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the Chriftian religion; all of which important knowledge I infused in the Socratic manner, and without the trammels of pedantic inftitutions. Some became more and fome lefs attached to the feries of my inftructions, as they grew more intricate, and required greater exertions of the mental powers; but all of them became on a par with any fix boys that had ever paffed through the hands of any profeffor who had an opportunity of knowing the attainments of my pupils; and none of them had any more felf-fufficiency in literature, than is common in young men who have had a liberal education. My daughter Alathea is now honourably and happily married, and is the, delight of her husband, her family and her neighbourhood. Nobody ever hears her prattle about fcience; but he is able to bear her fhare in the most interesting converfations of intelligent men, but accompanied with all the modefty and elegance of manner, that a Swift or a Chesterfield could expect in their churlish humours. In all the duties of a houfe-wife, he is diligent and exemplary; the rifes early in the morning, and steals an hour or two occafionally for the improvement of her mind, when her hufband is engaged with company, or is abroad upon bufinefs. My other daughters are coming on with equal profpects of giving pleafure to their parents; and the clergyman's daughters are fucceffively engaged in refpectable families connected with my husband's, in laying a foundation for a crop of rational and amiable women upon the model of Alathea. Thus, Mr. Editor, have I brought my long ftory to a conclufion, which I hope, as it treats of the most interefting of all fubjects to my own fex, and to fociety in general, will not have proved tiresome to your readers, I am, Sir, with regard, your obliged humble fervant, SOPHIA,
For the Bee.
Thoughts on the great Benefit to be derived from Want of Health.
I Do not mean here to speak as a moralift or divine: I confider my fubject merely in a civil and political light.
The benefits that accrue from bad health in high life, are fo various and important, that without it I do not fee how people of that defcription could exift at all. A minifter finds it neceffary to go out of place, because he cannot be permitted longer to hold it; but he only retires, because of the precarious ftate of his health. A Α Nobleman has run himself in debt; his rents are fequeftrated; he cannot afford to live at home; he goes abroad merely for the recovery of his health. A man is afraid of meeting with officious perfons in the street, who will infift on providing him with lodgings; to avoid thefe, he is confined to his chamber through indif pofition. A lady whofe thape has met with an untimely distortion, retires to the country for fome months, for the recovery of her health. In thefe, and a thoufand other inftances, this apology ferves to keep people of fashion in countenance, when they would have been otherwise at a great lofs. To them, therefore, bad health is often extremely convenient.
In lower fpheres, as people can more feldom afford to be in bad health, it is not indeed of fuch extenfive utility, as to the others; but ftill it has its uses. A particular cafe of this fort having lately occurred to myfelf, I fhall beg leave to flate it to you, as a fpeci
men of the ufes to which it may be applied in private life.
Of all kinds of debt, the most burthenfome to fome is a debt of gratitude. It is a vile thing to be stygma tifed as ungrateful; it blafls a perfon's character, and makes them be detested by society. Now, when it happens that one has a debt of that kind hanging over his head, and feels no inclination to discharge it, that must doubtless be a happy device which frees him alike from the burthen of repayment, and from the obloquy of ingratitude. And here bad health is just as conve、 nient on fome occafions to perfons of moderate rank, as it is in other inftances to people in high life. My illuftration of this cafe is as follows:
A lady, who was a connection of my own, had the misfortune to be involved feveral years ago in a very disagreeable affair, in which she was very unjustly blamed for crimes that I was well fatisfied fhe never had been guilty of. Appearances however were fo doubtful, that it was probable fhe might be ftripped of all the little property he had, before the could get herfelf extricated from this difagreeable embarraffment. On that trying occafion, all her friends, myself alone excepted, deferted her; and either reproached her in very inde cent terms, or dryly declined taking any concern in her affairs, either to advise or aflift in any way. This conduct in them, not lefs than my own natural propenfity, induced me to co-operate with her to the utmost of my power, to get her extricated out of this difagreeable fituation. I fincerely condoled with her, advised with her on all trying occafions; nor did I ever hefitate by night or by day to do every thing that was poffible for her relief, with as much cordial fincerity, as if the business had been my own. Thefe difficulties were at last overblown: The fortune of the lady was fecured Her friends have now returned to her; and instead of maltreatment or diftant civilities, they court her favour by every affiduity; and fhe enjoys
their adulation with as much cordiality, as if it were fincere. It happened, however, that by a fevere calamity in my family, fortune put it in the power of this lady to be nearly as ferviceable to me (not by means of pecuniary affiftance, but merely by a little personal exertion) as I had been to her. She had at all times been fo ready to exprefs her gratitude to me in strong and unequivocal terms, and I was fo cordially difpofed to befriend her, that it never once entered into my mind to fufpect he could have any backwardness to discharge thofe friendly offices to my family, that fortune had put within her reach. I thought indeed the would grasp at it with alacrity. At first fome flight excufes were admitted as apologies; but when thefe obftructions were removed, no other refource remained but bad health alone. Bad health however has lent its friendly aid, in this cafe, moft effectually, and will, no doubt, continue to do fo till it will be past time either for her to give the affiftance I ftood in need of, or for me to receive it..
Thus, my good Sir, you fee, that to people in inferior station, as well as to thofe in high life, the benefits of bad health are not inconfiderable. As an ob server of men and manners, I fend you this fhort anecdote; and hope you will have the goodness to infert this into your Be, that the parties concerned, in cafe they thould read it, may fee i understand the cafe; so that it is unneceffary to feek for any other apology, as this one will be readily admitted on all occafions, as perfectly valid. I am, Sir,
A LOVER OF GOOD HEALTH,
Obfervations on the Above.
Ir is fo natural for a perfon to judge favourably of their own concerns, when compared with that of others, that without any breach of charity, we may
fuppofe the writer of the above may have overlooked fome circumstances that might have confiderably altered the cafe, had they been brought forward. Perfons who have a native warmth of heart, as we would in charity fuppofe, may be the cafe with the writer of the above, are not well acquainted with the circumftances that may affect the minds of perfons of a more phlegmatic turt; and therefore may difregard them fo much, as, unknowingly, to have given geat offence. Can the perfon be certain that he has never been guilty of an imprudence of that fort?
If the writer be poffeffed of that benevolence of dispofition that his own reprefentation of his cafe is calculated to make us fuppofe, it is probable he may have formed expectations of meeting with a kind of reciprocal warmth of exertion: But if the other perfon concerned never was fenfible of these kind of affections, docs he not act inconfiderately ever to expect it? Has he duly weighed this circumitance?
A perion who is ardent in fupporting his friend, is 、 alfo too often equally warm and fincere in reprehending whatever he fees amifs. But it is. only perions of great vigour of mind, who can bear fuch kinds of freedom with temper. Is the writer certain that he has never tranfgreffed in this way, fo as to efface that tenderness for him, which he thinks himself entitled-to? If he has not been attentive here, is he not himself to blame for the conduct of which he complains?
Lafily. Has he compared what fhould be the effect of a conduct rigid and uncomplying on his part, with that of the attention and compliances that may have flowed from another quarter. It is perhaps one of the greatcft allevations to the diftrefles of life, that mankind are difpofed to court the favour of perfons who have money, from the hope of obtaining it. This confideration, and this alone, is fufficiently powerful to make many perfons flatter and coax the aged and the infirm, in mind as well as body, fo as to pleafe in eve