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entry into this cave. It was usual in those times, when any one carried a more than ordinary gloominess in his features, to tell him that he looked like one just come out of Trophonius's cave,
On the other hand, writers of a more merry complexion have been no less severe on the oppofite party; and have had one advantage above them, that they have attacked them with more turns of wit and humour.
After all, if a man's temper were at his own dis. posal, I think he would not chuse to be of either of these parties; since the most perfect character is that which is forined out of both of them. A man would neither chuse to be a hermic nor a buffoon : Human nature is not so nwiserable, as that we should be always melancholy; nor so happy, as that we should be always merry. In a word, a man should not live as if there was no God in the world ; nor, at the same time, as if there were no
men in it,
Ubique Luetus, ubique pavor
VIRG. Æn. ii. v. 369.All parts resound with tumults, plaints, and fears.
DRYDEN. IT T has been my custom, as I grow old, to allow
myself fomc little indulgences, which I never took in my youth. Among others is that of an afternoon's nap, which I fell into in the fifty-fifth year
of my age, and have continued for the three years last paft. By this means I enjoy a double morning, and rise twice a day fresh to my fpecula-tions. It happens very luckily for me, that some
of my dreams have proved instructive to my countrymen, fo that I
be said to sleep, as well as to wake, for the good of the public. I was yesterday meditating on the account with which I have already entertained my readers concerning the cave of Trophonius. I was no sooner fallen into my ufual flumber, but I dreamt that this cave was put into my poffeflion, and that I gave public notice of its virtue, inviting every one to it who had a mind · to be a serious man for the remaining part of his life. Great multitudes immediately resorted to me. The first who made the experiment was a MerryAndrew, who was put into my hands by a neighbouring justice of peace, in order to reclaim him from that profligate kind of life. Poor pickleherring had not taken above one turn in it, when he came out of the cave like a hermit from his cell, with a penitential look, and a most rueful countenance. I then put in a young laughing fop, and, watching for his return, asked him with a sinile, how he liked the place ? He replied, Prythee friend, be not impertinent; and stalked by me as grave as a judge.
judge. A citizen then desired me to give free ingress and egress to his wife, who was dretsed in the gayest coloured ribbons I have ever feen. She went in with a flirt of her fan, and a smirking countenance, but canie out with the severity of a vestal, and throwing from her feveral 'female gewgaws, told me with a sigh, that the resolved to go into deep mourning, and to wear black all the rest of her life. As I had had many coquette's recommended to me by their parents, their husbands, and their lovers, I let them in all at once, desiring them to divert 'themselves together as weil as they could. Upon their emerging again into day-light, you would have fancied my cave
have been a nunnery, and that you had seen a folemn procession of religious marching out, one behind another, in the most
profound filence, and the most exemplary decency. As I was very inuch delighted with so edifying a fight, there came towards me a great company of males and females, laughing, finging, and dancing, in such a manner, that I could hear them a great while before I saw them. Upon my alking their leader what brought them thither? They told me all at once, that they were French Protestants lately arrived in Great Britain, and that finding themfelves of too gay a humour for my country, they applied themselves to me in order to compose them for British conversation. I told them, that to oblige them I would soon fpoil their mirth; upon which I admitted a whole fhoal of them, who after having taken a survey of the place, came out in
very good order, and with looks entirely Englife. I afterwards put in a Dutchman, who had a great fancy to see the Kelder, as he called it, but I could not observe that I had made any manner of alteration in him,
A comedian who had gained great reputation in parts of humour, told me that he had a mighty mind to act Alexander the Great, and fancied that he should succeed very well in it, if he could strike two or three laughing features out of his face : He tried the experiment, but contracted fo very folid a look by it, that I am afraid he will be fit for no part hereafter, but a Timon of Athens, or a mute in the Funeral,
I then clapt up an empty fantastic citizen, in or. der to qualify him for an alderman. He was fucceeded by a young rake of the Middle-Temple, who was brought to me by his grand-mother; but to her great forrow and furprise, he came out a Quaker. Seeing myself furrounded with a body of Free-thinkers, and scoffers at religion, who were making themselves merry at the fober looks and thoughtful brows of thofe who had been in the cave: I thrust them all in, one after another, and VOL. VIII.
locked the door upon them. Upon my opening it, they all looked as if they had been frighted out of their wits, and were marching away with ropes in their hands to a wood that was within fight of the place. I found they were not able to bear themfelves in their first serious thoughts ; but knowing these would quickly bring them to a better frame of · inind, I gave them into the custody of their friends until that happy change was wrought in them.
The last that was brought to me was a young woman, who, at the first sight of my short face, fell into an immoderate fit of laughter, and was forced to hold her fides all the while her mother was speaking to me. Upon this I interrupted the old lady, and taking her daughter by the hand, Madam, said I, be pleased to retire into my closet, , while your
mother tells me your case. I then put her into the mouth of the cave, when the mother, after having begged pardon for the girl's rudeness, told me, that the often treated her father, and the gravest of her relations in the same inanner ; that he would fit giggling and laughing with her companions from one end of a tragedy, to the other ; nay, that she would sometimes burst out in the middle of a fermon, and set the whole congregation a staring at her. The mother was going on, when the young lady came out of the cave to us, with a coinposed countenance, and a low courtsey. She was a girl of such exuberant mirth, that her visit to Trophanius only reduced her to a more than ordinary decency of behaviour, and made a very pretty prude of her. After having performed innumerable cures, I looked about me with great fatisfaction, and faw all my patients walking by themselves in a very pensive and mufing pofture, fo that the whole place seemed covered with pliilofo. phers. I was at length refolved to go into the cave inyfelf, and see what it was that had produced fuch wonderful effets upon the coinpany; but, as I was
stooping at the entrance, the door being something low, I
gave such a nod in my chair, that I awaked... After having recovered myself from my first startle, I was very well pleased at the accident which had befallen me, as not knowing but a little stay in the place might have spoiled my SPECTATORS.
N0600. WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 29.
Solemque fum, fua fidera nôrunt.
VIRG. Æn. vi. ver. 641. Stars of their own, and their own funs they know.
LAVé always taken a particular pleasure in exa
mining the opinions which men of different religions, different ages, and different countries, have : entertained concerning the immortality of the soul, and the state of happiness which they promise themfelves in another world. For whatever prejudices and errors human nature lies under, we find thac either reason, or tradition from our first parents, has discovered to all people fomething in these great points which bears analogy to truth, and to the doctrines opened to us by divine revelation.
I was lately discoursing on this subject with a learned per. fon, who has been very much conversant among the inhabitants of the more western parts of Afric. Upon his converfing with several in that country, he tells me that their notion of heaven, or of a future state of happiness, is this, that every thing we there wish for will immediately present itself to us. We find, say they, our souls are of such a nature that they require variety, and are not capable of being always delighted with the same objects. The Supreme Being, therefore, in compliance with this taste of happiness which he has planted in the