« ForrigeFortsæt »
scribes laws to his will and humour? or is it when he is at once set free from religion, and all the authorities of collected reason but his own? If the last must be the state of sense in the country that I live in, let me be a fool; an ignorant, happy fool, enjoying the sentiments of my own heart, unmolested by doubt and mystery, rather than give way to the false fashion of philosophy, which adds nothing to our happiness and subtracts so much. Yes, proud relentless Man, brutes have their rights; the horse has his, and beyond reasonable service thou hast no right to use him. Thou wishest to see no tyrant but thyself; but thy proud arrogant heart would swell over every other creature. Thou puttest a bridle upon the horse; but it is thyself who needs the bit, the reins, and the martingale; thou tossest thy head too high; thou runnest away, at times, fired with passion, and frequently thy mulishness of mind needs the whip and spur to keep thee in the right road. Thou hast not been, perhaps, so well broke in by education as the horse; thou wouldst wish to throw every restraint from off thee, and to gallop through the world free and independent. And yet thou art but a poor creature after all! and of the horse and his rider, I believe the horse is generally the most consistent being of the two.'-Such were the reflections of my benefactor, who uttered them with so much application to myself, that I felt more regard for my master, man, than I had ever done before. Alas! my happiness in this state of tranquillity lasted but for a short time; my benefactor died in a few months, and the heir, who, I afterwards heard, at the instance of my kind master, had promised to take care of me through the remainder of his life, and to permit me to graze in his meadows, forgot the promise, and sold me to a man who replaced me in my former condition of life, and I became once more a post-horse. I had the good fortune, however, to-day to interest the feelings of a man who, I understand is an artist, and a writer of essays, and who came into the stable to draw my figure: he promised very kindly to publish my complaint to the world in your paper
of the Man in the Moon. I embraced the opportunity and have ventured to trouble you with the remonstrance of an unhappy
The Man in the Moon presents his Compliments to Miss Fanny Flutter, and
will notice her Letter in his next Paper.
MAN IN THE MOON.
s from envy, hatred, malice, and all uncharitableness, good Lord deliver us.”
NUMBER XXIV. (Price 4d.)
Saturday, 28th Jan, 1804.
PERHAPS better service cannot be done to society than to define with truth, and in all its proper
colouring, the beast denominated in the natural history of mankind, AN ENEMY. This cruel and ferocious animal is of two species, public, and private; the first, prowling like the wolf, and the second, cunning as the serpent, or insidious as the tiger, watching when to spring and destroy. The first, warring openly against society, and criminating without justice or distinction the worthy part of every class; the second, detracting from, or depreciating the talents or virtues of a private individual, or watching with hungry malice the moment of misfortune to feed upon its unhappy victim. What is called a noble enemy (if there can be any thing noble in the character of an enemy) is the foe who fights the armies of another country in arms; but even then, he must have his quarrel just, or he is no other than a robber and a murderer, and when great Powers amuse themselves with war to the detri,
ment of their subjects, from mere political questions of ambition, both parties are the enemies of mankind; but as I do not mean, in this paper, to enter into the consideration of the greater mischiefs and abuses of the commonwealth, I shall proceed to mark the characters of the public and private enemies, who molest and disturb society, that they may be known and shunned.
The worst public enemy is the man who avowedly scorns and contemns the rights and duties of morality and religion; who encourages, by his example, the weak and credulous to turn aside from the plain wholesome maxims of honest minds, upon which they have hitherto relied, to indulge new and fantastic ideas which only serve to disturb and lessen their happiness. The next public enemy is him who, in the schemes of åvarice, grinds and oppresses the poor, destroying the reciprocities of society to secure great advantages to himself, and robbing on the great scale with impunity; while the poor wretch, who steals to the value of halfa-crown, is condemned to death. Another public enemy is the man who, by his love of expence and cruel ostentation, invites hundreds to ruin; who, but for his example, would have lived secure and happy in their own moderate plan of life.
Another dangerous and cruel enemy, fostered by the former character, is fashion, drawing aside, by her absurd fascinations, the quiet passenger of life, by presenting before him the bugbear called DIS-RESPECT.
But to proceed to the next class, or what is called the private enemy,
the proper subject of this paper.
The private enemy usually makes his debut in the masquerade character of a friend, which, if he is at all clever, he supports very well; he treats his object with attention and respect, ventures a little modest flattery, and mixes up his slow poison in the sweet materials of approbation; seeks opportunities to soothe the discontents, and to do innumerable little kindnesses and services, to the man he has fixed on, whenever the occasion offers. These are the advances; and bad indeed must be the heart which could reject so apparently amiable and interesting a character. At length, the heart is opened, and the kind attentive stranger invited to the full possession of the mansion, even as the
It is then that the dark and insidious traitor creeps into every corner of it to detect its weaknesses, for the base purpose of subjugating the powers of the mind which first entertained him, to suit his base and interested purposes. It is then that he begins rather to demand than to ask favours. It is then that he begins to doubt, to question, and to contradict; to try the different effects of a different conduct, and to make successful inroads where to erect the standards of his own consequence in depreciation of his friend; by degrees he gets more into power, and his assumption of it increases till, at length, tired of restraint, he erects at once his crest, perches himself on the materials collected from the good-nature of his patron, and at once becomes ungrateful and offensive. It is then that he