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may afford Us Leisure, to canvass this Question more minutely.
p. Though I have never much Inclination, even when there is the most Leisure, for Controverly;: yėt, if You insist upon it, I shall not absolutely refuse to engage in a Debate with my Theron. Because, He will come to the amicable Rencounter, without bringing angry Paffions for his Second.“ My Reasons will be impartially weighed, not arte fully eluded, much less answered with Invective. If some inadvertent Expression should drop from my Lips, He will not rigorously prosecute the Slip; nor aggravate an unguarded Sentence into the Crime of Heresy.-Candour will form his Judgment, and Good-nature dictate his Expressions.
Ther. I thank You, my dear Aspasio, for your genteel Admonition. What I am, in the Language of Complaisance, means, What I should be.Well : I will endeavour to take your Hint, and check this my Impetuofity of Spirit. I have admired, O! that I could imitate, the beautiful Example of St. Paula When Feftus, forgetting the Dignity of the Governor, and the Politeness of the Gentleman, uttered that indecent Reflection ; Paul, thou art beside thyfelf: much Learning doth make Thee mad. Did the great Preacher of Christianity kindle into Resentment?--The Charge was unjust and abufive. But the Apostle, with a perfect Command of Himself, returned the softest, yet the most spirited Answer imaginable. I am not mad, most noble Festus; but Speak the Words of Truth and Saberness *.--Inexa
* See Als xxvi. Where We have an Apology, the most delicate and masterly, perhaps, that ever was mace;
pressibly graceful was this calm and obliging Replý, ; Though short, infinitely more convincing than a whole Torrent' of bitter or recriininating Words. It difarmed the Judge of his rising Displeasure ; it conciliated the Favour of his royal Affeffor ; and brought Honour to the Christian Cause.
This amiable Self-Regimen, and Moderation of Temper, I shall be sure to see exemplified in my Friend's Conversation; however I may fail of it myfelf, or be Proof against all his Arguments.
App. Ah! Theron, We want no Monitor, to remind Us of our fupposed Excellencies. And if You begin with your Compliments, it is Time to put anénd' to our Discourse.
Only let me just observe, That divine Truths cannot be properly discerned, but by the enlightening Influences of the Divine SPIRIT. We must address Ourselves to this Enquiry, not only with unprejudiced Minds, but likewise with praying Hearts. We must bring to this Disputé, not barely the Quiver of Logic, but that Unction from the HOLY
eminent for fine Addréfs, clear Reasoning, and important Truth. Which, notwithstanding all these very fuperior Recommendations, is deemed Madness : and that, by a Nobleman from Rome; the Seat of Science, and Fountain-head of polite Literature.—An Evidence this, no less demonstrative than deplorable, of the Apostle's Af: fertion ;- The natural Man, however ingenious or accomplished, receiveth not the Things of the SPIRIT of GOD. Nay, they are Foolishness.. unto Mim. The Roman Virtue, and the Athenian Philofophy; the self-admiring Pharisee, and the free-thinking Sadducee; all concur to pour Contempt upon that Person and that Righteousness, which are the one adequate Object of the divine Delight. Therefore our LORD most justly declared ; Blefjed is He, whosoever shall not be offended in me,
ONE, which may teach Us all Things *, --Let Us then adopt the Poet's Aspiration;
Thou celestial Light, Shine inward, and the Mind through all her Powers Irradiate; there plant Eyes; all Mift from thence Purge and disperfe!
MILTON, B. III. 51. . * 1 John ii. 20, 27.
THERON. D E are now, Aspasio, about two Miles SEXY distant from iny House. The HorseVA Road lies through a narrow dusty Lane,
The Foot-Path leads along a spacious
o pleasant Meadow. Suppose, We deliver our Horses to the Servant, and walk the Remainder of the Way?
Asp. You could not make a Proposal, more agreeable to my Inclination. Especially, as the Air is become cool, and the Walk is so inviting.
What a magnificent and charming Scene?-Hills, on either Side, gently rising, and widely spreading: Their Summits, crowned with scattered Villages, and clustering Trees. Their Slopes, divided into a beauteous Chequer-work; consisting partly of Tillage, with its waving Crops ; partly of Pastúrage, with its grazing Herds.--Before Us, the Trefoil, the Clover, and a Variety of graffy Plants, differently bladed, and differently branched, weave themselves into a Carpet of living Green. Can any of the Manufactures formed in the Looms, or extended in the Palaces of Persia, vie with the Cover
ing of this ample Area? Vie with it, in Grandeur of Size, or Delicacy of Decoration ? . .
What a Profusion of the gayest Flowers, fringing the Banks, and embroidering the Plain !--Nothing can be brighter, than the Lustre of those silver Daisies; nothing deeper, than the Tinge of those goiden Crowfoots. Yet, both seem to acquire additional Liveliness, by succeeding to the Deformity of Winter, and by flourishing arnidst the freshest Verdure.
Ther. Nature is truly in her Prime.-The vegetable Tribes are putting on their richest Attire. Those Chesnuts, on our Right-hand, begin to rear their flowering Pyramids; those Willows, on our left, are tipt with Taffels of Grey; while yonder Poplars, which overlook the River, and seem to command the Meadows, are pointed with Rolls of Silver.
The Hawthorn, in every Hedge, is partly turgid with silken Gems, partly diffused into a milk-white Bloom. Not a ftraggling Furze, nor a solitary Thicket on the Heath, but wears a rural Nosegay. Even amidst that neglected Dike, the Arum * rises in humble State; most curiously shrouded in her leafy Tabernacle, and surrounded with luxuriant Families, each distinguished by a peculiar Livery . . .: " : F4.a. some of
* Arum-a wild Herb, which unfolds but one Leaf; formed after a very singular Pattern; bearing some Resemblance to the Hare's Ear. It is really one of the prettiest Fancies in Nature's Wardrobe. So much admired by the Country People, that they have dignified it with the Appellation of Lords and Ladies. Because it looks, I suppose, somewhat like a Person of Quality, fitting, with an Air of Ease and Dignity, in his open Sedan. . .?i