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surely to shun any kind of actual disrespect, or affront to their persons, by insolence, which is the severest attack that can be made on the pride of man, and of which Florus seems to have no inadequate opinion, when speaking of the second Tarquin he says, "In omnes superbia (qua cru"delitate gravior est BONIS) grassatus." He trod on all with INSOLENCE, which sits heavier on men of great minds than cruelty itself.

If there is any temper, which more than all others disqualifies a man for society, it is this insolence or haughtiness, which blinding him to his own imperfections, and giving him a hawk's quick-sightedness to those of others, raises in him that contempt for his species, which inflates the cheeks, erects the head, and stiffens the gait of those strutting animals, who sometimes stalk in assemblies for no other reason but to show in their gesture and behaviour the disregard they have for the company. Though to a truly great and philosophical mind, it is not easy to conceive a more ridiculous exhibition than this puppet; yet to others he is little less than a nuisance: for contempt is a murtherous weapon, and there is this difference only between the greatest and weakest men, when attacked by it; that, in order to wound the former it must be just, whereas, without the shields of wisdom and

philosophy, which are in the possession of very few, it wants no justice to point it, but is certain to penetrate, from whatever corner it comes.

It is this disposition which inspires the empty Caius to deny his acquaintance, and overlook men of merit in distress; and the little, silly, pretty Phillida to stare at the strange creatures round her. It is this temper which constitutes the supercilious eye, the reserved look, the distant bow, the scornful leer, the affected astonishment, the loud whisper, ending in a laugh directed full in the face of another. Hence spring, in short, those numberless offences given too frequently in public and private assemblies, by persons of weak understandings, indelicate habits, and so hungry and foul-feeding a vanity, that it wants to devour whatever comes in its way.

Now if good breeding be what we have endeavoured to prove it, how foreign, and indeed how opposite to it, must such a behaviour be? And can any man call a duke or a duchess who wears it well bred? Or are they not more justly entitled to those inhuman names which they themselves allot to the lowest vulgar? But behold a more pleasing picture in the reverse. See the Earl of C. noble in his birth, splendid in his fortune, and embellished with every endowment of mind: how affable, how condescending!

himself the only one who seems ignorant that he is every way the greatest person in the room.

But it is not sufficient to be inoffensive, we must be profitable servants to each other: we are in the second place to proceed to the utmost verge in paying the respect due to others. And indeed whoever considers the bustle and contention about precedence, the pains and labours undertaken and sometimes the prices given for the smallest title or mark of pre-eminence, and the visible satisfaction betrayed in its enjoyment, may reasonably conclude this a matter of no small consequence. The truth is, we live in a world of common men and not of philosophers; one of those, when he appears (which is very seldom) among us, is distinguished, and very properly too, by the name of an odd fellow; for what is it less than extreme oddity to despise what the generality of the world think the labour of their whole lives well employed in procuring. We are, therefore, to adapt our behaviour to the opinion of the generality, and not to that of a few odd fellows.

It would be tedious, and perhaps impossible, to specify every instance, or to lay down exact rules for our conduct in every minute particular. However, I shall mention some of the chief which most ordinarily occur, after premising, that the business of the whole is no more than to convey

to others an idea of your esteem of them, which is indeed the substance of all the compliments, ceremonies, presents, and whatever passes between well bred people. And here I shall lay down these positions.

First, that all mere ceremonies exist in form only, and have in them no substance; but being imposed by the laws of custom become essential to good breeding, from those high flown compliments paid to the eastern monarchs, and which pass between Chinese mandarines, to those coarser ceremonials in use between English farmers and Dutch boors.

Secondly, that these ceremonies, poor as they are, are of more consequence than they at first appear, and in reality, constitute the only external difference between man and man. Thus, His Grace, Right Honourable, My Lord, Right Reverend, Reverend, Honourable, Sir, Esquire, Mr., &c. have in a philosophical sense no meaning, yet are perhaps, politically essential, and must be preserved by good breeding; because,

Thirdly, they raise an expectation in the person by law and custom entitled to them, who will consequently be displeased with the disappoint


In our behaviour to our superiors, two extremes are to be avoided, namely, an abject and base

servility, and an impudent and encroaching freedom.

In our behaviour to our inferiors condescension can never be too strongly recommended; for as a deviation on this side is much more innocent than the other, so the pride of man renders us much less liable to it. For besides that we are apt to over-rate our own perfections, and undervalue the qualifications of our neighbours, we likewise set too high an esteem on the things themselves, and consider them as constituting a more essential difference between us than they really do. The qualities of the mind do in reality establish the truest superiority over one another; yet should not these so far elevate our pride, as to inflate us with contempt, and make us look down on our fellow creatures, as on animals of an inferior order. But that the fortuitous accident of birth, the acquisition of wealth, with some outward ornaments of dress, should inspire men with an insolence capable of treating the rest of mankind with disdain, is so preposterous, that nothing less than daily experience could give it credit.

Certainly the highest pleasure which we are capable of enjoying in conversation, is to be found only in the society of persons whose understanding is nearly on an equality with our

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