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trast in the thought, which upon examination is not found there.
A light wife doth make a beavy husband.
Merchant of Venice.
Here is studied opposition in the words, not only without any opposition in the senfe, but even where there is a very intimate connection, that of cause and effect ; for it is the levity of the wife that torments the husband.
- Will maintain Upon his bad life to make all this good.
King Richard Il. alt 1. fc. 3.
Lucetta. What, shall these papers lie like tell-tales here? Julia. If thou respect them, best to take them up. Lucetta. Nay, I was taken up for laying them down.
Two Gentlemen of Verona, at 1. fc. 3.
A fault directly opposite to that last mentioned, is to conjoin artificially words that express ideas oppored to each other. This is a fault too gross to be in common practice ; and yet writers are guilty of it in some degree, when they conjoin by a copulative, things transacted at different periods of time. Hence a want of neatness in the following expreslion,
The nobility too, whom the King had no means of retaining by suitablc offices and preterments, had been feized with the general discontent, and unwarily threw themselves into the scale which began already too much to preponderate.
History of G. Britain, vol. i. p. 250.
In periods of this kind, it appears more neat to ex. press the pait time by the participle passive, thus :
The nobility having been seized with the general discorsa tent, unwarily threw themselves, &c. (or) The nobility, who had been seized, &c. unwarily threw themselves, &c.
It is unpleasant to find even a negative and affirme ative proposition connected by a copulative:
Nec excitatur classico miles truci,
Horace, Eport. 2. 1. 5.
If it appear riot plain, and prove untrue,
In mirth and drollery it may have a good effe&t to connect verbally things that are opposite to each other in the thought. Example : Henry the Fourth of France introducing the Marefchal Biron to fome of his friends, “ Here, Gentlemen,” lays he,“ is the Mareschał Biron, whom I freely present both to my friends and enemies."
This rule of Atudying uniformity between the thought and expression, may be extended to the construction of sentences or periods. A sentence or period ought to express one entire thought or mental proposition; and different thoughts ought to be feparated in the expression by placing them in different fentences or periods. It is therefore offending against neatness, to crowd into one period entire thoughts requiring more than one ; which is joining in language things that are separated in reality. Of errors against this rule take the following examples.
Behold, thou art fair, my beloved, yea pleasant; also our bed is green.
Cxfar, defcribing the Suevi :
Atque in eam fe confuetudinem adduxerunt, ut locis forig:dillimis, neque vellitus, præter pelles, habeant quidquam, quarum propter exiguitatem, magna eft corporis pars aperta, et laventur in fluminibus.
Commentaria, l. 4. prin.
Burnet, in the history of his own times, giving Lord Sunderland's character, says
His own notions were always good ; but he was a man of great expenfe.
I have seen a woman's face break out in heats as she has been talking against a great lord, whom the had never feen in her life, and indeed never knew a party-woman that kept her beauty for a twelvemonth.
Spectator, No. 57
Lord Bolingbroke speaking of Strada :
I single him out among the moderns, becaufe he had the foolith presumption to censure Tacitus, and to write history himself; and your Lordship will torgive this short excurlion in honour of a favourite writer.
Letters on hiftory, vl.i. let. 5.
It seems to me, that in order to maintain the moral system of the world at a certain point, far below that of ideal pesfection, (for we are made capable of conceiving what we are incapable of attaining,) but however fufficient upon the whole to constitute a late casy and happy, or at the worst tolerable : I say, it seems to me, that the Author of nature. has thought fit io mingle from time to time, among the focieties of men, a few, and but a few of those on whom he is gracioully płcafed.to bestow a larger proportion of the etherial spirit than is given in the ordinary course of his providence to the fons of men. Bolingbroke on the spirit of patriotifu, let: 1.
To crowd into a single member of a period different subjects, is still worse than to crowd them into one period : :
-Trojam, genitore Adamasto
Æneid. iii. 614.
From conjun&tions and disjunctions in general, we proceed to comparisons, which make one species of them, beginning with similes. And here also, the intimate connection that words have with their meaning requires, that in describing two resembling objects, a resemblance in the two members of the period ought to be studied. To illustrate the rule in this case, I shall give various examples of deviations from it; beginning with resemblances expressed in words that have no resemblance.
I have observed of late, the style of some great ministers very much to exceed that of any other productions.
Letter to the Lord High Treasurer. Swift.
This, instead of studying the resemblance of words in a period that expresses a comparison, is going out of one's road to avoid it. Instead of productions, which resemble not ministers great nor small, the proper word is writers or autbors.
If men of eminence are exposed to censure on the one hand, they are as much liable to flattery on the other. If they receive reproaches which are not due to them, they likewise receive praises which they do not deferve.
Here the subject plainly demands uniformity in ex, pression instead of variety; and therefore it is suba
mitted, whether the period would not do better in the following mariner :
If men of eminence be expofed to censure on the one hand, they are as much exposed to flattery on the other. If they receive reproaches that are not due, they likewise receive praises that are not due.
I cannot but fancy, however, that this imitation, which passes so currently with other judgments, mult at fome tiine or other have stuck a jitile with your Lord/hip.* (Berter thus :) I cannot but fancy, however, thai this imitation which passes fo currently with others, must at fome time or other have stuck a little with your Lordfrip.
A glutton or mere fensualift is as ridiculous as the other two characters.
Shaftesbury, vol. i. p. 129.
They wisely prefer the generous efforts of good-will and affection, to the reluctant compliances of Juch as obey by torce.
Remarks on the hitory of England, letter 5. Bolingbreke.
Titus Livius, mentioning a demand made by the people of Enna of the keys from the Roman governor, makes him say,
Quas sinul tradiderimus, Carthaginiensium extemplo Enna erit, tædiu que hic trucidabimur, quam Murgantiæ prælidium interfeclun eit,
1. 24. § 38.
Quintus Curtius, speaking of Porus mounted on an Elephant, and leading his army to battle :
* Letter concercing enthusialın. Slateur