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body in it. The hours are every where late-consequently I rise late. I have scarce breakfasted before morning visits begin, or 'tis time to go to an auction, or a concert, or to take a little exercise for my health. Dressing my hair is a long operation, but one can't appear with a head unlike every body else. One must sometimes go to a play, or an opera; though I own it hurries one to death. Then what with necessary visits -the perpetual engagements to card-parties at private houses and attendance on public assemblies, to which all people of fashion subscribe, the evenings, you see, are fully disposed of. What time then can I possibly have for what you call domestic duties?--You talk of the offices and enjoyments of friendship-alas! I have no hours left for friends! I must see them in a crowd, or not at all. As to cultivating the friendship of my husband, we are very civil when we meet, but we are both too much engaged to spend much time with each other. With regard to my daughters, I have given them a French governess, and proper masters-I can do no more for them. You tell me I should instruct my servants—but I have not time to inform myself, much less can I undertake any thing of that sort for them, or even be able to guess what they do with themselves the greatest part of the twenty-four hours. I go to church, if possible, once on a Sunday, and then some of my servants attend me; and if they will not mind what the preacher says, how can I help it ?—The management of our fortune, as far as I am concerned, I must leave to the steward and housekeeper; for I find I can barely snatch a quarter of an hour just to look over the bill of fare when I am to have company, that they may not send up any thing frightful or oldfashioned-As to the Christian duty of charity, I assure you I am not ill-natured; and (considering that the great expense of being always drest for company, with losses at cards, subscriptions, and public spectacles, leave me very little to dispose of) I am ready enough to give my money when I meet with a miserable object. You say I should inquire out such, inform myself thoroughly of their cases, make an acquaintance with
the poor of my neighbourhood in the country, and plan out the best methods of relieving the unfortunate, and assisting the industrious. But this supposes much more time, and much more money, than I have to bestow. I have had hopes indeed that my summers would have afforded me more leisure; but we stay pretty late in town; then we generally pass several weeks at one or other of the water-drinking-places, where every moment is spent in public; and, for the few months, in which we reside at our own seat, our house is always full, with a succession of company, to whose amusement one is obliged to dedicate every hour of the day."
So here ends the account of that time which was given you to prepare and educate yourself for eternity! Yet you believe the immortality of the soul, and a future state of rewards aud punishments. Ask your own heart what rewards you deserve, or what kind of felicity you are fitted to enjoy ?-Which of those faculties or affections, which heaven can be supposed to gratify, have you cultivated and improved?--If, in that eternal world, the stores of knowledge should be laid open before you, have you preserved that thirst of knowledge, or that taste for truth, which is now to be indulged with endless information ?-If, in the society of saints and angels, the purest benevolence and most cordial love is to constitute your happiness, where is the heart that should enjoy this delightful intercourse of affection? -Has your's been exercised and refined to a proper capacity of it during your state of discipline, by the energies of generous friendship, by the meltings of parental fondness, or by that union of heart and soul, that mixed exertion of perfect friendship and ineffable tenderness, which approaches nearest to the full satisfaction of our nature, in the bands of conjugal love ?— Alas! you scarce knew you had a heart, except when you felt it swell with pride, or flutter with vanity :Has your piety and gratitude to the Source of all Good, been exercised and strengthened by constant acts of praise and thanksgiving? Was it nourished by frequent meditation, and silent recollection of all the wonders
he hath done for us, till it burst forth in fervent prayer? -I fear it was rather decency than devotion, that carried you once a-week to the place of public worshipand, for the rest of the week, your thoughts and time were so very differently filled up, that the idea of a Ruler of the universe could occur but seldom, and then, rather as an object of terror, than of hope and joy. How then shall a soul so dead to divine love, so lost to all but the most childish pursuits, be able to exalt and enlarge itself to a capacity of that bliss which we are allowed to hope for, in a more intimate perception of the Divine Presence, in contemplating more nearly the perfections of our Creator, and in pouring out before his throne our ardent gratitude, love, and adoration?What kind of training is the life you have passed through, for such an immortality? Mrs Chapone.
17.-On Pronunciation, or Delivery.
How much stress was laid upon pronunciation, or delivery, by the most eloquent of all orators, Demosthenes, appears from a noted saying of his, related both by Cicero and Quintilian; when being asked, What was the first point in oratory? he answered, Delivery ; and being asked, What was the second? and afterwards, What was the third? he still answered, Delivery. There is no wonder, that he should have rated this so high, and that for improving himself in it, he should have employed those assiduous and painful labours, which all the ancients take so much notice of; for, beyond doubt, nothing is of more importance. To superficial thinkers, the management of the voice and gesture, in public speaking, may appear to relate to decoration only, and to be one of the inferior arts of catching an audience. But this is far from being the case. It is intimately connected with what is, or ought to be, the end of all public speaking, persuasion; and therefore deserves the study of the most grave and serious speakers, as much as of those, whose only aim it is to please.
For, let it be considered, whenever we address ourselves to others by words, our intention certainly is to
make some impression on those to whom we speak; it is to convey to them our own ideas and emotions. Now the tone of our voice, our looks and gestures, interpret our ideas and emotions no less than words do; nay, the impression they make on others, is frequently much stronger than any that words can make. We often see that an expressive look, or a passionate cry, unaccompanied by words, conveys to others more forcible ideas, and rouses within them stronger passions, than can be communicated by the most eloquent discourse. The signification of our sentiments, made by tones and ges tures, has this advantage above that made by words, that it is the language of nature. It is that method of interpreting our mind, which nature has dictated to all, and which is understood by all; whereas, words are only arbitrary, conventional symbols of our ideas; and, by consequence, must make a more feeble impression. So true is this, that, to render words fully significant, they must, almost in every case, receive some aid from the manner of pronunciation and delivery; and he who, in speaking, should employ bare words, without enforcing them by proper tones and accents, would leave us with a faint and indistinct impression, often with a doubtful and ambiguous conception of what he had delivered. Nay, so close is the connection between certain sentiments and the proper manner of pronouncing them, that he who does not pronounce them after that manner, can never persuade us, that he believes, or feels, the sentiments themselves. Blair
18.-Discontent, the common lot of all Mankind.
SUCH is the emptiness of human enjoyment, that we are always impatient of the present. Attainment is followed by neglect, and possession by disgust.-Few moments are more pleasing than those in which the mind is concerting measures for a new undertaking. From the first hint that wakens the fancy, to the hour of actual execution, all is improvement and progress, triumph and felicity. Every hour brings additions to the original scheme, suggests some new expedient to
I secure success, or discovers consequential advantages not hitherto foreseen. While preparations are made and materials accumulated, day glides after day through Elysian prospects, and the heart dances to the song of hope.
Such is the pleasure of projecting, that many content themselves with a succession of visionary schemes, and wear out their allotted time in the calm amusement of contriving what they never attempt or hope to execute.
Others, not able to feast their imagination with pure ideas, advance somewhat nearer to the grossness of action, with great diligence collect whatever is requisite to their design, and, after a thousand researches and consultations, are snatched away by death, as they stand waiting for a proper opportunity to begin.
If there were no other end of life, than to find some adequate solace for every day, I know not whether any condition could be preferred to that of the man who involves himself in his own thoughts, and never suffers experience to show him the vanity of speculation; for no sooner are notions reduced to practice, than tranquillity and confidence forsake the breast; every day brings its task, and often without bringing abilities to perform it: difficulties embarrass, uncertainty perplexes, opposition retards, censure exasperates, or neglect depresses. We proceed, because we have begun; we complete our design, that the labour already spent may not be vain : but as expectation gradually dies away, the gay smile of alacrity disappears, we are necessitated to implore severer powers, and trust the event to patience and constancy.
When once our labour has begun, the comfort that enables us to endure it is the prospect of its end; for though in every long work there are some joyous intervals of self-applause, when the attention is recreated by unexpected facility, and the imagination soothed by incidental excellencies not comprised in the first plan, yet the toil with which performance struggles after idea, is so irksome and disgusting, and so frequent is the necessity of resting below that perfection which we imagin ed within our reach, that seldom any man obtains more from his endeavours than a painful conviction of his