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CONVERSATION

OF A

COMPANY OF EPHEMERA;

WITH THE SOLILOQUY OF ONE ADVANCED IN AGE

TO MADAME BRILLIANT.

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COU may remem! er, my dear friend, that the

when we lately spent that happy day, in I the delightful garden and sweet fuciety of the phe Moulin Voly, I stopt a little in one of our walks, and staid fomne tiine behind the company. We had been shewn numberlefs skeletons of a kind of lit-It tle ily, . called an Ephemera, whose sueceflive gestion nerations, we were told, were bred and expiredina within the day. I happened to see a living com a pany of them on a leaf, who appeared to be engaged ed in converfation. You know I understand alle i the inferior animal tongues : my too great appli cation to the study of them, Is the best excuse I can give for the little progress, I have made in your du charming language. I listened through curiufity to the discourse of these little creatures, but as they, in their natural vivacity, spoke three or four together, I could make but little of their converfation, I found, however, by some broken expreffions that I heard now and then, they were disputing warmly on the merit of two foreign muficians, the one al cousin, the other a muscheto; in which difpute they spent their time, seemingly as regaidlufs of the di ness of life as if they had been fure

of living a month. Happy people, thought I, you live certainly under a wife, just, and mild government, since you have no public grievances to complain of, nor any subject of contention, but the perfections or imperfections of foreign mufic. I turned

my

head from them to an old grey-headed one who was single on another leaf, and talking to himfelf. Being amused with his soliloquy, I put it down in writing, in hopes it will likewise amuse her to whom I am so much indebted for the moft pleasing of all amusements, her delicious company, and heavenly harmony.

** It was," says he," the opinion of learned philofophers of our face, who lived and Avurished long before my time, that this vast world the Moulin you by could not itself subfiit more than eighteen hours; and I thing there was fome foundation for that opinion ; since, by the apparent motion of the great luminary, that gives life to all nature, and which in my time has evidently declined considerably lowards the ocean at the end of our earth, it must hen finish its courfe, be extinquished in the waters hat surround us, and leave the world in cold and larkness, ncceffarily producing universal death and leftruction. I have lived seven of those hours; a great age, being no less than 420 minutes of timeHow yery few of us continue so long! I have seen generations born, flourish and, expire. My preént friends are the cildren and grand-children of he friends of my youth, who are now, alas, no pore! And I must soon follow them; for, by he course of nature, though still in health, I can10% expect to live above feven or eight minutes onger, What now avails all my toil and labour, a amaling honey-due on this leaf, which I can

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II. Circumfpection, which surveys the whole chefs-board, or scene of action, the relations of the several pisces and situations, the dangers they are respectively exposed to, the several poffibilities of their aiding each other, the probabilities that the adverfary may take this or that niove, and attack this or the other piece, and what different means can be used to avoid his ftruke, or turn its consequences against him.

III. Caution, not to make our moves too hasti. ly. This habit is best acquired by observing ftri&ly the laws of the game,

fuch

as, “ touch a piece, you must move it somewhere ; " if you set it down, you must let it stand ;” and it is therefore beft that these rules should be obferved, as the game thereby becomes more the image of human life, and particularly of war; in which, if you have incautioully put yourself into a bad and dangerous pofition, you cannot obtain your eneny's leave to withdraw your troop, and place them more securely, but you must atide all the conf quences of your rashnefs,

And, lastly, we learn by chefs the lrabit of 100 being discouraged by present bad appearances in the Aate of our ajirirs, the habit of boping for a favourable change, and that of persevering in the search of resources. The game is so full of events, there is such a variety of iurns in it, the fortune (I it is so subject to sudden viciffitudes, and one 19 frequently, after long contemplation, discovers the means of extricating oneself from a supposed insurmountable difficulty, that one is encouraged to continue the contest to the last, in hopes of victory by our on skill, or at least of giving a stale mite, by the neglegence of our adversary, 'And

whoever considers, what in chess he often sees instances of, that particular pieces of success are apt to produce presumption, and its conscquent inattention, by which ihe loss may be recovered, will learn not to be too inuch discouraged by the present fuccess of his adversary, nor to despair of final good fortune, upon every little check he receives in the pursuit of it.

That we may therefore, be induced more frequently to choose this beneficial amusement, in preference to others, which are not attended with the same advantages, every circumstance which inay increase the pleasures of it should be regarded: and every action or word that is unfair, disreSpectful, or that in any way may give uneasiness, should be avoided, as contrary to the immediate intention of both the players, which is to pass the time agreeably:

Therefore, first, if it is agreed to play according to the strict rules; then those rules are to be exactly observed by both parties, and should not be insisted on for one side, while deviated from by the other for this is not equitable.

Secondly, if it is agreed not to cbserve the rules exietly, but one party demands indulgences, he hould then be as willing to allow them to the o

Thirdly, no false move should ever be made to extricate yourself out of a difficulty, or to gain an advantage. There can be no pleasure in playing wih

a perfun once detected in such unfair practice, Fourthly, if your adverfary is long in playing, you ought not to hurry him, or express any uneafiness at his delay. You should not fing, nur whistien luok at your watch, nor take up a book to

ther,

and sometimes painful dreams, it becomes of some confequence to obtain the one kind, and avoid the other; for, whether real or imaginary, pain is prin, and plealure is pleasure. If we can sleep without drcaning, it is well that poinful dreams are avoided. II, wiile we feep, we can have any pleasing arcanis, it is as the l'rench fay, tant gagné, so much added to the pleasure of life,

To this end it is, in the first place, necessary to be careful in preserving health, by due exercise, and great temperance; for, in fickness, the imagination is disturbed ; and disagreeable soinetimes terrible, ideas are apt to present themselves. Ex- . ercise should precede meals, not immediately follow them; the first promotes, the latter, unless moderate, obstructs digestion. If, after exercise, we feed sparingly, the digestion will be easy and good, the body lightfome, the temper cheerful, and all the animal functions performed agreeably, Sleep, when it follows, will be natural and undil. turbed. While indolence, with full feeding, oc: cafion nightmares and horrors inexpreflible: wel fall from precipices, are assaulted by wild beasts murderers and demons, and experience every va riety of distress. Observe, however that the quan tities of food and exercise are relative things :

those who move much may, and indeed ought to eat more: those whoule little exercise, thouldeat litile. Inge neral, mankind, fince the improvement of cookery eat about twice as much as nature requires. Sup. pers are not bad, if we have not dined; but reltless nights naturally follow hearty suppers, after full dinners. Indeed as there is a difference in conftitutions, fome reft well after thefe meals ; it costs them only a frightful dream, and an apoplexy, infter which they sleep till doomsday. Nothing

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