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wife when it impels us to take the meafures of violence in oppofition to the general fenfe of our own. For may not public happiness be estimated by the fame standard as that of private? and as every man's own opinion must determine his particular fatisfaction; fhall not the general opinion be confidered as decifive in the question concerning general intereft? Far am I, however, from infinuating, that the true welfare of mankind in their collective capacities depends fingly upon a prevailing fancy, any more than it does in their feparate: undoubtedly in both inftances they may equally embrace a falfe intereft. But whenever this is the cafe, I should hardly imagine that the love of our country, on the one hand, or of our neighbour, on the other, would justify any methods of bringing them to a wifer choice, than those of calm and rational perfuafion.

I CANNOT at prefent recollect which of the antient authors it is, that mentions the Cappadocians to have been fo enamored of fubjection to a defpotic power, as to refufe the enjoyment of their liberties, tho' generously tendered to them by the Romans. Scarcely

Scarcely, I suppose, can there be an instance produced of a more remarkable depravity of national tafte, and of a more falfe calculation of public welfare: yet even in this instance it should seem the highest injustice to have attempted by force, and at the expence, perhaps, of half the lives in the ftate, the introduction of a more improved system of government.

In this notion I am not fingular, but have the authority of Plato himself on my fide; who held it as a maxim of undoubted truth in politics, that the prevailing sentiments of a state, how much foever miftaken, ought by no means to be opposed by the measures of violence: a maxim, which if certain pretended or misguided patriots had happily embraced, much effufion of civil blood had been lately fpared to our nation. I am, &c.



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'HE dawn is overcaft, the morning lours, And heavily with clouds brings on the day. How then can I better difappoint the gloomy effects of a louring sky, than by calling my thoughts off from the dull scene before me, and placing them upon my friend? Much, certainly, are we indebted to that happy faculty, by which, with a fort of magic power, we can bring before one's mind whatever has been the subject of its most agreeable contemplation. In vain, therefore, would that lovely dame, who has so often been the topic of our conversations, pretend to enjoy you to herself: in spite of your favourite philofophy, or even of a more powerful divinity; in spight of Fortune herself, I can place you in my view, tho' half a century of miles lies between us. But am I for ever to be indebted to imagination only for your company? and will you not fometimes let me owe that fatisfaction to yourself? Surely you might fpare me a


few weeks before the fummer ends, without any inconvenience to that noble plan upon which I know you are fo intent, As for my own ftudies, they go on but flowly: İ am, like a traveller without a guide in an unknown country; obliged to inquire the way at every turning, and confequently cannot advance with all the expedition I could wish. I am, &c.

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To the fame.


'ORGIVE me, Palamedes, if I mif


trust an art, which the greatest of philofophers has called the art of deceiving, and by which the first of orators could per fuad the people that he had conquered at the athletic games, tho' they saw him fall at his adverfary's feet. The voice of Elo quence should ever, indeed, be heard with caution: and she, whose boast it has formerly been, to make little things appear confiderable, may diminish objects, perhaps,


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as well as enlarge them, and leffen even the charms of repofe. But I have too long experienced the joys of retirement, to quit her arms for a more lively mistress; and I can look upon ambitiom, tho' adorned in all the ornaments of your oratory, with the cool indifference of the most confirmed Stoic. To confefs the whole truth, I am too proud to endure a repulfe, and too humble to hope for fuccefs: qualities little favorable, I imagine, to the pretenfions of him who would claim the glittering prizes, which animate thofe that run the race of ambition. Let those honors then, you mention be infcribed on the tombs of others; be it rather told on mine, that I lived and died

Unplac'd, unpension'd, no man's heir or flave.

And is not this a privilege as valuable as any of those which you have painted to my view, in all the warmeft colors of your enlivening eloquence? Bruyere, at least, has just now affured me, that "to pay one's "court to no man, nor expect any to


pay court to you, is the most agreeable "of all fituations; it is the true golden


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