Abbildungen der Seite
PDF
EPUB

was something wild and distracted in her looks. Her name was Fancy. She led up every mortal to the appointed place, after having very officiously assisted him in making up his pack , and laying it upon his shoulders. My heart melted within me to see my fellow - creatures groaning under their respective burdens , and to consider that prodigious bulk of human calamities which lay before ine.

There were however several persons who gave me great diversion upon this occasion. I observed one bringing in a fardel very carefully concealed under an old embroidered cloak, which , upon his throwing it into the heap, I discovered to be Poverty. Another, after a great deal of puffing , threw down his luggage, which , upon examining, I found to be his wife.

There were multitudes of lovers saddled with very whimsical burdens composed of darts and slames; but what was very odd , though they sighed as if their hearts would break under these bundles of calamities, they could not persuade themselves to cast them into the heap, when they came up to it; but after a few. faint efforts , shook their heads, and marched away as heavy loaden as they came. I saw multitudes of old women throw down their wrinkles, and several young ones who stripped themselves of a tawny skin. There were very great heaps of red noses , large lips, and rusty teeth. The truth of it is, I was surprised to see the greatest part of the mountain made up of bodily deformities. Observing one advancing towards the heap, with a larger cargo than ordinary upon his back , I found, upon his near approach, that it was only a natural hump, which he disposed of, with great joy of heart, among this collection of human miseries. There were likewise distempers of all sorts, though I could not bụt observe, that there were many more imam ginary than real. One little packet I could not but take notice of, which was a complication of all the diseases incident to human nature, and was in the hand of a great many fine people: this was called the spleen. But what most of all surprised me, was a remark I made , that there was not a single vice or folly thrown into the whole hear : at which I was very much astonished, having concluded within myself, that every one would take this opportunity of getting rid of his passions, prejudices and frailties. · I took notice in particular of a very profligate fellow, who I did not question came loaden with his crimes ; but upon searching into his bundle, I found that, instead of throwing his guilt from him, he had only laid down his memory. He was followed by another worthless rogue, who flung away his modesty instead of his ignorance.

When the whole race of mankind had thus cast their burdens , the phantom which had been so busy on this occasion , seeing me an idle spectator of what passed, approached towards me. I grew uneasy at her presence, when, on a sudden, she held her magnifying-glass full before my eyes. I no sooner saw my face in it, but I was startled at the shortness of it, which now appeared to me in its utmost aggravation. The immoderate breadth of the features made me very much out of humour with my own countenance, upon which I threw it from me like a mask. It happened very luckily, that one who stood by me had just before thrown down his visage, which, it seems , was too long for him. It was indeed extended to a most shameful length; I believe the very chin was, modestly speaking , as long, as my whole face. We had both of us an opportunity of mending ourselves; and all the contributions being now brought in, every man was at liberty to exchange his misfortunes for those of another person. But as there arose many new incidents in the sequel of my vision , I shall reserve them for the subject of my next paper.

CTATOR.

THE VISION CONTINUED.

Inmy last paper, I gave my reader a sight of that mountain of miseries, which was made up of those several calamities that afflict the minds of men. I saw , with unspeakable pleasure , the whole species thus delivered from its sorrows: though at the same time, as we stood round the heap , aud surveyed the several materials of which it was composed, there was scarce a mortal , in this vast multitude, who did not discover what he thought pleasures and blessings of life, and wondered how the owners of them ever

came to look upon them as burdens and grievances.

As we were regarding very attentively this confusion of miseries, this chaos of calamity, Jupiter issued out a second proclamalion, that every one was now at liberty to exchange his affliction, and to return to his habitation with any such other bundle as should be delivered to him.

Upon this, Fancy began again to bestir herself; and parcelling out the whole heap with incredible activity, recommended to every one his particular packet. The hurry and confusion at this time was not to be expressed. Some observations which I made upon the occasion I shall communicate to the public. A venerable grey-headed man, who had laid down the cholic, and who I found wanted an heir to his estate, snatched up an undutiful son, that had been thrown into the heap by his angry father. The graceless youth , in less than a quarter of an hour , pulled the old gentleman by the beard, and had like to have knocked his brains out; so that meeting the true father, who came towards him with a fit of the gripes, he begged him to take his son again, and give back his cholic ; but they were in

« ZurückWeiter »