« 上一頁繼續 »
mation was, Liberty, Liberty! and no French ftrollers! as if a troup of comedians of that nation could destroy the liberties of England.
IN Naples the contrary of this difpofition prevails; there you shall see a smith or common artifan ftand at his door with a pair of crimsonvelvet breeches decorated with gold lace, and a laced waistcoat; liberty is a found not known in their country; therefore the most favourite idea is to look like a gentleman, which notion flatters
⚫ him into the expence of a laced suit and velvet, and that again into his being a gentleman.
POMP is fo much the feducing notion of the Neapolitan, that if he cannot hire a boy to walk after his wife to church, he will put on his sword and follow her himself to give her an air of grandeur. An Englishman would rob on the highway, or fell himself a flave, with as much good will, as follow his wife to church in that manner.
As to matters of the belly, the Neapolitan is eafily contented; give him only his water-melon with ice, and he may fare as you please in other refpects of diet.
THE pealants wives of that country go to market in a cloth-of-gold jacket, and a scarlet petticoat double laced with gold; the ass which brings her and her wares is also charged with the precious load of her inftrument of music, with this the amufes herself during her time of ftaying at market.
THUS you fee freedom creates the love of ftrong liquors, and arbitrary power fobriety; one loves to warm himself into infolence and contempt of authority, two things which he calls liberty, because he may do it uncontrouled; and the other is afraid of being intoxicated, left his lips fhould utter fome difrefpectful or indecent éxpreflion, and he should fuffer for it.
Ir may, I think, be fairly collected from the IT ancients, that the old Italians were no enemies to wine, but indulged their glafs whilft freedom lafted amongst them; which custom they would have preferved to this hour, if the fear of being betrayed by intemperance to inadvertent expres fions had not begotten the present reigning mode of fnow-water and fine cloaths.
THE Sabine and Falernian wine, the delights of Horace and Mecenas, had never been neglected and unknown had Rome continued free ; which is another reafon for burning his Holiness in this island, and to an English idea of liberty a calamity not eafily to be paffed over with all their philofophy.
FROM what I have faid you may imagine, that this difpofition to wine creates no unfrequent infolence in the ftreets of London; and yet, ftrange to tell in this kingdom, this intemperance has an effect not fo mifchievous as one would expect, if we confider it in a political light. Adieu.
I am your most obedient fervant.
To the Reverend Father FILIPPO
BONINI, at Rome.
T is a common obfervation, that too much zeal to ferve frequently degenerates into meannefs, and displeases a generous heart more than a becoming attention paid to yourself and to him you would oblige; the excefs of complaifance destroys the whole effect of it, and very often entirely disappoints the expectations of him that pays it: it is dangerous to give too much of any thing, left by the frequency of it the minds of the receivers become accustomed to that manner of treatment, and flight the giver, who rather seems to be profuse in his donations than generous in his fpirit; yet would they entirely defert him if he fhould be remifs. in the ufual customs, which he has fo long continued. Such is the nature of man in general.
IT is not in behaviour of common life alone that this excess of giving may destroy the ef fect of it. The full enjoyment of every object, the most defired by the inhabitants of this world from the cradle to the grave, makes the poffeffor rather unhappy, by having never tasted the difference which attends the want of them, than bleffed with their poffeffion. This very frequently creates inattention in nations, as well as in private men; and often dupes the minifter to the artifices of other kingdoms, as it does the individual to the schemes of thofe about him.
NOTHING is fo common in this kingdom, as to fee a young gentleman born to wealth and every thing neceffary for happiness, who has scarce tasted disappointment in his pleasures, during youth, to become tired and inattentive, and without ever being profufe or even generous, his estate moulders into ruin by the corroding power of those fycophants who surround him ; and this entirely owing to inattention and neglect of exa mining his affairs.