« PreviousContinue »
talk of that subject, and observe it and keep it in memory or writing; by this mean you will glean up the worth and excellence of every person you meet with, and at an easy rate put together that which may be for
13. Converse not with a liar or a swearer, or a man of obscene or wanton language; for either he will corrupt you, or at least it will hazard your reputation to be one of the like making. And if it doth neither, yet it will fill your memory with such discourses, that will be troublesome to you in after time, and the returns of the remembrance of the passages which you long since heard of this nature, will haunt you, when your thoughts should be better employed.
14. Let your speech be true; never speak any thing for a truth which you know or believe to be false. It is a great sin against God who gave you a tongue, to speak your offence against humanity itself; for where there is no truth, there can be no safe society between man and man.
15. As you must be careful not to lie, so you must avoid coming near to it; you must not equivocate, you must not speak that absolutely, which you have but by hearsay or relation; you must not speak that as upon knowledge which you have but by conjecture or opinion only.
16. Let your words be few, especially when your bet. ters or strangers, or men of experience or understanding, are present; for you do yourself at once two great mischiefs. First, you betray and discover your own weakness and folly. Secondly, you rob yourself of that opportunity which you might otherwise have to gain knowledge, wisdom, and experience, by hearing those whom you silence by your impertinent talking.
17. Be not over earnest, loud, or violent in talking; for it is unseemly; and earnest and loud talking make you overshoot and lose your business. When you should be considering and pondering your thoughts, and how to express them significantly, and to the purpose, you are striving to keep your tongue going, and to silence an opponent not with reason, but with noise,
18. Be careful not to interrupt another in his talk; hear him out; you will understand him the better, and be able to give him the better answer. It may be, if you will give
him leave, he will say something more than you hava yet heard, orwell understood, or that which you did not expect.
19. Always before you speak, especially where the business is of moment, consider beforehand, weigh the sense of your mind, which you intend to utter; think upon the expressions you intend to use, that they may be significant, pertinent and inoffensive; and whereas it is the ordinary course of inconsiderate persons to speak their words, and then to think, or not to think till they speak; think first and speak after, if it be in any matter of moment or seriousness. 20. Be sure you give not an ill report to any
you are not sure deserves it. And in rost cases, though a man deserves ill, yet you should be sparing to report him so. In some cases indeed you are bound, in honesty and justice, to give that account concerning the demerit or default of a person that he deserves.
21. Avoid scoffing, and bitter and biting jeering, and jesting, especially at the condition, credit, deformity, or natural defects of any person; for these leave a deep impression, and are most apparent injustice; for were you used, you would take it amiss; and many times such an injury co.ts a man dear, when he little thinks of it.
22. Be very careful that you give no reproachful, bitter, menacing, or spiteful words to any person; nay not to seryants or other persons of an inferior condition. There is no person so mean but that you may stand in need of him in one kinsl, er at some time or another. Good words make friends, bad words make enemies; it is the best prudence in the world to make as many friends as honestly you can.
23. If there be occasion for you to speak in any company, always be careful, if you speak at all, to speak lat. est. especially if strangers are in company; for by this mean you will have the advantage of knowing the sense, judgment, temper, and relations of others, which may be a great light and help to you in ordering your speech; and you will better know the inclination of the company, and speak with more advantage and acceptation, and with more security against giving offence.
24. Be careful that you commend not yourselves; it is the nost useless thing that can be. You should avoid flattery from others, but especially decline flattering yourselves.
It is a sign your reputation is small and sinking, if your own tongues must be your datterers and commenders; and it is a fulsome and unpleasing thing for others to hear it.
25. Abhor all foul, unclean, and obscene speeches, it is a sign that the beart is corrupt ; and such kind of speeches will make it worse ; it will taint and corrupt yourselves and those who hear it, and bring disreputation on those who use it.
26 Never use any profane speeches, nor make jest of scripture expressions. When you use the names of God or Christ, or any passages or words of the holy scripture, use them with reverence and seriousness, and not lightly or scurrilously, for it is taking the name of God in vain.
27. If you hear any unseemly expressions used in religious exercises, you mnet be careful to forget and not to publish them ; or if you at all mention them, let it be with pity and soriów, not with derision or repreach,
BRUTUS' SPEECH ON THE DEATH OF CÆSAR.
Romans, COUNTRYMEN, AND LOVERS,
EAR me, for my cause; and be silent, that you may hear. Believe me, for mine honour ; and have respect for mine honor ; that you may believe. Censure me, in your wisdom; and awake your senses, that you may the better judge.
2. If there be any in this assembly, any dear friend of Cæsar, to him I say, that Brutus' love to Cæsar was no less than his. If then, that friend demand, why Brutus rose àgainst Cæsar, this is my answer ; not that I loved Cæsar less, but that I loved Rome more.
3. Flad you rather Cæsar were living, and die all slayes, than that Cæsar were dead, to live all freemen ? As Cæsar loved me, I weep for him; as he was fortunate, I rejoice at it ; as he was valiant, I honor him ; but, as he was ambitinus, I slew him,
4 There are tears for his love, joy for his fortune, honor for his valor, and death for his ambițion. Who's here so base, that he would be a bondman ; If any, speak ; for him have I offended,
5. Who's here so rude, that he would not be a Roman? If any, speak ; for him have I offended. Who's here so vile, that he will not love his country ? If any, speak ; for him have I offended. I pause for a reply.
6. None ? Then none have I offended. I have done no more to Cæsar, than you should do to Brutus. And as I slew my best lover for the good of Rome, I reserve the same dagger for myself, whenever it shall please my coun. try to need my death.
ANTONY'S SPEECH OVER THE BODY OF CÆSAR.
FRIENDS, ROMANS, COUNTRYMEN,
END me your ears.
2. Noble Brutus
3. He was my friend, faithful and just to me But Brutus says he was ambitious
4. When that the poor hath cried,Caesar hath wept!
5. You all did see, that, on the Lupercal, I thrice presented him a kingly crown ; Which he did thrice refuse : Was this amittion ?
Yet Brutas says he was ambitious;
6. I speak not to disprove what Brutus spoke;
7. Bear with me:
8. O masters! If I were dispos’d to stir
But here's a parchment, with the seal of Cæsar;
10. have tears, prepare to shed them now,.