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* Most People seek out their own Interest under colour of obliging others, and are kind to their Neighbours for their own sakes.
ther to understand Matters; for many are perfect in Men's Humours, that are not greatly capable of the real part of Business, which is the Constitution of one that has studied Men more than Books; fuch men are fitter for Practice than Counsel; and they are good but in their own Alley, turn 'em to other Men, and they have loft their aim
* Affected Dispatch, is one of the most dangsrous things to Business that can be ; it is like that which the Physicians call Pre-digestion, which is sure to fill the Body with Crudities and secret Seeds of Diseases. Therefore measure not Dispatcb by the time of Sitting, but by the Advancement of the Business.
* He that would be sure to have his Bufiness well done, must either do it himself, or see the doing of it; Besides that, many a good Servant is spoild by a careless Master. The Morality of this Caution, is as good a Lesson to Governments as to private Families. For a Prince's leaving his Business wholly to his Ministers, without a strict Eye over them, is as dangerous an Error in Politicks, as a Master's committing all to his Servants is in Oeconomicks;
There are a fort of Impertinents, who having least to do, would appear to be loaded with At fairs. They make a Mystery of every thing, and that with the greatest Silliness Imaginable. These are Chameleons of Applause, but are heartily Laugh'd at by every Body.
The best way to know how that which is intended to be done will be received, is to let fly fome Shot in the Air, especially when they are Matters the issue and approbation whereof is doubtful. By that means we are sure to hit our Mark, and always at liberty to Retreat or Advance. Thus we pump out Men's Minds, and know where it is best to set our Foot. That Prevention is most necessary, for asking Pertinently, placing Friendship aright, and for Governing
stifies the Cheating of other people. It is as easie a matter to deceive a Man's self, and not be sensible of it, as it is hard to impose upon others, and yet for them not to be fenfible of it.
An honest Intention of imposing upon no body, lays us open to the Cheating of other people.
The most effectual way to be bubbled, is to fancy one's self wiser than one's Neighbours
. The being a Blockbead is sometimes the best security against being impos'd upon by a Man of Senses
He that fancies such a sufficiency in himself
, that he can live without all the World, is mightily mistaken ; but he that imagines himself fo necessary, that other People cannot live without him, is fo a great deal more.
Affected Simplicity and Plainness is but a nicer and more labour'd Cheat.
Men would never live so long together in Society and good Correspondence, if they did not mutually make Fools of one another.
The common way of fome to do their Business, and rise in the World, is to use all possible means of perswading People that their Business is done already.
We are so used to dissemble with others, that in time we come to deceive and dissemble with our selves.
It is sometimes of great Use for a Man to pretend he is deceivd; for when we let a subtile Fellow see that we are sensible of his Tricks, it gives him occafion to be more refird.
It is a hard task upon Knaves to be perpetually employ'd in concealing their own want of Sincerity, and making amends for the Breaches of their Promise.
Honesty and Plain-dealing puts Knaves out of their Byass; it breaks all their Measures by which they hop'd to compass their Ends: for Knaves commonly think that nothing can be done but by Tricks and Artifice.
* All Frauds are covered and gilded over with specious Pretences and Men are every jot as easily impos'd upon, as Birds, Beasts, or Fishes; while the eagerness of our Appetites suspends the Exercise of our Reason. A Treat, a Woman or a Bottle
is the same thing to us, that a Worm, a Gudgeon, a grain of Corn, or a piece of Flesh is to those Animals: We snap at the Bait without ever dreaming of the Hook, the Trap, or the Snare, that goes along with it.
Men never can bear to be over-reach'd by their Enemies, or betray’d by their Friends; and yet they are often contented to be both cheated and betray'd by their own selves.
He is an unhappy Man that lives in the World without being deceiv'd.
The Pleasure of Deceit goes sometimes so far, that the greatest of your Enemies makes himself agreeable when he imposes upon you; and the best of your Friends feldom undeceives you, but you are offended at it.
* It is in some fort natural to be a Knave. We were made fo, in the very composition of cur Flesh and Blood : Only Fraud is call’d Wit in one case, Good Husbandry in another, &c. while 'tis the whole Business of the World for one Man to Cozen another. But there's this to be said fort yet, that we play the Fool by consent. We Co. zen in our Words, and in our Actions; only we are agree'd upon't, that such and such Forms of Civility, like "fome Adulterations, shall pass current for so much.
A fashionable Imposture or Hypocrisie, shall be called Good Manners, and so we make shift,in some sort, to legitimate the Abuse.
* There is nothing more agreeable in Converfation, than a frank, open way of Dealing, and a simplicity of Manners, but yet, where there is an habitual Hardness of ill-Nature, it must be à Diamond that cuts a Diamond ; for one Fraud is belt undermin’d and disappointed by another.
* When a Crafty Knave is Infatuated, any filly Wretch may put Tricks upon him.
* The main Business of the World is nothing but Sharping, and putting Tricks upon one another by Turns.
Clemency, Good-Nature. THE "He Clemency of Princes is very often little less
but a State Trick, to gain upon the Affection of their Subje&ts.
That Clemency which is so mightily cry'd up in the World for a Vertue, is often practis'd out of Pride; sometimes out of Sloth and Neglect, fometimes out of Fear, and generally out of a mixture of all these Motives together.
* No Vertue is so often in fault as Clemency.
* Good Nature is a great Misfortune when it is not manag‘d with Prudence.
* A bare eafiness of Pardoning, has often the force of a Temptation to offend again.
* 'Tis a great Error to take Facility for Good Nature: Tenderress without Discretion, is no better than a more pardonable Folly.
A furance, Balbfulness. IT IT is good not to conceive fuch a high Notion
of People, as to become Bashful in their Prefence. Some appear to be Men of Importance, till others Treat with them ; but Communicarion foon urdeceives the Credulous, Dignity gives