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20 The folly and inconvenience of affectation . . 127

21 The anxieties of literature nor less than those of pub-

lick stations. The inequality of authors writings 133

22 An allegory on wit and learning : : . 140

23 The contrariety of criticism. The vanity of objec-

tion. An author obliged to depend upon his

own judgment . . . . . . . 146

24 The necessity of attending to the duties of common

: life. The natural character not to be forsaken 151

25 Rashness preferable to cowardice. Enterprize not.

to be repressed

26 The mischief of extravagance, and misery of de' "

pendence . . . . . 163

27 An author's treatment from six patrọng

. .170

28 The various arts of self-delusion

29 The folly of anticipating misfortunes . . . . . 183

30 The observance of Sunday recommended. An

allegory . . . . . . . 189

31 The defence of a known mistake highly culpable 194

32 The vanity of stoicism. The necessity of patience 20%

33 An allegorical history of rest and labour ... 208

34 The uneasiness and disgust of female cowardice 214

35 A marriage of prudence without affection ... 221

36 The reasons why pastorals delight . . . 227

37 The true principles of pastoral poetry . . .233

38 The advantages of mediocrity. . An Eastern fable 240

39 The unhappiness of women whether single or married 246

40 The difficulty of giving advice without-offending 252

41 The advantages of memory . . . 258

42 The misery of a modish lady in solitude ... 264

43 The inconveniencies of precipitation and confidence 270

44 Religion and superstition, a vision . . . 276

· 45 The causes of disagreement in marriage ... 283

46 The mischiefs of rural faction . . . . 289

47 The proper nieans of regulating sorrow ... 295

48 The miseries of an infirm constitution . . . . 302

49 A disquisition upon the value of fame.... 306

50 A virtuous old age always reverenced .... 312

51 The employments of a housewife in the country 318



N° 1. TUESDAY, MARCH 20. 1750.

Cur tamen hoc libeat potius dcurrere campo,
Per quem magnus equos Aurunca fiexit alumnus,
Si vacat et placidi rationem admittitis, edam.

Why to expatiate in this beaten field,
Why arms oft used in vain, I mean to wield;
If time permit, and candour will attend,
Some satisfaction this essay may lend.

T HE difficulty of the first address on any new

1 occasion, is felt by every man in his transactions with the world, and confessed by the settled and regular forms of salutation which necessity has introduced into all languages. Judgment was wearied with the perplexity of being forced upon choice, where there was no motive to preference ; and it was found convenient that some easy method of introduction should be established, which, if it wanted the allurement of novelty, might enjoy the security of prescription.

Perhaps few authors have presented themselves before the public, without wishing that such cere

Vol. I.

monial modes of entrance had been anciently established, as might have freed them from those dangers which the desire of pleasing is certain to produce, and precluded the vain expedients of softening censure by apologies, or rousing attention by abruptness.

The epick writers have found the proemial part of the poem such an addition to their undertaking, that they have almost unanimously adopted the first lines of Homer, and the reader needs only be informed of the subject, to know in what manner the poem will begin.

But this solemn repetition is hitherto the peculiar distinction of heroick poetry ; it has never been legally extended to the lower orders of literature, but seems to be considered as an hereditary privilege, to be enjoyed only by those who claim it from their alliance to the genius of Homer.

The rules which the injudicious use of this prerogative suggested to Horace, may indeed be applied to the direction of candidates for inferior fame; it may be proper for all to remember, that they ought not to raise expectation which it is not in their power to satisfy, and that it is more pleasing to see smoke brightening into flame, than flame sinking into smoke."

This precept has been long received, both from regard to the authority of Horace, and its conformity to the general opinion of the world ; yet there have been always some, that thought it no deviation from modesty to recommend their own labours, and imagined themselves intitled by indisputable merit to an exemption from general restraints, and to clevations not allowed in common

life. They, perhaps, believed, when, like Thucydides, they bequeathed to mankind xlaya esas, an estate for ever, it was an additional favour to inform them of its value.

It may, indeed, be no less dangerous to claim, on certain occasions, too little than too much. There is something captivating in spirit and intrepidity, to which we often yield, as to a resistless power ; nor can he reasonably expect the confidence of others, who too apparently distrusts himself. , Plutarch, in his enumeration of the various occasions on which a man may without just offence proclaim his own excellencies, has omitted the case of an author entering the world ; unless it may be comprehended under this general position, that a man may lawfully praise himself for those qualities which cannot be known but from his own mouth ; as when he is among strangers, and can have no opportunity of an actual exertion of his powers. That the case of an author is parallel will scarcely be granted, because he necessarily discovers the degree of his merit to his judges when he appears at his trial. But it should be remembered, that unless his judges are inclined to favour him, they will hardly be persuaded to hear the cause.

In love, the state which fills the heart with a degree of solicitude next that of an author, it has been held a maxim, that success is most easily obtained by indirect and unperceived approaches : he who too soon professes himself a lover, raises obstacles to his own wishes ; and those whom disappointments have taught experience, endeavour to conceal their passion till they believe their mis

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