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"* I cannot help myself thinking it may be in no small degree attributable to that separation between class and class, which is the great curse of British Society, and for which we are all, more or less, in our respective spheres, in some degree responsible, and which is more complete in these districts than in agricultural districts, where the resident gentry are enabled to shed around them the blessings arising froin the exercise of benevolence, and the influence and example of active kindness. I am afraid we all of us keep too much aloof from those beneath us, and whom we thus encourage to look upon us with suspicion and dislike. Even to our servants, we think, perhaps, we fulfil our duty when we perform our contract with them, when we pay them their wages, and treat them with the civility consistent with our habits and feelings; when we cub our temper, and use no violent expression towards them. Bat bow painful is the thought, that there are men and women growing up around us, ministering to our comforts and necessities, with whose affections and nature we are as much unacquainted as if tley were the inhabitants of some other sphere. This feeling, arising from that kind of reserve peculiar to the English character, does, I think, greatly tend to prevent that mingling of class with class, that reciprocation of kind words and gentle affections, gracious admonitions and kind enquiries -which often, more than any book education, tend to the culture of the affections of the heart, and the refirement and elevation of the character of those to whom they are addressed : and if I were to be asked—What is the great want of English Society? to mingle class with class, I would say in one word, the want is the want of Sympathy.”
Immediately after the utterance of those words, that good man became speechless, and shortly expired. Mr. Justice Coleridge, speaking of him, said that his learned brother had one ruling purpose of his life-the doing good to his fellow-creatures in his generation. I trust we all desire to benefit ourselves and others by such an example.
It niust be evident to you, that society is composed of many classes—as labourers, artificers, weavers, manufacturers, merchants, professionalists, gentry, and nobility. But each has duties to perform ; each
is responsible to, and dependent upon the other; all co-operate for the general good and mutual benefit. For of what use would be our metals, if unwrought? and our raw textile materials, if unwoven? A special blessing attends the honest results of labour, and the peacefully-gathered fruits of industry. There are few sounds sweeter to my ear than the chick of the shuttle, accompanied by some melody sustained by half-a-dozen voices, in a respectable loom-shop. The ALMIGHTY has mercifully given us all things for our happiness; but in such a state that they require the labour of man to render them beneficial to the real and artificial wants of society.
To work, therefore, in some form or another, is the lot and con. dition of all: so that it is our business to learn and labour truly-i.e., earnestly and honestly—to get our own living, "not slothful in business," and to do our duty in that position in which it has pleased PROVIDENCE to place us.
Some homely proverbs to be found in “ Poor Richard's Almanack," written by that celebrated man (essentially a man of the people), Dr. Franklin, are well worth treasuring in our minds as rules of conduct. He says
“He that hath a trade, hath an estate." “Diligence is the mother of good luck ; and God gives all things to industry.” “Then plough deep, while sluggards sleep,
shall have corn, both to sell and to keep." “Many without labour would live by their wits only; but they break for want of stock."
“He that by the plough would thrive
Himself must either hold or drive." Thus in every respect, both divine and human, is labour commended; and it will not be difficult to demonstrate that it possesses its equal share of happi
So wisely and beneficently ordained are all the dispensations of PROVIDENCE, that each class of society has it proportionate share of jors and sor
rows. No condition or rank of life is free from pain,
Please trundle your hoops just out of Broadway,,
Have hunted their victims to gloom and despair ;
Grope through the dark dens, climb the rickety stair
From the poor dying creature who writhes on the floor;
As you sicken and shudder and fly from the door:
Where the glare, and the glitter, and the tinsel of Time
Some of you may occasionally experience the pains of hunger, cold, and scanty clothing; but very many of the rich groan with the pains arising from excess and dissipation
Do not, therefore, envy the rich. Remember the Divine remark, ". How hard is it for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of Heaven !" Such holy authority I quote with some reluctance, knowing we have others among us so pre-eminenly qualified to explain and to teach the higher paths of righteousness. I can only offer more humble and more worldly advice.
“ Vessels large may venture more,
Lut little boats should keep near shore." To be contented with our position is a virtue most difficult to attain; but that it is w wise to murmur, is humourously shewn by Addiso), in his “ Mountain of Miseries.” . The story is, tint Jupiter made a proclamation that every moral wight bring his troubles, and
ow them into one is all with permission to exchange for any other fill therein. The old man threw in his aged pilltop".Pi un got a yonng wife who soon made a fool of li. The young man got a wiser wife; but she bore un out of his life. The labourer got money, which has soon spent. The rich man, health and strength trich ho speedily abused. The man who deployed oss ignorance, got a heap of knowledge, which pet loin out of humour with his present lot, and qualis him for no other. The lonely man got friends, -! in he quarrelled with. The busy man obtained retirement and was
soon sick of it. When all was distributed, the lamentations and regrets were so loud, that Jupiter permitted each man to resume his own burden; which each gladly did, and so marched off infinitely more satisfied than when he came.
Now, we need not in these enlightened days pass through such an unpleasant ordeal, but we may derive a good lesson not to repine at our misfortunes or to envy the happiness of others.
"The swelling of an outward fortune can
And wealth is but her golden ornament.”