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of it, and shall think my self obliged, for the future, to speak always in Truth and Sincerity of Heart. While a Man is learning to fence, he practises both on Friend and Foe; but when he is a Master in the Art, he never ex-erts it but on what he thinks the right Side:
That this last Allufion may not give my Reader a wrong Idea of my Design in this paper, I muft here inform him that the Author of it is of no Faction, that he is a Friend to no. Interests but those of Truth and Virtue, nor a Foe to any but those of Vice and Folly. Though I'make more Noise in the World than I used to do, I am fill resolved to act in it as an indifferent SPECTATOR. It is not my Ambition to encrease the Number either of Whigs or Tories, but of wise and good Men, and I could heartily wish there were not Faults common to both Parties which afford me sufficient Matter to work upon, with out descending to those which are peculiar to either.
If in a Multitude of Counsellors there is Safety, we ought to think our selves the securest Nation in the World. Most of our Garrets are inhabited by Satesmen, who watch over the Liberties of their Country, and make a Shift to keep themselves from starving, by taking into their Care the Properties of their FellowSubjects.
Á's these Politicians of both Sides havealready worked the Nation into a most unnatural Ferment, I shall be so far from endeavouring to raise it to a greater Height, that on the contrary, it shall be the chief Tendency of my Papers, to inspire my Countrymen with a mutual Good-will and Benevolence. Whatever Faults either. Party may be guilty of, they are rather inflamed than cured by those Reproaches, which tliey caft'upon one another. The most likely Method of rectifying any Man's Conduct, is, by recommending to him the Principles of Truth and Honour, Religion and Virtue ; and so long as he acts with an Eye to these Principles, whatever Party he is of, he cannot fail of being a good Englishman, and a Lover of his Country
As for the Persons concerned in this work, the Names of all of them, or at least of such as desire it, shall be published hereafter: Till which time I must entreat the courteous Reader to suspend his Curiosity, and rather to consider what is written, than who they are that write it.
HAVING thus adjusted all necessary Preliminaries with my Reader, I shall not trouble him with any more prefatory Discourses, but proceed in my old Method, and entertain him with Speculations on every useful Subject that falls in my Way.
HERE is nothing, says Plato, fo delightful, as the
there is no Conversation so agreeable as that of the Man of Integrity, who hears without any Intention to betray, and speaks without any Intention to deceive :
AMONG all the Accounts which are given of Cato, I do not remember one thăt more redounds to his Honour than the following Passage related by Plutarch. As an Advocate was pleading the Cause of his Client before one of the Prætors, he could only produce a fingle Witness in a Point where the Law required the Te. Itimony of two Persons; upon which the Advocate infifted on the Integrity of that Person whom he had produced : but the Prætor told him, That.where the Law required two Witnesses he would not accept of one, tho" it were Cato himself. Such a Speech from a Person who fat at the Head of à Court of Justice, while Cata was still living, shews us, more than a thousand Examples, the high Reputation this great Man had gained among his Contemporaries upon the Account of his Sineerity,
When such an inflexible Integrity is a little foftened and qualified by the Rules of Conversation and Goodbreeding, there is not a more shining Virtue in the whole Catalogue of Social Duties. A Man however ought. to take great Care not to polish himself out of his Ye-racity, nor to refine his Behaviour to the Prejudice of his Virtue.
This Subject is exquisitely treated in the most elegant Sermon of the great British Preacher. I shall beg Leave to transcribe out of it two or three Sen-tences, as a proper Introduction to a very curious Letter, which I shall make the chief Entertainment of this Speculation.
• The old English Plainness and Sincerity, that generous Integrity of Nature, and Honesty of Disposition, which always argues true Greatness of Mind, and is. usually accompanied with undaunted Courage and Refolution, is in a great Measure loft among us.
• The Dialect of Conversation is now-a-days so swel. • led with Vanity and Compliment, and so surfeited (as • I may fay) of Expressions of Kindness and Respect, .. that if a Man that lived an Age or two ago should re• turn into the World again, he would really want a • Dictionary to help him to understand his own Lan
guage, and to know the true intrinsick: Value of the • Phrase in fashion ;; and would hardly, at first, believe 6 at what a low Rate the highest Strains and Expres« fions of Kindness imaginable do commonly pass in cur. • rent Payment; and when he should come to understand. « it, it would be a great while before he could bring « himself with a good Countenance and a good Con6 science, to converse with Men upon equal Terms and s in their own Way.
I have by me a Letter which. I look upon as a great Curiosity, and which may serve as an Exemplification to . the foregoing Paffage, cited out of this moft excellent Prelate. It is said to have been written in King Charles II's Reign by the Ambassador of Bantam, a little after. his Arrival in England.
HE People, where I now am, have Tongues
• Bantam, and thou knowest the Inhabitants of one of • these Places do not know what is done in the other. • They call thee and thy Subjects Barbarians, because
we speak what we mean; and account themselves a ci.
vilized People, because they speak one thing and mean ' another : Truth they call Barbarity, and Fallhood Po' liteness. Upon my first landing, one who was sent • from the King of this place to meet me, told me, That • he was extremely sorry for the Storm I had met with just
before my Arrival. I was troubled to hear him grieve and • afflict himself upon my Account; but in less than a Quar
ter of an Hour hesmiled, and was as merry as if nothing had happened. Another who came with him told me by my Interpreter, He foould be glad to do me any Service that lay in his Power. Upon which I desir'd him to carry one
me, but instead of serving me according to his Promise, he laughed, and bid another doit. I lodged, the first Week, at the House of one, who defired me to think my self at home, and te. consider his House as my own. Accordingly, I the next Morning began to knock down one of the Walls of it, in order to let in the fresh Air, and had packed up some
of the Houshold-Goods, of which I intended to have * made thee a Present : But the false Varlet no sooner
faw me falling to work, but he sent Word to defire me to give over, for that he would have no such Doings in his House. I had not been long in this Nation, before I was told by one, for whom I had asked a cer
tain Favour from the Chief of the King's Servants,whom 'they here call the Lord-Treasurer, That I had eternally 'obliged him. I was so surpriz'd at his Gratitude, that I
could not forbear saying, What Service is there which one Man can do for another, that can oblige him to all Eternity ! However I only asked him for
Reward that he would lend me his eldest Daughter during my Stay in this Country; but I quickly found that he was as treacherous as the rest of his Countrymen.
At my first going to Court, one of the great Men, • almost put me out of Countenance, by asking ten thous
fand Pardons of me for only treading by Accident upon my Toe. They call this kind of Lyea Compliment; for when they are Civil to a great Man they tell him
Untruths, for which thou wouldest order any of thy Of*ficers of State to receive an hundred Blows upon his « Foot. I do not know how I shall negotiate any thing
with his People,fince there is so littleCredit to be given
to them. When I go to see the King's Scribe, I am ge• nerally told that he is not at home, tho' perhaps I saw, • him go into his House almost the very Moment before, « Thou wouldest fancy that the whole Nation are Physio
cians, for the first Question they always ask me, is, How I do: I have this Question put to me above an
hundred times a Day. Nay, they are not only thus in •quisitive after my Health, but with it in a more fo• lemn Manner, with a full Glass in their Hands, every 6 time I fit with them at Table; tho' at the same time
they would persuade me to drink their Liquors in such "Quantities as I have found by Experience will make me
fick. They often pretend to pray for thy Health also
in the same Manner; but I have more Reason to expect • it from the Goodness of thy Conftitution, than the Sin
cerity of their Wishes. May thy Slave escape in Safety from this doubled-tongued Race of Men, and live to lay himself once more at thy Feet in the Royal City of Bantam.