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and of dirt in the marsh; I shivered on the brink of a river while the sportsmen crossed it, and trembled at the sight of a five-bar gate. When the sport and danger were over, I was still equally disconcerted; for I was effeminate, though not delicate, and could only join a feebly whispering voice in the clamours of their triumph.
A fall, by which my ribs were broken, soon recalled me to domestick pleasures, and I exerted all my art to obtain the favour of the neighbouring ladies; but wherever I came, there was always some unlucky conversation upon ribands, fillets, pins, or thread, which drove all my stock of compliments out of my memory, and overwhelmed me with shame and dejection.
Thus I passed the ten first years after the death of my
brother, in which I have learned at last to repress that ambition, which I could never gratify; and, instead of wasting more of my life in vain endeavours after accomplishments, which, if not early acquired, no endeavours can obtain, I shall confine my care to those higher excellencies which are in every man's power, and though I cannot enchant affection by elegance and ease, hope to secure esteem by honesty and truth.
I am, &c.
NUMB. 124. SATURDAY, May 25, 1751.
-Tacitum sylvas inter reptare salubres,
ELPHINSTON. The season of the year is now come, in which the theatres are shut, and the card-tables forsaken; the regions of luxury are for a while unpeopled, and pleasure leads out her votaries to groves and gardens, to still scenes and erratick gratifications. Those who have passed many months in a continual tumult of diversion ; who have never opened their eyes in the morning, but upon some new appointment; nor slept at night without a dream of dances, musick, and good hands, or of soft sighs and humble supplications; must now retire to distant provinces, where the syrens of flattery are scarcely to be heard, where beauty sparkles without praise or envy, and wit is repeated only by the echo.
As I think it one of the most important duties of social benevolence to give warning of the approach of calamity, when by timely prevention it may be turned aside, or by preparatory measures be more easily endured, I cannot feel the increasing warmth, or observe the lengthening days, without considering the condition of my fair readers, who are now preparing to leave all that has so long filled up their hours, all from which they have been accustomed to hope for delight; and who, till fashion proclaims
the finery and expences of other young men: therefore believed, that happiness was now in 1 power, since he could obtain all of which he had h therto been accustomed to regret the want. Her solved to give a loose to his desires, to revel in enjo ment, and feel pain or uneasiness no more.
He immediately procured a splendid equipag dressed his servants in rich embroidery, and covere his horses with golden caparisons. He shower down silver on the populace, and suffered their acel mations to swell him with insolence. The nobl saw him with anger, the wise men of the state con bined against him, the leaders of armies threatene his destruction. Almamoulin was informed of h danger: he put on the robe of mourning in the pr sence of his enemies, and appeased them with gol and gems, and supplication.
He then sought to strengthen himself, by an a liance with the princes of Tartary, and offered th price of kingdoms for a wife of noble birth. Hi suit was generally rejected, and his presents refused but the princess of Astracan once condescended t admit him to her presence. She received him sittin on a throne, attired in the robe of royalty, a shining with the jewels of Golconda ; comma sparkled in her eyes, and dignity towered on forehead. Almamoulin approached and tremb] She saw his confusion and disdained him : P says she, dares the wretch hope my obedience, thus shrinks at my glance ? Retire, and enjo riches in sordid ostentation ; thou wast born wealthy, but never canst be great.
gay may be
the liberty of returning to the seats of mirth and elegance, must endure the rugged 'squire, the sober housewife, the loud huntsman, or the formal parson, the roar of obstreperous jollity, or the dulness of prudential instruction ; without any retreat, but to the gloom of solitude, where they will yet find greater inconveniencies, and must learn, however unwillingly, to endure themselves.
In winter, the life of the polite and said to roll on with a strong and rapid current; they float along from pleasure to pleasure, without the trouble of regulating their own motions, and pursue the course of the stream in all the felicity of inattention; content that they find themselves in progression, and careless whither they are going. But the months of summer are a kind of sleeping stagnation without wind or tide, where they are left to force themselves forward by their own labour, and to direct their passage by their own skill; and where, if they have not some internal principle of activity, they must be stranded upon shallows, or lie torpid in a perpetual calm.
There are, indeed, some to whom this universal dissolution of gay societies affords a welcome opportunity of quitting, without disgrace, the post which they have found themselves unable to maintain; and of seeming to retreat only at the call of nature, from assemblies where, after a short triumph of uncontested superiority, they are overpowered by some new intruder of softer elegance or sprightlier vivacity. By these, hopeless of victory, and yet 'ashamed to confess a conquest, the summer is