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not shave so much alike as not to be distinguished.” I thought this not possible, till he specified so many of the varieties in shaving ;-holding the razor more or less perpendicular ;-drawing long or short strokes ; beginning at the upper part of the face, or the under at the right side or the left side. Indeed when one considers what variety of sounds can be uttered by the windpipe, in the compass of a very small aperture, we may be convinced how many degrees of difference there may be in the application of a razor.
We dined with Dr. Butter,9 whose lady is daughter of my cousin Sir John Douglas, whose grandson is now presumptive heir of the noble family of Queensberry, Johnson and he had a good deal of medical conversation. Johnson said, he had somewhere or other given an account of Dr. Nichols's discourse “ De Animå Medica.” He told us, “that whatever a man's distemper was, Dr. Nichols would not attend him as a physician, if his mind was not at ease; for he believed that no medicines would have any influence. He once attended a man in trade, upon whom he found none of the medicines he prescribed had any effect; he asked the man's wife privately whether his affairs were not in a bad way?
She said no. He continued his attendance some time, still without success. At length the man's wife told him she had discovered that her husband's affairs were in a bad way. When Goldsmith was dying Dr. Turton said to him, “ Your pulse is in greater disorder than it should be, from the degree of fever which you have: is your mind at ease ?' Gold smith answered it was not."
After dinner, Mrs. Butter went with me to see the
9 [Dr. Butter was at this time a practising physician at Derby. He afterwards removed to London, where he died in his 79th year, March 22, 1805, He is authour of several medical tracts. MALONs.]
silk-mill which Mr. John Lombe had had a patent for, having brought away the contrivance from Italy. I am not very conversant with mechanicks; but the simplicity of this machine, and its multiplied operations, struck me with an agreeable surprize. I had learnt from Dr. Johnson, during this interview, not to think with a dejected indifference of the works of art, and the pleasures of life, because life is uncertain and short ; but to consider such indifference as a failure of reason, a morbidness of mind; for happiness should be cultivated as much as we can, and the objects which are instrumental to it should be steadily considered as of importance with a reference not only to ourselves, but to multitudes in successive ages. Though it is proper to value small parts, as
“ Sands make the mountain, moments make the year;
yet we must contemplate, collectively, to have a just estimation of objects. One moment's being uneasy or not, seems of no consequence; yet this may be thought of the next, and the next, and so on, till there is a large portion of misery. In the same way one must think of happiness, of learning, of friendship. We cannot tell the precise moment when friendship is formed. As in filling a vessel drop by drop, there is at last a drop which makes it run over; so in a series of kindnesses there is at last one which makes the heart run
We must not divide the objects of our attention into minute parts, and think separately of each part. It is by contemplating a large mass of human existence,
See Hutton's History of Derby, a book which is deservedly esteemed for its information, accuracy, and good narrative. Indeed the age în which we live is eminently distinguished by topographical excellence.
that a man, while he sets a just value on his own life, does not think of his death as annihilating all that is great and pleasing in the world, as if actually contained in his mind, according to Berkeley’s reverie. If his imagination be not sickly and feeble, it “ wings its distant way" far beyond himself, and views the world ine unceasing activity of every sort. It must be acknowledged, however, that Pope's plaintive reflection, that all things would be as gay as ever, on the day of his death, is natural and common. We are apt to transfer to all around us our own gloom, without considering that at any given point of time there is, perhaps, as much youth and gaiety in the world as at another. Before I came into this life, in which I have had so many pleasant scenes, have not thousands and ten thousands of deaths and funerals happened, and have not families, been in grief for their nearest relations? But have those dismal circumstances at all affected me? Why then should the gloomy scenes which I experience, or which I know, affect others ? Let us guard against imagining that there is an end of felicity upon earth, when we ourselves grow cld, or are unhappy.
Dr. Johnson told us at tea, that when some of Dr. Dodd's pious friends were trying to console him by saying that he was going to leave “ a wretched world,” he had honesty enough not to join in the cant;—“ No, no, (said he,) it has been a very agreeable world to me.” Johnson added, “ I respect Dodd for thus speaking the truth; for, to be sure, he had for several years enjoyed a life of great voluptuousness.”
He told us, that Dodd's city friends stood by him so, that a thousand pounds were ready to be given to the gaoler, if he would let him escape. He added, that he knew a friend of Dodd's, who walked about Newgate for some time on the evening before the day of his execution, with five hundred pounds in his pocket, ready to be paid to any of the turnkeys who could get him out, but it was too late; for he was watched with much circumspection. He said, Dodd's friends had an image of him made of wax, which was to have been left in his place; and he believed it was carried into the prison.
Johnson disapproved of Dr. Dodd's leaving the world persuaded that “ The Convict's Address to his unhappy Brethren,” was of his own writing. “But, Sir, (said I,) you contributed to the deception ; for when Mr. Seward expressed a doubt to you that it was not Dodd's own, because it had a great deal more force of mind in it than any thing known to be his, you answered,Why should you think so ? Depend upon it, Sir, when any man knows he is to be hanged in a fortnight, it concentrates his mind wonderfully.'” JOHNSON. “ Sir, as Dodd got it from me to pass as his own, while that could do him any good, that was an implied promise that I should not own it. To own it, therefore, would have been telling a lie, with the addition of breach of promise, which was worse than simply telling a lie to make it be believed it was Dodd's. Besides, Sir, I did not directly tell a lie: I left the matter uncertain. Perhaps I thought that Seward would not believe it the less to be mine for what I said; but I would not put it in his power
I had owned it." He praised Blair's Sermons : Yet," said he, (willing to let us see he was aware that fashionable fame, however deserved, is not always the most lasting.)
perhaps they may not be re-printed after seven years; at least not after Blair's death."
He said, “ Goldsmith was a plant that flowered late. There appeared nothing remarkable about him when he was young; though when he had got high in fame, one of his friends began to recollect something of his
being distinguished at College." Goldsmith in the same manner recollected more of that friend's early years, as he grew a greater man.”
I mentioned that Lord Monboddo told me, he awaked every morning at four, and then for his health got up and walked in his room naked, with the window open, which he called taking an air-bath ; after which he went to bed again, and slept two hours more.
John"son, who was always ready to beat down any thing that seemed to be exhibited with disproportionate importance, thus observed : “ I suppose Sir, there is no more
in it than this, he wakes at four, and cannot sleep till - he chills himself, and makes the warmth of the bed a grateful sensation.”
I talked of the difficulty of rising in the morning. Dr. Johnson told me, “ that the learned Mrs. Carter, at that period when she was eager in study, did not awake as early as she wished, and she therefore had a contrivance, that, at a certain hour, her chamber-light -should burn a string to which a heavy weight was suspended, which then fell with a strong sudden noise : this roused her from sleep, and then she had no difficulty in getting up.” But I said that was my diffi*culty; and wished there could be some medicine invented 'which would make one rise without pain, which I never did, unless after lying in bed a very long time. Perhaps there may be something in the stores of Nature which could do this. I have thought of a pully to raise 'me gradually; but that would give me pain, as it Would counteract my internal inclination. I would shave something that can dissipate the vis inertia, and give elasticity to the muscles. As I imagine that the human body may be put, by the operation of other sub
3 [He was distinguished in college, as appears from a circumstance mentioned by Dr. Kearney. See vol. i. p. 362, and 363. MALONE.]