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called in as usual. They read it, commented on it in my hearing, and I had the exquisite pleasure of finding it met with their approbation, and that, in their different guesses at the author, 290 none were named but men of some character among us for learning and ingenuity. I suppose now that I was rather lucky in my judges, and that perhaps they were not really so very good ones as I then esteemed them.....
14. I have been the more particular in this description of my 295 journey, and shall be so of my first entry into that city, that you may in your mind compare such unlikely beginnings with the figure I have since made there. I was in my working dress, my best clothes being to come round by sea. I was dirty from my journey ; my pockets were stuffed out with shirts and stockings, 300 and I knew no soul, nor where to look for lodging. I was fatigued with travelling, rowing, and want of rest; I was very hun. gry, and my whole stock of cash consisted of a Dutch dollar, and about a shilling in copper. The latter I gave the people of the boat for my passage, who at first refused it on account of my row- 305 ing ; but I insisted on their taking it. A man being sometimes more generous when he has but a little money than when he has plenty, perhaps through fear of being thought to have but little.
15. Then I walked up the street, gazing about, till, near the market-house, I met a boy with bread. I had made many a meal 310 on bread, and, inquiring where he got it, I went immediately to the baker's he directed me to, in Second Street, and asked for biscuit, intending such as we had in Boston ; but they, it seems, were not made in Philadelphia. Then I asked for a threepenny loaf, and was told they had none such. So, not considering or 315 knowing the difference of money, and the greater cheapness nor the names of his bread, I bade him give me threepenny-worth of any sort. He gave me, accordingly, three great puffy rolls. I was surprised at the quantity, but took it, and, having no room
295, 296. my journey, His journey to
Philadelphia, whither he went
at the age of seventeen, having quarrelled with his brother.
LITERARY ANALYSIS. – 292 -- 294. I suppose ... them. Analyze this sentence.
295-298. I have been ... there. What kind of sentence is this rhetorically?
in my pockets, walked off with a roll under each arm, and eat- 320 ing the other. Thus I went up Market Street as far as Fourth Street, passing by the door of Mr. Read, my future wife's father ; when she, standing at the door, saw me, and thought I made, as I certainly did, a most awkward, ridiculous appearance. Then I turned and went down Chestnut Street, and part of Walnut 325 Street, eating my roll all the way, and, coming round, found myself again at Market Street Wharf, near the boat I came in, to which I went for a draught of the river water; and, being filled with one of my rolls, gave the other two to a woman and her child that came down the river in the boat with us, and were 330 waiting to go farther.
16. Thus refreshed, I walked again up the street, which by this time had many clean-dressed people in it, who were all walking the same way. I joined them, and thereby was led into the great meeting-house of the Quakers, near the market. I sat down 335 among them, and, after looking round awhile and hearing nothing said, being very drowsy through labor and want of rest the preceding night, I fell fast asleep, and continued so till the meeting broke up, when one was kind enough to rouse me. This was, therefore, the first house I was in, or slept in, in Philadelphia. 340
LITERARY ANALYSIS.—295-340. Write in your words an account of Franklin's first entry into Philadelphia.
CHARACTERIZATION BY MACAULAY. 1. [Through Boswell's Life,] Johnson grown old, Johnson in the fulness of his fame and in the enjoyment of a competent fortune, is better known to us than any other man in history. Everything about him, his coat, his wig, his figure, his face, his scrofula, his
St. Vitus's dance, his rolling walk, his blinking eye, the outward signs which too clearly marked his approbation of his dinner, his insatiable appetite for fish-sauce and veal-pic with plums, his inextinguishable thirst for tea, his trick of touching tl.e posts as he walked, his mysterious practice of treasuring up scraps of orangepeel, his morning slumbers, his midnight disputations, his contortions, his mutterings, his gruntings, his puffings, his vigorous, acute, and ready eloquence, his sarcastic wit, his vehemence, his insolence, his fits of tempestuous rage, his queer inmates, old Mr. Levett and blind Mrs. Williams, the cat Hodge and the negro Frank-all are familiar to us as the objects by which we have been surrounded from childhood.
2. Johnson, as Mr. Burke most justly observed, appears far greater in Boswell's books than in his own. His conversation appears to have been quite equal to his writings in matter, and far superior to them in manner. When he talked, he clothed his wit and his sense in forcible and natural expressions. As soon as he took his pen in his hand to write for the public, his style became systematically vicious. All his books are written in a learned language ; in a language which nobody hears from his mother or his nurse ; in a language in which nobody ever quarrels, or drives bargains, or makes love ; in a language in which nobody ever thinks.
3. It is clear that Johnson himself did not think in the dialect in which he wrote. The expressions which came first to his congue were simple, energetic, and picturesque. When he wrote for publication, he did his sentences out of English into Johnsonese. His letters from the Hebrides to Mrs. Thrale are the original of that work of which the Gourney to the Hebrides is the translation; and it is amusing to compare the two versions. “When we were taken upstairs," says he, in one of his letters, “ a dirty fellow bounced out of the bed on which one of us was to lie." This incident is recorded in the Fourney as follows : “Out of one of the beds on which we were to repose, started up, at our entrance, a man black as a Cyclops from the forge.” Sometimes Johnson translated aloud. “ The Rehearsal," he said, very unjustly, “ has not wit enough to keep it sweet;" then, after a pause, “it has not vitality enough to preserve it from putrefaction.”
4. Mannerism is pardonable, and is sometimes even agreeable, when the manner, though vicious, is natural. Few readers, for example, would be willing to part with the mannerism of Milton or of Burke. But a mannerism which does not sit easy on the mannerist, which has been adopted on principle, and which can be sustained only by constant effort, is always offensive. And such is the mannerism of Johnson.
5. The characteristic faults of his style are so familiar to all our readers, and have been so often burlesqued, that it is almost superfluous to point them out. It is well known that he made less use than any other eminent writer of those strong plain words, Anglo-Saxon or Norman-French, of which the roots lie in the inmost depths of our language ; and that he felt a vicious partiality for terms which, long after our own speech had been fixed, were borrowed from the Greek and Latin, and which therefore, even when lawfully naturalized, must be considered as born aliens, not entitled to rank with the king's English. His constant practice of padding out a sentence with useless epithets, till it became as stiff as the bust of an exquisite; his antithetical forms of expression, constantly employed even where there is no opposition in the ideas expressed ; his big words wasted on little things ; his harsh inversions, so widely different from those graceful and easy inversions which give variety, spirit, and sweet. ness to the expression of our great old writers—all these peculiarities have been imitated by his admirers and parodied by his assailants, till the public has become sick of the subject.
6. Goldsmith said to him, very wittily and very justly, “ If you were to write a fable about little fishes, doctor, you would make the little fishes talk like whales." No man surely ever had so little talent for personation as Johnson. Whether he wrote in the character of a disappointed legacy-hunter or an empty town fop, of a crazy virtuoso or a flippant coquette, he wrote in the same pompous and unbending style. His speech, like Sir Piercy Shafton's euphuistic eloquence, bewrayed him under every disguise. Euphelia and Rhodoclea talk as finely as Imlac the poet, or Seged, Emperor of Ethiopia. The gay Cornelia describes her reception at the country house of her relations in such terms as these : “ I was surprised, after the civilities of my first reception, to find, instead of the leisure and tranquillity