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liberal patronage, fired by emulation, proudly determined to maintain the post we have gained, and supported by the aid of many eminent literary characters, we have no apprehensions of failure, when we state our determination to persevere in the same course which we have hitherto trodden, being only constantly watchful for every opportunity of improvement. The same strict impartiality in judging the merits of our contributors; the same independence of censure or praise in our literary criticisms; and the same excellence and variety in our miscellaneous articles, shall be zealously maintained : --and, being maintained, we have little reason to doubt that we shall possess the same support, and the same eminence as hitherto. To the fair pretensions of honorable exertion, public patronage has seldom, perhaps never, been denied ; and though effrontery and lofty professions may snatch a premature wreath of renown from the hands of fashion and folly, yet its bloom and lustre wither before the potent rays of unerring truth; while the laurels that are slowly awarded, spring up in the soil of patient judgement, and have in them a principle of vigour and of beauty which no transitory dereliction can destroy,
January 1st, 1809.
For JANUARY, 1809.
“We shall never envy the honours which wit and learning obtain in any other cause, if we can be numbered among the writers who have given ardour to virtue, and confidence to truth."-DR. JOHNSON.
ORIGINAL COMMUNICATIONS. FIVE ORIGINAL LETTERS, addressed ing or ability; I have hitherto been
to a LADY, upon the PLEASURES more conversant with my own specuand IMPORTANCE of INTELLEC- lations, and the solitary contemplaTUAL CULTIVATION.
tions of my own thoughts, than with SIR,
men or books; and, in general, I have
drawn my notions of lite purely from T THE following letters were written speculation. Yet perhaps I shall not
in the summer of 1806, to a be the less accurate: å spectator of lady in Edinburgh, and they were events often knows more about them written with the intention of being than they who mingle in the crowd published, had they swelled to the and have a share in their production. size of a volume. Circumstances
The topics which ) shall discuss in arose, however, which occasioned their sudden suspension, nor is it now the following letters, I leave entirely
to chance. They will be as various likely that they will ever be com as possible ; for my design will be to pleted according to the original de entice your mind, by an alluring vasign : but should those that are now riety, into the walks of literature; offered to your notice be considered and what so poor and humble a guide by you as worthy of a place in the Universal Magazine, they are quite your attention to the most interesting
as myself can do, towards directing at your service, and their appearance objects, you well know you can comwill gratify,
mand. Be not, however, surprised, Sir,
if I sometimes relinquish literature, Your obedient servant, science, and knowledge, and unfold London, Jan. 4th, 1809. M. myself to you in the prevailing co
lours of the moment; tell you my MY DEAR ELIZA,*
feelings, my hopes, my plans, my The promise which I have long schemes, my desires; detail my studies, made shall at length be fulfilled. I make you participate in all my joys now sit down to commence a cor- and sorrows, in my hours of rapture respondence, which, whether advan- and in my moments of despondency. tageous to you or not, will certainly Often shall I, my dear Eliza, sit down prove a source of great pleasure to to write to you, as to one who can myself. That pleasure indeed will bear with patience my querulousness, be considerably heightened, if I can endure the mournful anticipations I have reason to hope that your intel- may sometimes indulge in, and parlectual improvement will proceed don the ungrounded fears which a with my exertions; and I assure you morbid melancholy may excite.that those exertions shall not be How frequently, when I have labourspared. I can, however, promise cd under these impressions, have I you no great display either of learn- cast my eye upon the wide world,
and shuddered to think, that in its * It should be stated that Eliza is ample space not a human being not the real name of the lady; but breathed in whose bosom I could rethere are reasons for adopting the pre- pose my feelings! I have had acsent appellation.
quaintance: yes, many, light, super
ficial, vivacious, amusing beings, who which I hope will be attended with have futtered around me while bask- advantage. Your last letter pleased ing in the sun ; but when the clouds me much; it had, however, one fault, began to obscure the horizon, when it was too short: I mention this, a lowring, aspeet began to breathe not only because I shall receive more around, they-fled: and yet such, pleasure from long ones, but because Eliza, such is the intercourse of Ideem it necessary to your improve society!
ment that they should be more elaCould I ever rest my mind upon borate. Bear' constantly in mind, such an intercourse? No. I heard that nothing valuable can ever be them: I disbelieved: I received them, effected without labour; and though but did not esteem; I endured their you may attain, in fifty short letters, caresses, but knew they were false a certain point of perfection, yet you and hollow; I mingled with them, will more assuredly aitain the same because I was unable to quit them. point in ten long and labored ones. But my heart was unsatisfied. I de. I know this by experience. Whatspaired of ever realising pictures which ever requires repetition as a means solitude had impressed my mind :-- of success, must have each repetition I began to think I had formed vision. extensive; if it be not so, the immeary ideas of man and manners; and diate effects of your present exertions, that, in this corrupt and degenerate which are just beginning to dawn in age, it was in vain to look for noble the mind, are lost, and require to be sentiments, or generous sensibility, renewed' by subsequent labours ; You, Eliza, and your beloved hus- while, on the contrary, if you perband, have undeceived me, and con- severe, and give a sort of permanency vinced me I was not wrong. Judge, to those nascent impressions, they then, with what feelings I commence are fixed for ever. It is certainly a this correspondence; and how tena- great art to know where to stop; ciously I shall maintain it, when it is but is less dangerous, in given cirthe very thing which, for many years, cumstances, to undergo supereroga. I have sighed for.
tory labour, than to rest indolently But here I must stop. - This is satisfied with imperfect exertions. merely an introductory letter; a sort From these remarks, it is a natural of catalogue of what you are to ex- transition to what are to be the impect: however, such as it is, I expect mediate objects of this letter ; viz. you will reply to it; for, be it well. The importance of a regular apunderstood, that I shall never allow "propriation of Time, and the advanyou to be a single letter in arrears. “ tages, pleasures, and necessity of In my :ext, I intend, as a very pro- “ intellectual cultivation." per subject, to offer some remarks It was said by an Italian writer, upon the importance of a regular that “ Time was his estate :" and appropriation of Time, and the advan- though this may not apply to you in tages, pleasures, and necessity of in- the same way in which he meant it, tellectual cultivation.
yet it applies to every human being Farewel! Believe me to be, with in a moral point of view. Time is the warmest sentiments of regard, every man's moral estate, and happy Your's, most affectionately,
is he, who has early learned not to squander his patrimony! A just and
correct knowledge of the importance MY DEAR ELIZA,
of Time, I look upon to be one of the Having once fairly entered upon greatest marks of a sound head. A the career, it is to be hoped that man who suffers moments to glide nothing now can impede our progress. away imperceptibly, unemployed, I confess I had fears lest timidity except in listless, indolent inactivity, would have prevented you from re- or in trifling and irrational amuseplying to my last; but I rejoice that inents, fails in the great duty he owes your good sense has overcome that himself and his fellow creatures : be natural bashfulness which you pos- fails in the duty he owes to himself, sess, in regard to your own powers, for he neglects to strengthen the vir and induced you to make an effort tuous principles of his character by
proper exercise, without which they and the glooms of sickness, when it become corrupted and inert; and he may be presumed he found it necesfails in the duty which he owes to his sary to avail himself of every interval fellow creatures, because no man that might offer. These instances should live for himself alone: action and many others which it would be is his spebre: he should do something tedious to enumerate, may serve to towards the general stock, or else he convince you that large and uninteris to be regarded as an intruder upon rupted portions of time are by no the labours of his brethren : means necessary for the carrying on “Man, like the generous vine, supported extensive occupations. lives,
It has often vexed me to hear a The strength he takes, is from the strength person complain of want of time, he gives."
setting very comfortably perhaps upon Next to a due sense of the import- a sofa, their hands lying indolently ance of Time, nothing tends so much before them, and stretching and yawntowards invigorating it, as a practical ing from mere idleness. application of it. By a practical ap A most useful auxiliary towards plícation, I mean that regular and employing time to the best advantage, distinct appropriation of it," (as far as and one which I would earnestly recircumstances will admit) by which commend to you, is to form a kind of every moment (if
possible) may have schedule, which is divided into as its proper_avocation. It is well ob- many distinct portions as there are served by Dr. Young, that
hours between your rising and going “ Sands make the mountain, minutes its appropriate avocation ; and by this
to rest. Opposite to each hour mark make the year."
means, whatever portion of time reHe who has not learnt to appreciate mains vacant, by referring to the the value of moments, will very sel- schedule, you will see what ought to dom employ, bours to advantage: be its employment. I mention this Remember what an infinite deal may from experience ; for I have myself be done by a persevering and per- employed it with great advantage. petual application; small portions of Let me again repeat, that nothing is time, when viewed in the aggregate, so essential as employing minute amount to a mass that will astonish scraps of bours properly'; hours themyou: as a stone may be worn away selves are great big dogs, that know by the constant friction of a single how to take care of themselves ; but drop of water, so the greatest labours minutes are poor little helpless ormay be overcome by continued repe- phans, that pine away and die, unless tition. Consider that some of those we shelter them. Dr. Young obworks which now obtain the admi, serves, with great propriety, that ration of posterity were prosecuted
“ Procrastination is the thief of time." and completed and the toils and bustle of public and active life. It But I am so sleepy, and it is so late, has not been the lot of every man to that I fear, my dear Eliza, I must rerepose ander academic bowers, or to serve my remarks upon intellectual recline in the shades of solitude.- cultivation till my next. Perhaps in Cicero wrote many of his finest ora- that, too, I shall say a few more tions during the most active part of words upon the present subject. his life; Hugo Grotius and Puffendorf, Good night; and believe me to be two of the greatest civilians of modern most affectionately, times, produced their invaluable works
Your's, in very arduous situations: Machievelli is also another instance of this : MY DEAR ELIZA, Dryden wrote most of his pieces dis Once more I take up my pen to tracted by various avocations, and, address you. It is astonishing what most of all, by straitened circum- an alacrity I feel in pursuing this corstances; and Johnson compiled his respondence, considering the averDictionary, certainly a most astonish- sion I have always had and still have ing proof of the powers of the human to writing. Some of my most intimind, amid the distractions of poverty mate acquaintance seldom get above
a letter in six months from me, and some such excuse to a few persons in then the reflection that I have got to this world. write it, makes me miserable a whole But now, to pass from week before hand. But now, not «Grave to gay, from lively to severe;" only do I contrive to scribble three a week, but each of them is as long as I have finished my aërial accusation five ordinary ones. Surely, Eliza, and defence, and shall descend to the you have used some witchcraft in mundane occupation of these nether making me thus active, and contented regions. at an occupation which hitherto has The subject of this letter will be a always been most irksome. Well, more pleasing one than that of the well, the sin, if there be any, shall be last. We are now to consider the upon your head. When you go to human mind in a state of cultivation; the next world, you may expect to rising above the mist of error that in have a fine clatter about your ears : its infancy surrounds it, and beamCicero, and Virgil, and Sallust, and ing forth with resplendent lustre. Livy, and a whole host of modern Surely nothing can be so pleasing as writers, will all assemble round you, to view the intellectual part of human and demand back all that time which nature adorned with every grace of (they will say) ought to have been which it is susceptible, and uniting at devoted to them. And when I make once the loveliness of ornament with my appearance among them, me- the strength and vigour of perfection. thinks how downcast and self-con To treat, first, of the advantages demned I shall look! How ridicu- of intellectual cultivation :lous I shall appear! What, in the It was sententiously observed by name of Mercy, shall I say, when Lord Bacon, “ that knowledge is they exclaim-“Empty trifler! what power,” and never a truer aphorism "object in the world could be suf- fell from the pen of man. The supe“ficiently attractive to draw you riority of mind over body has been « away from the sublime beauties of felt and acknowledged by every per- ! “ our productions which have been son ; except a few mad enthusiasts, “ celebrated by the world? Could who, in endeavouring to advance the “ there be any thing superior in plea- savage state of human nature over “ sure to the reading and studying our the civilized, have at the same time “ works? Could there be any ihing tacitly placed corporeal power over " that could compensate for quitting mental. Rational men, however, “the pages of our immortal volumes who have taken more sober views of -"Alas! Gentlemen,” I shall say, life, have universally conceded the “I am unable to tell how it was my- superiority of the latter; and poets “ self; but if you would have the have dignified its attributes with some
goodness to look at that lady, and of the finest flowers of imagination. “a
above all if you would have the It is beautifully observed by Sallust, “ condescension to sit in her com- (forgive my quoting Latin to a Lady,
pany for half an hour, I think you but you have one at your elbow who ! will discover the reason. I'am will explain it to you) — “Nostra “ sure, for my part, I always loved "omnis vis in animo et corpore sita ; “ books better than company; but “animi imperio, corporis' servitio, “she, that ghost, Gentlemen, that " magis utimur. Alterum nobis cum "stands laughing at me, contrived, “dis, alterum cum belluis, commune “ by the help of her tongue and eyes, Quò inihi rectius videtur “ to draw me from them: and 'the “ ingenii quam virium opibus gloriain "only justification I can make is, to “ quærere, et, quoniam vita ipsa quâ “ beg that you will let ber try their “ fruimur brevis est, memoriam nos«
power upon you; and, unless she “tri quàm maximè longam efficere. " is altered since her death, I think “ Nam divitiarum et formæ gloria “ you will have as little cause to boast “fluxa atque fragilis; virtus clara « as myself." Such, my dear Eliza, “æternaque babetur.' will be my excuse to these illustrious A very superficial view of life will shades in the other world; and, in- serve to convince you, that mankind deed, I am forced sometimes to make are prized in proportion to thcir