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will be used after the same manner; as some good mothers will be sure to whip their children until they cry, and then whip them for crying.
There are but two ways of doing any thing with great people, and those are by making yourself either considerable or agreeable: the former is not to be attained but by finding a way to live without them, or concealing that you want them; the latter is only by falling into their taste and pleasures : this is, of all the employments in the world, the most servile, except it happens to be of your own natural humour. For to be agreeable to another, especially if he be above you, is not to be possessed of such qualities and accomplishments as should render you agreeable in yourself, but such as make you agreeable in respect to him. An imitation of his faults, or a compliance, if not subservience, to his vices, must be the measures of your conduct.
When it comes to that, the unnatural state a man lives in, when his patron pleases, is ended; and his guilt and complaisance are objected to him, though the man who rejects him for his vices, was not only his partner, but seducer. Thus the client, like a young woman who has given up the innocence which made her charming, has not only lost his time, but also the virtue which could render him capable of resenting the injury which is done him.
It would be endless to recount the tricks of turning you off from themselves to persons who have less power to serve you, the art of being sorry for such an unaccountable accident in your behaviour, that such a one, who, perhaps, has never heard of you, opposes your advancement; and if you have any thing more than ordinary in you, you are flattered with a whisper, that it is no wonder people are so slow in doing for a man of your talents, and the like.
After all this treatment, I must still add the plea„santest insolence of all, which I have once or twice
seen; to wit, that when a silly rogue has thrown away one part in three of his life in unprofitable attendance, it is taken wonderfully ill that he withdraws, and is resolved to employ the rest for himself.
When we consider these things, and reflect upon so many honest natures, which one, who makes observation of what passes, may have seen, that have miscarried by such sort of applications, it is too melancholy a scene to dwell upon; therefore I shall take another opportunity to discourse of good patrons, and distinguish such as have done their duty to those who have depended upon them, and were not able to act without their favour. Worthy patrons are like Plato's guardian angels, who are always doing good to their wards; but negligent patrons are like Epicurus's gods, that lie lolling on the clouds, and instead of blessings, pour down storms and tempests on the heads of those that are offering incense to them.
Ingenuous arts , where they can entrance find,
I CONSIDER an human soul without education like marble in the quarry, which shews none of its inherent beauties, until the skill of the polisher fetches out the colours, makes the surface shine, and discovers every ornamental cloud, spot, and vein, that runs through the body of it. Education, after the same manner, when it works upon a noble mind, draws out to view every latent virtue and perfection, which withcut such helps are never able to make their appearance.
If my reader will give me leave to change the allusion so soon upon him, I shall make use of the same instance to illustrate the force of education, which Aristotle has brought to explain his doctrine of substantial forins, when he tells us that a statue lies hid in a block of marble; and that the art of the statuary only clears away the superslucus matter, and removes the rubbish. The figure is in the stone, the sculptor only sincs it. What sculpture is to a block of marble, education is to an hunian soul. The philosopher, the saint, or the liero, the wise, the good, or the great man, very often lie hid and concealed in a plebeian, which a proper education might have disinterred, and have brought to light. I am therefore much delighted vith reading the accounts of savage nations, and with contemplating those virtues which are wild and uncultivated; to see courage exerting itself in fierceness, resolution in obstinacy, wisdoin in cunning, patience in stillerness and despair.
Men's passions operate variously, and appear in different kinds of actions, according as they are more or less rectified and swayed by reason.
When one hears of negroes, whe, lipon the death of their masters, or upon changing their service, hang themselves upon the next tree, as it frequently happens in our American plantations, who can forbear admiring their fidelity, though it expresses itself in so clreadful a manner? What might not that savage greatness of soul which appears in these poor wretches on many occasions, be raised to, were it rightly cultivated? And what colour of excuse can there be for the contempt with which we treat this part of our species? That we should not put them upon the common foot of humanity, that we should only set an insignificant fine upon the man who murders them; nay, that we should, as much as in us lies, cut them off from the prospec
of happiness in another world as well as in this, and deny them that which we look upon as the proper means for attaining it!
Since I am engaged on this subject, I cannot forbear mentioning a story which I have lately heard, and which is so well attested, that I have no manner of reason to suspect the truth of it. I may call it a kind of wild tragedy that passed about twelve years ago at St. Christophers, one of our British leeward) islands. The negroes, who were the persons concerned in it, were all of them the slaves of a gentleman who is now in England.
This gentleman, among his negroes, had a young woman who was looked upon as a most extraordinary beauty by those of her own complexion. He had, at the same time, two young fellows, who were likewise negroes and slaves, remarkable for the comeliness of their persons, and for the friendship which they bore to one another. It unfortunately happened that both of them fell in love with the female negroe abovementioned, who would have been very glad to have taken either of them for her husband, provided they could agree between themselves which should be the man. But they were both so passionately in love with her, that neither of them could think of giving her up to his rival; and at the same time were so true to one another, that neither of them would think of gaining her without his friend's consent. The torment of these two lovers were the discourse of the family to which they belonged, who could not forbear observing the strange complication of passions which perplexed the hearts of the poor negroes, that often dropped expressions of the uneasiness they underwent, and how impossible it was for either of them ever to be happy.
After a long struggle between love and friendship, truth and jealousy, they one day took a walk together into a wood, carrying their mistress along with them: where, after abundance of lamentations, they stabbed her to the heart, of which she immediately died. A slave who was at his work not far from the place where this astonishing piece of cruelty was committed, hearing the shrieks of the dying person, ran to see what was the occasion of them. He there discovered the woman lying dead upon the ground, with the two negroes on each side of her, kissing the dead corpse, weeping over it, and beating their breasts in the utmost agonies of grief and despair. He immediately ran to the English family with the news of what he had seen; who, upon coming to the place saw the woman dead, and the two negroes expiring by her with wounds they had given themselves.
We see in this amazing instance of barbarity, what strange disorders are bred in the minds of those men whose passions are not regulated by virtue, and disciplined by reason. Though the action which I have recited is in itself full of guilt and horror, it proceeded from a temper of mind which might have produced very noble fruits, had it been informed and guided by a suitable education.
It is therefore an unspeakable blessing to be born in those parts of the world where wisdom and knowledge flourish ; though it must be confessed, there are, even in these parts, several poor uninstructed persons, who are but little above the inhabitants of those nations of which I have been here speaking; as those who have had the advantage of a more liberal education, rise above one another by several different degrees of perfection. For to return to our statue in the block of marble, we see it sometimes only begun to be chipped, sometimes rough-hewn, and but just sketched into an human figure; sometimes we see the man appearing distinctly in all his limbs and features, sometimes we find the figure wrought up to a great elegancy, but seldom meet with any to which the hand of a Phidias or Praxiteles could not give several nice touches and finishings.