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To rougher man Ambition's task resign: 'Tis ours in senates or in courts, to shine, To labour for a sunk, corrupted state, Or dare the rage of Envy, and be great. One only care your gentle breasts should move, Th' important business of your life is love; To this great point direct your constant aim, This makes your happiness, and this your fame.
Be never cool reserve with passion join'd; With caution choose; but then be fondly kind. The selfish heart, that but by halves is giv'n, Shall find no place in Love's delightful heav'n; Here sweet extremes alone can truly bless: The virtue of a lover is excess.
A maid unask'd may own a well-plac'd flame; Nat loving first, but loving wrong, is shame.
Contenan the little pride of giving pain,
Blest is the maid, and worthy to be blest,
The honest warmth of undissembled love;
But, lest harsh care. the lovers peace destray,
Yet may you rather feel that virtuous pain,
E'en in the happiest choice, where fav’ring Heap'o Has equal love and easy fortune giv'n, Think not, the husband gain'd, that all is done : The prize of happiness must still be won : And oft, the careless find it to their cost, The lover in the husband may be lost. The Graces might alone his heart allure; They and the Virtues meeting rust secure.
Let e’en your prudence wear the pleasing dress Of care for him, and anxious tenderness. From kind concern about his weal or wo, Let each domestic duty seem to flow. The household sceptre if he bids you bear, Make it your pride his servant to appear: Endearing thus the common acts of life, The mistress still shall charm him in the wife; And wrinkled age shall unobserv'd come on, Before his eye perceives one beauty gone; E'en o'er your cold, your ever sacred urn, His constant flame shall unextinguish'd burn.
Thus I, Belinda, would your charms improve,
GOVERNMENT OF THE TEMPER. PEEVISHNESS, though not so violent and fatal in it's immediate effects, is still more unamiable than passion, and, if possible, more destructive of happiness, inasmuch as it operates more continually. Though the fretful man injures us less, he disgusts us more than the passionate one, because he betrays a low and little mind, intent on trifles, and engrossed by a paltry sel-love; which knows not how to bear the very apprehcnsion of any inconvenience, It is self-love, then, which we , must combat, when we find ourselves assaulted by this infirmity ; and, by voluntarily enduring inco::weniences, we shall habituate ourselves to bear them with ease and good humour, when occasioned by others. Perhaps this is the best kind of religious mortification, as the chief end of denying ourselves any innocent indulgences must be to acquire a habit of command over our passions and inclinations, particularly such as are likely to lead us into evil. And though the aged and infirm are most liable to this evil (and they alone are to be pitied for it); yet we sometimes see the young, the healthy, and those who enjoy most outward blessings, inexcusably guilty of it.
The smallest disappointment in pleasure, or difficulty in the most trifling employment, will put wilful young people out of temper; and their very amusements frequently become sources of vexation and peevishness. How often have I seen a girl, preparing for a ball, or for some other public appearance, unable to satisfy her own vanity, fret every ornament she put on, quarrel with her maid, with her clothes, her hair; and, growing still more unlovely as she grew more cross, be ready to fight with her looking-glass for not making her as handsome as she wished to be! She did not consider, that the traces of this ill humour on her countenance would be a greater disadvantage to her appearance, than any defect in her dress, or even than the plainest features, enlivened by joy and good humour. There is a degree of resignation necessary even to the enjoyment of pleasure; we 'must be ready and willing to give up some part of what 'we could wish for, before we can enjoy that which is indulged to us. I have no doubt, that she, who frets all the while she is dressing for an assembly, will suffer still "greater uneasiness when she is there. The same craving, restless vanity will there endure a thousand mortifications, which, in the midst of seeming pleasure, will secretly cor'rode her heart; while the meek and humble generally find more gratification than they expected, and return home pleased and enlivened from every scene of amusement, though they could have staid away from it with perfect ease and contentment.
INSUFFICIENCY OF BEAUTY.
Why round our coaches crowd the white-glov'd
beaux ? Why bows the sidebox from it's inmost rows ? How vain are all these glories, all our pains, Unless good sense preserve what beauty gains : That men may say, when we the front box grace, Behold the first in virtue as in face! Oh! if to dance all night and dress all day, Charm'd the smallpox, or chas’d old age away, Who would not scorn what housewife's cares produce, Or who would learn one earthly thing of use? To patch, nay ogle, might become a saint; Nor could it sure be such a sin to paint. But since, alas! frail beauty must decay; Curld or uncurl'd, since locks will turn to gray; Since painted, or not painted, all shall fade, And she who scorns a man must die a maid ; What then remains but well our pow'r to use, And keep good humour still, whate'er we lose ? And trust me, dear! good humour can prevail, When airs, and flights, and screams, and scolding fail : Beauties in vain their pretty eyes may roll; Charms strike the sight, but merit wins the soul."
the fresh instruction o'er the mind,