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“The Good-natured Man.” The first lines of this Prologue are strongly characteristical of the dismal gloom of his mind; which in his case, as in the case of all who are distressed with the same malady of imagination, transfers to others its own feelings. Who could suppose it was to introduce a comedy, when Mr. Bensley solemnly began. “Press'd with the load of life, the weary

mind Surveys the general toil of human kind.” But this dark ground might make Goldsmith's humour shine the more.

In the spring of this year, having published my “ Account of Corsica, with the Journal of a Tour to that Island,” I

In this prologue, as Mr. John Taylor informs me, after the fourth line—“ And social sorrow loses half its pain”-the following couplet was inserted :

Amidst the toils of this returning year,
When senators and nobles learn to fear,
Our little bard without complaint may share

The bustling season's epidemic care.” So the Prologue appeared in the Public Advertiser. Goldsmith probably thought that the lines printed in Italic characters, which, however, seem necessary, or at least improve the sense, might give offence, and there. fore prevailed on Johnson to omit them. The epithet little, which perhaps the author thought might diminish his dignity, was also changed to anxious.- Malone.

2 The exact title is as follows: “ An account of Corsica, the Journal of a Tour to that island; and Memoirs of Pascal Paoli. By James Boswell. Glasgow. Printed by R. and A. Foulis for E. and Č. Dilly, in the Poultry, London. 1768.” “ The attention of London Society had been attracted to Corsica by a well-timed book of travels; for Boswell, who had been sent abroad to study law, had found his way to Paoli’s head-quarters, and returning home with plenty to tell, had written what is still by far the best account of the island that has ever been published.”—Trevelyan's Early History of Charles James Fox, p. 153. London: Longman and Co. 1880.-Editor.

“Mr. Boswell's book I was going to recommend to you when I received your letter: it has pleased and moved me strangely, all (I mean) that relates to Paoli. He is a man born two thousand years after his time! The pamphlet proves what I have always maintained, that any fool may write a most valuable book by chance, if he will tell us what he heard and saw with veracity. Of Mr. Boswell's truth I have not the least suspicion, because I am sure he could invent nothing of this kind. The true title of this part of his work is, a Dialogue between a Green-Goose and a Hero. Gray to Horace Walpole, Feb. 25, 1768.”—

returned to London, very desirous to see Dr. Johnson, and hear him upon the subject. I found he was at Oxford, with his friend Mr. Chambers, who was now Vinerian Professor, and lived in New-Inn Hall. Having had no letter from him since that in which he criticised the Latinity of my Thesis, and having been told by somebody that he was offended at my having put into my book an extract of his letter to me at Paris, I was impatient to be with him, and therefore followed him to Oxford, where I was entertained by Mr. Chambers, with a civility which I shall ever gratefully remember. I found that Dr. Johnson had sent a letter to me to Scotland, and that I had nothing to complain of but his being more indifferent to my anxiety than I wished him to be. Instead of giving, with the circumstances of time and place, such fragments of his conversation as I preserved during this visit to Oxford, I shall throw them together in continuation.

I asked him whether, as a moralist, he did not think that the practice of the law, in some degree, hurt the nice feeling of honesty. JOHNSON. “Why no, Sir, if you act properly. You are not to deceive your clients with false representations of your opinion: you are not to tell lies to a Judge." BOSWELL. “But what do you think of supporting a cause which you know to be bad?” JOHNSON. “Sir, you do not know it to be good or bad till the Judge determines it. I have said that you are to state facts fairly; so that your thinking, or what you call knowing, a cause to be bad, must be from reasoning, must be from your supposing your arguments to be weak and inconclusive. But, Sir, that is not enough. An argument which does not convince yourself, may convince the judge to whom you urge it: and if it does convince him, why, then, Sir, you are wrong, and he is right. It is his business to judge; and you are not to be confident in your own Works, Aldine edition, vol. iv., p. 112. But again Mr. Trevelyan's estimate is more just : “It is difficult to understand how Gray could have failed to recognise in the volume which delighted him the indications of that rare faculty (whose component elements the most distinguished critics have confessed themselves unable to analyse), which makes every composition of Boswell readable, from what he intended to be a grave argument on a point of law down to his most slip-shod verses and his silliest letters.”-P. 154, note.-Editor.

opinion that a cause is bad, but to say all you can for your client, and then hear the judge's opinion.” BOSWELL.

But, Sir, does not affecting a warmth when you have no warmth, and appearing to be clearly of one opinion when you are in reality of another opinion, does not such dissimulation impair one's honesty ? Is there not some danger that a lawyer may put on the same mask in common life, in the intercourse with his friends ?” JOHNSON. “Why no, Sir. Every body knows you are paid for affecting warmth for your client; and it is, therefore, properly no dissimulation : the moment you come from the bar you resume your usual behaviour. Sir, a man will no more carry the artifice of the bar into the common intercourse of society, than a man who is paid for tumbling upon his hands will continue to tumble upon his hands when he should walk on his feet.”

Talking of some of the modern plays, he said, “ False Delicacy was totally void of character. He praised Goldsmith's “ Good-natured Man;" said it was the best comedy that had appeared since “The Provoked Husband,” and that there had not been of late any such character exhibited on the stage as that of Croaker. I observed it was the

Suspirius" of his “ Rambler.” He said, Goldsmith had owned he had borrowed it from thence. “Sir," continued he, " there is all the difference in the world between characters of nature and characters of manners; and there is the difference between the characters of Fielding and those of Richardson. Characters of manners are very entertaining; but they are to be understood, by a more superficial observer than characters of nature, where a man must dive into the recesses of the human heart."

It always appeared to me that he estimated the compositions of Richardson too highly, and that he had an unreasonable prejudice against Fielding. In comparing these two writers, he used this expression; " that there was as great a difference between them, as between a man who knew how a watch was made, and a man who could tell the hour by looking on the dial-plate." This was a

By Hugh Kelly, the poetical staymaker : he died, an. ætat. 38, Feb. 3, 1777.-Croker.

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short and figurative state of his distinction between draw. ing characters of nature and characters only of manners. But I cannot help being of opinion, that the neat watches of Fielding are as well constructed as the large clocks of Richardson, and that his dial-plates are brighter. Fielding's characters, though they do not expand themselves so widely in dissertation, are as just pictures of human nature, and I will venture to say, have more striking features, and nicer touches of the pencil; and, though Johnson used to quote with approbation a saying of Richardson's, “ that the virtues of Fielding's heroes were the vices of a truly good man,” I will venture to add, that the moral tendency of Fielding's writings, though it does not encourage a strained and rarely possible virtue, is ever favourable to honour and honesty, and cherishes the benevolent and generous affections. He who is as good as Fielding would make him, is an amiable member of society, and may be led on by more regulated instructors, to a higher state of ethical perfection.

Johnson proceeded: "Even Sir Francis Wronghead' is a character of manners, though drawn with great humour.” He then repeated, very happily, all Sir Francis's credulous account to Manly of his being with “the great man,” and securing a place. I asked him if “The Suspicious Husband”? did not furnish a well-drawn character, that of Ranger. JOHNSON. “No, Sir; Ranger is just a rake, a mere rake, and a lively young fellow, but no character.

The great Douglas Cause was at this time a very general subject of discussion. I found he had not studied it with much attention, but had only heard parts of it occasionally.

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1 In The Provoked Husband, begun by Sir John Vanbrugh, and finished by Colley Cibber.-Wright.

By Dr. Benjamin Hoadly, eldest son of Bishop Hoadly; born Feb. 10, 1705; died Aug. 10, 1757. Garrick's inimitable performance of Ranger was the main support of the piece during its first run. George II. was so well pleased with this comedy, that he sent the author one hundred pounds.-Wright.

Horace Walpole gives as a reason of George the Second's favour, that one of the causes of suspicion against the innocent heroine (the finding Ranger's hat) was the same with one of those alleged against bis mother, the Électress Dorothea—the hat of Count Konigsmark (the same who caused the murder of Mr. Thynne) having been found in her apartment.-- Crokcr.

3 Boswell, who was counsel on the side of Mr. Douglas, had published,

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opinion that a cause is bad, but to say all you can for your client, and then hear the judge's opinion.” BOSWELL.

But, Sir, does not affecting a warmth when you have no warmth, and appearing to be clearly of one opinion when you are in reality of another opinion, does not such dis. simulation impair one's honesty ? Is there not some danger that a lawyer may put on the same mask in common life, in the intercourse with his friends ?” JOHNSON. “Why no, Sir. Every body knows you are paid for affecting warmth for your client; and it is, therefore, properly no dissimulation: the moment you come from the bar you resume your usual behaviour. Sir, a man will no more carry the artifice of the bar into the common intercourse of society, than a man who is paid for tumbling upon his hands will continue to tumble upon his hands when he should walk on his feet.”

Talking of some of the modern plays, he said, “ False Delicacy was totally void of character. He praised Goldsmith's “Good-natured Man;” said it was the best comedy that had appeared since “The Provoked Husband,” and that there had not been of late any such character exhibited on the stage as that of Croaker. I observed it was the “Suspirius" of his “ Rambler.” He said, Goldsmith had owned he had borrowed it from thence. “Sir," continued he, " there is all the difference in the world between characters of nature and characters of manners; and there is the difference between the characters of Fielding and those of Richardson. Characters of manners are very entertaining; but they are to be understood, by a more superficial observer than characters of nature, where a man must dive into the recesses of the human heart."

It always appeared to me that he estimated the compositions of Richardson too highly, and that he had an unreasonable prejudice against Fielding. In comparing these two writers, he used this expression; "that there was as great a difference between them, as between a man who knew how a watch was made, and a man who could tell the hour by looking on the dial-plate.”

This was a ? By Hugh Kelly, the poetical staymaker: he died, an. ætat. 38, Feb. 3, 1777.-Croker.

2 No. 59.

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