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THE GOOD ADVOCATE
I JE is one that will not plead that cause wherein his tongue I must be confuted by his conscience. It is the praise of
the Spanish soldier that, whilst other nations are mercen. ary and for money will serve on any side, he will never fight against his own king; nor will our advocate against the sovereign truth plainly appearing to his conscience.
He not only hears, but examines his client, and pincheth the cause where he fears it is foundered. For many clients in telling their case rather plead than relate it, so that the advocate hears not the true state of it till opened by the adverse party. Surely the lawyer that fills himself with instructions will travel longest in the cause without tiring. Others that are so quick in searching seldom search to the quick; and those miraculous apprehensions who understand more than all before the client had told half run without their errand and will return without their answer.
If the matter be doubtful, he will only warrant his own dili. gence. Yet some keep an assurance office in their chamber, and will warrant any cause brought unto them, as knowing that, if they fail, they lose nothing but what long since was lost, their credit.
He makes not a Trojan siege of a suit, but seeks to bring it to a set battle in a speedy trial. Yet sometimes suits are continued by their difficulty, the potency and stomach of the parties, without any default in the lawyer.
He is faithful to the side that first retains him, — not like De. mosthenes, who secretly wrote one oration for Phormio, and another in the same matter for Apollodorus, his adversary.
In pleading he shoots fairly at the head of the cause, and hav. ing fastened, no frowns nor favors shall make him let go his hold, - not snatching aside here and there to no purpose, speaking little in much, as it was said of Anaximenes, “that he had a flood of words and a drop of reason." His boldness riseth or falleth as he apprehends the goodness or badness of his cause.
He joys not to be retained in such a suit where all the right in question is but a drop blown up with malice to a bubble. Wherefore, in such trivial matters, he persuades his client to sound a retreat and make a composition.
When his name is up, his industry is not down, thinking to plead not by his study, but his credit. Commonly, physicians, like beer, are best when they are old; and lawyers, like bread, when they are young and new. But our advocate grows not lazy; and if a leading case be out of the road of his practice, he will take pains to trace it through his books, and prick the footsteps thereof wheresoever he finds it.
He is more careful to deserve, than greedy to take, fees. He accounts the very pleading of a poor widow's honest cause sufficient fees, as conceiving himself then the King of Heaven's advocate, bound ex officio to prosecute it. And although some may say that such a lawyer may even go live in Cornwall, where it is observed that few of that profession hitherto have grown to any great livelihood, yet shall he, besides those two felicities of common lawyers, that they seldom die either without heirs or making a will, find God's blessing on his provisions and posterity.
Complete. From the Holy State.
THE COMMON BARRATOR BARRATOR is a horse-leech that only sucks the corrupted blood of the law. He trades only in tricks and quirks; his high
way is in bypaths, and he loveth a cavil better than an argument, an evasion than an answer. There are two kinds of them; either such as fight themselves, or are trumpeters in a battle to set on others. The former is a professed dueler in the law that will challenge any, and in all suit combats be either principal or second.
References and compositions he hates as bad as a hangman hates a pardon. Had he been a scholar, he would have maintained all paradoxes; if a chirurgeon, he would never have cured a wound, but always kept it raw; if a soldier, he would have been excellent at a siege; nothing but ejectio firma would out him.
He is half starved in the lent of a long vacation for want of employment, - save only that he brews work to broach in termtime. I find one so much delighted in law sport that when Louis, the King of France, offered to ease him of a number of suits, he earnestly besought his Highness to leave him some twenty or thirty behind, wherewith he might merrily pass away the time.
He hath this property of an honest man that his word is as good as his bond; for he will pick the lock of the strongest conveyance, or creep out at the lattice of a word. Wherefore he counts to enter common with others as good as his own several; for he will so vex his partners that they had rather forego their right than undergo a suit with him. As for the trumpeter barrator,
He falls in with all his neighbors that fall out, and spurs them on to go to law. A gentleman, who in a duel was rather scratched than wounded, sent for a chirurgeon, who, having opened the wound, charged the man with all speed to fetch such a salve from such a place in his study. «Why," said the gentleman, “is the hurt so dangerous ? » «Oh, yes," answered the chirurgeon, « if he return not in posthaste the wound will cure itself, and so I shall lose my fee.” Thus the barrator posts to the house of his neighbors, lest the sparks of their small discords should go out before he brings them fuel, and so he be broken by their making up. Surely, he loves not to have the bells rung in a peal, but he likes it rather when they are jangled backward, him. self having kindled the fire of dissension amongst his neighbors.
He lives till his clothes have as many rents as himself hath made dissensions. I wonder any should be of this trade when none ever thrived on it; paying dear rates for their counsels for bringing many cracked titles, they are fain to fill up their gaping chinks with the more gold.
But I have done with this wrangling companion, half afraid to meddle with him longer, lest he should commence a suit against me for describing him.
The reader may easily perceive how this « Book of the Profane State » would swell to a great proportion, should we therein character all kinds of vicious persons which stand in opposition to those which are good. But the pains may well be spared, seeing that rectum est index sui et obliqui ; and the lustre of the good formerly described will sufficiently discover the enormity of those which are otherwise.
Complete. From the «Profane State.» V-116
NGER is one of the sinews of the soul; he that wants it hath A a maimed mind, and with Jacob, sinew-shrunk in the hol
low of his thigh, must needs halt. Nor is it good to converse with such as cannot be angry, and, with the Caspian Sea, never ebb nor flow. This anger is either heavenly, when one is offended for God; or hellish, when offended with God and good. ness; or earthly, in temporal matters; which earthly anger (whereof we treat) may also be hellish, if for no cause, no great cause, too hot, or too long.
Be not angry with any without a cause. If thou beest, thou must not only, as the proverb saith, be appeased without amends (having neither cost nor damage given thee), but, as our Savior saith, “be in danger of the judgment.”
Be not mortally angry with any for a venial fault. He will make a strange combustion in the state of his soul, who, at the landing of every cockboat, sets the beacons on fire. To be angry for every toy debases the worth of thy anger; for he who will be angry for anything will be angry for nothing.
Let not thy anger be so hot but that the most torrid zone thereof may be habitable. Fright not people from thy presence with the terror of thy intolerable impatience. Some men, like a tiled house, are long before they take fire, but once on flame there is no coming near to quench them.
Take heed of doing irrevocable acts in thy passion,- as the revealing of secrets, which makes thee a bankrupt for society ever after; neither do such things which once are done forever, so that no bemoaning can amend them. Samson's hair grew again, but not his eyes; time may restore some losses, others are never to be repaired. Wherefore in thy rage make no Persian decree, which cannot be reversed or repealed; but rather Polonian laws, which, they say, last but three days; do not in an instant what an age cannot recompense.
Anger kept till the next morning, with manna, doth putrefy and corrupt; save that manna corrupted not at all, and anger most of all, kept the next Sabbath. St. Paul saith, “Let not the sun go down on your wrath,” to carry news to the antipodes in another world of thy revengeful nature. Yet let us take the Apostle's meaning rather than his words with all possible speed to depose our passion, not understanding him so literally that we take leave to be angry till sunset; then might our wrath lengthen with the days, and men in Greenland, where day lasts above a quarter of a year, have plentiful scope of revenge. And as the English (by command from William the Conqueror) always raked up their fire and put out their candles when the curfew bell was rung, let us then also quench all sparks of anger and heat of passion.
He that keeps anger long in his bosom giveth place to the devil. And why should we make room for him, who will crowd in too fast of himself ? Heat of passion makes our souls to chap, and the devil creeps in at the crannies. Yea, a furious man in his fits may seem possessed with a devil; foams, fumes, tears himself, is deaf and dumb in effect to hear or to speak reason; sometimes wallows, stares, stamps, with fiery eyes and flaming cheeks. Had Narcissus himself seen his own face when he had been angry, he could never have fallen in love with himself.
Complete. From the «Holy State.»
I JE WHOSE Own worth doth speak need not speak his own worth. M Such boasting sounds proceed from emptiness of desert;
whereas the conquerors in the Olympian games did not put their laurels on their own heads, but waited till some other did it. Only anchorets that want company may crown themselves with their own commendations.
It showeth more wit, but no less vanity, to commend oneself not in a straight line, but in reflection. Some sail to the port of their own praise by a side wind; as when they dispraise themselves, stripping themselves naked of what is their due, that the modesty of the beholders may clothe them with it again; or when they flatter another to his face, tossing the ball to him that he may throw it back again to them, or when they commend that quality, wherein themselves excel, in another man (though absent), whom all know far their inferior in that faculty, or, lastly (to omit other ambushes men set to surprise praise), when they send the children of their own brain to be nursed by another man, and commend their own works in a third person, but if challenged by the company that they were authors of them them.