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being comfortably filled with roast-beef; love, like being enlivened with champagne. J. “ No, Sir; admiration and love are like being intoxicated with champagne; judgment and friendship like being enlivened. Waller has hit upon the same thought with you; but I don't believe you have borrowed from Waller. I wish you would enable yourself to borrow more."
An ingenious gentleman was mentioned, concerning whom it was observed, that he had a constant firmness of mind; for after a laborious day, and amidst a multiplicity of cares and anxieties, he would sit down with his sisters, and be quite cheerful and good humoured. Such a disposition, it was remarked, was a happy gift of nature.-JOHNSON. “I do not think so; a man has from nature a certain portion of mind; the use he makes of it depends upon his own free avill. That a man has always the same firmness of mind I do not say, because every man feels his mind less firm at one time than at another; but I think a man's being in a good or bad humour depends upon his will.”
Dr. Johnson on some occasion talked with approbation of one who had attained to the state of the philosophical wise man, that is, to have no want of any thing. “Then, Sir (said Mr. Boswell), the savage is a wise man.”—“ Sir (replied
Johnson), I do not mean simply being withoutbut not having a want." -Mr. Boswell maintained, against this proposition, that it was better to have fine clothes, for instance, than not to feel the want of them.-JOHNSON. “ No, Sir; fine clothes are good only as they supply the want of other means of procuring respect. Was Charles the Twelfth, think you, less respected for his coarse blue coat and black stock? And you find the King of Prussia dresses plain, because the dignity of his character is sufficient.”
Mr. Boswell at another time talked to him of misery being “ the doom of man,” in this life, as displayed in his ' Vanity of Human Wishes;' yet observed, that things were done upon the supposition of happiness ; grand houses were built, fine gardens were made, splendid places of public amusement were contrived, and crowded with company. Alas, Sir (said Johnson), these are only struggles for happiness. When I first entered Ranelagh, it gave an expansion and gay sensation to my mind, such as I never experienced any where else. But, as Xerxes wept when he viewed his immense army, and considered that not one of that great multitude would be alive a hundred years afterwards, so it went to my heart to consider that there was not one in all that brilliant circle, that was not
afraid to go home and think; but that the thoughts of each individual there would be distressing when alone*"
Mr. Boswell suggested, that being in love and Hattered with hopes of success, or having some favourite scheme in view for the next day, might prevent that wretchedness of which they had been talking. “Why, Sir (said Johnson), it may sometimes be as you suppose;
conclusion is in general but too true.”
Mr. Boswell tells us, that he once teased John son with fanciful apprehensions of unhappiness. A moth having fluttered round the candle, and burnt itself, the Doctor laid hold of this little incident to admonish him, saying, with a sly look, and in a solemn but quiet tone,
66 That creaturę was its own tormentor, and I believe its name was Boswell."
One evening (says Mr. B.) Dr. Johnson was engaged to sup with me at my lodgings in Downing-street, Westminster. But on the preceding night my landlord having behaved very rudely to me and some company who were with me, I had resolved not to remain another night in his house. I was exceedingly uneasy at the
*« This reflection (says Mr. Boswell) was experimentally just. The feeling of languor, which succeeds the animation of gaiety, is itself a very severe pain; and when the mind is then vacant, a thousand disappointments and vexations rush in and excruciate."
awkward appearance I supposed I should make to Johnson and the other gentlemen whom I had invited, not being able to receive them at home, and being obliged to order supper at the Mitre. I went to Johnson in the morning, and talked of it as of a serious distress. He laughed, and said, “ Consider, Sir, how insignificant this will appear a twelve-month hence.”_Were this con, sideration to be applied to most of the little vexatious incidents of life, by which our quiet is too often disturbed, it would prevent many painful sensations. I have tried it frequently, with good effect. “ There is nothing (continued Johnson) in this mighty misfortune; nay, we shall be better at the Mitre." -I told him that I had been at Sir John Fielding's office, complaining of my landlord, and had been informed, that though I had taken my lodgings for a year, I might, upon proof of his bad behaviour, quit them when I pleased, without being under an obligation to pay rent for any longer time than while I possessed them. The fertility of Johnson's mind could shew itself even upon so small a matter as this. Why, Sir (said he), I suppose this must be the law, since you have been told so in Bowstreet. But if your landlord could hold you to your bargain, and the lodgings should be yours for a year, you may certainly use them
as you think fit. So, Sir, you may quarter two
life-guardmen upon him; or you may send the greatest scoundrel you can find into your apartments; or you may say that you want to make some experiments in natural philosophy, , and may burn a large quantity of assafætida in his house.”
A respectable person was one day mentioned to Johnson as of a very strong mind, but as having little of that tenderness which is common to human nature; as an instance of which, when it was suggested to him that he should invite his son, who had been settled ten years in foreign parts, to come home and pay him a visit, his answer was, “No, no, let him mind his business." Johnson observed, “I do not agree with him, Sir, in this.. Getting money is not all , man's business; to cultivate kindness is a valuable
part of the business of life.” At another time the conversation turned on the prevailing practice of going to the East Indies in quest of wealth.
" A man (said Johnson) had better have ten thousand pounds at the end of ten years passed in England, than twenty thousand pounds at the end of ten years passed in India, because you must compute. what you give for money; and a man who has lived ten years in India, has given up ten years of social comfort, and all those advantages which arise from living in England. The ingenious Mr. Brown, distin