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is scarce! and in some cases they have contrived to enjoy that undescribable rapture of possessing an unique copy! Not long ago, a certain collector purchased a precious illuminated manuscript, at the expence
of 1001.--As soon as the copy was in his hands, he requested a moment's silence among the congregation of collectors.“ Gentlemen! (cried he) -Observe I tear into pieces this valuable copy, for which I have paid 1001.--and by which means, I become the possessor of an unique copy!
for I have another in my collection, and which I now value at 300l.!"--In saying this, he tore the costly copy he had bought, and to the envy of these literary misers, wore a jewel on his philosophical cap, as large and as unrivalled as the Pittdiamond!
Flim-Flams, v. 3, p. 215.
MARRIAGE.- A person was mentioned as having resolved never to marry a pretty woman. Johnson said, sir, it is a very foolish resolution not to marry a pretty woman. Beauty is of itself very
estimable. No, sir, I would prefer a pretty woman, unless there were objections to her. Å pretty woman may be foolish; a pretty woman may be wicked; a pretty woman may not like me. But there is no such danger in marrying a pretty woman as is apprehended; she will not be persecuted if she does not invite persecution. A pretty woman, if she has a mind to be wicked, can find readier
way than another; and that is all.” He observed, that a man of sense and education should meet a suitable companion in a wife. It was a miserable thing when the conversation
could only be such as, whether the mutton should be boiled or roasted, and probably a dispute about that.
A gentleman talked to him of a lady whom he greatly admired and wished to marry, but was afraid of her superiority of talents. “ Sir (said he,) you need not be afraid; marry her. goes about, you'll find her reason much weaker, and her wit not so bright.”
Johnson's Table Talk, o. 1, p. 48.
Before a year
It is said of Margarite, daughter of Charles II. of Naples and Sicily, and wife to Charlet count of Valois, that the embassadors of France having required her for the kings brother, besought her they might see whether she were touched with her fathers naturall imperfections, who was crooked, she uncloathed herselfe even to her smock, made of so fine Holland, that one might easily behold her shape, and withall replying, that never would she for a crowne make any scruple to pull it off.-Matthieu on Philippa the Catanian, tr. by Sir T. Hawkins, p. 320.
A learned friar in Italy, famous for his piety and knowledge of mankind, being commanded to preach before the pope at a year of jubilee, repairto Rome a good while before the day appointed, to see the fashion of the conclave, and to accommodate his sermon the better to the solemnity of the occasion. At length, when the day came, having ended his prayer, he, looking a long time a'bout, at last cried out with a loud and vehement
voice, three times, “ St. Peter was a fool; St. Peter was a fool; St. Peter was a fool;" and then came down from the pulpit. Being afterwards questioned before the pope, concerning the unsuitableness of his behaviour, he made this reply: Surely, holy father, if a cardinal may go to heaven abounding in wealth, honour, and preferment, and living at ease, and wallowing in sloth and in luxury, seldom or never preaching; then certainly St. Peter was a fool, who took such a hard way of travelling thither, by fasting, preaching abstinence, and humiliation."
Edinbro' Budget, p. 53.
On the occasion of the author's Hotentot following for a considerable distance the traces of the waggon, he notes the sagacity of this race of people in investigation.
“ At this sort of business a Hottentot is uncommonly clever. There is not an animal among the numbers that range the wilds of Africa, if he be at all acquainted with it, the print of whose feet he cannot distinguish. And though the marks by which his judgment is directed be very nice, they are constant in animals in a state of nature, whereas domesticated animals are liable to many accidental variations. He will distinguish the wolf for instance, from the domesticated dog, by the largeness of the ball of the foot, and the comparative smallness of the toes. The print of any of his companions' feet he would single out among a thousand. The peasantry are also tolerably expert in tracing game by the marks of their feet;
it is, in fact, a part of their education. An African boor gains a sort of reputation by being clever op het spoor. This is the method by which, on moonlight nights, they hunt down the poor Bosjesmans."
Barrow's Travels in Africa.
Crasus, king of Lydia, had rendered all the Asiatic Greeks tributary. For various reasons, many of the most powerful men of that age left Greece, and retired to Sardis, the capital of Croesus's empire. That city was then flourishing in riches and honour. The favourable terms, in which Solon was mentioned in it, excited in Crosus a desire to see him. He sent a message, entreating him to come and reside with him. In compliance with the solicitation of Cræsus, Solon set off for Sardis.
Passing through Lydia, he met with many grandees, whose retinues exhibited all the splendour regal magnificence. He imagined each of them, as they appeared in succession, to be the king, He was at last introduced into the presence of Croesus, who was waiting for him, seated on his throne; and purposely dressed in the richest vestments that his wardrobe could afford.
In Solon there appeared no indication of astonishment at the sight of such magnificence.--" My guest,” said Croesus to him, “fame has made me acquainted with your wisdom. I know that you have travelled much; but have you ever seen any one dressed with such magnificence as I am?”“Yes," replied Solon," pheasants, dunghill-cocks, and peacocks, are possessed of something more
magnificent, since all their brilliancy is the gift of nature; and therefore the acquisition of it free from care.'
At an answer so unexpected, Cresus was very much surprized. He ordered his servants to open all his treasures, and to display before Solon all that was precious in his palace. He invited him a second time into his
you ever seen," said he to him, “ a man happier than I?"_“Yes," returned Solon :" it is Tellus, an Athenian eitizen, who in a very polished state, lived an honest man. He has left, with a comfortable living, two children, who are very much esteemed; and, finally, he himself died under arms, when gaining a victory for his native country. The Athenians have erected a monument to him in the very place where he lost his life; and have distinguished him with great honours."
At this answer Creesus was no less astonished, than at the former. He now thought Solon a fool.--"Well, then," resumed he," who is the happiest man after Tellus ?"_“ There were in former times," answered the philosopher, “ two brothers, one of whom was named Cleobis, the other Bito."
Croesus could no longer conceal his indignation. “ How!" replied he, “ do you then find no place for me among the number of the happy?"-" 0 king of the Lydians!" answered Solon, “ you are possessed of great riches, and are the sovereign of many nations; but to so great vicissitudes is human life subject, that it is impossible to decide on the felicity of any man, till he finish the career of life. That time is continually producing new acccidents,