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felfishness, aided by pride, acquires the preponderance in the moral balance, though they are deligned by Providence to counteract each other. Selfishness is the handmaid of many vices: yet corrupt as the heart may be, pride still flatters the fancy by all the arts of self-adulation. It is not necessary here to analyse those arts which will be found amply detailed in the works of many moralists and divines. But with this pride, à fpurious fort of sympathy is often found to combine, if it may be called sympathy which consists, not in fellow feeling, properly fo called, but in viewing all characters through its own medium, and judging of their principles, motives, and actions, by its own. It therefore draws this conclusion, that where the motives are the fame, the actions must be similar. The language of the true philanthropist is, " I will put myfelf in that person's situation, and act towards him as I might reasonably exped he would act with regard to me in like circumstances.” The secret language of the sellish man, who attributes to all mankind his own disposition, is, “ I will mal-treat or defraud that man, for, had he it in his power, he would act the fame part by me; for are not all incn alike?” There is the more neceflity of guarding againt this, and no less against that felfdeception which induces mankind to palliate their faults to themselves; as, whether sympathy operates as it ought or not, there is always fomething like it at work in the mind. This is that fort of plastick power in the fancy, by which every person, I believe, when figuring to himfelf an absent perfon, whom he has not seen, but expects to fee, always gives the picture a fort of resemblance to himself, both in outward lineaments and difposition. If we could combine the idea of high intellectual powers, joined with the utmost depravity, we might conceive a mixture of malignity and pride, which might presume to attribute its own hideous character to the Supreme Being. lu fact, this often has been the case in some degree in the ancient world, and fill is where idolatry and fanaticism prevail. This, or somewhat like it, seems to be what the poet means to represent in the characters of Beelzebub and of Satan himself; it may at least probably account for the seeming extravagance of some of the fentiments expreffed here and in other parts of the poem where these characters are introduced; or, if it even shows the origin and progrets of fome pernicious habits in the mind, from
the prevalence of one grand fource of moral evil, the observation may not be quite useless.
It is observable, that not only at this period of their mifery, but at first, the supposed tyranny or arbitrary government of the Supreme Being *, is assigned firit as a sufficient excuse for ingratitude and rebellion; and, after their overthrow, it is pleaded as a just reason for retaliation and revenge. In the same manner here, a fancied Night, even from a benefactor, is often, to a depraved mind, made a plea for the most bitter and persevering refentment. BOYD.