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guishing. These circumstances confirmed me in an opinion, which I had entertained upon the first reading of his letter, that the gentleman was far gone in the spleen. I therefore advised him to rise the next morning, and plunge into the cold bath, there to remain under water until he was almost drowned. This I ordered him to repeat six days successively; and on the seventh, to repair at the wonted hour to my lady Haughty's, and to acquaint me afterwards with wbat he shall meet with there; and particularly to tell ine, whether he shall think they stared upon him so much as the time before. The gentleman smiled ; and, by his way of talking to me, showed himself a man of excellent sense in all particulars, unless when a cane-chair, a round or a joint stool, were spoken of. He opened his heart to me at the same time concerning several other grievances ; such as, being overlooked in public assemblies, having his bows unanswered, being helped last at table, and placed at the back part of a coach; with many other distresses, which have withered his countenance, and worn him to a skeleton. Finding hinn a man of reason, I entered into the bottom of his distemper. Sir, said I, there are more of your constitution in this island of Great Britain than in any other part of the world; and I beg the favour of you to tell me, whether you do not observe that you meet with most affronts in rainy days ? He answered candidly, that he had long observed that people were less saucy in sunshine than in cloudy weather. Upon which I told him plainly, his distemper was the spleen; and that, though the world was very ill-natured, it was not so bad as he believed it. I further assured him, that his use of the cold bath, with a course of steel which I should prescribe him, would certainly cure most of his ac
quaintance of their rudeness, ill-behaviour, and impertinence. My patient smiled, and promised to observe my prescriptions, not forgetting to give me an account of their operation. This distemper being pretty epidemical, I shall, for the benefit of mankind, give the public an account of the progress I make in the cure of it.
TABLES OF FAME. No. 81.
THERE are two kinds of immortality; that which the soul really enjoys after this life, and that imaginary existence by which men live in their fame and reputation. The best and greatest actions have proceeded from the prospect of the one or the other of these ; but my design is to treat only of those who have chiefly proposed to themselves the latter, as the principal reward for their labours. It was for this reason that I excluded from my tables of fame all the great founders and votaries of religion ; and it is for this reason also, that I am more than ordinary anxious to do justice to the persons of ' whom I am now going to speak; for, since fame was the only end of all their enterprizes and studies, a man cannot be too scrupulous in allotting them their due proportion of it. It was this consideration which made me call the whole body of the learned to my assistance; to many of whom I must own my obligations for the catalogues of illustrious persons which they have sent me in upon this occasion. I yesterday employed the whole afternoon in comparing them with each other ; · which made so strong an impression upon my imagination, that they broke my sleep for the first part of the following night, and at length threw me into a very
agrceable agreeable vision, which I shall beg leave to describe in all its particulars.
I dreained that I was conveyed into a wide and boundless plain, that was covered with prodigious multitudes of people, which no man could number. In the midst of it there stood a mountain, with its head above the clouds. The sides were extremely steep, and of such a particular structure, that no creature which was not made in a human figure éould possibly ascend it. On a sudden there was heard from the top of it a sound like that of a trumpet; but so exceeding sweet and harmonious, that it filled the hearts of those who heard it with raptures, and gave such high and delightful sensations as seemed to animate and raise human nature above itself. This made me very much amazed to find so very few, in that innumerable multitude, who had ears fine enough to hear or relish this music with pleasure : but my wonder abated, when, upon looking round me, I saw most of them attentive to three syrens clothed like goddesses, and distinguished by the names of Sloth, Ignorance, and Pleasure. They were seated on three rocks, amidst a beautiful variety of groves, meadows, and rivulets, that lay on the borders of the mountain. While the base and grovelling multitude of different nations, ranks, and ages, were listening to these delusive deities, those of a more erect aspect and exalted spirit separated themselves from the rest, and marched in great bodies towards the mountain from whence they heard the sound, which still grew sweeter the more they listened to it.
On a sudden methought this select band sprang forward, with a resolution to climb the ascent, and follow the call of that heavenly music. Every one took something with him, that he thought might be of assistance
to him in his march. Several had their swords drawn, some carried rolls of paper in their hands, some had compasses, others quadrants, others telescopes, and others pencils : some had laurels on their heads, and others buskins on their legs : in short, there was scarce any instrument of a mechanic art or liberal science which was not made use of on this occasion. My good dæmon, who stood at my right hand during the course of this whole vision, observing in me a burning desire to join that glorious company, told me, be highly approved the generous ardour with which I seemed transported; but at the same time advised me to cover my face with a mask all the while I was to labour on the ascent. I took his counsel, without inquiring into his reasons. The whole body now broke into different parties, and began to climb the precipice by ten thousand different paths. Several got into little alleys, which did not reach far up the hill before they ended and led no further; and I observed that most of the artisans, which considerably diminished our number, fell into these paths.
We left another consisterable body of adventurers behind us, who thought they had discovered by-ways up the hill, which proved so very intricate and perplexed, that, after having advanced in them a little, they were quite lost among the several turns and windings; and though they were as active as any in their motions, they made but little progress in the ascent. These, as my guide informed me, were men of subtle tempers and puzzled politics, who would supply the place of real wisdom with cunning and artifice. Among those who were far advanced in their way, there were some that by one false step fell backward, and lost more ground in a moment than they had gained for many hours, or could
be ever able to recover. We were now advanced very high, and observed, that all the different paths which ran about the sides of the mountain began to meet in įwo great roads; which insensibly gathered the whole multitude of travellers into two great bodies. At a little distance from the entrance of each road there stood a hideous phantom, that opposed our further passage. One of these apparitions had his right hand filled with darts, which he brandished in the face of all who came up that way : crowds ran back at the appearance of it, and cried out, Death! The spectre that guarded the other road was Envy: she was not armed with weapons of destruction, like the former ; but by dreadful hissings, noises of reproach, and a horrid distracted laughter, she appeared more frightful than Death itself, insomuch that abundance of our company were discouraged from passing any further, and some appeared ashamed of having come so far. As for myself, I must confess my heart shrunk within me at the sight of these ghastly appearances : but on a sudden the voice of the trumpet came more full upon us, so that we felt a new resolution reviving in us : and in proportion as this resolution grew the terrors before us seemed to vanish. Most of the company, who had swords in their hands, marched on with great spirit, and an air of defiance, up the road that was commanded by Death ; while others, who had thought and contemplation in their looks, went for. ward in a more composed manner up the road possessed by Envy. The way above these apparitions grew smooth and uniform, and was so delightful, that the travellers went on with pleasure, and in a little time arrived at the top of the mountain. They here began to breathe a delicious kind of ether, and saw all the fields about them covered with a kind of purple light, that made