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are the greatest losers after all, for you will forfeit the respect you owe to yourselves, and another and a better age will criminate you, as we pretend to criminate the supine and senseless multitude who allowed a Chatterton to perish. Bartolozzi, the great, the sublime, the unequalled Bartolozzi has left you, and every inimitable sketch of his, is a stain upon the national character that will never rub out. Do
you mean to allow the man who has encouraged the cause of virtue, the cause of loyalty, the cause of humanity to want, because your taste is changed? Know, that the true taste for talent, for genius, for wit can never change; it must approve as long as the world exists; the connoisseur in painting knows the touch of the master, and still cries out in rapture, this is a Reuben, this is a Carracci. It is only the vain pretenders to taste who mistake the copy for the original, and who are pleased with the daub of the sign painter. Merit may want a dinner, character it will always have; the country may have wealth, character it may not always have from that venal source.
It is impossible to imagine a cause for the neglect of merit and genius in a country where so much boast is made of liberality, and certainly the English may justly be called a kind hearted people. Yet there is so much spirit of trade and traffic among them, that the fine arts, and the belles lettres are held in a sort of tacit contempt: poets and painters are considered as no very useful members of the community by those who cannot estimate the advantages of enlightening
and refining the understanding of the vulgar, and
The Man in the Moon has opportunities of observing a great deal, and being independent of any views, but the general happiness of his fellow creatures, he thus boldly asserts the cause of merit ; he loves a man of genius, and will never relax in his endeavours to engage a portion of mankind, at least, in the support of its claims. It is the design of the Man in the Moon to give, in a future Number, some tributes to the merits of living persons in the different walks of life who have aided, by their talents, the great purposes of ameliorating the condition of mankind, who have improved the general mind of society, and whose influences have directed their actions in a greater or less degree to good.
MUCH moral and useful instruction may be obtained from a fair and candid consideration of the disagreeable circumstances, occupations, and engagements into which we voluntarily throw ourselves, not content with the evil of the day which is sufficient, but seeking opportunies, as it were, to make our situations more irksome, and all things worse than they really
And this consideration may be pursued to still greater advantage, by contrasting the disagreeable things of life with the agreeable things within our reach, and which are by far more numerous and valuable than we have perhaps ever imagined; and many of them so secure in their nature from the miseries of regret, ruin, or remorse, that it is astonishing they are not more frequently chosen by man, who is, by nature, an epicure, and that they are not distinguished by the name of pleasures. Perhaps these valuable items escape our observation in the catalogue of the incidents of life, because we chuse to purchase its most expensive and ornamental furniture, however useless or brittle ; though perhaps by the time the lot arrives home, the house is shut up, and its owner to be seen no more.
I shall, however, avoid treating this subject gravely; it is by no means an unpleasant one, and if better understood by man, he would wonder how it liad happened that he had missed so many opportunities of happiness, rejected so many means of tasting true satisfaction, and abandoned so often the substantial for the empty and transitory delight of the placentia sensus; perversely chusing the sweets which contain a poison in preference to the sweets which are both delightful and salubrious.
Perhaps the first in rank, and the most agreeable thing to the nature of man, is love. I mean that love which is the mother of charity, good-nature, and complacency for our fellow-creatures; which instructs us to pity, to help, and to relieve, which can abate by its mild interferences the sternness of justice, which can retard the impetus of misfortune, or defeat the malignant power of an enemy in favour of any suffering fellow creature it may meet with. How excellent a quality then is love, to soften and solace the rigours of a life bending to the yoke of moral and physical evil; and why is not its principles distributed by the precepts of education from school to school through the universe, as the true rudiment of happiness.
I shall next speak of that love which is the inclination of the two sexes for each other, both in compliment to the ladies, and because it ranks as the third law of nature, and possesses in its chaste character the richest store of extatic delights presented to man. Listen to the language of the lover.
- When my
dear Sacharissa consented to the appointment of the evening, to meet her beneath the row of elms, I impatiently watched the dial which promised to produce a moment of so much delight. I anticipated all the luxuries of a chaste and delicate interview. At length the time of meeting arrived, a thrill of exquisite pleasure ran through my veins; it was at the approach of my Sacharissa, my breast became agitated with the tumults of love. She gave me her hand, and love and joy fluttered their wings about my heart. In walking, the tender Sacharissa inclined her bosom to me, and as she leant on my arm seemed to imagine me her protector; her beautiful and expressive eyes frequently met mine, their soft fluid sparkling with the liveliness of love and pleasure. When we were seated, her hand was within mine, and the dialogue was friendship, pity, and sometimes love. When Sacharissa spoke of the deceit and falsehood of the world, the generous blush that covered her face pictured a soul of constancy and truth.
Her pure and eloquent blood
may naturally be supposed that marriage-should follow, and so it does naturally enough; and notwithstanding what cross old bachelors may say on the subject, matrimony contains a larger portion of happiness for man than any other state, provided the affinities of mind and fortune are attended to in the choice of the object. · Methinks, before I end the chapter of love, it may be proper to say something of