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thine eye. Moderate thine expences. Hear much : speak little. Sustine et abstine. If thou seest ought amiss in another, mend it in thyself. Keep thine own counsell; reveal not thy secrets; be silent in thine intentions. Give not ear to tale-tellers, bablers : be not scurrilous in conversation : jest without bitterness : give no cause of offence. Set thine house in order. Take heed of suretiship. Fide et diffide : as a fox on the ice, take heed whom you trust. Live not beyond thy means. Give chearfully. Pay thy dues willingly. Be not a slave to thy mony. Omit not occasion; embrace opportunity ; loose no time. Be humble to thy superiors, respective to thine equals, affable to all, but not familiar. Flatter no man. Lie not : dissemble not. Keep thy word and promise, be constant in a good resolution. Speak truth. Be not opiniative : maintain no factions. Lay no wagers : make no comparisons. Find no faults, meddle not with other mens matters. Admire not thyself. Be not proud or popular. Insult not. Fortunam reverenter habe. Fear not that which cannot be avoided. Grieve not for that which cannot be recalled. Undervalue not thy self. Accuse no man, commend no man, rashly.
Go not to law without great cause. Strive not with a greater man. Cast not off an old friend. Take heed of a reconciled enemy. If thou come as a guest, stay not too long. Be not unthankful. Be meek, merciful, and patient. Do good to all. Be not fond of fair words. Be not a newter in a faction. Moderate thy passions. Think no place without a witness. Admonish thy friend in secret : commend him in publike. Keep good company. Love others, to be loved thy self. Ama, tanquam osurus. Amicus tardo fias. Provide for a tempest.
Noli irritare crabrones. Do not prostitute thy soul for gain. Make not a fool of thy self, to make others merry. Marry not an old crony, or a fool, for mony. Be not over sollicitous or curious. Seek that which may be found. Seem not greater then thou art. Take thy pleasure soberly. Ocymum ne terito. Live merrily as thou canst. Take heed by other mens examples. Go as thou wouldst be met : sit as thou wouldst be found. Yield to the time ; follow the stream. Wilt thou live free from fears and cares? Live innocently, keep thy self upright; thou needest no other keeper, &c. Look for more in Isocrates, Seneca, Plutarch, Epictetus, &c. a, for defect, consult with cheese-trenchers and painted cloths.
AGAINST MELANCHOLY IT SELF.
Every man, saith Seneca, thinks his own burthen the heaviest; and a melancholy man, above all others, complains most. Weariness of life, abhorring all company and light; fear, sorrow, suspition, anguish of mind, bashfulness, and those other dread symtomes of body and mind, must needs aggravate this misery ; yet, conferred to other maladies, they are not so hainous as they be taken. For, first, this disease is either in habit or disposition, curable or incurable. If new and in disposition, 'tis commonly pleasant, and may be helped. If inveterate, or an habit, yet they have lucida intervalla, sometimes well, and sometimes ill ; or if more continuate, as the Vejentes were to the Romans, 'tis hostis magis assiduus quam gravis, a more durable enemy then dangerous; and, amongst many inconveniences, some comforts are annexed to it. First, it is not catching ; and, as Erasmus comforted himself, when he was greivously sick of the stone, though it was most troublesome, and an intolerable pain to him, yet it was no whit offensive to others, not lothsome to the spectators, gastly, fulsom, terrible, as plagues, apoplexies, leprosies, wounds, sores, tetters, pox, pestilent agues are, which either admit of no company, terrify or offend those that are present. In this malady, that which is, is wholly to themselves; and those symptomes not so dreadful, if they be compared to the opposite extreams. They are most part bashful, suspicious, solitary, &c. therefore no such ambitious, impudent intruders, as some are, no sharkers, no cunnicatchers, no prolers, no smel-feasts, praters, panders, parasites, bawds, drunkards, whoremasters : necessity and defect compels them to be honest ; as Micio told Demea in the comedy,
Haec si neque ego neque tu fecimus,
Non sivit egestas facere nos : if we be honest, 'twas poverty made us so : if we melancholy men be not as bad as he that is worst, ’tis our dame Melancholy kept us so :
Non deerat voluntas sed facultas.
Besides they are freed in this from many other infirmities; solitariness makes them more apt to contemplate, suspition wary, which is a necessary humour in these times ; nam, pol, qui maxime cavet, sæpe is cautor captus est : he that takes most heed, is often circumvented and overtaken. Fear and sorrow keep them temperate and sober, and free them from many disolute acts, which jollity and boldness thrust men upon ; they are therefore no sicarii, roaring boyes, theeves, or assassinates. As they are soon dejected, so they are as soon, by soft words and good perswasions, reared. Wearisomeness of life makes them they are not so besotted on the transitory vain pleasures of the world. If they dote in one thing, they are wise and well understanding in most other. If it be inveterate, they are insensati, most part doting, or quite mad, insensible of any wrongs, ridiculous to others, but most happy and secure to themselves. Dotage is a state which many much magnifie and commend : so is simplicity, and folly, as he said,
Hic furor, O Superi, sit mihi pepetuus. Some think fools and disards live the merriest lives, as Ajax in Sophocles ; nihil scire vita jucundissima ; 'tis the pleasantest life to know nothing; iners malorum remedium ignorantia ; ignorance is a down-right remedy of evils. These curious arts and laborius sciences, Galens, Tullies, Aristotles, Justinians, do but trouble the world, some think; we might live better with that illiterate Virginian simplicity, and gross ignorance; entire ideots do best ; they are not macerated with cares, tormented with fears and anxiety, as other wise men are : for, as he said, if folly were a pain, you should hear them houl, roar, and cry out in every house, as you go by in the street ; but they are most free, jocund, and merry, and, in come countries, as amongst the Turks, honoured for saints, and abundantly maintained out of the common stock. They are no dissemblers, lyers, hypocrites; for fools and mad men tell commonly truth. In a word, as they are distressed, so are they pittied; which some hold better then to be envied, better to be said then merry, better to be foolish and quiet, quam sapere et ringi, to be wise and still vexed ; better to be miserable then happy: of two extremes it is the best.
EXERCISE RECTIFIED OF BODY AND MINDE.
To that great inconvenience, which comes on the one side by immoderate and unseasonable exercise, too much solitariness and idleness on the other, must be opposed, as an antidote, a moderate and seasonable use of it, and that both of body and
minde, as a most materiall circumstance, much conducing to this cure, and to the generall preservation of our health. The heavens themselves run continually round ; the sun riseth and sets ;
the moon increaseth and decreaseth; stars and planets keep their constant motions ; the aire is still tossed by the winds ; the waters eb and flow, to their conservation no doubt, to teach us that we should ever be in action. For which cause Hierom prescribes Rusticus the monk, that he be alwayes occupied about some business or other, that the devill do not finde him idle. Seneca would have a man do something, though it be to no purpose. Xenophon wisheth one rather to play at tables, dice, or make a jester of himself (though he might be far better imployed) than do nothing. The Ægyptians of old, and many flourishing commonwealths since, have enjoyned labour and exercise to all sorts of men, to be of some vocation and calling, and to give an account of their time, to prevent those greivous mischiefs that come by idleness ; for, as fodder, whip, and burthen, belong to the asse, so meat, correction, and worke, unto the servant, Ecclus. 33. 23. The Turks injoyn all men whatsoever, of what degree, to be of some trade or other : the grand Signior himself is not excused. In our memory (saith Sabellicus) Mahomet the Turke, he that conquered Greece, at that very time when he heard ambassadours of other princes, did either carve or cut wooden spoones, or frame something upon a table. This present sultan makes notches for bows. The Jews are most severe in this examination of time. All wel-governed places, towns, families, and every discreet person will be a law unto himself
. But, amongst us, the badge of gentry is idleness : to be of no calling, not to labour (for that's derogatory to their birth), to be a meer spectator, a drone, fruges consumere natus, to have no necessary employment to busie himself about in church and commonwealth (some few governers exempted), but to rise to eat , &c. to spend his dayes in hawking, hunting, &c. and such like disports and recreations (which our casuists tax), are the sole exercise almost and ordinary actions of our nobility, and in which they are too immoderate. And thence it comes to pass, that in city and country so many grievances of body and mind, and this ferall disease of melancholy so frequently rageth, and now domineers almost all over Europe amongst our great ones. They know not how to spend their times (disports excepted, which are all their business), what to do, or otherwise how to bestow themselves ; like our modern Frenchmen, that had rather lose a pound of blood in a single combate, than a drop of sweat in
any honest labour.
Every man almost hath something or other to employ himself about, some vocation, some trade: but they do all by ministers and servants ; ad otia duntaxat se natos existimant, imo ad sui ipsius plerum et que aliorum perniciem, as one freely taxeth such kinde of men : they are all for pastimes ; 'tis all their study; all their invention tends to this alone, to drive away time, as if they were born, some of them, to no other ends. Therefore to correct and avoid these errors and inconveniences, our divines, physicians, and politicians, so much labour, and so seriously exhort : and for this disease in particular, there can be no better cure than continuall business, as Rhasis holds, to have some employment or other, which may set their minde aworke, and distract their cogitations. Riches may not easily be had without labour and industry, nor learning without study; neither can our health be preserved without bodily exercise. If it be of the body, Guianerius allowes that exercise which is gentle, and still after those ordinary frications, which must be used every morning. Montaltus (cap. 26) and Jason Pratensis use almost the same words, highly commending exercise, if it be moderate : a wonderful help, so used, Crato calls it, and a great means to preserve our health, as adding strength to the whole body, increasing naturall heat, by means of which, the nutriment is well concocted in the stomacke, liver, and veines, few or no crudities left, is happily distributed over all the body. Besides, it expells excrements by sweat, and other insensible vapours ; in so much that Galen prefers exercise before all physick, rectification of diet, or any regimen in what kinde soever ; 'tis Natures physician. Fulgentius (out of Gordonius, de conserv. vit. hom. lib. i cap. 7) tearms exercise a spur of a dull sleepy nature, the comforter of the members, cure of infirmity, death of diseases, destruction of all mischiefes and vices. The fittest time for exercise is a little before dinner, a little before supper, or at any time when the body is empty. Montanus (consil. 31) prescribes it every morning to his patient, and that, as Calenus addes, after he hath done his ordinary needs, rubbed his body, washed his hands and face, combed his head, and gargarized. What kinde of exercise he should use, Galen tells us, lib. 2 et 3. de sanit. tuend. and in what measure, till the body be ready to sweat, and roused up, ad ruborem, some say, non ad sudorem, lest it should dry the body too much ; others injoyn those wholesome businesses, as to dig so long in
garden, to old the plough, and the like. Some prescribe frequent and violent labour and exercises, as sawing every day, so long together, (epid. 6. Hippocrates confounds