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for the general welfare of the church. Wherefore, by this letter, we constitute and declare you Prince of Arhens, Director and Guardian of the jabove-mentioned seminary of education; and promise to you, in verbo refis, that as scon as we obtain posseson of bur empire, you shall be invested with the laid principality of Athens, and the whole territory belonging to it, anciently called Attica; to which principality we will, besides, join the duchy of Thebes, with its territory called Bceotia ; both the one and the other, with full sovereign pow. jjr to you and the male children procreated or adopted by you, and all their lawful descendents for ever. Farther, for a delightful retirement, we will bestow upon you the renowned and beautiful valley which extends siom the city of Gonna in Theffaly, *o the ThclTalonic gulph, anciently called Tempe; to which vale, comprehending the city of Gonna, we will invest you with the fame rights as to the above-mentioned principality and duchy: and this to the end that all the world maybe convinced of our esteem for your abilities and accqm*
plilhments, which are deservedly the admiration of all Christendom, and of the affection with which we return your attachment to our person.
VII. Whereas we have been by yoa assured of the profound regard which all Europe entertains for the moll holy father Benedict, an,d his most glorious order; we will take that ordd which is so highly the object of your affection and esteem, under our imperial protection; and we will cause complete restitution to be made to it of all the monasteries which it formerly pollUTcd in our dominion*, in order that the Christians of the Latin ritual may enjoy proper opportunities of gratifying their devout dispositions.
We solemnly vow and promise to perform the above engagements as loon as it shall be in our power. So help us God and all his saints. In testimony whereof, we have, with our own hand, affixed our ustiul seal to this deed. Given at Turin, on the 15th of October 1633.
Suitan Iachia Ottomah.
By command of the most icrene Sultan HoNORATK Tikant.
(NovclJe Letteraric di Firenze.)
Charallcr ofDr Johnson, as drawn by himself.
IN perusing the Lives of the Poets, I have often thought I traced Johnson depicting his own mind so accurately, so natural'y and faithfully, that I could not resist the inclination to make a selection of some passages, which, put together, appear to form an exact and jnst character of him. And after so much has been said of the Doctor, I hope it will not be disagreeable to your readers to peruso a
rHAKACTER Ofdr JoHNSOtI " WRITTEN BY HIMSELF." "MutalO tlO
imne de te fibula narratur"
"His miscellanies contain a collec
tion of (hort compositions, written some as they were dictated by a mind at leisure, and some as they were called forth by different occasions. (Vol. I. Cowlcy, p. 53.) His power is not so much to move the affections, as to exercise the understanding, (p. 56.), His levity never leaves his learning behind it, (p. 61.) The plenitude of the writer's knowledge flows in upon his page, so that the reader is commonly surprised into some improvement, (ibid.) He wrote with abundant fertility, with much thought, but with little imagery; hfc is never pathetic, Mig. - * . •
ttharadcr ofDoclor Johnson, as drawn iy liimfcls.
(rictic, and rarely sublime, but always either ingenious or learned, either acute.or profound, (p. 86.) He read much, and yet borrowed little, (p. 87.) He was in his own time considered as of unrivalled excellence, (ibid.) He is one of those writers that improved our taste and advanced our language; and whom we ought therefore to read tvith gratitude, though, having done much, he left much to do, (Dtnham, p. 118.) It appears in all his writings that he had the usoal concomitant of great abilities, a lofty and steady confidence in himself, perhaps not without some contempt of others } for scarcely any man ever wrote so much, and praised so few. Of his praise he was very frugal; as he set its value high, and considered his mention of a name as a security against the waste of time, and a certain preservative against oblivion, (Milton, p, 130, 131.) While he contented himself to write [politics]; he perhaps did only what his conseience dictated: and if he did not very vigilantly watch the influence of his own passions, and the gradual prevalence of opinions, fust willingly admitted, and then habitually indulged; if objections, by being ovet looked, were forgotten, and desire superinduced conviction ; yet he shared only the common weakness of mankind, and might he no less sincere than his opponents, (p. 151.) He taught only the statedoctrine of authority, and the tinpleafing duty of submission: and he had been so long not only the monarch but the tyrant of literature, that almost all mankind were delighted to find him desied and insulted by a new name, hot yet considered as any man's rival, (p. 155.) I cannot but remark a kind of respect, perhaps unconsciousiy, paid to this great man by his biographers; every house in which he resided is historically mentioned, as if it were an injury to neglect naming any place that he honoured with his presence,
v His warraest advocates must allow,
that he never spared any asperity ot reproach, or brutality of insolence, (p. 190.) He never learned the ari of doing little things with grace; he overlooked the milder excellencies of suavity and softness ; he was a lion that had no skill in dandling the kidj (p. .218.) He was naturally a thinM er for himself, confident of his own abi> Ikies, and disdainful of help or hindrance. There is in his writings noi thing by which the pride of other aui thoTs might be gratified * or favou^ gained; no exchange of praise, or so. licitation of support, (p. 262.) Ill had watched with great diligence tht operations of human nature; and tra. ced the effects of opinion, humour, in* terert, and passion. From such remark* proceeded that great number of ser.teni tious distichs which have passed intd conversation, and are added as proverbial axioms to the general stock of practical knowledge, (Butler, p. 280. J He improved taste, if he did not enlarge knowledge^ and may be mm*. bered among ths Benefactors to English literature, (Roscommon, p. 320.) He passed his time in the company that was highest both in rank and wit, from which even his obstinate sobriety did not exclude him. Though ha drank water, he was enabled by his fertility of mind to heighten the mink of Bacchanalian assemblies, (Waller, p. 367.) His convivial power of p!e;;lsing is universally acknowledged; bift those who conversed with him inuj mately, found him not only passionate* especially in his old age, but resentful/ (p. 382.) To see the highest mind thus levelled with the meanest, rrlay produce some solace to the consciousness of weakness, and some mortisica* tion to the pride of wisdom. But let it be remmembered, that minds lire not levelled in their power, but when they are first levelled in their desirt.s, (Dryden, vol. II. p. 33.) His repu« tationinhis time w.ts sucli, that hi? name was thought necessary to tie success of every poetical or litsraiy perfoim
ance, and therefore he was engaged to contribute something, whatever it Itiight be,to many publications, (p. 55.)
That conversion will always be suspected that apparently comes with interest'. He that never finds his error till it hinders his progress towards wealth or honour, will not be thought to love truth only for herself. Yet it may easily happen, that information (nay come at a commodious time; iind, as truth and interest are not by *ny fatal necessity at variance, that one May by accident introduce the other. When opinions are struggling into popularity, the arguments by which they lire opposed or defended become more Known; and he that changes his proi jllion would perhaps have changed it before, with the like opportunities of instruction, (p.'6i.) See vol. I. p. 151.
The modesty which made him so flow to advance, and so easy to be rcfulsed, was certainly no suspicion of deficient merit, or unconsciousness of h s own' value; he appears to have known, in its whole extent, the dignity of his character, and to have let a very high value on his power and performances. He probably did not offer his conversation, because he ex| ected it to be solicited ; and he retired from a cold reception, not submissive, but indignant, with such relerence of his own greatnsfs as made h ira unv/illiDg to exj-ose it to neglect or violation, (p. 84.) He has been described as magisterially presiding 0V*.r the younger writers, and assuming the distribution os poetical fame J but he who excels has a right to teach; and he whole judgment is incontestable, may, without usurpation, exajnine and decide, (p. 85.)
His criticism may be considered as je&cral or occasional. In his general precepts, which depend upon the nature of things, and the structure of the human mind, he may doubtless be safely recommended to the ;oc£dence of
the render ; but his occasional and par* titular positions were sometimes interested, sometimes negligent, and sometimes capricious, (p. 108.) His scholastic acquisitions seem not proportionate to his opportunities and abilities. He could not, like Milton and Cowley, have made his name illustrious merely by his learning. He mentions but few books, and those such as lie in the beaten tract of regular study, from which if ever he departs, he is in danger of losing himself in unknown regions, (p. III.) Yet it cannot be laid that his genius is ever unprovided of matter, or that his fancy Ian* guifhes in penury of ideas. His wotks abound with knowledge, and sparkle with illustrations. There is scarce any science or faculty that does not supply him with occasional images and lucky similitudes; every page discovers a mind very widely acquainted both with art and nature, and in full possession of great stores of intellectual wealth, (p. 112.)
The power that predominated in his intellectual operations was rather strong reason than quick sensibility. Upon all occasions that were presented, he studied rather than felt, and ptoduced sentiments not such as nature enforces, but meditation supplies. With the simple and elemental passions, as they spring separately in the mind, he seems not much acquainted; and seldom describes them, but as they are complicated by the various relations of society, and confused ia the tumults and agitations of life, (p. 173.) He was a mao of such estimation among his companions, that the casual censures or praises which he dropped in conversation were considered, like those of Scaliger, as worthy of preservation, (Smith, p. 249.) His phrases are original, but they are sometimes harm; as lie inherited no csegaoce, none has he bequeathed.
Chservatiom upon the Passions: Addressed to the Ladies.
I Think the ladies will not accuse me of busying myself in impertinent remarks upon their dress and attire, for indeed it is not to their persons mv services are devoted, but to their minds: if I can add to them any tiling ornamental, or take from them any thing unbecoming, I shall gain my wish; the rest I (hall leave to their milliners ar.d mantuamakers.
Now if I h<ive any merit with them for not intruding upon their toilets, lei them shew rue so much complaisance, as not to read this paper whilst they are engaged in those occupations, which I have never before interrupted; for as I intend to talk with them a little metaphysically, I would not wish to divide their attention, nor shall 1 be contented with less than the whole.
In the first place, I mull tell them, gentle though they be, that human nature is subject to a variety of passions; some of these are virtuous passions; some, on the contrary, I am afraid are evil; there are however a number of intermediate propensities, most of which might also be termed passions, which by proper influence of reason may become very useful allies to any one single virtue, when in danger of being overpowered by a holt of foes: at the fame time they arc as capable of being kidnapped by the enemies of reason, and, when insisted in the ranks of the insurgents, seldom sail to turn the sate of the battle, and commit dreadful havock in the peaceful quarters of the invaded virtue. It is apparent then that ail these intermediate propensities are a kind t>f balancing powers* which seem indeed to hold a neutrality in moral affairs, but, holding it with arms in their hands, cannot be supposed to remain impartial spectators of the fray, and therefore must be either with us, or against us.
I shall make myself better understood when I proceed to instance them, and I will begin with that, which has been Vol. VII. No 41. S
called the universal passion, The love os Fame.
I presume no lady will disavow this propensity; I would not wish her to attempt it; let her examine it however; let her first inquire to what point it is likely to carry her before she commits herself to its conduct: if it is to be her guide to that fame only, which excels in fashionable dissipation, figures in the first circles of the gay world,. and is the loadstone to attract every ■ libertine of high fife into the sphere ■ os its activity, it is a traiterous guide,, and is seducing her to a precipice, that . will sooner or kter be the grave of her happiness: on the contrary, if it proposes to avoid these dangerous pur-., suits, and recommends a progress thro', paths less tempting to the eye perhaps, but terminated by substantial comforts^ she may securely follow a propensity, which cannot mislead her, and indulge a passion, which will be the moving spring of all her actions, and but for which her nature would want energy, and her character be no otherwise distinguished than by avoidance of vice without the grace and merit of any positive virtue. I can hardly suppose, if it was put to a lady's choice at her outset into life, which kind of fame she would be distinguished for, good or evil, but that she would at once prefer the good;. I must believe (lie would acknowledge more gratification in being signalized as the best wife, the best mother, the most exemplary woman of her time, than in being pointed out in all circles she frequents as the most fashionable rake, the best dressed voluptuary in the nation: if this be rightry conjectured, why will not every woman, who has her choice to make, direct her ambition to those objects which will give her most satisfaction when attained ? There can be no reason but because it imposes on her some self-denials by the way, which she has not fortitude to surmount; aud it is plain she does not s love
love fame well enough to be at much pains in acquiring it; her ambition does not reach at noble objects, her passion for celebrity is no better than that of a buffoon's, who, for the vanity cf being conspicuous, submits to be contemptible.
Friendship is a word which has a very captivating found, but is by no means of a decided quality ; it may be friend or foe as reason and true judgment lliall determine for it. If I were to decry all female friendships in the lump, it might, seem a harsh sentence, ao'i yet it will seriously behove every parent to keep strict watch over this propensity in the early movements of the female mind. 1 am not disposed to expatiate upon its dangers very particular-y; they are sufficiently known to people of experience and discretion; but attachments mult be stemmed in their beginnings ; keep off correspondents from your daughters as you would keep oil" the pestilence: romantic misses, sentimental novelists, and scribbling pedants, overturn each others heads with siich eternal rhapsodies about friepdsti:p, and refine upon nonsense with such an aflectatioa of enthusiasm, that if it has not been the psr-jnt's study to take earjy precautions against all such growing propensities, h will be in vain to oppose the torrent, when it carries ail before it, and overt whelms the passions with ifs force,
Sensibility is a mighty favourite with the fair sex; it is an amiable friend or a very dangerous foe to virtue: let the female, who professes it, be careful how (lie makes too full a display of her weakness; for this is so very (oft and insinuating a propensity, that it will be found in most female plossaries as a synonimous term for tjve itself; in fact, it is little less than the nommi--tif-guerre, which that in sir dious adventurer takes upon him in all first approaches ; the pass-word in all those skirmishing experiments, which young people make upon each other's affections, Lefore they proceed to plain.
er declarations; it is the whet-stone, upon which love sharpens and prepares his arrows i if any lady makes a certain show of sensibility in company with her admirer, he must be a very dull fellow, if he dots not know how to turn the weapon from himself to her. New sensibility assumes a different character when it is taken into the service of benevolence, or made the centinel of modesty; in one case, it gives the spring to pity, in the other, the alarm to discretion ; but whenever it assiiils the heart by soft seduction to bestow that pity and relief, which discretion does not want and purity ought not to grant, it should be treated as a renegado and a spy, which, ur.cer the mask of charity, would impose upon credulity for the vilest purposes, and betray the heart by flattering it to its ruin.
Vanity is a passion, to which I think I am very complaisant, when 1 admit it to a place amongst these convertible propensities, for it is as much as I cm do to find any occupation for it in the family concerns of virtue; perhaps if 1 had not known Vanessa I should not pay it even this small compliment; it can, however, do some under-offiees in the household of generosity, cf chearfulness, hospitality, and certain other respectable qualities: it is little else than an officious, civil, silly thing, that runs on errands for its betters, and is content to be paid with a smile for its good will, by those who have tcfl much good fense to show it any red respect I when it is harmless, it would be hard to wound it out of wantonness; when it is misehievoys, there is merit in chastising it with the whip of ridicule: a lap-dog may be endured, if he is inoffensive and does Dot annoy the company, but a snappish, barking pett, though in a lady's arms, deserves to have his ears pulled for his impertinence.
Delicacy is a soft name, and fine ladies, who have a proper contempt for the vulgar, are very willing to be