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The Project Gutenberg EBook of The Works of
Samuel Johnson, LL.D, In Nine Volumes, by
Samuel Johnson
This eBook is for the use of anyone anywhere at
no cost and with almost no restrictions whatsoever.
You may copy it, give it away or re-use it under the
terms of the Project Gutenberg License included
with this eBook or online at
Title: The Works of Samuel Johnson, LL.D, In Nine
Volumes Volume the Third: The Rambler, Vol. II
Author: Samuel Johnson
Release Date: March 2, 2004 [EBook #11397]
Language: English
Produced by Jonathan Ingram, Carol David and
PG Distributed ProofreadersJOHNSON'S WORKS.
106. The vanity of an author's expectations.—Reasons why good authors are sometimes
neglected 107. Properantia's hopes of a year of
confusion. The misery of prostitutes 108. Life
sufficient to all purposes if well employed 109. The
education of a fop 110. Repentance stated and
explained. Retirement and abstinence useful to
repentance 111. Youth made unfortunate by its
haste and eagerness 112. Too much nicety not to
be indulged. The character of Eriphile 113. The
history of Hymenæus's courtship 114. The
necessity of proportioning punishments to crimes
115. The sequel of Hymenæus's courtship 116.
The young trader's attempt at politeness 117. The
advantages of living in a garret 118. The
narrowness of fame 119. Tranquilla's account of
her lovers, opposed to Hymenæus 120. The
history of Almamoulin the son of Nouradin 121.
The dangers of imitation. The impropriety of
imitating Spenser 122. A criticism on the English
historians 123. The young trader turned gentleman
124. The lady's misery in a summer retirement
125. The difficulty of defining comedy. Tragick and
comick sentiments confounded 126. The
universality of cowardice. The impropriety of
extorting praise. The impertinence of an
astronomer 127. Diligence too soon relaxed.
Necessity of perseverance 128. Anxiety universal.
The unhappiness of a wit and a fine lady 129. The
folly of cowardice and inactivity 130. The history of
a beauty 131. Desire of gain the general passion
132. The difficulty of educating a young nobleman
133. The miseries of a beauty defaced 134.
Idleness an anxious and miserable state 135. The
folly of annual retreats into the country 136. Themeanness and mischief of indiscriminate dedication
137. The necessity of literary courage 138. Original
characters to be found in the country. The
character of Mrs. Busy 139. A critical examination
of Samson Agonistes 140. The criticism continued
141. The danger of attempting wit in conversation.
The character of Papilius 142. An account of squire
Bluster 143. The criterions of plagiarism 144. The
difficulty of raising reputation. The various species
of detractors 145. Petty writers not to be despised
146. An account of an author travelling in quest of
his own character. The uncertainty of fame 147.
The courtier's esteem of assurance 148. The
cruelty of parental tyranny 149. Benefits not always
entitled to gratitude 150. Adversity useful to the
acquisition of knowledge 151. The climactericks of
the mind 152. Criticism on epistolary writings 153.
The treatment incurred by loss of fortune 154. The
inefficacy of genius without learning 155. The
usefulness of advice. The danger of habits. The
necessity of reviewing life 156. The laws of writing
not always indisputable. Reflections on tragi-
comedy 157. The scholar's complaint of his own
bashfulness 158. Rules of writing drawn from
examples. Those examples often mistaken 159.
The nature and remedies of bashfulness 160.
Rules for the choice of associates 161. The
revolutions of a garret 162. Old men in danger of
falling into pupilage. The conduct of Thrasybulus
163. The mischiefs of following a patron 164.
Praise universally desired. The failings of eminent
men often imitated 165. The impotence of wealth.
The visit of Scrotinus to the place of his nativity
166. Favour not easily gained by the poor 167. Themarriage of Hymenæus and Tranquilla 168. Poetry
debased by mean expressions. An example from
Shakespeare 169. Labour necessary to excellence
170. The history of Misella debauched by her
relation 171. Misella's description of the life of a
prostitute 172. The effect of sudden riches upon
the manners 173. Unreasonable fears of pedantry
174. The mischiefs of unbounded raillery. History
of Dicaculus 175. The majority are wicked 176.
Directions to authors attacked by criticks. The
various degrees of critical perspicacity 177. An
account of a club of antiquaries 178. Many
advantages not to be enjoyed together 179. The
awkward merriment of a student 180. The study of
life not to be neglected for the sake of books 181.
The history of an adventurer in lotteries 182. The
history of Leviculus, the fortune-hunter 183. The
influence of envy and interest compared 184. The
subject of essays often suggested by chance.
Chance equally prevalent in other affairs 185. The
prohibition of revenge justifiable by reason. The
meanness of regulating our conduct by the
opinions of men 186. Anningait and Ajut; a
Greenland history 187. The history of Anningait
and Ajut concluded 188. Favour often gained with
little assistance from understanding 189. The
mischiefs of falsehood. The character of Turpicula
190. The history of Abouzaid, the son of Morad
191. The busy life of a young lady 192. Love
unsuccessful without riches 193. The author's art
of praising himself 194. A young nobleman's
progress in politeness 195. A young nobleman's
introduction to the knowledge of the town 196.
Human opinions mutable. The hopes of youthfallacious 197. The history of a legacy-hunter 198.
The legacy-hunter's history concluded 199. The
virtues of Rabbi Abraham's magnet 200. Asper's
complaint of the insolence of Prospero.
Unpoliteness not always the effect of pride 201.
The importance of punctuality 202. The different
acceptations of poverty. Cynicks and Monks not
poor 203. The pleasures of life to be sought in
prospects of futurity. Future fame uncertain 204.
The history of ten days of Seged, emperour of
Ethiopia 205. The history of Seged concluded 206.
The art of living at the cost of others 207. The folly
of continuing too long upon the stage 208. The
Rambler's reception. His designTHE
No. 106. SATURDAY, MARCH 23, 1751.
Opinionum commenta delet dies, naturæ judicia
CICERO, vi. Att. 1.
Time obliterates the fictions of opinion, and
confirms the decisions
of nature.
It is necessary to the success of flattery, that it be
accommodated to particular circumstances or
characters, and enter the heart on that side where
the passions stand ready to receive it. A lady
seldom listens with attention to any praise but that
of her beauty; a merchant always expects to hear
of his influence at the bank, his importance on the
exchange, the height of his credit, and the extent
of his traffick: and the author will scarcely be
pleased without lamentations of the neglect of
learning, the conspiracies against genius, and the
slow progress of merit, or some praises of the
magnanimity of those who encounter poverty and
contempt in the cause of knowledge, and trust for
the reward of their labours to the judgment and
gratitude of posterity.An assurance of unfading laurels, and immortal
reputation, is the settled reciprocation of civility
between amicable writers. To raise monuments
more durable than brass, and more conspicuous
than pyramids, has been long the common boast
of literature; but, among the innumerable architects
that erect columns to themselves, far the greater
part, either for want of durable materials, or of art
to dispose them, see their edifices perish as they
are towering to completion, and those few that for
a while attract the eye of mankind, are generally
weak in the foundation, and soon sink by the saps
of time.
No place affords a more striking conviction of the
vanity of human hopes, than a publick library; for
who can see the wall crowded on every side by
mighty volumes, the works of laborious meditation,
and accurate inquiry, now scarcely known but by
the catalogue, and preserved only to increase the
pomp of learning, without considering how many
hours have been wasted in vain endeavours, how
often imagination has anticipated the praises of
futurity, how many statues have risen to the eye of
vanity, how many ideal converts have elevated
zeal, how often wit has exulted in the eternal
infamy of his antagonists, and dogmatism has
delighted in the gradual advances of his authority,
the immutability of his decrees, and the perpetuity
of his power?
—Non unquam dedit
Documenta fors majora, quam frugili loco
Starent superbi.

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