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up with thee in this public vehicle, is in some degree assaulting on the high road.'
Here Ephraim paused, and the captain with a happy and uncommon impudence (which can be convicted and support itself at the same time) cries, • Faith, friend, I thank thee; I should have been a little impertinent if thou hadst not reprimanded me. Come, thou art, I see, a smoky old follow, and I will be very orderly the ensuing part of my journey. I was going to give niyself airs, but, ladies, I beg pardon.
The captain was so little out of humour, and our company was so far from being soured by this little ruffle, that Ephraim and he took a particular delight in being agreeable to each other for the future; and assumed their different provinces in the conduct of the company. Our reckonings, apartments, and accommodation, fell under Ephraim; and tlie captain looked to all disputes upon the road, as the good behaviour of our coachman, and the right we had of taking place, as going to London, of all vehicles coming from thence. The occurrences we met with were ordinary, and very little happened which could entertain by the relation of them: but when I considered the company we were in, I took it for no small good-fortune, that the whole journey was not spent in impertinences, which to one part of us might be an entertainment, to the other a suffering. What therefore Ephraim said when we were almost arrived at London, had to me an air not only of good understanding, but good breeding. Upon the young lady's expressing her satisfaction in the journey, and declaring low delightful it had been to her, Ephraim declared himself as follows: “ There is no ordinary part of human life, which expresseth so much a good mind, and a right inward man, as his behaviour upon meeting with strangers, especially such as may seein
the most unsuitable companions to him: such a man, when he falleth in the way with persons of simplicity and innocence, however knowing he may be in the ways of men, will not vaunt himself thereof, but will the rather bide his superiority to them, that he may not be painful unto them. My good friend,' continued he, turning to the officer, thee and I are to part by and by, and peradventure we may never meet again: but be advised by a plaiu man; modes and apparel are but trifles to the real man, therefore do not think such a man as thyself terrible for thy garb, nor such a one as me contemptible for mine, When two such as thee and I meet, with affections as we ought to have towards each other, thou shouldst rejoice to see my peaceable demeanor, and I should be glad to see thy strength and ability to protect me in it.'
N° 133. THURSDAY, AUGUST 2, 1711.
Quis desiderio sit pudor, aut modus
HOR. I Od. xxiv. 1.
THERE is a sort of delight, which is alternately mixed with terror and sorrow, in the contemplation of death. The soul has its curiosity more than or
dinarily awakened, when it turns its thoughts upon » the conduct of such who have behaved themselves
with an equal, a resigned, a cheerful, a generous or heroic temper in that extremity. We are affected with these respective manners of behaviour, as we secretly believe the part of the dying person imitable by ourselves, or such as we imagine ourselves more particularly capable of. Men of exalted minds march before us like princes, and are, to the ordinary race of mankind, rather subjects for their admiration than example. However, there are no ideas strike more forcibly upon our imaginations, than those which are raised from reflections upon the exits of great and excellent men. Innocent men who have suffered as crininals, though they were benefactors to human society, seem to be persons of the highest distinction, among the vastly greater number of human race, the dead. When the iniquity of the times brought Socrates to liis execution, how great and wonderful is it to behold him, unsupported by any thing but the testimony of his own conscience, and conjectures of hereafter, receive the poison with an air of mirth and good-liumour, and as if going on an agreeable journey, bespeak some deity to make it fortunate!
When Phocion's good actions had met with the like revard from his country, and he was led to death with many others of his friends, they bewailing their fate, he walking composedly towards the place of execution, how gracefully does he support his illustrious character to ihe very last instant! One of the rabble spitting at him as he passed, with his usual authority be called to know if no one was ready to teach this fellow how to behave himself. When a poor-spirited creature that died at the same time for his crimes, bemoared himself unmanfully, be rebuked
d him with this question, 'Is it no consolation to such a man as thou art to die with Phocion?' At the instant when he was to die, they asked what com- } mands he had for his son: he answered, To forget this injury of the Athenians' Niocles, his friend, under the same sentence, desired he might drink the potion before him: Phocion said, because he never had denied him any thing, lie would not even this, the most difficult request he had ever made.'
These instances were very noble and great, and the reflections of those sublime spirits had made death to them what it is really intended to be by the Author of nature, a relief from a various being, ever subject to sorrows and difficulties.
Epaminondas the Theban general, having received in fight a mortal stab with a sword, which was left in bis body, lay in that posture till he had intelligence that his troops had obtained the victory, and then permitted it to be drawn out, at which instant he expressed himself in this manner: “This is not the end of my life, my fellow-soldiers; it is now your Epaminondas is born, who dies in so much glory
It were an endless labour to collect the accounts, with which all ages have filled the world, of noble and heroic minds that have resigned this being, as if the termination of life were but an ordinary occurrence of it.
This common-place way of thinking I fell into from an aukward endeavour to throw off a real and fresh affliction, by turning over books in a melancholy mood; but it is not easy to reinove griefs which touch the heart, by applying remedies which only entertain the imagination. As therefore this paper is to consist of any thing which concerns human life, I cannot help letting the present subject regard what has been the last object of my eyes, though an entertaininent of sorrow.
I went this evening to visit a friend, with a de
sign to rally him, upon a story I had heard of his intending to steal a marriage without the privity of us his intimate friends and acquaintance. I came into his apartment with that intimacy which I have done for very many years, and walked directly into his bed-chainber, where s found my friend in the agonies of death. -What could I do? The innocent mirth in my thoughts struck upon me like the most flagitious wickedness: I in vain called upon him ; he was senseless, and too far spent to have the least knowledge of my sorrow, or any pain in himself. Give me leave then to transcribe my soliloquy, as I stood by his mother, duinb with the weight of grief for a son who was her honour and her comfort, and never till that hour since his birth had been an occasion of a moment's sorrow to her.'
How surprising is this change! From the possession of vigorous life and strength, to be reduced in a few hours to this fatal extremity! Those lips which look so pale and livid, within these few days gave delight to all who heard their utterance: it was the business, the purpose of his being, next to obeying him to whom he is gone, to please and instruct, and that for no other end but to please and instruct. Kindness was the motive of his actions, and with all the capacity requisite for making a figure in a coutentious world, moderation, good-nature, affability, temperance, and chastity, were the arts of his excellent life. There as he lies in helpless agony, no wise man who knew him so well as I, but would resign all the world can bestow to be so near the end of such a life. Why does my heart so little obey my reason .as to lament thee, thou excellent man? - Heaven receive him or restore him ?- Thy beloved mother, thy obliged friends, thy lielpless servants, stand around