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those that having excellencies of higher reputation and brighter splendor, perhaps imagine that they have some right to gratify themselves at the expence of others, and are to demand compliance, rather than to practise it. It is hy some unfortunate mittake that almost all those who have any claim to esteem or love, press their pretensions with too little consideration of others. This mistake, my own interest as well as my zeal for general happiness, makes me desirous to rectify; for I have a friend, who because he knows his own fidelity and usefuluess, is never willing to sink into a companion. I have a wife whore beauty first subdued me, and whose wit confirmed her conquest ; but whose beauty now serves no other purpose than to entitle her to tyranny, and whose wit is only used to justify perverseness.
Surely nothing can be more unreasonable than to lose the will to please; when we are conscious of the power, or shew more cruelty than to choose any kind of influence before that of kindnefs. He that regards the welfare of others, should make his virtue approachable, that it may be loved and copied ; and he that considers the wants which every man feels, or will feel of external assistance, muft rather wish to be surrounded by those that love kim, than by those that admire his excellencies, or folicit his favours; for admiration ceases with novelty, and interest gains its end and retires. A man whose great. qualities want the ornament of superficial attractions, is like a naked mountain with mines of gold, which will be frequented only till the treasure is exhausted.
CHAPTER VI. ON THE KNOWLEDGE OF THE WORLD. Nothing has so much exposed men of learning to con tempt and ridicule, as their ignorance of things which are known to all but thernfelves. Those who have been taught to consider the institutions of the schools, as giving the last perfection to human abilities, are surprised to see men wrinkled with study, yet wanting to be instructed in the minute circumstances of propriety, or the necessary forms of daily transaction; and quickly shake off their reverence for modes of education, which they find to pro, duce no ability, above the rest of mankind.
Books, fays Bacon, can never teach the use of books, The student must learn by commerce with mankind to reduce his fpeculations to practice, and accommodate his knowledge to the purposes of life.
It is too common for those who have been bred to fcholastic profellions, and passed much of their time in academi`s, where nothing but learning confers honours, to disregard every other qualification, and to imagine that they shall find mankind ready to pay homage to their knowledge, and to crowd about them for instruclion, They therefore step out from their cells into the open world, with all the confidence of authority and dignity of importance; they look round about them at once with ignorance and scorn on a race of beings to whom they are equally unknown, and equally contemptible, but whose mainers they must imitate, and with whose opi-. nions they must comply, if they desire to pass their time happily among them.
To lefsen that disdain with which scholars are inclined to look on the common business of the world, and the
unwillingness with which they condescend to learn what is not to be found in any system of philosophy, it may be
necessary to consider, that though admiration is excited by obstruse researches and remote discoveries, yet plea.. fure is not given, nor affection conciliated, but by softer accomplishments, and qualities more easily communicable to those about us. He that can only converse upon questions, about which only a finall part of mankind has knowledge sufficient to make them curious, must lose his days in unfocial filence, and live in the crowd of life without a companion. He that can only be useful on great occafions, may die without exerting his abilities, and fand a helpless spectator of a thousand vexations which fret away happiness, and which nothing is required to remove but a little dexterity of conduct and readiness of expedients.
No degree of knowledge attainable by a man, is able to set him above the want of hourly assistance, or to extinguish the desire of fond endearments, and tender officiousness; and therefore, no one should think it unnecessary to learn those arts by which friendship may be gained. Kindness is preserved. by a constant reciprocation of benefits or interchange of pleasures : but such benefits can only be bestowed, as others are capable of receiving, and fuch pleasures only imparted, as others are qualified to enjoy.
By this defcent from the pinnacles of art no honour will be loft; for the condescenfions of learning are always overpaid by gratitude. An elevated genius employed in little things, appears, to use the simile of Longinus, like the fun in his evening declination; he remits his fplendor, but retains his magnitude ; and pleases more though her dazzles less.
CHAPTER VII. ON THE ADVANTAGES OF UNITING GENTLE. NESS OF MANNERS WITH FIRMNESS OF MIND.
I MENTIONED to you, some time ago, a sentence, which I would most earnestly with you always to retain in your thoughts, and observe in your conduct; it is suaviter in modo, fortiter in re. I do not know any one rule so unexceptionably useful and necessary in every part of life.
The fuaviter in modo alone would degenerate and fink into a mean, timid complaisance, and passiveness, if not fupported and dignified by the fortiter in re; and which would also run into impetuosity and brutality, if not tem, pered and softened by the suaviter in modo : however, they are seldom united. The warm choleric man, with strong animal spirits, despises the suaviter in modo, and thinks to carry all before him by the fortiter in re. He may possibly, by great accident, now and then fucceed, when he has only weak and timid people to deal with ; but his general fate will be, to shock, offend, be hated, and fail. On the other hand, the cunning crafty man thinks to gain all his ends by the suaviter in modo only: he becomes all things to all men; he seems to have no opinion of his own, and servilely adopts the present opinion of the present person; he insinuates himself only into the esteem of fools, but is Loon detected, and surely despised, by every body else. The wise man (who differs as much from the cunning as from the choleric man) alone joins the suaviter in modo with the fortiter in re.
If you are in authority, and have a right to command, your
commands delivered fuaviter in medo, will be willingly, cheerfully, and consequently well obeyed; whereas if given only fortiter, that is brutally, they will rather, as Tacitus says, be interpreted than executed. For my own
part, if I bade my footman bring me a glass of wine, in a rough infulting manner, I fhould expect that in obeying me, he would contrive to spill some of it upon me; and I am sure I fhould deserve it. A cool, steady refolution should shew, that where you have a right to command, you will be obeyed; but at the same time, a gentleness in the manner of enforcing that obedience, should make it a cheerful one, and foften, as much as possible, the mortifying conscioufness of inferiority. If you are to ask a favour, or even to folicit your due, you muft do it fuaviter in modo, or you will give thofe, who have a 'mind to refuse you either, a pretence to do it, by resenting the manner; but, on the other hand, you must, by a steady perfeverence and decent tenaciousness, shew the fortiter in re. Int hort, this precept is the only way I kitow in the world, of being loved without being despised, and feared without being hated. It constitutes the dignity of character, which
every wise man muft endeavour to establish. If therefore you find that you have a haffiness in your temper, which unguardedly breaks out into indiscreet fallies, or rough expressions, to either your superiors, your equals, or your inferiors, watch it narrowly, check it carefully, and call the fuaviter in modo to your asistance; at the first impulse of paslion be filent, till you can be foft. Labour even to get the command of your countenance fo well, that those emotions may not be read in it: a most unspeakable advantage in business ? On the other hand, let no complaisance, no gentleness of temper, no weak defire of pleasing on your part, no wheedling, coaxing, nor flattery, on other people's, make you recede one jot from any point that reason and prudence have bid yout purfue; but return to the charge, perfift, persevere, and you will find most things attainable, that are possible. A yielding, timid meekness is always abused and insulted by the unjuft and the unfeeling: but meekness, when fustain