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To please him, none would foolishly forbear
Or food or reft, or itch in fhirts of hair;
Or deem it merit to believe, or teach,
What Reafon contradicts, or cannot reach;
None would fierce ZEAL for PIETY mistake,
Or Malice, for whatever tenet's fake,

Or think falvation to one fect confin'd,

And heaven too narrow to contain mankind:
No more would brutal rage disturb our peace,
But envy, hatred, war, and difcord cease;
Our own and others' good each hour employ,
And all things fmile with universal joy.
Fair VIRTUE then, with pure RELIGION join'd,
Would regulate and bless the human mind,
And man be what his Maker first design'd.






DLENESS is truly said to be the root of all evil; and Solitude certainly encourages in the generality of its votaries this baneful difpofition. Nature has fo framed the character of man, that his happiness effentially depends on his paffions being properly interested, his imagination busied, and his faculties employed; but these engagements are feldom found in the vacant scenes and tedious hours of retirement from the world, except by those who have acquired the great and happy art of furnishing their own amusements: an art which, as we have already fhewn, can never be learnt in the irrational folitude of caves and cells.

The idlenefs which folitude is fo apt to induce, is dangerous in proportion to the natural ftrength, activity, and spirit of the mind; for it is observed, that the highest characters are frequently goaded by that reftleffness which accompanies leifure, to acts of the wildest outrage and greatest enormity. The ancient legislators were

fo confcious that indolence, whether indulged in Solitude or in Society, is the nurse of civil commotion, and the chief inftigator of moral turpitude, that they wifely framed their laws to prevent its exiftence. SOLON obferving that the city was filled with perfons who affembled from all parts on account of the great fecurity in which people lived in ATTICA, that the country withal was poor and barren, and being conscious that merchants, who traffic by fea, do not use to transport their goods where they can have nothing in exchange, turned the attention of the citizens to manufactures; and for this purpose made a law, that he who was three times convicted of idleness, fhould be deemed infamous; that no fon fhould be obliged to maintain his father if he had not taught him a trade; that trades fhould be accounted honourable; and that the council of the Areopagus fhould examine into every man's means of living, and chastise the idle with the greatest severity. DRACO conceived it fo neceffary to prevent the prevalency of a vice to which man is by nature prone, and which is fo deftructive to his character, and ruinous to his manners, that he punifhed idleness with death. The tyrant PISISTRATUS, as THEOPHRASTUS relates, was fo convinced of the importance of preventing idlenefs among his fubjects, that he made a law against

against it, which produced at once industry in the country, and tranquillity in the city. PERICLES, who, in order to relieve ATHENS from a number of lazy citizens, whofe lives were neither employed in virtuous actions, nor guarded from guilt by habits of industry, planted colonies in Cherfonefus, Naxos, Andros, Thrace, and even in Italy, and fent them thither; for this fagacious statesmen faw the danger of indulging this growing vice, and wifely took precautions to prevent it. Nothing, indeed, contributes more effentially to the tranquillity of a nation, and to the peaceful demeanour of its inhabitants, than those artificial wants which luxury introduces; for by creating a demand for the fashionable articles, they engage the attention, and employ the hands, of a multitude of manufacturers and artificers, who, if they were left in that restless indolence which the want of work creates, would certainly be unhappy themselves, and in all probability would be fomenting mischief in the minds of others. To fufpend, only for one week, the vast multitudes that are employed in the several mechanical trades and manufactories in Great Britain, would be to run the rifque of involving the metropolis of that great, flourishing and powerful country once more in flames; for it would be converting the populace into an aptly disposed train of combuftible matter, which being

ing kindled by the leaft fpark of accidental enthusiasm, by the heat of political faction, or, indeed, by their own internal fermentation, would explode into the most flagrant enormities. Nature, it is faid, abhors a vacuum; and this old Peripatetic principle may be properly applied to the intellect, which will embrace any thing, however abfurd or criminal, rather than be wholly without an object. The fame author alfo obferves, that every man may date the predominance of thofe defires that disturb his life, and contaminate his confcience, from fome unhappy hour when too much leisure exposed him to their incurfions; for that he has lived with little obfervation, either on himself or others, who does not know, that to be idle is to be vicious. "Many writers of eminence in physic," continues this eminent writer, whose works not only disclose his general acquaintance with life and manners, but a profound knowledge of human nature," have laid out their diligence upon the confideration of those diftempers to which men are expofed by particular ftates of life, and very learned treatifes have been produced upon the maladies of the camp, the fea, and the mines. There are, indeed, few employments which a man accustomed to academical enquiries, and medical refinements, would not find reason for declining as dangerous to health, did not his learning

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