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has given fo convincing a proof of its utility?


BESIDES, your application to me is little fufpicious; and looks as if you wanted to draw from me a confirmation of your own fentiments, rather than a candid examination of them. For how was it poffible for you not to foresee the difficulty I must be under in debating this point with you? When have I been able to diffent from you in any question of morals or policy? and especially what chance for my doing it in this instance, when you know the bias which my own education, conducted in this way, must have left upon me?

I AM therefore at a lofs, as I faid, to account for your fancy in making me of your council on this occafion. But whatever your purpofe might be, fince you have thought fit to honour me so far, I muft own your Letter of Inquiry could


not poffibly have found me in a fitter feafon.

I HAPPENED just then to amufe myself with recollecting a converfation, which, not many days before, had paffed between me and a certain Philofopher of great note, on that very fubject.

You know the esteem I have of this Philofopher; I mean, for fuch of his writings, as are most popular, and deferve to be fo; fuch as his pieces on Government, Trade, Liberty, and Education. No man understands the world better; or reasons more clearly on thofe fubjects, in which that world takes itself to be most of all, and is, in truth, very nearly concerned.

His Philofophy, properly fo called, is not, I doubt, of so good a taste. At least, his notion of morals is too modern for my relish I had put myself to school


to other mafters, and had learnt, you know, from his betters what to think of Life and Manners; which they treat in a ftyle quite out of the way of these subverters of ideal worlds [b], and architects on material principles [c].

BUT on this head, my dear Sir, you have heard me fpeak often, and may hear from me more at large, on fome other occafion. With exception to this one article (an important one, however), no man is more able, than Mr. LOCKE, or more privileged by his long experience, to give us Lectures on the good old chapter of Education; which many others indeed have difcuffed; but none with fo much good fenfe and with fo

[6] Such as certain philofophers amused themfelves with building, on Innate Ideas.

[c] Ideas of Senfation on which principles, indeed, a late writer has conftructed, but by no fault of Mr. LOCKE, a material fyftem of the groffeft Epicurifm. See a work entitled, De L'Efprit, in 2 tom. Amft. 1759.


conftant an eye to the use and business of the world, as this writer.

THE purpose of your inquiry, then, cannot, as I fuppofe, be any other way fo well anfwered, as by putting into your hands a faithful account of his fentiments on the conduct and ufe of Travelling: Efpecially, as you will perceive at the fame time what my notions are (if that be of any importance to you) on the fame fubject.

If I were compofing a Dialogue in the old mimetical, or poetic form, I fhould tell you, perhaps, the occafion that led us into this track of converfation. Nay, I fhould tell you what accident had brought us together; and thould even omit no circumstance of time or place, which might be proper to let you into the scene, and make you, as it were, one of us.

B 3


BUT these punctilios of decorum are thought too conftraining, and, as fuch, are wifely laid afide, by the eafy moderns. Nay, the very notion of Dialogue, fuch as it was in the politeft ages of antiquity, is fo little comprehended in our days, that I queftion much, if these papers were to fall into other hands, than your own, whether they would not appear in a high degree fantastic and vifionary. It would never be imagined that a point of morals or philofophy could be regularly treated in what is called a converfation-piece; or that any thing fo unlike the commerce of our world could have taken place between men, that had any ufe or knowledge of it.

THIS, I fay, might be the opinion of men of better breeding; of thofe, who are acquainted with the fashion, and are themselves practised in the converfations, of the polite world. The formalifts, on the

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