Abbildungen der Seite

the earl of Rochester to act for you till your father might have no temptation you are of age.

to withdraw from the ancient seat of his You will do well to write your most family. From the conquest to the rehumble thanks to her majesty, for so foration your ancestors conttantly regraciously remembering you, unfolicit. fided amongit their countrymen, except ed, in your absence; you should likewi:e when the public service called upon do the same to my lord Rochelter, for them to facriace their lives for it. accepting the trouble.

Stowe, in your grandfather's time, This, my dear lord, is a preparative till the civil wars broke out, was a kind to bring you upon the fage with some of academy for all young men of family luftre at your first appearance in the in the country; he provided himself world, You are placed at the head of with the best masters, of all kinds, for a body of gentry, entirely disposed in education ; and the children of his affection to you and your family : you neighbours and friends shared the adare born poffefsed of all those amiable vantage with his own. Thus he, in a qualities which cannot fail of fixing manner, became the father of his coun. their hearts: you have no other example try, and not only engaged the affection to follow, but to tread in the steps of of the present generation, but laid a your ancestors: it is all that is hoped or foundation of friendship for pofterity, desired from you.

which is not worn out at this day. You are upon an uncommon founda Upon this foundation, my lord, you zion in that part of the world ; your inherit friends without the trouble of ancestors, for at least 500 years, never making them, and have only to preserve made any alliance, male or female, out them : an easy task for you, to whom of the western counties: thus there is nature has been so liberal of every quahardly a gentleman, either in Cornwall lity necessary to attract affection and or Devon, but has some of your blood, gain the heart. or you some of theirs. I remember the I must tell you, the generality of our first time I accompanied your grand countrymen have been always royalists ; father into the Weit, upon holding his you inherit too much loyal blood to like parliament of tinners, as warden of the them the worse ; there is an old saying Stannaries, when there was the most amongit them, " That a Godolphin numerous appearance of gentry of both was never known to want wit; a counties that had ever been remem Trelawney courage ; or a Granville bered together: I observed there was “ loyalty.” Wit and courage are not hardly any one but whom he called to be mistaken ; and to give those famicousin, and I could not but observe at lies their due, they still keep up their the same time how well they were character ; but it is the misfortune of pleased with it. Let this be a lesion for loyalty not to be so clearly understood, you when it comes to your turn to ap or defined. In a country subject to repear amongst them. Nothing is more volutions, what passes for loyalty to-day, obliging than to seem to retain the me may be treason to-morrow : but I make mory of kindred and alliances, though great difference between real and nomi. never so remote ; and by consequence nal treason. In the quarrel of the nothing more disobliging than a forget- houses of York and Lancaster, both sides ' fulness of them, which is always im were proclaimed traitors, as the other puted to an affected, disdainful superio- prevailed: even under Cromwell's usus. rity and pride.

pation, all who adhered to the kingwere There is another particular, in my proclaimed traitors, and suffered as such: opinion of no small consequence to the but this makes no alteration in the thing support of your interest, which I would itself: it may be enacted treason to cali recommend to your imitation; and that black, black; or, white, white; but 'is, to make Stowe your principal refi. black will be black, and white will be dence. I have heard your grandfather white, in spite of all the legislators in say, if ever he lived to be possessed of the world. New-hall, he would pull it down, that There can be no doubt about allegi.


ance, unless princes become tyrants, and been false patriots, as well as false pre, then they cease to be kings: they will phets. no longer be respected as God's vicege. “To fear God, and honour the King," rents, who violate the laws they were were injunctions fo closely tack'd togesworn to protect. The preacher may ther, that they seem to make but one tell us of paflive obedience; that tyrants and the same command. A man may are to be patiently suffered as scourges as well pretend to be a good christian in the hands of a righteous God, to without fearing God, as a good subject chastise a linful nation; and to be sub. without honouring the King. mitted to, like plagues, famines, and “ Deo, Patriæ, Amicis,” was your such like judgments from above. Such great grandfather, Sir Bevil's, motto: doctrines, were it true, could only serve in three words he has added to his exto mislead ill-judging princes into a ample a role which, in following, you false security ; men are not to be rea. can never err in any duty of life. The son’d'out of their senses : human nature brightest courage, and the gentlest dis. and self-preservation will eternally arm position, is part of the Lord Clarenagainst flavery and oppression.

don's character of him: so much of It is therefore not to be supposed, that him you have begun to thew us alrea. even the weakest prince would run that dy: and the best wish I can make for hazard, unless seduced by advice wick. you, is, to resemble him as much in all edly palliated by evil countellors. Nero --but his untimely fate. himself, under the influence of a good I am, my lord, for ever, &c. ministry, was the mildest, the most gracious, and best beloved of the emperors; the most fanguinary, the most profligate,

$ 145. Second Letter to the fame, and the most abhorred, under a bad one.

Sept. 22, A prince may be deceived, or mistaken, Every living creature, my dear lord, in the choice of his favourites ; but he is entitled to offices of humanity. The has this adyantage, he is sure to hear of distress, even of an enemy, Soul it from the voice of the public: if then concile us to him : if he thirsts, give he is deaf, he seems to take upon himself him drink; if he hungers, give him the blame and odium of those actions, food ; overcome evil with good. It is which were chargeable before but upon with this disposition I would have you his advisers.

enter into the exercise of that authority Idle murmurs, groundless discon- with which her majesty has honoured tents, and pretended jealousies and fears, you over your countrymen. Let nog the effect of private prejudice and re. body inspire you with party prejudices sentments, have been, and will ever be, and resentments, Let it be your busiunder the wileft adminiftrations : we ness to reconcile differences and heal are pestered with them even now, when divisions; and to restore, if poflible, we have a queen who is known to have harmony and good neighbourhood a. nothing so much at heart as the content. mongst them. If then there should be ment of her people: these are transitory any left to wish you ill, make them aq vapours, which scatter at the first ap- named and confounded with your goodpearance of light; the infection spreadsness and moderation. Not that I would no farther than a particular set of four, ever advise you to sacrifice one hair of fplenetic enthusiasts in politics, not worth the head of an old friend to your family minding or correcting. Universal dis. to gain fifty new ones ; but if you content can never happen, but from so. can increase the number by courtesy lid provocations.

and moderation, it may be worth the Many well-meaning persons, how. trial. ever, abounding in zeal, have been Believe me, my dear lord, humanity often unwarily caught by popular pre- and generosity make the best foundation Lences, and not undeceived, till 'twas to build a character upon. A man may too late. Have a care, my dear cousin, have birth, and riches, and power, wit, of splitting upon that rock ; there have learning, courage ; but without gene,



[ocr errors]

rofity, it is impossible to be a great man. ftand always nearest in fight, and are Whatever the rich and powerful may not to be put out of countenance, nor think of themselves; whatever value thrust out of the way. I remember to they may set upon their abundance have heard a saying of the late King and grandeur; they will find themselves James, “ That he never knew a model but the more hated and despised for the man make his way in a court.” Daill use they make of it. You should look vid Floyd, whom you know, being then upon yourselves but as stewards and in waiting at his majesty's elbow, replied trustees for the distressed : your over bluntly,“ Pray, Sir, whose fault's that??' abundance is but a depofit for the use The king stood corrected, and was fiand relief of the unhappy: you are an lent, fwerable for all superfluities mil-spent, If princes could see with their own It is not to be supposed, that Providence eyes, and hear with their own ears, would have made such distinctions a. what a happy situation it would be, both mong men, such unequal distributions, for themselves and their subjects To but that they might endear themselves reward inerit, to redress the injured, to to one another by mutual helps and relieve the oppressed, to raise the moobligations. Gratitude is the sureft deft, to humble the insolent; what a cement of love, friendship, and fo- godlike prerogative, were a right use ciety.

made of it! There are, indeed, rules to be ob How happy are you, my dear lord, served, and measures to be kept, in the who are born with such generous inclia distribution of favours : we know who nations, with judgment to direct them, have both the power and inclination to and the means to indulge them ! Of do good ; but, for want of judgment in all men, most miserable is he who has the direction, they pass only for good. the inclination without the means. To natured fools, instead of generous bene meet with a deserving object of comfactors,

passion, without having the power to My lord will grudge a guinea give relief, of all the circumftances in to an honest gentleman in distress, but life is the most disagreeable: to have readily give twenty to a common ftrum- the power is the greatest pleasure, Me. pet. Another shall refuse to lend fif. thinks I see you ready to cry outty pounds to his best friend, without “ Good cousin, why this discourse to sufficient security; and the next moment " me? What occasion have I for these fet his whole fortune upon a card or " lectures?" None at all, my dear a die; a chance for which he can have lord; I am only making my court to no security. My lord is to be you, by letting you fee I think as you seen every day at a toy-shop, squander. do. But one word more, and I have ing away his money in trinkets and done.--In truft, intimacy, and confibaubles; and, at the same time, leaves dence, be as particular as you please ; his brothers and sisters without common in humanity, charity, and benevolence, neceffaries,

universal. Generosity does not consist in a con

I am for ever, &c. tempt of money, in throwing it away at random, without judgment or dil.

§ 146. T. Mr. Bevil GRANVILLI, tinction ; (though that indeed is better

upon his entering into Holy Orders. than locking it up, for multitudes have the benefit of it) but in a right dispo When I look upon the date of your sition to proper objects, in proportion last letter, I must own myself blame. to the merit, the circumstances, the rank, able for not having sooner returned you and condition, of those who stand in need my thanks for it. of our service,

I approve very well of your resolu. Princes are more exposed than any tion of dedicating yourself to the service others to the misplacing their favours. of God; you could not chufe a better · Merit is ever modeft, and keeps its dif.' master, provided you have so sufficiently tance: the forward and importunate searched your heart, as to be persuaded


you can serve him well : in so doing liar, and condescending in his conver. you may secure to yourself many ble fation, as he was strict, regular, and songs in this world, as well as a sure ex- exemplary in his piety: as well bred pectation in the next.

and accomplished as a courtier, as reThere is one thing which I perceive verend and venerable as an apostle : he you have not yet thoroughly purged was indeed in every thing apoftolical, yourself from, which is flattery : you for he abandoned all to follow his Lord have bestowed so much of that upon me and Matter. in your letter, that I hope you have no May you resemble him! may he remore left, and that you meant it only vive in you! may his spirit descend to take your leave of fuch Aights of upon you, as Elijah's upon Elisha! fancy; which, however well meant, oft. And may the great God of Heaven, in ner put a man out of countenance than guiding, directing, and strengthening oblige him.

your pious resolutions, pour down his You are now become a searcher after beit and choicest blessings upon you ! truth: I shall hereafter take it more You shall ever find me, dear nephew, kindly to be juftly reproved by you,

Your affectionate uncle, than to be undeservedly complimented.

Lansdowne. I would not have you understand me, as if I recommended to you a four se- § 147. A Letter from the Marquis DE verity, that is yet more to be avoided. Montesquieu to a young Gentlemax, Advice, like physic, should be so sweet. on reading History. ened and prepared as to be made palatable, or nature may be apt to revolt

Sir, against it. Be always fincere, but at I have learnt with much pleasure, the same time always polite: be hum- that you have resolved to exercise a re. ble, without descending from your cha- gular course of Audy in the country, sacter : reprove and correct, without of- and to continue it even at Paris, and fending good-manners : to be a cynic with the army, in proportion as you is as bad as to be a sycophant. You are hall have time. But you do me too not to lay aside the gentleman with your much honour, to consult me about the sword, nor to put on the gown to hide reading you should make choice of, your birth and good-breeding, but to being so capable of making that choice adorn it.

yourself. Nevertheless, since you absoSuch has been the malice of the lutely require that Ishould explain myself world from the beginning, that pride, thereupon, I shall not hesitate to tell avarice, and ambition, have been charg. you, that I should prefer the reading of ed upon the priesthood in all ages, in history to all other. It is an opinion all countries, and in all religions; what of which I have given a public testithey are most obliged to combat against mony, and that I shall never change. in their pulpits, they are most accused Instead of quoting the passage where I of encouraging in their conduct. It be- speak advantageously of history, I had hoves you therefore to be more upon racher write it in this letter, for your your guard in this, than in any other ease and my own. You will not have profession. Let your example confirm the trouble to look for the book, and I your doctrine ; and let no man ever fall not have that of recollecting the have it in his power to reproach you arguments I then advanced. That hifwith practising contrary to what you tory instructs us in an engaging and apreach.

greeable manner; that the greater part You had an uncle, Dr. Dennis Gran. of the other sciences give precepts ville, dean of Durham, whose memory which our mind usually Nights, because I shall ever revere, make him your ex. it loves freedom, and because it takes ample, Sanctity sat so easy, so unaf- pleasure in opposing every thing that fected, and so graceful upon him, that favours of command. I added, that inin him we beheld the very beauty of stead of those imperious maxims, history holiness: he was as chearful, as fami. gives us only reflections to make upon



the events that the displays before our considering that I was going to destroy eyes, and that those events are so many the good opinion you might have of my examples which we have to follow or writings. I will even tell you what hilavoid. She makes us attend the coun. torian I should prefer for pleasure and cils of sovereigns, and enables us to dif. for instruction : it is Plutarch, whom the tinguish Aattery from good advice. She too severe critics will hardly acknow. describes fieges and battles to us, and ledge to be an historian. I must allow, makes us take notice of the faults or indeed, that he has not made any body good conduct of the generals. In a of history, and that he has left none word, she gives us, in a few years, an ex but particular and unconnected lives : perience that many years cannot give, but what histories can be found which without her assistance. Will you per. please and instruct like these lives? At mit me, Sir, to improve upon what I least, what person can read them with have said, and to take from a better out relishing a thousand beauties, and .fund than my own ? A most eloquent remarking every moment maxims of prelate will supply me with two or three morality and politics? Plutarch introperiods which you will be very glad to duces them naturally; he gathers none know. He speaks of a great and inge- but Howers that grow under his feet, nious princess, which we have just loft, and does not go out of his way to gaand says, that the resolution of profe. ther others. He paints the man whose cuting the study of wisdom, kept her life he relates : he makes him known, engaged to the reading of which we such as he was at the head of the ar. speak. That history is rightly called the mies, in the government of the people, wise counsellor of princes. It is there, in his own family, and in his pleasures. continued he, that the greatelt kings In fine, Sir, I should be of the opinion have no more rank than by their vir. of an author, who said, that if he was fues; and that, degraded for ever by the constrained to fing all the books of the hands of death, they undergo, without ancients into the sea, Plutarch should court, and without retinue, the judg- be the last drowned. We will say more ment of all people, and of all ages. It of this when we go to * with the is there we discover that the glofs of M. of M**** If you would enterflattery is superficial, and that false co tain your friends with less ceremony, lours will not last, how ingeniously fo. we should already have made you this ever they be laid on. There our ad. visit, but you treat at your house as mirable princes studied the duties of sumptuously as if the superintendancy those whose lives compose history, &c. was still in your family. You see, Sir, that I have kept my word, I am most absolutely, Sir, what I have borrowed is better than

Your most humble, and most · what is my own; and that I have thought

obedient servant. of nothing but fatisfying you, without

* *






« ZurückWeiter »