« 上一頁繼續 »
choose well those whom he employeth, and and, as we say now, to jade anything too change them often, for new are more far. timorous and less subtle. He that can As for jest, there be certain things which look into his estate but seldom, it be- ought to be privileged from it, namely, hooveth him to turn all to certainties. religion, matters of state, great persons, man had need, if he be plentiful in some any man's present business of importance, kind of expense, to be as saving again in and any case that deserveth pity. Yet some other : as if he be plentiful in diet, to there be some that think their wits have be saving in apparel; if he be plentiful in been asleep, except they dart out somethe hall, to be saving in the stable; and what that is piquant and to the quick. the like. For he that is plentiful in ex- That is a vein which would be bridled : penses of all kinds will hardly be preserved “Parce, puer, stimulis, et fortius utere from decay.
loris" (Spare the whip, lad, and hold the In clearing of a man's estate, he may as reins tighter). And, generally, men ought well hurt himself in being too sudden, as to find the difference between saltness and in letting it run on too long, for hasty sell- bitterness. Certainly, he that hath a ing is commonly as disadvantageable as satirical vein, as he maketh others afraid interest. Besides, he that clears at once of his wit, so he had need be afraid of will relapse, for, finding himself out of others' memory. He that questioneth straits, he will revert to his customs; but much, shall learn much and content much; he that cleareth by degrees induceth a but especially if he apply his questions to habit of frugality, and gaineth as well upon the skill of the persons whom he asketh, his mind as upon his estate. Certainly, for he shall give them occasion to please who hath a state to repair may not despise themselves in speaking, and himself shall small things, and, commonly, it is less continually gather knowledge. But let dishonourable to abridge petty charges his questions not be troublesome, for that than to stoop to petty gettings. A man is fit for poser. And let him be sure to ought warily to begin charges, which once leave other men their turns to speak. begun will continue; but in matters that Nay, if there be any that would reign and return not, he may be more magnificent. take up all the time, let him find means to
take them off and to bring others on, as OF DISCOURSE
musicians used to do with those that dance
to long galliards. If you dissemble someSOME in their discourse desire rather times your knowledge of that you are commendation of wit, in being able to hold thought to know, you shall be thought, all arguments, than of judgment, in dis- another time, to know that you know not. cerning what is true; as if it were a praise Speech of a man's self ought to be to know what might be said, and not what seldom, and well chosen. I knew one was should be thought. Some have certain wont to say in scorn, “He must needs be a commonplaces and themes wherein they wise man, he speaks so much of himself. are good, and want variety; which kind of And there is but one case wherein a man poverty is for the most part tedious, and, may commend himself with good grace, and when it is once preceived, ridiculous. The that is in commending virtue in another, honourablest part of talk is to give the especially if it be such a virtue whereunto occasion, and again to moderate and pass himself pretendeth. Speech of touch toto somewhat else, for then a man leads the wards others should be sparingly used, for dance. It is good in discourse and speech discourse ought to be as a field, without of conversation to vary and intermingle coming home to any man. I knew two speech of the present occasion with argu- noblemen, of the west part of England,
, ments, tales with reasons, asking of ques- whereof the one was given to scoff, but kept tions with telling of opinions, and jest ever royal cheer in his house; the other with earnest, for it is a dull thing to tire, would ask of those that had been at the other's table, “Tell truly, was there never the compass of it, directeth them, but in a flout or dry blow given ?" To which the new things abuseth them. The errors of guest would answer, “Such and such a young men are the ruin of business; but thing passed.” The lord would say, “I the errors of aged men amount but to this, thought he would mar a good dinner.” that more might have been done, or sooner. Discretion of speech is more than elo- Young men, in the conduct and manage quence, and to speak agreeably to him of actions, embrace more than they can with whom we deal, is more than to speak hold, stir more than they can quiet; fly in good words or in good order.
to the end, without consideration of the A good continued speech, without a good means and degrees; pursue some few speech of interlocution, shows slowness, principles which they have chanced upon and a good reply, or second speech, with- absurdly;
absurdly; care not to innovate, which out a good settled speech, showeth draws unknown inconveniences; use exshallowness and weakness. As we see in treme remedies at first; and, that which beasts that those that are weakest in the doubleth all errors, will not acknowledge or course are yet nimblest in the turn, as it is retract them, like an unready horse, that betwixt the greyhound and the hare. To will not neither stop nor turn. Men of use too many circumstances, ere one come age object too much, consult too long, to the matter, is wearisome; to use none at adventure too little, repent too soon, and all, is blunt.
seldom drive business home to the full
period, but content themselves with a OF YOUTH AND AGE
mediocrity of success.
Certainly it is good to compound emA man that is young in years may be old ployments of both, for that will be good in hours, if he have lost no time, but that for the present, because the virtues of happeneth rarely. Generally youth is either age may correct the defects of both; like the first cogitations, not so wise as the and good for succession, that young man second, for there is a youth in thoughts as may be learners, while men in age are well as in ages. And yet the invention of actors; and, lastly, good for externe acyoung men is more lively than that of oldcidents, because authority followeth old and imaginations stream into their minds men, and favour and popularity youth. better, and, as it were, more divinely. But for the moral part, perhaps youth will Natures that have much heat and great have the pre-eminence, as age hath for and violent desires and perturbations, are the politic. A certain rabbin, upon the not ripe for action till they have passed the text, “Your young men shall see visions, meridian of their years, as it was with and your old men shall dream dreams," Julius Cæsar and Septimius Severus, of inferreth that young men are admitted the latter of whom it is said, “Juventutem nearer to God than old, because vision is egit erroribus, imo furoribus plenam” a clearer revelation than a dream. And (He spent a youth full of errors, indeed certainly, the more a man drinketh of the full of acts of madness). And yet he was world, the more it intoxicateth; and age the ablest emperor almost of all the list. doth profit rather in the powers of underBut reposed natures may do well in youth, standing then in the virtues of the will and as it is seen in Augustus Cæsar, Cosmus affections. duke of Florence, Gaston de Foix, and There be some have an over-early ripeothers. On the other side, heat and vi- ness in their years, which fadeth betimes. vacity in age is an excellent composition These are, first, such as have brittle wits, for business. Young men
the edge whereof is soon turned, invent than to judge, fitter for execution was Hermogenes the rhetorician, whose than for counsel, and fitter for new projects books are exceeding subtle, who afterward than for settled business; for the ex- waxed stupid. A second sort is of those perience of age, in things that fall within that have some natural dispositions, which
are fitter to
have better grace in youth than in age, of books; else distilled books are like comsuch as is a fluent and luxuriant speech, mon distilled waters, flashy things. which becomes youth well, but not age; Reading maketh a full man, conference so Tully saith of Hortensius, “Idem a ready man, and writing an exact man; manebat, neque idem decebat” (He re- and therefore if a man write little he had mained the same, when it was no longer need have a great memory, if he confer seemly). The third is of such as take too little he had need have a present wit, and high a strain at the first, and are magnani- if he read little, he had need have much mous more than tract of years can uphold; cunning to seem to know that he doth not. as was Scipio Africanus, of whom Livy Histories make men wise; poets, witty; saith, in effect, "Ultima primis cadebant mathematics, subtile; natural philosophy, (His end fell short of his beginning). deep; moral, grave; logic and rhetoric,
able to contend. “Abeunt studia in OF STUDIES
mores” (Studies result in habits). Nay,
there is no stand or impediment in the wit, STUDIES serve for delight, for ornament, but may be brought out by fit studies, like and for ability. Their chief use for delight as diseases of the body may have appropriis in privateness and retiring; for orna- ate exercises. Bowling is good for the ment is in discourse; and for ability is in stone and reins, shooting for the lungs and the judgment and disposition of business. breast, gentle walking for the stomach, For expert men can execute, and perhaps riding for the head and the like. So if a judge of particulars, one by one; but the man's wit be wandering, let him study the general counsels and the plots and mar- mathematics, for in demonstrations, if his shalling of affairs come best from those wit be called away never so little, he must that are learned. To spend too much time begin again; if his wit be not apt to disin studies is sloth; to use them too much tinguish or find difference, let him study for ornament is affectation; to make judg- the schoolmen, for they are "cymini ment wholly by their rules is the humour sectores" (hair-splitters). If he be not of a scholar. They perfect nature and are apt to beat over matters and to call up one perfected by experience. For natural thing to prove and illustrate another, let abilities are like natural plants, that need him study the lawyers' cases. So every pruning by study; and studies themselves defect of the mind may have a special do give forth directions too much at large, receipt. except they be bounded in by experience.
RICHARD HOOKER Crafty men contemn studies, simple men admire them, and wise men use them.
THE LAW OF NATURE For they teach not their own use; but
From THE LAW OF ECCLESIASTICAL that is a wisdom without them and above
POLITY them, won by observation.
Read not to contradict and confute, nor Moses in describing the work of Creato believe and take for granted, nor to find tion attributeth speech unto God: “God talk and discourse, but to weigh and con- said, let there be light; let there be a sider. Some books are to be tasted, others firmament; let the waters under the to be swallowed, and some few to be heaven be gathered together into one chewed and digested ; - that is, some place; let the earth bring forth; let there books are to be read only in parts; others
be lights in the firmament of heaven.' to be read but not curiously; and some few Was this the only intent of Moses, to to be read wholly, and with diligence and signify the infinite greatness of God's attention. Some books also may be read power by the easiness of his accomplishing by deputy, and extracts made of them by such effects, without travail, pain, or others; but that would be only in the less labour? Surely it seemed that God had important arguments and the meaner sort herein besides this a further purpose,
namely, first, to teach that God did not last gasp, the clouds yield no rain, the work as a necessary but as a voluntary earth be defeated of heavenly influence, agent, intending beforehand and decreeing the fruits of the earth pine away as children with himself that which did outwardly at the withered breasts of their mothers, proceed from him ; secondly, to show that no longer able to yield them relief; what God did then institute a law natural to be would become of man himself, whom all observed by creatures, and therefore, these things do now serve? See we not according to the manner of laws, the in- plainly that obedience of creatures unto stitution thereof is described as being the law of nature is the stay of the whole established by solemn injunction. His world? commanding those things to be which are, and to be in such sort as they are, to keep
JOHN DONNE that tenor and course which they do, importeth the establishment of Nature's
COSMETICS law. This world's first creation, and the
From LXXX SERMONS preservation since of things created, what is it but only so far forth a manifestation CERTAINLY the limits of adorning and by execution, what the eternal law of God beautifying the body are not so narrow, so is concerning things natural? And as it strict, as by some sour men they are somecometh to pass in a kingdom rightly times conceived to be. Differences of ordered that after a law is once published ranks, of ages, of nations, of customs, make it presently takes effect far and wide, all great differences in the enlarging, or constates framing themselves thereunto; even tracting of these limits, in adorning the so let us think it fareth in the natural body; and that may come near sin at some course of the world; since the time that time, and in some places, which is not so God did first proclaim the edicts of his always, nor everywhere. Amongst the law upon it, heaven and earth have heark- women there, the Jewish women, it was so ened unto his voice, and their labour hath general a thing to help themselves with been to do his will. He made a law for the aromatical oils, and liniments, as that rain, he gave his decree unto the sea that that which is said by the prophet's poor the waters should not pass his command- widow, to the prophet Elisha, that she had ment. Now if Nature should intermit nothing in the house but a pot of oil, is very her course, and leave altogether, though it properly by some collected from the were but for a while, the observation of original word, that it was not oil for meat, her own laws; if those principal and but oil for unction, aromatical oil, oil to mother elements of the world, whereof all make her look better; she was but poor, things in this lower world are made, but a widow, but a prophet's widow, (and should lose the qualities which they now likely to be the poorer for that) yet she have; if the frame of the heavenly arch left not that. We see that even those erected over our heads should loosen and women, whom the kings were to take for dissolve itself; if celestial spheres should their wives, and not for mistresses, (which forget their wonted motions, and by ir- is but a later name for concubines) had a regular volubility turn themselves any certain, and a long time assigned to be way as it might happen; if the prince of prepared by these aromatical unctions, and the lights of heaven, which now as a giant liniments for beauty. Neither do those doth run his unwearied course, should, as that consider, that when Abraham was it were through a languishing faintness, afraid to lose his wife Sara in Egypt, and begin to stand and to rest himself; if the that every man that saw her, would fall in moon should wander from her beaten way; love with her, Sara was then above threethe times and seasons of the year blend score, and when the king Abimelech did themselves by disorder and confused fall in love with her, and take her from mixture; the winds breathe out their Abraham, she was fourscore and ten, they grace
do not assign this preservation of her com
her plexion, and habitude to any other thing, Of heavenly race, than the use of those unctions, and lini- No mortall blemishe may her blotte. ments, which were ordinary to that nation. But yet though the extent and limit of this See, where she sits upon the grasse greene, adorning the body, may be larger than O seemely sight! some austere persons will allow, yet it is Yclad in scarlot, like a mayden Queene, not so large, as that it should be limited And ermines white: only, by the intention and purpose of Upon her head a cremosin coronet, them that do it; so that if they that beau- With Damaske roses and daffadillies set: tify themselves, mean no harm in it, there- Bay leaves betweene, fore there should be no harm in it; for, And primroses greene, except they could as well provide, that Embellish the sweete violet. others should take no harm, as that they should mean no harm, they may partici- Tell me, have ye seene her angelick face, pate of the fault. And since we find such Like Phoebe fayre? an impossibility in rectifying and govern- Her heavenly haveour, her princely grace, ing our own senses, (we cannot take our Can you well compare? own eye, nor stop our own ear, when we The redde rose medled with the white would) it is an unnecessary, and insup
yfere, portable burden, to put upon our score, In either cheeke depeincten lively chere: all the lascivious glances, and the licen- Her modest eye, tious wishes of other persons, occasioned Her majestie, by us, in over-adorning ourselves.
Where have you seene the like but there?