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tion. Bnt a wretched life is no wise man's wish. To be without honesty is in effect to be without natural affection, or sociableness of any kind. And a life without natural affection, friendship, or sociableness, would be found a wretched one, were it to be tried. It is, as these feelings and affections are intrinsically valuable and worthy, that self-interest is to be rated and esteemed. A man is by nothing so much hiinself as by his temper, and the character of his passions and affections. If he loses what is inanly and worthy in these, he is as much lost to himself as when he loses his memory and understanding. The least step into villainy or baseness changes the character and value of life. He who would preserve life at any rate must abase himself worse than any one else can abase bim. And if life be not a dear thing indeed, he who has refused to live a villain, and has preferred death to a base action, has been a gainer by the bargain.
Of all the pleasures that endear human life, there are none more worthy the attention of a rational creature than those that flow from the mutual return of conjugal love. Our great poet Milton, after describing the nuptial bower of Adam and Eve in Paradise, thus apostrophises that blissful state. “ Hail, wedded love, mysterious law, true source Of human offspring, sole propriety In Paradise, of all things common else ! By thee adulterous lust was driv'n from men, Among the bestial herds to range ; by thee, Founded in reason, loyal, just, and pure, Relations dear, and all the charities Of Father, Son, and Brother first were known
Perpetual fountain of domestic sweets !-
In this scene the looser passions of youth are consolidated into a settled affection ; for the lawful object of love unites every care in itself, and makes even those thoughts that were paiuful before, become delightful. When two minds are thus engaged by the ties of reciprocal sincerity, each alternately receives and communicates a transport, that is inconceivable to all but those who are in this situation. Hence arises that heartennobling solicitude for the welfare of each other; that tender sympathy which alleviates affliction ; and that participated pleasure which heightens joy itself. This is a full completion of the blessings of humanity ! for if reason and society are the characteristics which distinguish us from other animals, an excellence in those two great privileges of man, which centers in wedlock, must raise us in happiness above the rest of our species. It is here that the noblest passions of which the human soul is susceptible join together, virtuous love and friendship; the one supplying it with a constant rapture, and the other regulating it by the rules of reason. I would not be understood to be speaking here of those unnatural and disproportionate matches that are daily made upon worldly views, where interest or passion are the only motives; I mean that such only enjoy the bliss who are conducted by Hymen through his own realms of innocence and sincerity.
A gentleman who is very happy in a beautiful friend, as a certain English poet calls a wife, and is a kind of enthusiast for the married state, told me the following story of an Italian pair who were famous for their unalterable constancy and affection.
A young nobleman of Genoa, named Marini, had a large estate in the island of Corsica, wbither he went every five or six years to regulate his affairs. At the age of five-and-twenty he was married to a beautiful lady, called Monimia, who had refused the greatest matches in Italy to prefer the fortunate Marini. As their marriage was founded on a mutual esteem, their passion increased instead of diminishing by enjoyment, till they became an example of conjugal affection, to all who knew them. They lived many years in this uninterrupted state of felicity, when Marini was obliged to make a voyage into Corsica, which was then disturbed by an insurrection, in order to secure his property. But the greatest affliction which he felt on this occasion, and which absorbed all the rest, was bis being necessitated to part a while from Monimia, who being then pregnant, was unable to accompany him as usual.
When the fatal time of parting was come, they embraced with the utmost grief, and the warmest prayers to Heaven for the safety of each other. As soon as this afflicting scene was over, Marini embarked, and having a fair wind, arrived safe at Bastia in a few hours. The progress of the insurrection being checked and the affairs of the island settled, our lover prepared for his return; but as he was walking one day by the harbour where the ships of burthen lay, he heard two sailors who were just arrived, talking of the death of a Genoese nobleman's wife, then absent from the republic. This casual circumstance greatly alarmed him, and roused his curiosity to listen further to their conversation, when after a little pause he heard one of them mention the name of his dear Monimia. . At these words his surprise and affliction were so great that he had not power to follow the mariners to satisfy his doubt, but swooned away, and when he recovered found himself surrounded by his lamenting servants.
While this happened to Marini, something of the same nature equally distressed Monimia ; for an imperfect report came to Genoa by the captain of a Venetian vessel, that a gentleman named Marini, had been surprised and killed by a desultory party of the rebels. These two as