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as mich from the cunning, as from the choleric man) alone joins the suavitèr in modo with the fortitèr in re.
If you are in authority, and have a right to command, your commands delivered suavitèr in modo will be willingly, cheerfully, and consequently well obeyed: whereas if given only fortiter, that is brutally, they will rather, as Tacitus says, be interpreted than executed. For my own part, if I bade
footman bring me a glass of wine in a rough insulting manner, I should expect, that, in obeying me, he would contrive to spill some of it upon me: and I am sure I should deserve it. . A cool steady resolution should show, that, where you have a right to command, you will be obeyed; but at the same time a gentleness in the manner of enforcing that obedience should make it a cheerful one, and soften, as much as possible, the mortifying consciousness of inferiority. If you are to ask a favour, or even to solicit your due, you must do it suavitèr in modo, or you will give those, who have a mind to refuse you cither, a pretence to do it, by resenting the manner; but, on the other hand, you must, by a steady perseverance and decent tenaciousness, show the fortitèr in re. In short, this precept is the only way I know in the world of being loved without being despised, and feared without being hated. It constitutes the dignity of character, which every wise man must endeavour to establish.
If therefore you find, that you have a hastiness in your temper, which unguardedly breaks out into indiscreet sallies, or rough expressions, to either your superiors, your equals, or your inferiors, watch it narrowly, check it carefully, and call the suaritèr in modo to your assistance : at the first impulse of passion be silent, till you can be soft. Labour even to get the command of your countenance so well, that those emotions may not be read in it: a most unspeakable advantage in business ! On the other hand, let no complaisance, no gentleness of temper, no weak desire of pleasing on your part, no wheedling, coaxing, nor flattery, on other people's, inake you recede one jot from any point, that reason and prudence have bid you pursue; but return to the cliarge, persist, persevere, and you will find most things attainable that are possible. A yielding, timid meekness is always abused and insulted by the unjust and the unfeeling; but meekness, when sustained by the fortitèr in re, is always respected, commonly successful. In your friendships and connections, as well as in your enmities, this rule is particularly useful: let
your firmness and vigour preserve and invite attachments to you; but, at the same time, let your manner hinder the enemies of your friends and dependents from becoming yours ; let your enemies be disarmed by the gentleness of your manner, but let them feel, at the same time, the steadiness of your just resentment; for there is a great difference between bearing malice, which is always uygenerous, and a resolute self-defence, which is always prudent and justifiable.
I conclude with this observation, That gentleness of manners, with firmness of mind, is a short, but full description of human perfection, on this side of religious and moral duties.
ON GOOD SENSE.
WERB I to explain what I understand by Good Sense, I should call it right reason ; but right reason that arises not from formal and logical deductions, but from a sort of intuitive faculty in the soul, which distinguishes by immediate perception: a kind of innate sagacity, that in many of it's properties seems very much to resemble instinct. It would be improper, therefore, to say, that sir Isaac Newton showed his good sense, by those amazing discoveries which he made in natural philosophy; the operations of this gift of Heaven are rather instantaneous than the result of any
process.. Like Diomede, after Minerva had indued him with the power of discerning gods from mortals, the man of good sense discovers at once the truth of those objects he is most concerned to distinguish, and conducts himself with suitable caution and security.
It is for this reason, possibly, that this quality of the mind is not so often found united with learning as one could wish ; for good sense being accustomed to receive her discoveries without labour or study, she cannot so easily wait for those
truths, which being placed at a distance, and lying concealed under numberless covers, require much pains and application to unfold.
But though good sense is not m the number, nor always, it must be owned, in the company of the sciences; yet is it (as the most sensible of poets has justly observed) "fairly worth the seven.” Rectitude of understanding is indeed the most useful, as well as the most noble of haman endowments; as it is the sovereign guide and director in every branch of civil and social intercourse.
Upon whatever occasion this enlightening faculty is exerted, it is always sure to act with distinguished eminence; but it's chief and peculiar province seems to lie in the commerce of the world. Accordingly we may observe, that those who have conversed more with men than with books, whose wisdom is derived rather from experience than conteniplation, generally possess this happy talent with superior perfection. For good sense, though it cannot be acquired,
be improved ; and the world, I believe, will ever be found to afford the most kindly soil for it's cultivation.
Studies serve for delight, for ornament, and for ability. The chici use for delight is in privateness and retiring ; for ornament, is in discourse ; and for ability, is in the judgment and disposition of business. For expert men can execute, and perhaps judge of particulars one by one; but the general counsels, and the plots, and marshalling of affairs, come best from those that are learned. . To spend too much time in studies is sloth; to use thein too much for ornament is affection; to make judgment wholly by their rules is the humour of a scholar. They perfect nature, and are perfected by experience; for natural abilities are like natural plants, that need pruning by duty; and studies themselves do give forth directions too much at large, except they be bounded in by, experience. Crafty men contenin studies,
simple men admire them, and wise men use them: for they teach not their own use, but that is a wisdom without them, and above them, won by observation. Read not to contradict and confute, nor to believe and take for granted ; not to find talk and discourse, but to weigh and consider. Some books are to be tasted, others to be swallowed, and some few to be chewed and digested : that is, some books are to be read only in parts; others to be read, but not curiously ; and some few to be read wholly, and with diligence and attention. Some books also may be read by deputy, and extracts made of them by others; but that should be only in the less important arguments, and the meaner sorts of books; else distilled books are like common distilled waters, flashy things. Reading maketh a full man; conference a ready man; and writing an exact man. And therefore, if a man write little, he had need have a great memory; if he confer little, he had need have a present wit; and if he read little, he had need have much cunning, to seem to know that he doth not.
ON SATIRICAL WIT.
-Trust me, this unwary pleasantry of thine will sooner or later bring thee into scrapes and difficulties, which no afterwit can extricate thee out of. In these sallies, too oft, I see, it happens, that the person laughed at considers himself in the light of a person injured, with all the rights of such a situation belonging to him ; and when thou viewest him in that light too, and reckonest upon his friends, his family, his kindred and allies, and musterest up with them the many recruits, which will list under him from a sense of common danger; 'tis no extravagant arithmetic to say, that for every
, ten jokes, thou hast got a hundred enemies; and, till thou hast gone on, and raised a swarm of wasps about thine cars, and art half stung to death by them, thou wilt never be convinced it is so.
I cannot suspect it in the man whom I esteem, that there is the least spur from spleen or malevolence of intent in these sallies. I believe and know them to be truly honest and sportive; but consider, that'fools cannot distinguishı this, and that knaves will not; and thou knowest not what it is, either to provoke the one, or to make merry with the other; whenever they associate for mutual defence, depend upon it they will carry on the war in such a manner against thee, my dear friend, as to make thee heartily sick of it, and of thy life too.
Revenge from some baneful corner shall level a tale of dishonour at thee, which no innocence of heart or integrity of conduct shall set right. The fortunes of thy house shall totter—thy character, which led the way to them, shall bleed on every side of it—thy faith questioned-thy works belied thy wit forgotten—thy learning trampled on. To wind up the last scene of thy tragedy, Cruelty and Cowardice, twin ruffians, hired and set on by Malice in the dark, shall strike togetker at all thy infirmities and mistakes ; the best of us, *my end, lie open there; and trust me when, to gratify a private appetite, it is once resolved upon, that an innocent and a helpless creature shall be sacrificed, it is an easy matter to pick up sticks enough from any thicket where it has strayed, to make a fire to offer it up with.
HAMLET'S INSTRUCTIONS TO THE PLAYERS.
Speak the speech, I pray you, as I pronounced it to you, trippingly on the tongue. But if you mouth it, as many of our players do; I had as lieve the town crier had spoke my lines. And do not saw the air too much with your hand, thus : but use all gently; for in the very torrent, tempest, and, as I may say, whirlwind of your passion, you must acquire and beget a temperance, that may give it smoothness. O! it offends me to the soul, to hear a robustious periwigpated fellow tear a passion to tatters, to very rags, to split the ears of the groundlings; who, for the most part, are capable of nothing but inexplicable dumb shows and noise :