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versation with one of riper years, who is not only able to advise, but who knows the manner of advising. By this mean, youth can enjoy the benefit of the experience of age; and that at a time of life when such experience will be of more service to a man than when he has lived long enough to acquire it of himself.
3. The kindnesses, which most men receive from others, are like traces drawn in the sand. The breath of every passion sweeps them away, and they are remembered no more. But injuries are like inscriptions on monuments of brass or pillars of marble, which endure, unimpaired, the revolutions of time.
4. View the groves in autumn, and observe the constant succession of falling leaves; in like manner, the generations of men silently drop from the stage of life, and are blended with the dust from whence they sprang.
5. Perfect happiness is not the growth of a terrestrial soil; it buds in the gardens of the virtuous on earth, but blooms with unfading verdure only in the celestial regions.
6. He, who would pass the latter part of his life with honour and decency, must, when he is young, consider that he shall one day be old; and remember, when he is old, that he has once been young.
7. He, who governs his passions, does more than he who commands armies. Socrates, being one day offended with his servant, said, "I would beat you if I were not angry."
8. We too often judge of men by the splendour, and not by the merit, of their actions. Alexander demanded of a pirate, whom he had taken, by what right he infested the seas? By the same right," replied he boldly, "that you enslave the world. I am called a robber, because I have only one small vessel; but you are styled a conqueror, because you command great fleets and armies."
9. Beauty, as the flowery blossom, soon fades; but the divine excellences of the mind, like the medicinal virtues of the plant, remain in it when all those charms are withered.
10. There are two considerations which always imbitter the heart of an avaricious man; the one is a perpetual thirst after more riches; the other, the prospect of leaving what he hath already acquired.
11. There cannot be a more glorious object in creation,
than a human being replete with benevolence, meditating in what manner he may render himself most acceptable to his Creator, by doing most good to his creatures.
12. A man should never be ashamed to own he has been in the wrong; which is but saying, in other words, that he is wiser to-day than he was yesterday.
13. Knowledge will not be acquired without pains and application. It is troublesome digging for deep, pure waters; but when once you come to the spring, they rise up and meet you.
14. The most unhappy effect of fashionable politeness is, that it teaches us the art of dispensing with the virtues which it imitates. Let us be educated to cherish the principles of benevolence and humanity, and we shall have politeness enough, or shall stand in no need of it.
15. If we should not have that which is accompanied by the graces, we should have that which bespeaks the honest man and the good citizen. We should stand in no need of having recourse to the falsehood of appearances.
16. Man is the only being endowed with the power of laughter, and perhaps he is the only one who deserves to be laughed at.
17. It is the great privilege of poverty to be happy unenvied, to be healthful without physick, and secure without a guard; to obtain from the bounty of nature what the great and wealthy are compelled to procure by the help of artists, and the attendance of flatterers and spies.
18. Prudence is a duty which we owe ourselves, and, if we will be so much our own enemies as to neglect it, we are not to wonder if the world is deficient in discharging their duty to us; for, when a man lays the foundation of his own ruin, others, too often, are apt to build upon it.
19. There are no principles but those of religion to be depended on in cases of real distress; and these are able to encounter the worst emergencies, and to bear us up under all the changes and chances to which our lives are subject.
20. Riches without charity are worth nothing. They are a blessing only to him who makes them a blessing to others.
21. The tongue of a viper is less hurtful than that of a slanderer; and the gilded scales of a rattlesnake less dreadful than the purse of the oppressor.
22. As benevolence is the most sociable of all the virtues, so it is of the largest extent; for there is not any man, either so great or so little, but he is yet capable of giving and of receiving benefits.
23. When thou dost good, do it because it is good; not because men esteem it so. When thou avoidest evil, flee from it because it is evil; not because men speak against it. Be honest for the love of honesty, and thou shalt be uniformly so. He who doth it without principle is wavering.
24. Wish rather to be reproved by the wise than to be applauded by him who hath no understanding. When they tell thee of a fault, they suppose thou canst improve; the other, when he praiseth thee, thinketh thee like unto himself.
25. Set not thy judgement above that of all the earth; neither condemn as falsehood what agreeth not with thine own apprehension. Who gave thee the power of determining for others? or who took from the world the right of choice?
26. How many things have been rejected, which now are received as truths; how many, now received as truths, will in their turn be despised? Of what, then, can man be certain?
27. An immoderate desire of riches is a poison lodged in the soul. It contaminates and destroys every thing which was good in it. It is no sooner rooted there, than all virtue, all honesty, all natural affection, fly before the face of it.
28. Drunkenness is but voluntary madness; it imboldens men to do all sorts of mischiefs; it both irritates wickedness and discovers it; it does not merely make men vicious, but it shows them to be so.
29. Every man should mind his own business; for he who torments himself with other people's good or ill fortune will never be at rest.
30. To set about acquiring the habit of meditation and study late in life, is like getting into a go-cart with a gray beard, and learning to walk when we have lost the use of our legs. In general, the foundation of a happy old age must be laid in youth; and he who has not cultivated his reason young will be utterly unable to improve it when old.
31. Endeavour to be first in your profession, and let no one go before you in doing well. Nevertheless, do not envy the merits of another; but improve your own talents.
32. Never reveal your secrets to any, except it be as much their interest to keep them as it is yours they should be kept. Intrust only thyself, and thou canst not be betrayed.
33. Glory, like a shadow, fleeth him who pursueth it; but it followeth at the heels of him who would flee from it. If thou court it without merit, thou shalt never attain unto it; if thou deserve it, though thou hide thyself, it will never forsake thee.
34. Pursue that which is honourable, do that which is right, and the applause of thine own conscience will be more joy to thee than the shouts of millions, who know not that thou deservest them.
35. Love labour. If you do not want it for food, you may for physick. The idle man is more perplexed to know what to do than the industrious in doing what he ought. There are few who know how to be idle and innocent. By doing nothing, we learn to do ill.
36. Honour thy father with thy whole heart, and forget not the sorrows of thy mother. How canst thou recompense them the things which they have done for thee?
37. It is a mark of a depraved mind to sneer at decrepit old age, or to ridicule any one who is deformed in his person, or lacketh understanding. Who maketh one to differ from another?
38. The merciful man is merciful to his beast; and he, who takes pleasure in tormenting any of God's creatures, although ever so inferiour, ought to be banished from human society, and ranked among the brutes.
39. Admonish thy friend; it may be he hath not done it; and, if he hath, that he do it no more. Admonish thy friend; it may be he hath not said it; or, if he hath, that he speak it not again. Admonish a friend; for many times it is a slander; and believe not every tale.
40. Be not forward in leading the conversation. This belongs to the oldest persons in company. Display your learning only on particular occasions. Never oppose the opinion of another, but with great modesty.
41. On all occasions, avoid speaking of yourself, if possible. Nothing that we can say ourselves will varnish our defects, or add lustre to our virtues; on the contrary, it will often make the former more visible, and the latter obscure.
42. Without a friend, the world is but a wilderness. A man may have a thousand intimate acquaintances, and not a friend among them all. If you have one friend, think yourself happy.
43. There is but one way of fortifying the soul against all gloomy pres'ages and terrours of the mind; and that is, by securing to ourselves the friendship and protection of that Being who disposes of events and governs futurity.
A HINT TO PARENTS.
IT is to be wished that parents would consider what a variety of circumstances tend to render the evil reports of their children, respecting their teachers, false and exaggerated.*
2. They judge hastily, partially, imperfectly, and improperly, from the natural defects and weakness of their age. They, likewise, too often intentionally misrepresent things. They hate those who restrain them; they feel resentment for correction; they love change; they love idleness, and the indulgences of their home.
3. Like all human creatures, they are apt not to know when they are well, and to complain. Let parents, then, consider these things impartially, and be cautious of aspersing the character, and disturbing the happiness, of those who may, probably, deserve thanks rather than ill usage; whose office is at best full of care and anxiety; and, when it is interrupted by the injudicious interference or complaints of the parents, becomes intolerably burdensome.
4. If a father suspect his confidence to have been misplaced, it is best to withdraw it immediately, without altercation and without reproaches. I have often heard old and experienced instructers declare, that the whole business of managing a large school, and training pupils to learning and virtue, was nothing in comparison with the trouble which was given by whimsical, ignorant and discontented parents. * Pronounced ex-ad'jer-a-ted.