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which proceeds from some powerful relaxation, and which is a symptom of danger and decay. Mental imbecility causes the one, and some kind of corporeal weakness occasions the other. But so are we made, that to bear a sudden elevation with humility and temperance, requires an almost gigantic resolution ; and he must possess an eagle's eye, who can look at the sudden splendour of prosperity without winking.
To outstrip every competitor ; to soar above the malice of those who once hated us, and be shielded from the attacks of those who persecuted us; to be suddenly raised to the means of crushing those who had done us evil, and of rewardiog those who had done us good; to be removed from the necessity of looking humble before the proud, and enabled to return the supercilious glance of that pride which lately had disdained us; in short, to find every wish of humble and anxious life at once realized into gratification : these, surely, are circumstances so flattering to the weakness of human nature, that it is almost impossible not to become giddy on a sudden elevation to them.
On the contrary, Adversity, however great its first shock may be, soon yields to time; and, on the recovery from it, we begin to see every thing in its true light; the false glare is at once dissipated; our true are immediately distinguished from our false friends; we are no longer dupes to the fallacy of our own hearts, and the film is soon removed which prevented us from seeing and knowing ourselves. Reflection, vigilance, and foresight, now succeed to inattention, negligence, and carelessness. We rest upon nothing that will not support us; and, finding that the best of this world's dependences are but weak and uncertain, we shall be taught to look for permanent support and comfort, in the hopes of a better, beyond the grave.
To this point Adversity is intended to conduct us; and they who patiently attend to its guidance, will soon be persuaded that it is only a blessing in disguise; the gentle corrections of a tender father, who wished to work the real good of his children ; and, looking back with gratitude, mingled with disdain, to the heights from whence they fell, will exclaim with the exiled statesman of Greece, that " they should have been utterly ruined, if they had not been undone."
THE charms of beauty give to certain individuals of both sexes a distinction impossible to be described, though easily and irresistibly felt. "We are forced to add, tliat it is a distinction in general disadvantageous to its possessor. The folly of parents, the early adulation of interested admirers, the suggestions of self-conceit, and a thousand other enemies, conspire against those favourites of nature, and, at one time or other, render them objects of weariness, if not of disgust. Trusting entirely to external charms, every solid and permanent accomplishment is too often neglected, while we spend the inestimable days of youth in acquiring a few superficial and transitory trifles, as frail as the beauty ley are meant to adorn.
How many delightful forms attract our attention, which, upon examination, we quit with a sigh of pity, or a smile f contempt; finding their minds either mere voids of no
ingness, blanks of insipidity, or despicable magazines of nity and folly. How many a young female thus steps
o the world, confident of her charms as Samson of his strength, untutored by wisdom, unguarded by prudence; running wild through all the mazes of fantastic dissipation, and in the end, perhaps, drawing ruin upon herself! How many a young man, ihus depending on the graces of his person, spends his best years, utterly neglectful of every noble purpose and rational enjoyment of life, despised by esery man (and woman too) of 'sensė, and only acceptable to beings whose frivolity equals his own!
But neither of these characters will feel all their misery during the days of youth and health ; for then their society will be tolerated by most people, and even courted by many ; yet by how precarious a tenure do they hold even that privilege! Their enjoyment resembles his who feasted royally in a room of state with a sword over his head, suspeoded by a single hair. And though they should escape the strokes of sickness and of accident, yet soon will the scene of joy be closed : soon will the ruthless hand of Time crop every flower of youth and beauty; then what a disconsolate and dreary waste succeeds!
I am not able to imagine a state on earth more wretched than that of a person advanced in life, whose mind has never known the happy effects of cultivation, and whose pleasures have been merely constitutional. Better were it indeed for that man never to have been born, than to drag the languid hours of age in listless weariness; neglected, despised, and forgotten, even before his death. It is a state of desolation against which the young ought carefully to fortify themselves, by a diligent culture of their best powers, and by acquiring those accomplishments and amusements, which depend not for their relish on the fine turn of the limbs, the brilliancy of the eyes, or the polish and transparent glow of the skin.
In general, it is wrong to trust blindly for our happiness to any one natural gift, and neglect every other useful attainment. This remark greatly widens the field of instruction; we are not all beauties, but we have all received some talent in trust from Heaven, for which we are accountable. To mistake that talent ; to over-rate it; or to misapply it, are the chief misfortunes to which we are exposed ; and he only fuláls the purposes of his life, who, by judicious enquiry, and by proper knowledge of himself, discovers where his strength lies ; who strives to form a right estimation of it, and to enforce its exertions by every advantage in his power to obtain; who will not reveal it to the unworthy, exhaust it in vile pursuits, nor prostitute it to the advancement of such ends which religion forbids, and wisdom reprobates.
By such rational conduct we may render our characters respectable; and it will be beyond the power of our most malicious enemies to make sport of them : we may secure our happiness, at least as far as human happiness can be secured; and, while free from outward misfortune, we may enjoy every hour with relish. Age, which brings the frivolous, the idle, and the dissipated to a state of premature oblivion, will only make us more venerable, and turn our enjoyments into a current more serene and pure. Man will admire a life so beautiful, and God himself will approve it.
THERE is nothing ought more earnestly to be recommended to the female reader, than a deaf ear to adulation; though it is pleasing, and too often acceptable, when couched in the smooth language of a sensible and designing man.
Flattery is the incense always offered to female beauty, and love the only language that it hears; but there are women whose judgment is not to be imposed on.
Many will no doubt urge, that we are all fond of Aatlery; and so grateful is it to our ears, that we are unwilling to consider how fallacious it is; but it is the nurse of crimes. To that do many parents owe the destruction of their daughters; to that has many a fair virgin been sacrificed ; to that has many a villain owed a base triumph over credulous innocence.
Mark was the only son of a wealthy baronet in the west of England. Clarinda was the daughter of a neighbouring farmer. He was a man of gallantry and dissipation. Her features were elegant, her person was beautiful, and her skin exceeded the lily and the rose. Mark, froin the respectability of his father, and his proximity to Rusticus (for that was the name of Clarinda's parent, her mother she had lost in her infancy) soon found means to be introduced. Her father was pleased at the partiality shewn Clarinda ; he encouraged the visits of Mark, and they were frequent : the poor old man had buoyed himself up with the hopes of a very advantageous match for his only child. Mark was at first disagreeable to her, but flattery, and the intreaties of her father, rendered him by degrees more and more pleasing.
Every meeting he repeated his passion with additional tenderness and fervency. She believed him to be a man of virtue, as he vowed his soul was enraptured with an honourable love. He called her by every endearing name love itself could have suggested. She never before had heard her charms so pleasingly depicted. She listened to it with avidity; it gave her the only vice she knew, it gave her pride; she thought all he said was true: he swore so frequently to the sincerity of his intentions, that she was at length persuaded to believe, that, without reciprocal love on her side, he would be truly wretched. She resolved to encourage his addresses ; partly in obedience to her father, partly out of gratitude arising from his' promises of love and friendship; but chiefly from the inpression flattery had made upon her unguarded heart ; these considerations prompted her to give him every assurance of her regard and esteein.
Innocent freedoms, with a mixture of the most tender and delicate expressions, passed between them at every meeting: but mark the dreadful sequel ! One luckless hour, he found the fair innocent seated in a shady grove belonging to her father's garden, when her mind was fitted to give and receive every soft impression. Alas! that there are in life these unguarded minutes, when tenderness melts down the soul, and leaves the breast too open to base deceivers ! But such was the time, when, softly stealing to the grove, Mark found her there, and as she sat reclined, he pressed her hand, kissed it with ardency, and begged, with love-beguiling tears, she would fix the welcome day to make him truly happy.
She was greatly affected with the earnestness of his solicitations; she sat pensive; she meditated for some minutes -and
“She who once deliberates is lost.” He saw her soften, kissed her blushing cheek, pressed her heaving breast, and called it the golden minute of his life! Such fondness at this time had an improper effect upon her; and he, base villain ! vulture-like, seized the unguarded opportunity, and robbed the fair one of her virtue and reputation. Hapless Clarinda!
THE shortening days--the sullen clouds, grown dark and ponderous with the gathering rain-the frigid air, that strikés unwelcome on the tender frame (but shews what Albion's sons could once endure) proclaim the approach of winter. See, how the trees (as though they felt a shock