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ARGUMENT OF THE SECOND BOOK.
Reflections suggested by the conclusion of the former
book.-- Peace among the nations recommended, on the ground of their common fellowship in forrow,
- Prodigies enumerated.- Sicilian earthquakes.Man rendered obnoxious to these calamities by fin. -God the agent in them.--The philofophy that Atops at secondary causes reproved.Our own late miscarriages accounted for.-Satirical notice taken of our trips to Fontainbleau.---But the pulpit, not satire, the proper engine of reformation.—The Reverend Advertiser of engraved sermons.--Petitmaitre parfon. The good preacher.--Pictures of a theatrical clerical coxcomb.-Story-tellers and jefters in the pulpit reproved.- Apostrophe to popular applause - Retailers of ancient philofophy expostulated with.-Sum of the whole matter.-Effects of facerdotal mismanagement on the laity.---Their folly and extravagance. The mischiefs of profufion.Profufion itself, with all its consequent evils, af-. cribed, as to its principal cause, to the want of difcipline in the univerhties.
THE TAS K.
Os for a lodge in fome vaft wilderness,
T' enforce the wrong, for such a worthy cause Dooms and devotes him as his lawful
prey. Lands intersected by a narrow frith Abhor each other. Mountains interpos’d Make enemies of nations, who had else, Like kindred drops, been mingled into one. Thus man devotes his brother, and destroys; And, worse than all, and most to be deplor'd, As human nature's broadest, foulest blot, Chains him, and tasks him, and exacts his fweat With stripes, that mercy, with a bleeding heart, Weeps when she sees inflicted on a beaft. Then what is man? And what man, feeing this, And having human feelings, does not blush, And hang his head, to think himself a man? I would not have a Nave to till my ground, To carry me, to fan me while I Neep, And tremble when I wake, for all the wealth That sinews bought and sold have ever earn'd. No: dear as freedom is, and in my
heart's Just estimation priz'd above all price, I had much rather be myself the slave, And wear the bonds, than fasten them on him. We have no slaves at home.-Then why abroad?
And they themselves, once ferried o'er the wave That
parts us, are emancipate and loos’d. Slaves cannot breathe in England; if their lungs Receive our air, that moment they are free; They touch our country, and their shackles fall. That's noble, and bespeaks a nation proud And jealous of the blessing. Spread it then, And let it circulate through ev'ry vein Of all your empire; that where Britain's pow'r Is felt, mankind may feel her mercy too.
Sure there is need of social intercourse, Benevolence, and peace, and mutual aid, Between the nations, in a world that seems To toll the death-bell of its own decease, Aød by the voice of all its elements To preach the gen’ral doom*. When were the
* Alluding to the calamities at Jamaica.
Portentous, unexampled, unexplain'd,
Alas for Sicily! rude fragments now
Alluding to the fog that covered both Europe and Asia during the whole summer of 1783.