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On Play and Luck.
forces into brazen vaults, for obtaining a very trifling end ; it glides along the branching tubes of a hair, and overturns mighty palaces. - In like manner it sometimes - creates a wonderful filent destiny in tribes and nations, as well as in private persons and particular families. It labours likewise at quenching the rising sparks of every advantage, and extinguishing the dawn of light in pestilential vapour. ln vain are then all the talents conferred by nature, fruitless the efforts to cast off the covering of darkness. They lie for years and ages entire, unless a vivyfying breath of fortune calls them to a new life and vigour. Others again sparkle in a blaze, that least of all befits them. Scarcely is a trace of their merit to be found in any departed writing. They enjoy, however, the benefit of the sun which so favourably enlightened them; even the smallest gleam mounts upwards in them ; and they set no. bounds to their merits but what their vanity prescribes. In the mean time, their betters stand in obscurity before their splendour; and their envious light permits no ray to pierce the surrounding gloom. Thus reign almighty time, and fate and fortune, and shed in but too large proportions, light and darkness over mortals. ! Yet one kind of fortune at- . tends during the progress of life. on every employment, on the execution of every projećt. To this I might give the name of mixed fortune; for nothing can eminently thrive, where the sure impulse from within, and, the favourable inspiration from without do not concur; and that
with equal ability. Here the un-, derstanding