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Selfishness oftener on the side of honesty than dis.
sensible things, what, 267
the perceptions of, gross, 355
Sleep, a death, 289; sleep-walkers, 325
civil men have a right to its advantages, 236
true knowledge of its nature, whence, 343
Statesmen, duties of, 240
Stoics, their view of human nature, contrasted with
that of the EPICUREANS, 12
Success, not the true criterion of merit, 299
the plainest legend, 176
Trade, source of, 272
Tragedy, its particular instruction, 81
grounds of criticism in, 345
Translation, the art of, 174
Words incapable of conveying spiritual truths, 62
PASSAGES FOR TRANSLATION
Into Latin Prose.
1. LET us remember what it is that gives us such perpetual pleasure in reading the Iliad, that makes us start at the turns in the speeches, and fills us with anxiety and wonder. It is not the beautiful descriptions of places, nor even the rage and ardour of the battles ; but those high strokes of character that everywhere occur, and are constantly presenting us with new sentiments of the human heart, such as we.
expect, and from our own experience feel to be true. These can never miss their aim: they at once charm the fancy with images, and fill the understanding with reflection; they interest everything that is human about us, and go near to agitate us with the same passions as we see represented in the moving story.
This reflection will bear to be turned on every side, and dreads no search be it ever so severe. In the choice we make of any measure in the conduct of our business or pleasures, we examine its justness and expediency, not only by considering what good end it serves; but likewise, what inconveniences are avoided, what pains or trouble spared, or what miscarriages prevented, to which another method might be liable. Take Homer's subject in the same light, and it will appear with a pre-eminency hardly to be expressed. Such a convention of princes, from different countries and soils, but all speaking the same language, furnished him with great materials, and hindered him from attempting an impossibility; I mean the feigning or forming new imaginary characters, without originals from which he might copy them.
The flourishing condition of Greece at that time; the great number of principalities, free cities, and growing republics, sent forth an assembly of heroes, the world could hardly match ever since. The Grecians themselves confessed, that their country, when much more polished and improved, had never produced so many free natural characters, not tainted with politics, not moulded by laws, nor effeminated with pleasures; and for that reason, half-deified those very persons, whom they knew at the same time to be but the sons of men.
[Chancellor's Medals, 1817.]
2. I AM equally sensible of your affliction, and of your kindness, that made you think of me at such a moment; would to God I could lessen the one, or requite the other with that consolation which I have often received from you when I most wanted it! but your grief is too just, and the cause of it too fresh, to admit of any such endeavour. What, indeed, is all human consolation ? Can it efface every little amiable word or action of an object we loved, from our memory? Can it convince us, that all the hopes we had entertained, the plans of future satisfaction we had formed, were illgrounded and vain, only because we have lost them ? The only comfort, I am afraid, that belongs to our condition, is to reflect (when time has given us leisure for reflection) that others have suffered worse; or that we ourselves might have suffered the same misfortune at times and in circumstances that would probably have aggravated our sorrow. [Chancellor's Medals, 1819.]
3. We may generally observe a pretty nice proportion between the strength of reason and passion; the greatest geniuses have commonly the strongest affections, as, on the other hand, the weaker understandings have generally the weaker passions; and it is fit the fury of the coursers should not be too great for the strength of the charioteer. Young men whose passions are not a little unruly, give small hopes of their ever being considerable; the fire of youth will of course abate, and is a fault, if it be a fault, that mends every day; but surely, unless a man has fire in his youth, he can hardly have warmth in old age. We must therefore be very cautious, lest while we think to regulate the passions, we should quite extinguish them, which is putting out the light of the soul; for to be without passion, or to be hurried away with it, makes a man equally blind. The extraordinary severity used in most of our schools has this fatal effect, it breaks the spring of the mind, and most certainly destroys more good geniuses than it can possibly improve. And surely it is a mighty mistake that the passions should be so entirely subdued: for little irregularities are sometimes not only to be borne with, but to be cultivated too, since they are frequently attended with the greatest perfections. All great geniuses have faults mixed with their virtues, and resemble the flaming bush which has thorns amongst lights.
[Pitt Scholarship, 1824.]
4. The best way to represent to life the manifold uses of friendship, is to cast and see how many things there are which a man cannot do himself; and then it will appear that it was a sparing speech of the ancients, to say, “that a friend is another himself; for that a friend