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current of our discourses, by turning the stream as it were for a moment back upon itself. This Figure also shews the attention and accuracy of the speaker, in that he appears immediatelyaware of objections that may be made against what he is offering, and shelters himself from their force. Let me observe further, that whoever duly examines the instances that have been given will find that the fense is enhanced by these corrections, or at least is more advanta-* geously received; and it is certainly in some oases wiser to raise our sense by degrees, than crowd it all at once upon our audience. As the ideas gradually open, so the mind also gradually opens by this Figure, till we have agreeably and fully imbibed, and, as it were, absorbed a feeaker's whole meaning. Water bursting ia an hasty flood upon the mouth of a vial will certainly be wasted; and we can only hope to sill it by a gentle and leisurely infusion. I ihall add, with Mr Blackwall, that " the unex"pected quickness of the recollection and turn "in this Figure pleasingly surprises the Reader, « and all of a sudden fires him with the Au«' thpr's. own passion. The height of this Fi"gure is, when a person, having lately declared "-an inclination to a thing, presently rejects it "with horror, and vows against it with impre"cations." Of this sort Mr Blackwall gives an instance from D1 Do's speech in Vi R
The Queen, deep wounded with the darts of love,
When the next morning had restored the sun,
"O my dear Anna, my anxiety • "Has chas'd my fleep. What an uncommon guest' "Have we admitted to our regal dome! "O what a form \ How brave, how great in arms \ "'Tis past conjecture; certain 'tts he sprang '« From a celestial stock: his port, his looks, "His speech proclaim his origin divine. *' Fear argues vulgar minds; but by what fates "Has he been tost? What wars has he deserib'd? *' Had not my foul immoveably resolv'd "Never to wear the nuptial bonds again, "From the first hour my dear Sichæus fell, ** And the connubial bed and torch renounc'd, "This man might o'er my prudence so prevail «' As to incline me to a second choice. "Sister, I own that since my husband's death, "Th' unfortunate Sichæus, since the time *« My brother's barb'rous hand with gore distain'd "The houstiold Gods, this man alone has charm'd '« My gazing fense, and wak'd my soul to love: « And the same passion that Sichæus rais'd, "Æneas now rekindles in my breast. "But O! may earth asunder burst, and lock
L 2 "Me "Me in its closing jaws, or may the arm
"Of Jupiter dart its resistless fires,
"And drive me headlong to the ghosts below,
"The pale wan ghosts, and dark domains of hell,
"Before I trespass upon modesty,
"And with a second match disgrace the first *."
* At Regina gravi jamdudum saucia cura,
VIrcil. Æneii. lib. iv. ver. 1.
§ I, The definition of the Aposiopesis. § 2. An instance of this Figure from Bishop Fleet Wood. § 3. Examples of it from Virgil, Terence, Cicero, and Juvenal. §4. Instances of this Figure in Scripture, and on what occasions. § 5. The use of the Aposiopesis. -. ..
§ 1, yfPosiopesis * is a Figure whereby a per-*3f son, often through the power of some passion, as anger, sorrow, fear, serV. breaks off his speech without finishing the sense.
§ 2. We have a remarkable instance of this Figure in the following passage of Bishop FleetWood; in which, contrasting the former and the latter years'* of Queen Anne's reign, he thus speaks, and then closes with a striking Aposiopesis. "Never did seven such years together pass over"the head of any English Monarch, nor cover "it with so much honour. The crown and "sceptre seemed to be the Queen's least ornaL 3 M ments:
• From ccTrocrtwiryu!, I am silent.
"mcnts: those other Princes wore in common "with her and her great personal virtues were ** the fame before and since. But such was the "fame of her administration of affairs at home i '« such was the reputation and felicity in choos"ing Ministers, and such was then esteemed "their faithfulness and zeal, their diligence and "great abilities in executing her commands: "to such an height of military glory did her **' great General and her armies carry the Britijb
* name abroad; such were the harmony and "concord betwixt her and her allies •, and such ** was the blessing of God upon all her councils
* and undertakings, that I am as sure as history ** can make me, that no Prince of ours was « ever yet so prosperous and successful, so loved, "so esteemed and honoured by their subjects "and their friends, nor near so formidable to "their enemies. We were, as all the world "imagined then, just entering on the ways that "promised to lead to such a peace, as would "have answered all the prayers of our religious "Queen, the care and vigilance of a most able "Ministry, the payments of a willing and obe"dient People, as well as all the glorious toils "and hazards of the Soldiery when God for "our sins permitted the spirit of discord to go "forth, and, by troubling the Camp, the City, "and the Country (and O! that it had altoge"ther spared the Places sacred to his Worship !) "to spoil for a time the beautiful and pleasing "prospect, and give us in its stead, I know