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approaches when he beholds his nerves shattered, and all the powers of his soul destroyed, has not the courage to make the delayed confeffion, "I am tired of the world and all its idle follies !”
THE legions of fantaftic fafhions to which a man of pleasure is obliged to facrifice his time, impair the rational faculties of his mind, and destroy the native energies of his foul. Forced continually to lend himself to the performance of a thoufand little trifles, a thousand mean abfurdities, he becomes by habit frivolous and abfurd. The face of things no longer wears its true and genuine afpect; and his depraved tafte lofes all relifh for rational entertainment or fubftantial pleasure. The infatuation feizes on his brain, and his corrupted heart teems with idle fancies and vain imaginations.
THE inevitable confequences of this ardent purfuit of entertainments and diverfions are languor and diffatisfaction. He who has drained the cup of pleasure to the last drop, who is at length obliged to confefs that all his hopes are fled, who finds disappointment and difguft mingled with every enjoyment, who feels astonished at his own infenfibility, and who no longer poffeffes the magic of the enchantrefs Imagination to gild and decorate the scene, calls in vain to his affistance the P 2 daughters
daughters of Sensuality and Intemperance: their careffes can no longer delight his dark and melancholy mind: the soft and fyren song of Luxury no longer can difpel the cloud of discontent that hovers round his head.
BEHOLD that debilitated weak old man running after pleasures he can no longer enjoy. The airs of gaiety which he affects render him ridiculous: his attempts to fhine expofe him to derifion: his endeavours to difplay the wit and eloquence of youth betray him into the garrulity of old age. His conversation, filled with repetition and tirefome narrative, creates difguft, and only forces the fmile of pity from the lips of his youthful rivals. To the eye of wisdom, however, who obferved him through all the former periods of his life sparkling in the mazes of folly, and rioting in all the noify circles of extravagance and vice, his character always appeared the fame.
"A languid, leaden iteration reigns,
"And ever muft, o'er those whose joys are joys "Of fight, fmell, tafte. The cuckow-seasons fing "The fame dull note to fuch as nothing prize, "But what those seasons, from the teeming earth, "To doating fenfe indulge. But nobler minds, "Which relish fruits unripened by the fun, "Make their days various; various as the dyes "On the dove's neck, which wanton in his rays.
"On minds of dove-like innocence poffeft, "On lighten'd minds, that bask in Virtue's beams, "Nothing hangs tedious
THE wife man, in the midst of the moft tumultuous pleasures, frequently retires within himself, and filently compares what he might do with what he is doing. Surrounded by, and even when accidentally engaged in, the exceffes of intoxication, he affociates only with those warm and generous fouls whose highly elevated minds are drawn towards each other by the moft virtuous inclinations and fublime sentiments. The filent retreat of the mind within itself, has more than once given birth to enterprizes of the greatest importance and utility; and it is not difficult to imagine that some of the most celebrated actions of mankind were first inspired among the founds of mufic, or conceived amidst the mazes of the dance. Senfible and elevated minds never commune more closely with themselves than in those places of public refort in which the low and vulgar, furrendering themselves to illusion and caprice, become incapable of reflection, and blindly suffer themselves to be overwhelmed by the furrounding torrent of folly and distraction.
THE Unceafing pursuit of fenfual enjoyment is merely a mean used by the votaries of worldly pleasure
pleasure of flying from themselves: they seize with avidity upon any object that promises to occupy the present hour agreeably, and provide entertainment for the day that is passing over their heads. To fuch characters the man who can invent hour after hour new schemes of pleasure, and open day after day fresh sources of amusement, is a valuable companion indeed: he is their best, their only friend. Are then these lazy and luxurious votaries offenfual pleasures deftitute of thofe abilities which might prevent this facrifice of time, and, if properly exerted, afford them relief? Certainly not. But, having been continually led from object to object in the purfuit of pleasure, the affiftance of others has habitually become the first want and greatest neceffity of their lives: they have infenfibly loft all power of acting for themselves, and depend, for every object they fee, for every sensation they feel, for every sentiment they entertain, on those by whom they are attended. This is the reafon why the rich, who are feldom acquainted with any other pleasures than those of sense, are, in general, the most miserable of mankind.
THE Nobility and Courtiers of France think their enjoyments appear vain and ridiculous only to those who have not the opportunity of partaking in them; but I am of a different opinion. Returning
one Sunday from Trianon to Versailles, I perceived at a distance a number of people affembled upon the terrace of the castle; and, on a nearer approach, I beheld Louis the Fifteenth furrounded by his court at the windows of his palace. A man very richly dreffed, with a large pair of branching antlers faftened on his head, whom they called the flag, was pursued by about a dozen others who composed the pack. The pursued and the purfuers leaped into the great canal, scrambled out again, and ran wildly round and round, amidst the acclamations of the affembly, who loudly clapped their hands to teftify their de light, and to encourage the diverfion. "What can "all this mean?" faid I to a French gentleman who stood near me. "Sir," he replied, with a very serious countenance, "it is for the enter
tainment of the Court." The moft obfcure and indigent individuals may certainly be much happier than these masters of mankind with their melancholy flaves and miferable entertainments.
"But all, alas! would into fame advance,