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encroachments of the turbulent and unworthy, is, in her, the spontaneous offspring of true humility; it is the transcript of that wisdom which is from above, pure, and peaceable, and lovely —Modesty is not in her the affectation of squeamish delicacy—it is the purity of the heart. Maternal fondness (and never was the heart of a mother more tenderly affectionate) is, like every other affection of her soul, put under the control of reason. That blind indulgence, which would be prejudicial to the real interest of its object, is, by her, considered as a selfish gratification, not to be enjoyed but at the expense of the future happiness of her child; it is therefore wisely restrained, though sometimes at the expense of present feeling. Such tenderness, directed by such wisdom, is the nearest possible imitation of the most amiable attributes of the divinity —And who would put such a woman as this in comparison with the most beautiful piece of insipid ignorance that ever opened its eyes upon the world ! Is there a man who would prefer the vapid chatter of a pretty ideot to the conversation of such a woman 2 So good so wise! so beautiful! Yes, my noble Rajah, she is still beautiful! though her eyes have lost somewhat of that lustre which but a few years ago was the admiration of all beholders, they still beam with animation and sensibility.” Ah! my friend, cried I, you need say little to persuade me of her beauty; the accomplishments and virtues of an ugly woman can make little impression even on the mind of a philosopher.—My friend coloured, but before he could reply, a loud explosion from the further end of the room burst upon our ears and filled us with momentary terrour. In discoursing on Lady Grey, my friend had forgotten the necessary management of a retort, which, for want of his attention, burst in pieces. I know not what were its contents, but they sent forth such suffocating effluvia, as, had I not been restrained by politeness, would quickly have
When the smoke which followed the explosion was somewhat dissipated, I observed my friend standing in a melancholy posture, with clasped hands and fixed eyes, ruminating on the misfortune that had befallen him. A course of experiments, the labour of many weeks, were by this unhappy accident rendered abortive; it was a subject that could not immediately admit of consolation. I therefore, for some time, preserved the strictest silence. Just as I was about to open my lips with the voice of sympathy, the Philosopher, who had never lifted his eyes from the remains of the broken vessel, suddenly clapping his hands together, exclaimed, in a transport of ecstacy, “I see it! I see it!— Heavens ! what a discovery l—Never was there so fortunate an accident t” I was at first somewhat afraid that my friend's senses had received a shock from this alarming incident; but was happily relieved from my apprehensions, on being informed that the appearances which the matter, contained in the retort, had assumed on its explosion,
gave a hint to the Philosopher for the explanation of some phaenomena hitherto unaccounted for. In a moment, that fine countenance (and never did Brama bestow upon a human soul an index so intelligible) which had been so lately shaded by the cloud of despondency, was brightened by the emanations of joy, and irradiated by the smile of exultation and delight. I was not sufficiently initiated in science to be able to appreciate the value of the discovery which gave such ecstatick pleasure to the mind of the Philosopher, but contemplated with rapture the wisdom of the immortal spirit, who, when he spread the volume of Nature before his rational offspring, passed this unalterable decree : “That to the mind, devoted to its perusal, the corrosive passions should be unknown. That it should have power to assuage the tumults of the soul; to foster the emotions of virtue; and to produce a species of enjoyment peculiarly its own t”—Such, O! Maandaara! such are the advantages of science
According to appointment, I went, a few evenings ago, to Lady Ardent’s rout. Doctor Severan had the goodness to accompany me; a piece of condesension, which, now that I know what sort of a thing a rout is, I cannot but consider as a very distinguished compliment.
A rout is a species of penance, of which the pious Yogees of Hindostan never conceived an idea; if these people were not the professors of a religion which prohibits the worship of the inferiour deities, I should say, it was a sacrifice to the Goddess of Fashion; a sacrifice not of the joint of a finger, or a toe, as we are here told it is the custom to present to that Goddess in some newly discovered countries,” but of every
* It is supposed by the Translator, that the Rajah here alludes to a custom said to be practised in Otaheite. See Cook's Voyages.