Page images

a man for what is properly his own? 4. He has a superb train, a beautiful palace, so much credit, such a revenue; all these are about him, not in him. 5. If you cheapen a horse, you have him stripped of his housing-clothes, that he may appear naked and open to your eye. 6. Why, in giving your estimate of man, do you prize him wrapped and muffled up? He then discovers nothing to you but such parts as are not in the least his own; and conceals those by which alone one may rightly judge of his worth. 7. It is the value of the blade you inquire into, and not of the scabbard. You are to judge of him by himself, not by what he wears. As one of the ancients very pleasantly observed: do you know why you repute him tall? You take into the account the height of his pattens, whereas the pedestal is no part of the statue. 8. Measure him without his stilts, let him lay aside his revenues and his titles, let him present himself in his shirt, then examiné if his body be sound and sprightly, active and disposed to perform its functions. 9. What mind has he? Is it beautiful and capacious, and happily provided with all its faculties? Is it rich in what is its own, or in what it has borrowed? Has fortune no hand in the affair? That is what is to be examined, and by that are we to judge the difference between man and



The Influence of an early Taste for Reading.

[ocr errors]

In'-flu-ence, s. any power which acts on the mind, and biasses or directs it.

Taste, s. (figuratively,) discernment or relish. (The sense by which the relish is received by any thing on the palate.) 1. In'-tel-lect, s. the power of the mind called the understanding, Im-pres-sed, pret. fixed on the mind.

2. De-po"-si-to-ry, s. the place where any thing is lodged. 4. Talent, s. a faculty, power, or gift of nature. (Also a sum of money, varying in different periods of time and in different countries.)

In'-ter-val, s. time between two events.

6. Tra"-verse, v. to wander over, to travel over. (Also to thwart, or oppose.)

10. Scope, s. room or space.

[ocr errors]

Sug-ges'-ti-ons, s. pl. secret hints.

11. Di-gest', v. to think upon, settle, and put in order. (Also to concoct or dissolve food in the stomach.)

Sa-ga'-ci-ous, a. (pro. sa-ga-shus,) quick of thought..

Sym'-pa thy, s. fellow-feeling.

13. Su-per-fi"-ci-al, a. slight, trivial.

16. Dis-si-mi-lar, a. unlike.

16. Ge"-ne-rate, v. to cause or produce.

[ocr errors]

1. THERE is, perhaps, nothing that has a greater tendency to decide favourably or unfavourably respecting a man's future intellect, than the question ; Whether or not he be impressed with an early taste for reading?

2. Books are the depository of every thing that is. most honourable to man. He that loves reading has. every thing within his reach. 3. He has but to desire, and he may possess himself of every species of wisdom to judge, and power to reform.

4. The chief point of difference between the man of talent and the man without it, consists in the

different ways in which their minds are employed during the same interval. 5. They are obliged, we will suppose, to walk from Temple-Bar to HydePark Corner.

6. The dull man goes straight-forward; he has so many furlongs to traverse. 7. He observes whether he meets any of his acquaintance; he inquires respecting their health and their family, 8. He glances his eye, perhaps, at the shops as he passes; he admires, perchance, the fashion of a buckle, and the metal of a tea-urn. 9. If he experience any flights of fancy, they are of a short extent; of the same nature as the flights of the forest bird, clipped of his wings, and condemned to pass the rest of his life in a farm-yard.

'10. On the other hand, the man of talent gives full scope to his imagination. Unindebted to the suggestions of surrounding objects, his whole soul is employed. 11. He enters into nice calculations; he digests sagacious reasonings. In imagination he declaims or describes, impressed with the deepest sympathy, or elevated to the loftiest rapture. 12. He makes a thousand new and admirable combinations.

passes through a thousand imaginary scenes, tries his courage, tasks his ingenuity, and thus becomes gradually prepared to meet almost any of the many-coloured events of human life. 13. If he observes the passengers, he reads their countenances, conjectures their past history, and forms a superficial notion of their wisdom or folly, their virtue or vice, their satisfaction or misery. 14. If he observe scenes that occur, it is with the eye of an artist.


Every object is capable of suggesting to him a volume of reflections.

15. The time of these two persons, in one respect, resembles; it has brought them both to Hyde-Park Corner. In every other respect how dissimilar !

16. Probably nothing has contributed so much to generate these opposite habits of mind as an early taste for reading. 17. Books gratify and excite our curiosity in innumerable ways. They force us to reflect: they present direct ideas of various kinds, and they suggest indirect ones. 18. In a well written book we are presented with the maturest reflections, or the happiest flights of a mind of uncommon excellence: and it is impossible that we can be much accustomed to such companions, without retaining some resemblance of them.


Observations on the Book of Common Prayer.

1. Pro"-ba-bly, ad. likely.

Com-mon-Prayer, s. is the liturgy or form of service used in the Church of England. The adjective common, in this place, signifies general or universal, and only implies, that it is generally and universally used by all the members of the church. Prayer, s. a petition or request made to heaven,

2. I-tal-ics, s. pl. letters formed after the manner of the Italians. 3. Mi"-nis-ter, s. a clergyman, the person who performs the public service in divine worship.

[ocr errors]

1. As probably you are yet unacquainted with the Book of Common Prayer, it is worth your notice to observe the following directions :

2. The first thing you are to know is, that there are rules and directions given at the head of each part of the service, and are usually printed in a different print, called italics.

3. They are designed to instruct both minister and people when to kneel, and when to stand up, that the service may be performed with order.

4. They are called rubrics, because they used formerly to be printed in red letters, and the word rubric signifies red, from the Latin word rubrica.

5. For want of observing the directions in the rubrics many persons make great mistakes, some repeating the parts designed for the minister only; others neglecting to repeat the answers in which all the people should join.

6. The church service begins with some sentences, or texts of scripture, concerning repentance and forgiveness, in which sinners are encouraged to turn from their evil ways; these being at the beginning of the morning and evening prayer.

7. The first sentence is,-"When the wicked man turneth away from his wickedness that he hath committed, and doth that which is lawful and right, he shall save his soul alive."-EZEKIEL.

8. It may be, that the minister may say some one following, therefore, you should pay strict attention, otherwise you will not readily observe where the clergyman begins.*

The English Liturgy was first composed, approved, and confirmed in Parliament in the year 1548. The proper meaning of the word Liturgy is supplication, but it now generally means the whole Book of Common-Prayer, as used in the Church of England.

« PreviousContinue »