not to truit.- Idem.

SPIES. AT whatever period fpies, informers, falfe witnesses, and pretended pluts are adopted by men in power, to il rengthen themselves in office, and dettroy virtuous oppofition, there is reason to fear, in spite of all profeffions of the contrary, thas the tyravnic fpirit of the degenerate Cæfars waits but for oppure kimies to difpky iiluf in aas of Neronian atrocity. Power

It argues

is deficient; but inclination is equally hoftile to the mass of mankind, denominated the people, whom fome politicians. scarcely condescend to acko wledge as pofieffed of any political exillence.

The employment of fpies and informers is a virtual declaration of hostilities against the people. It argues a want of confidence in them. It argues a fear and jealousy of them. a desire to destroy them by ambuscade. It is, in civil govern. ment, what stratagems are in a state of war. It tends also to excite retaliation... Spirit of Difpotism.

A HIRED fpy and informer will, by an easy transition, become a false witneis, even in trials where liberty and life are at stake. In trials of less confequence, there is no donbt but his confcience will ftretch with the occasion.

His object: is not truth or justice, but filthy lucre; and when he aspires at great rewards, great must be his venture. Having once broken down, as a treacherous fpy, the fences of honor and conscience, nothing but fear will rettrain trim, as a witness, from overleaping the bounds of truih, justice, and niercy. He will rob and murder under the fornis of law; and add to. the atrocity of Blood-guiltinefs, the crime of perjury. No man is fafe, where such men are countenanced by officers of Itate. They 'hen selves may perish by his false tongue; fuffering the vengeance due to their base encouragement of traitors to the public, by falling unpitied victims to his disappointed treachery. The peftilential brea:h of spies and informers is not to be endured in the pure healthy atmofphere of a free state Ie brings with it the fickly despotism of oriental climes.- Idem.

TIRANNT.
TYRANNY is a poor provider. It neither knows how
to accumulate, nor how to extract.--Burke.
A GREAT deal of the furniture of ancient tyranny is

tore to rags; the rest is entirely out of fashon.-- Idem.

TIRANT.

PROUD, impatient
Of aught superior, ev’n of heav'n that made him :
Fond of faile glory, of the favage pow'r .
Of ruling without reason, of confounding
Just and urjuft, by an unbounded will ;
By whon eligun, honor, all the bands
That Cught to hold the jarring world in pce,

1

0

Tyrany.

225
Were held the tricks of state, snares of wise princes,
To draw their eafy neighbours to destruction,
To walte with sword and fire their fruitful fields :
Like fonie accursed fiend, who, 'scap'd from hell,
Poisons the balmly air thro' which he flies ;
He blasts the bearded corn, and loaded branches,
The lab’ring hind's best hopes, and marks his way with ruia.

Rowe.
THERE is hardly any prince without a favorite, by whom
he is governed in as arbitrary a manner as he governs the
wretcb:s subjected to him. Here the tyranny is doubled.
There are two courts and two interests : both very different
from the interests of the people. The favorite knows that
the regard of a tyrant is as inconftant and capricious as that
of a woman ; and concluding his time to be short, he makes
halte to fill up the measure of his iniquity, in rapine, in luxury,
and in revenge. Every avenue to the throne is shut

up

He oppreffes, and ruins the people, whilst he persuades the prince, that those murmurs raised by his own oppression are the effects of disaffection to the prince's government. Then is the natural violence of despotism inflamed, and aggravated by hatred and revenge. To deserve well of the state is a crime against the prince. To be popular, and to be a traitor, are considered as synonymous terms. Even virtue is dangerous, as an aspiring quality, that claims an esteem by itself, and independent of the countenance of the court. What has been said of the chief, is true of the inferior officers of this species of government; each in his province exercising the same tyranny, and grinding the people by an oppreffion, the more severely felt, as it is near them, and exercised by base and fubordinate persons. For the gross of the people, they are considered as mere herd of cattle; and really in little time become no better; all principle of honest pride, all fenfe of the dignity of their nature is lost in their slavery. The day, says Homer, which makes a man a Nave, takes away half his worth ; and in fact he loses every impulse to action, but that low and base one of fear. In this kind of

government human pature is not only absurd, and insulted, but it is actually degraded and funk into a species of brutality.Burke.

THE punishment of real tyrants is a nable and awful act of justice; and it has with truth been said to be consolatory to the human mind. Idem.

TIME PAST. WHETHER it be that life has more vexations than. comforts, or what is in event just the same, that evil makes deeper impresions than good, it is certain that few can review the time paft, without heaviness of heart. He remembers many calamities incurred by folly; many opportunities lost by negligence. The shades of the dead rise up before him, and he laments the companions of his youth, the partners of his amusements, the affiitants of his labours, whom the hand of death has snatched away.--Iller.

TITLES. MOST of the titles of nobility, and other civil diftinations, were taken from war: as a marquis, a duke, a count, a baron, a landgrave, a knight, an esquire. The inventors of arts, the improvers of life, those who have mitigated evil, and augmented the good allotted to men in this world, were not thought worthy of any titular distinctions The reason is indeed fufficiently obvious: titles were originally bestowed by defpotic kings, who required and rewarded no other merit but that which supported them by violeace in their arbitrary. rule. In some countries they are now giren, for the same reasons, to those who effe&t the same purposes, not by war only, but by corruption. ---Spirit of Difpotifin.

THE death-bed itews the emptiness of titles in a true light. A poor difpirited finner lies trembling under the apprehensions of the ilate he is entering on; and is aiked by a grave attendant, how his holiness does? Another hears himself addiefed under the tide of highness or excellency, who lies under such mear circumftances of mortality as are the disgrace of human nature. Titles at such a time look rather like insults and mockery than respect.--Speator.

TRIFLES. TRIFLES always require exuberance of ornament. The building which has no strength, can be valued only for the grace of iis decorations. The pebble muít be polished with care, which hones to be valued as a diamond ; and words ought sure!! to be laboured, when they are intended to stand for things. -Rambler.

TAXATION. TAXING is an easy business. Any projector can contrive dew impofitions; alty bungler can add to the old. But iş

« PreviousContinue »