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regular, and peaceful line of trade, or any of the learned professions, and you should take it into your head to accept a commission in the army, or a purser's warrant in the navy, how would the idle, dissipated, debauched life, and continually shifting quarters of the former, or the noise, confusion, swearing, inconveniencies, and dangers of a sea-life, agree with your virtuous and refined
and delicate temperate habits ? These are points that ought to be well considered and weighed before the change is made.
I lately tried a sea-life myself, and went out under the command of a nobleman, who had. appointed me to a respectable situation in his ship, and promised me his interest to advance
I fitted myself out at the expence of 100l. and embarked with pleasing hopes :---but, alas ! I had not reflected that I was unaccustomed to the way of life; was no longer young, and able to bear the fatigue of being tossed about in a tem. pestuous sea, and going through the weakening effects of a violent sickness; or of being confined within the narrow compass of a ship, subject to have my more refined feelings hurt and distracted with noise, confusion, blasphemy, and obscenity, or my eyes shocked with the scenes of drunkenness, and necessary corporal punishment that too frequently occur in that situation. ---The conséquence was, that, being extremely ill, I gavę
up my warrant; and returned homé, quite cured of the mania of making a fortune by prize-money.
In short, it will always be found that a man is only fittest for the particular line in which he has been originally brought up, and that any deviation from it will hardly ever be attended with success.
In commerce, however, or even in retail trade, it will sometimes happen, that a man may deal in various commodities and articles, and yet be a judge of them all, or, if he is not, can employ an experienced broker to judge for him ; and, possessing a capital to turn himself in any branch of commerce, there is no inconvenience or danger attends that kind of change ; but the great danger is, where, having been brought up for the church, you take to the sword; or, having studied for the law, you aim at becoming a physician; or, having been educated for a teacher of others, you embark in a new profession, and must be again taught yourself, before you can exercise that new profession: neither, with propriety, can a mechanic become a horse-dealer, or a shopkeeper a theatrical performer;---in every change of this nature there is much risque, danger, and loss of time; and the habits acquired in the one are probably prejudicial to you in the exercise of the other. ---Indeed there are very few instances where these changes have been attended with the expected success, and fewer still, where a man has patiently 'persevered
in his original occupation, and has not in the end succeeded. If
any circumstance can tend to invalidate or throw doubt , upon this proposition, it is the difficulty and uncertainty of the present critical times, when men without fortune hardly know what to aim at, or how to turn themselves; and those who have money, are afraid to risque it, from the uncertainty of commerce; but, even under that disadvantage, I think the doctrine of steady adherence to your original trade or profession still holds good, and it cannot but be strongly recommended accordingly.
Of Friendships, and the Choice of Friends---with some Observations on the bad Consequences of unlawful Connexions with the Female Sex.
A friend loveth at all times.
TRUE friendship is the balm of life, and, next to lawful love, the greatest happiness a man can meet with in the difficult journey of life.
The words Friend and Companion are terms often used to denote the same thing ; but no mistake can be greater. Many persons have variety of companions; but how few, through their whole lives, ever meet with a real friend ! The characteristics of a true friend are these:---He must be a person in whom you can place the most unlimited confidence, and to whom you can with safety and pleasure disclose the inmost secrets of your heart. You must be able to rely as certainly upon him as upon yourself in the transaction of any business that he undertakes for you: he must neither be jealous, suspicious, envious, nor distrustful. He must take a strong interest and sincere concern in your health, happiness, and success in life. In prosperity and adversity he must still be constant; your joys and sorrows must be his; your pleasures and amusements, the same :---his influence, time, and purse, must be at your command; and, to sum up the whole, even his life, if necessary, must be risqued to rescue you from danger; in short, he must be a second self.
It is that mutual confidence, esteem, reci. procity of good offices, and the happiness experienced in each other's society, founded upon virtuous principles, which constitute the true value, advantages, and consolations of friendship, rendering it, perhaps, the greatest blessing here below. M 4
But remember, ingenuous youth! there, can exist no true or sincere friendship among the wicked. There, if a friendship is attempted to be formed, dark suspicion, mistrust, jealousy, selfinterest, and envy, will soon poison its springs, and confusion in every transaction ensue, till anger, malice, and violence, at length dissolve the flimsy cobweb tie.
As there is 'no peace to the wicked (saith your God), and they are like the troubled sea which cannot rest, so, BLESSED is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners; i. e. who neither forms any connexion with them, or puts himself in the way of their company. For where men's mutual transactions are vicious, dishonest, and incapable of bearing the light, all those concerned in them being criminal, and their bad principles known to each other, there cannot exist any true confidence, therefore suspicion and distrust, must naturally follow; and every one, aiming at who shall secure the greatest share of the fruits of their villany to himself, will make no hesitation to cheat his associates, and even be the means of hanging them, at last, for his own safety, as we see it a hundred times in the year exemplified in those who turn king's evidence to convict their companions. ---This is a plain and convincing argument, that there can neither be friendship or safety with the wicked; and, though we have