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chamber, and was very deeply engaged in the socond book of Milton's Paradise Lost. I walked to and fro with the book in my hand; and, to speak the truth, I fear I made no little noise; when, presently coming to the following lines :
On a sudden open fly;
I in great transport threw open the door of my chamber, and found the greatest part of the family standing on the outside in a very great consterna. tion. I was in no less confusion, and begged par, don for having disturbed them; addressing myself particularly to comfort one of the children who re. ceived an unlucky fall in this action, while he was too intently surveying my meditations through the key-hole. To be short, after this adventure I easily observed that great part of the family, especially the women and children, looked upon me with some apprehensions of fear; and my friend him. self, though he still continues his civilities to me, did not seem altogether easy: I took notice that the butler was never after this accident ordered to leave the bottle upon the table after dinner. Add to this, that I frequently overheard the servant mention me by the name of " the crazed gentle. man, the gentleman a little touched, the mad Lon. doner," and the like. This made me think it high time for me to shift my quarters, which I resolved to do the first handsome opportunity; and was confirmed in this resolution by a young lady in the neighbourhood who frequently visited us, and who one day, after having heard all the fine things I was able to say, was pleased with a scornful smile to bid me
go to sleep.”.
The first minute I got to my lodgings in town I set pen to paper to desire your opinion, whether, upon the evidence before you, I am mad or not. I can bring certificates that I behave myself soberly before company, and I hope there is at least some merit in withdrawing to be mad. Look you, sir, I am contented to be esteemed a little touched, as they phrase it, but should be sorry to be madder than my neighbours; therefore, pray let me be as much in my senses as you can afford. I know I could bring yonrself as an instance of a man who has confessed talking to himself; 'but yours is a particular case, and cannot justify me, who have not kept silence any part of my life. What if I should own my self in love? You know lovers are always allowed the comfort of soliloquy. But I will say no more upon this subject, because I have long since, observed the ready way to be thought mad is to contend that you are not so; as we generally conclude that man drunk who takes pains to be thought sober. I will therefore leave myself to your determination; but am the more desirous to be thought in my senses, that it may be no discredit to you when I assure you that I have always been very much
"P.S. If I must be mad, I desire the young lady may believe it is for her.'
• The humble Petition of John a Nokes and John u.
That your petitioners have causes de. pending in Westminster-hall above five hundred years, and that we despair of ever seeing them
brought to an issue; that your petitioners have not been involved in these law-suits out of any litigious temper of their own, but by the instigation of con. tentious persons; that the young lawyers in our inns of court are continually setting us together by the ears, and think they do us no hurt, because they plead for us without a fee; that many of the gentlemen of the robe have no other clients in the world besides us two; that when they have nothing else to do, they make us plaintiffs and defendants, though they were never retained by any of us; that they traduce, condemn, or acquit us, without any manner of regard to our reputations and good names in the world. Your petitioners therefore, being thereunto encouraged by the favourable re. ception which you lately gave to our kinsman Blank, do humbly pray that you will put an end to the controversies which have been so long de. pending between us your said petitioners, and that our enmity may not endure from generation to generation; it being our resolution to live hereafter as it becometh men of peaceable dispositions.
** And your petitioners, as in duty bound, shall ever pray, &c.
N° 578. MONDAY, AUGUST 9, 1714.
-Eque feris bumana in corpora transit,
OvID. Met. Xy. 1
There has been very great reason, on several accounts, for the learned world to endeavour at set. tling what it was that might be said to compose personal identity
Mr. Locke, after having premised that the word person properly signifies a thinking intelligent being that has reason and reflection, and can consider itself as itself, concludes, that it is conscious. ness alone, and not an identity of substance, which makes this personal identity of sameness. ! Had I the same consciousness,' says that author, that I saw the ark and Noah's flood, as that I saw an overflowing of the Thames last winter; or as that I now write; I could no more donbt that I who write this now, that saw the Thames overflow last winter, and that viewed the food at the general deluge, was the same self, place that self in what substance you please, than that I who write this am the same myself now while I write, whether I consist of all the same substance, material or immaterial, or nọ, that I was yesterday; for as to this point of being the same self, it matters not whether this present self be made up of the same or other substances.'
I was mightily pleased with a story in some mea. sure applicable to this piece of philosophy, which I
read the other day in the Persian Tales, as they are lately very well translated by Mr. Pbilips; and with an abridgement whereof I shall here present my readers.
I shall only premise that these stories are writ after the eastern manner, but somewhat more correct.
Fadlallah, a prince of great virtue, succeeded his father Bin Ortoc in the kingdom of Mousel. He reigned over his faithful subjects for some time, and lived in great happiness with his beauteous consort queen Zemroude; when there appeared at His court a young dervis of so lively and entertains ing a turn of wit, as woil upon the affections of every one he conversed with. His reputation grew so fast 'every day, that it at last raised a curiosity in the prince himself to see and talk with him. He did so; and, far from finding that common 'famë had flattered him, he was soon convinced that every thing he had heard of him fell short of the truth.
Fadlallah immediately lost all manner of relish for the conversation of other men; and, as he was every day more and more satisfied of the abilities of this stranger, offered him the first posts in his kingdom. The young dervis, after having thank ed him with a very singular modesty, desired to be excased, as having made a vow never to accept of any employment, and preferring a free and in. dependent state of life to all other conditions.
The king was infinitely charmed with so great an example of moderation ; and though he could not get him to engage in a life of business, made him however his chief companion and first favour ite.
* As they were one day hunting together, and happened to be separated from the rest of the com.