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little pleasure, could I receive it only from those enjoyments which are in my own possession; but by this great tincture of humanity, which I find in all my thoughts and reflections, I am happier than any single person can be, with all the wealth, strength, beauty, and success, that can be conferred upon a mortal, if he only relishes such a proportion of those blessings as is' vested in himself, and is his own vate property. By this means, every man that does himself any real service, does me a kindness. I come in for my share in all the good that happens to a man of merit and virtue, and partake of many gifts of fortune and power that I was never born to. There is nothing in particular in which I so much rejoice, as the deliverance of good and generous spirits out of dangers, difficulties, and distresses. And because the world does not supply instances of this kind to furnish out sufficient entertainments for such an humanity and benevolence of temper, I have ever delighted in reading the history of ages past, which draws together into a narrow compass, the great occurrences and events that are but thinly sown in those tracts of time which lie within our own knowledge and observation. When I see the life of a great man, who has deserved well of his country, after having struggled through all the oppositions of prejudice and envy, breaking out with lustre, and shining forth in all the splendour of success, I close my book, and am an happy man for a whole evening

But since in history, events are of a mixed nature, and often happen alike to the worthless and deserving, insomuch that we frequently see a virtuous man dying in the midst of disappointments an calamities, and the vicious ending their days in prosperity and peace; I love to amuse myself with the accounts I meet with in fabulous histories and fictions: for in this kind of writings, we have always the pleasure

of seeing vice punished, and virtue rewarded.. Tini deed, were we able to viewra man in the whole circle of his existence, we should have the satisfacstion of seeing it close with happiness or misery, ac cording to his proper merit : but though our viewe of him

is interrupted by death before the finishing of his adventures, (if I may so'speak,) we may bersure that the conclusion and catastrophe is altogether suitable to his behaviour. On the contrary, the whole being of a man considered as an hero, 1 or a knight-errant, is comprehended within the limits of a poem or romance, and therefore always ends to our satisfaction; so that inventions of this kind are like food and exercise to a good-natured disposition, which they please and gratify at the same time that they nourish and strengthen. The greater the affliction is 'which we see our favourites in these relations engaged, the greater is the pleasure we take in seeing them relieved.

Among the many feigned histories which I have met with in my reading, there is none in which the hero's perplexity is greater, and the winding out of it more difficult, than that in a French author whose name I have forgot. It so happens, that the hero's mistress was the sister of his most intimate friend, wlio for certain reasons was given out to be dead, while he was preparing to leave his country in quest of adventures. The hero having heard of his friend's death, immediately repaired to his mistress, ito.condole with her, and comfort her. Upon his arrival

in her garden, he discovered at a distance a man " clasped in her arms, and embraced with the most endearing tenderness. What should he do? It did not consist with the gentleness of a knight-errant either to kill his mistress or the man whom she was pleased to favour. At the same time, it would have spoiled a romance, should he have laid violent hands on himself. In short, he immediately entered upon his adventures; and after a long series of exploits,

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found out by degrees, that the person he saw in his mistress's arms was her own brother, taking leave of her before he left his country, and the embrace she gave him, nothing else but the affectionate farewell of a sistere so that he had at once the two greatest satisfactions that could enter into the heart of man, in finding his friend alive, whom he thought dead; and his mistress faithful, whom he had believed inconstant. 's . There are, indeed, some disasters so very fatal that it is impossible for any accidents to rectify them. Of this kind was that of poor Lucretia; and yet we see Ovid has found an expedient even in a case like hers. He describes a beautiful and royal virgin walking on the sea-shore, where she was discovered by Neptune, and violated after a long and unsuecessful importunity. To mitigate her sorrow, he offers her whatever she would wish for. Never certainly was the wit of woman more puzzled in finding out a stratagem to retrieve her honour. Had she desired to be turned into a stock or.stone, a beast, fish, or fowl, she would have been a loser by it : or had she desired to have been made a sea-nymph, or a goddess, her immortality would but have perpetuated her disgrace. Give me, therefore, said she, such a shape, as may make me incapable of suffering again the like calamity, or of being reproached for

what I have already suffered. To be short, she - was turned into a man, and by that only means avoided the danger and imputation she so much dreaded. 14. I was once myself in agonies of grief that are uns utterable, and in so great a distraction of mind,

that I thought myself even out of the possibility of {receiving comfort. The occasion was as follows: 3 When I was a youth, in a part of the army which was then quartered at Dover, I fell in love with an agreeable young woman, of a good family in, those parts, sand had, the satisfaction of seeing my ad

dresses kindly received, which occasioned the per. plexity I am going to relate.

We were in a calm evening diverting ourselves upon

the

top of the cliff, with a prospect of the sea, and trifling away the time in such líttle fondnesses as are most ridiculous to people in business, and most agreeable to those in love.

In the midst of these our innocent endearments, she snatched a paper of verses out of my hand, and ran away with them. I was following her, when on a sudden the ground, though at a considerable distance from the verge of the precipice, sunk under her, and threw her down from so prodigious an height upon such a range of rocks as would have dashed her into ten thousand pieces, had her body been made of adamant. It is much easier for my reader to imagine my state of mind upon such an occasion, than for me to express it. I said to myself, “ It is not in the power of heaven to relieve me !" when I awaked, equally transported and astonished, to see myself drawn out of an affliction which the very moment before appeared to me altogether inextricable.

The impressions of grief and horror were so lively on this occasion, that while they lasted, they made me more miserable than I was at the real death of this beloved person, (which happened a few months after, at a time when the match between us was concluded,) inasmuch as the imaginary death was untimely, and I myself in a sort an accessary; whereas her decease had at least these alleviations, of being natural and inevitable.

The memory of the dream I have related, still dwells so strongly upon me, that I can never read the description of Dover-Cliff

, in Sakespear's Tragedy of King Lear, without a fresh sense of my escape. The prospect from that place is drawn with such proper incidents, that whoever can read it

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without growing giddy, must have a good head, or a very bad one.

Come on, Sir, here's the place. Stand still! How fearful
And dizzy 'tis to cast ones eyes so low!
The crows and choughs that wing the midway air
Shew scarce as gross as beetles. Half-way down
Hangs one that gathers samphire; dreadful trade!
Methinks he seems no bigger than his head.
The fishermen that walk upon the beach
Appear like mice; and yon tall anchoring bark
Diminish'd to her boat; her boal, a buoy,
Almost too small for sight. The murmuring surge
(That on the unnumber'd idle pebbles beat)
Cannot be heard so high. I'll look no more,
Lest
my

brain turn.

No. 119. THURSDAY, JANUARY 12, 1709.

In tenui labor.

VIRG.

Sheer-Lane, January 11. I

HAVE lately applied myself with much satisfaction to the curious discoveries that have been made by the help of microscopes, as they are related by authors of our own and other nations. There is a great deal of pleasure in prying into this world of wonders, which nature has laid out of sight, and seems industrious to conceal from us. Philosophy had ranged over all the visible creation, and began to want objects for her enquiries, when the present age, by the invention of glasses, opened a new and inexhaustible magazine of rarities, more wonderful and amazing than any of those which astonished our forefathers. I was yesterday amusing myself with speculations of this kind, and reflecting upon my. riads of animals that swim in those little seas of juices that are contained in the several vessels of an human body. While my mind was thus filled with that secret wonder and delight, I could not but

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