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for. Walk with her, though it be but on a heath or a common, and fhe will difcover numberlefs beauties, unobserved before, in the hills, the dales, the brooms, brakes, and the variegated flowers of weeds and poppies. She enjoys every change of weather and of feason, as bringing with it fomething of health or convenience. In converfation, it is a rule with her, never to start a fubject that leads to any thing gloomy or difagreeable. You therefore never hear her repeating her own grievances, or those of her neighbours, or (what is worst of all) their faults and imperfections. If any thing of the latter kind be mentioned in her hearing, she has the address to turn it into entertainment, by changing the most odious railing into a pleasant raillery. Thus Meliffa, like the bee, gathers honey from every weed; while Arachne, like the fpider, fucks poifon from the fairest flowers. The confequence is, that, of two tempers, once very nearly allied, the one is ever four and diffatisfied, the other always gay and chearful; the one fpreads an univerfal gloom, the other a continual funshine.
THERE is nothing more worthy of our attention, than this art of happiness. In converfation as well as life, happiness very often depends upon the slightest incidents. The taking notice of the badness of the weather, a north-eaft wind, the approach of winter, or any trifling circumftance of the difagreeable kind, fhall infenfibly rob a whole company of its good-humour, and fling every member of it into the vapours. If, therefore we would be happy in ourselves, and are defirous of communicating that happiness to all about us, thefe minutia of converfation ought carefully to be attended to. The brightness of the fky, the lengthening of the days, the encreafing verdure of the spring, the arrival of any little piece of good news, or what
ever carries with it the most diftant glimpse of joy, fhall frequently be the parent of a focial and happy converfation. Good manners exact from us this regard to our company. The clown may repine at the funfhine that ripens the harveft, becaufe his turnips are burnt up by it; but the man of refinement will extract pleasure from the thunder ftorm to which he is expofed, by remarking on the plenty and refreshment, which may be expected from the fucceeding fhower.
THUS does politenefs, as well as good fenfe, direct us to look at every object on the bright fide; and, by thus acting, we cherish and improve both. By this practice it is, that Meliffa is become the wifest and best bred woman living; and, by this practice, may every perfon arrive at that agreeablenefs of temper, of which the natural and never-failing fruit is Happiness.
TOTHING (fays Longinus) can be great, the contempt of which is great.". The poffeffion of wealth and riches, cannot give a man a title to greatness; because it is looked upon as a greatnefs of mind, to contemn thefe gifts of fortune, and to be above the defire of them. I have been therefore inclined to think, that there are greater men who lie concealed among the fpecies, than those who come out and draw upon themselves the eyes and
and admiration of mankind. Virgil would never have been heard of, had not his domestic miffortunes drawn him out of his obfcurity, and brought him to Rome.
If we fuppofe, that there are fuperior beings who look into the ways of men (as it is highly probable there are, both from reafon and revelation) how different must be their notions of us, from those which we are apt to form of one another!-We are dazzled with the pleasure of titles, the oftentation of learning, the noife of victories. They, on the contrary, fee the philofopher in the cottage, who poffeffes his foul in patience and thankfulness, under the preffures of what little minds call poverty and diftrefs. They do not look for great men, at the head of armies, or among the pomps of the court; but often find them out in fhades and folitudes, in the private walks and by-ways of life. The evening walk of a wife man, is more illuftrious, in their fight, than the march of a general at the head of a hundred thousand men. A contemplation of God's works, a voluntary act of juftice to our own detriment, a generous concern for the good of mankind, tears hed in filence for the mifery of others, a private defire of refentment broken and fubdued, an unfeigned exercise of humility, or any other virtue, are fuch actions as are glorious in their fight, and denominate men great and reputable. The most famous among us, are often looked upon with pity and contempt, or with indignation; while thofe who are moft obfcure, are regarded with love, with approbation and esteem.
PLEASURE AND PAIN.
HERE were two families, which, from the beginning of the world, were as oppofite to each other as light and darkness. The one of them lived in heaven, and the other in hell. The youngest defcendant of the firft family, was Pleafure; who was the daughter of Happiness, who was the child of Virtue, who was the Offspring of the Gods. These, as I faid before, had their habitation in Heaven. The youngest of the oppofite family, was Pain; who was the son of Mifery, who was the child of Vice, who was the offspring of the Furies. The habitation of this race of beings, was in hell.
THE middle ftation of nature, between these two oppofite extremes, was the earth; which was inhabited by creatures of a middle kind; neither fo virtuous as the one, nor fo vicious as the other, but partaking of the good and bad qualities of these two oppofite families. Jupiter, confidering that this fpecies, commonly called man, was too virtuous to be miferable, and too vicious to be happy; that he might make a distinction between the good and the bad, ordered the two youngest of the above-mentioned families (Pleafure who was the daughter of
Happiness, and Pain who was the son of Misery) to meet one another upon this part of nature; having promised to settle it upon them both, provided they could agree upon the divifion of it, fo as to fhare mankind between them.
PLEASURE and Pain were no fooner met in their new habitation, but they immediately agreed upon this point; that Pleasure should take poffeffion of the virtuous, and Pain of the vicious part, of that fpecies which was given up to them. But, upon examining to which of them any individual they met with belonged, they found each of them had a right to him; for, that, contrary to what they had feen in their old places of refidence, there was no perfon fo vicious who had not fome good in him, nor any person fo virtuous who had not in him some : evil. The truth of it is, they generally found, upon fearch, that, in the most vicious man, Pleasure might lay a claim to an hundredth part; and that, in the moft virtuous man, Pain might come in for at least two-thirds. This, they faw, would occafion endlefs difputes between them, unless they could come to fome accommodation. To this end, there was a marriage propofed between them, and at length concluded. Hence it is, that we find Pleasure and Pain are fuch conftant yoke-fellows, and that they either make their vifits together, or are never far afunder. If Pain comes into a heart, he is quickly followed by Pleafure; and, if Pleasure enters, you may be fure Pain is not far off.
BUT, notwithstanding this marriage was very convenient for the two parties, it did not seem to answer the intention of Jupiter, in fending them among mankind. To remedy, therefore, this inconvenience, it was ftipulated between them by article, and confirmed by the confent of each family, that notwithstanding they here poffeffed the fpecies indifferently; upon the death of every perfon, if he were found to have in him a certain proportion of evil, he fhould be dispatched into the infernal regions, by a paffport from Pain; there to dwell with Misery,