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[Estimate of the Effects of Luxury.]
[From the same.]

emotions which they excite are soft and tender. They
draw off the mind from the hurry of business and in-
terest; cherish reflection; dispose to tranquillity; and
produce an agreeable melancholy, which, of all dispo-
sitions of the mind, is the best suited to love and
friendship. In the second place, a delicacy of taste
is favourable to love and friendship, by confining our Since luxury may be considered either as innocent
choice to few people, and making us indifferent to the or blameable, one may be surprised at those prepos-
company and conversation of the greater part of men. terous opinions which have been entertained concern-
You will seldom find that mere men of the world, ing it; while men of libertine principles bestow praises
whatever strong sense they may be endowed with, are even on vicious luxury, and represent it as highly
very nice in distinguishing characters, or in marking advantageous to society; and, on the other hand, men
those insensible differences and gradations which make of severe morals blame even the most innocent luxury,
one man preferable to another. Any one that has and represent it as the source of all the corruptions,
competent sense is sufficient for their entertain-disorders, and factions incident to civil government.
ment: they talk to him of their pleasure and affairs
We shall here endeavour to correct both these ex-
with the same frankness that they would to another; tremes, by proving, first, that the ages of refinement are
and finding many who are fit to supply his place, they both the happiest and most virtuous; secondly, that
never feel any vacancy or want in his absence. But, wherever luxury ceases to be innocent, it also ceases
to make use of the allusion of a celebrated French to be beneficial; and when carried a degree too far,
author, the judgment may be compared to a clock or is a quality pernicious, though perhaps not the most
watch where the most ordinary machine is sufficient pernicious, to political society.
to tell the hours, but the most elaborate alone can
point out the minutes and seconds, and distinguish
the smallest differences of time. One that has well
digested his knowledge, both of books and men, has
little enjoyment but in the company of a few select
companions. He feels too sensibly how much all the
rest of mankind fall short of the notions which he has
entertained; and his affections being thus confined
within a narrow circle, no wonder he carries them
further than if they were more general and undistin-
guished. The gaiety and frolic of a bottle companion
improves with him into a solid friendship; and the
ardours of a youthful appetite become an elegant

To prove the first point, we need but consider the effects of refinement both on private and on public life. Human happiness, according to the most received notions, seems to consist in three ingredients; action, pleasure, and indolence. And though these ingredients ought to be mixed in different proportions, according to the particular disposition of the person, yet no one ingredient can be entirely wanting without destroying in some measure the relish of the whole composition. Indolence or repose, indeed, seems not of itself to contribute much to our enjoyment, but, like sleep, is requisite as an indulgence to the weakness of human nature, which cannot support an uninterrupted course of business or pleasure. That quick march of the spirits which takes a man from himself, and chiefly gives satisfaction, does in the end exhaust the mind, and requires some intervals of repose, which, though agreeable for a moment, yet, if prolonged, beget a languor and lethargy that destroy all enjoyment. Education, custom, and example, have a mighty influence in turning the mind to any of these pursuits; and it must be owned that, where they promote a relish for action and pleasure, they are so far favourable to human happiness. In times when industry and the arts flourish, men are kept in perpetual occupation, and enjoy as their reward the occupation itself, as well as those pleasures which are the fruit of their labour. The mind acquires new vigour, enlarges its powers and faculties, and, by an assiduity in honest industry, both satisfies its natural appetites and prevents the growth of unnatural ones, which commonly spring up when nourished by ease and idleness. Banish those arts from society, you deprive men both of action and of pleasure; and leaving nothing but indolence in their place, you even destroy the relish of indolence, which never is agreeable but when it succeeds to labour, and recruits the spirits exhausted by too much application and fatigue.

Another advantage of industry and of refinements in the mechanical arts is, that they commonly produce some refinements in the liberal; nor can one be carried to perfection without being accompanied in some degree with the other. The same age which produces great philosophers and politicians, renowned generals and poets, usually abounds with skilful weavers and ship-carpenters. We cannot reasonably expect that a piece of woollen cloth will be brought to perfection in a nation which is ignorant of astronomy, or where ethics are neglected. The spirit of the age affects all the arts, and the minds of men being once roused from their lethargy and put into a fermentation, turn themselves on all sides, and carry improvements into every art and science. Profound ignorance is totally banished, and men enjoy the privilege of rational

[On Simplicity and Refinement.]

[From the same.]

It is a certain rule that wit and passion are entirely incompatible. When the affections are moved, there is no place for the imagination. The mind of man being naturally limited, it is impossible that all its faculties can operate at once; and the more any one predominates, the less room is there for the others to exert their vigour. For this reason a greater degree of simplicity is required in all compositions where men, and actions, and passions are painted, than in such as consist of reflections and observations. And, as the former species of writing is the more engaging and beautiful, one may safely, upon this account, give the preference to the extreme of simplicity above that of refinement.

We may also observe, that those compositions which we read the oftenest, and which every man of taste has got by heart, have the recommendation of simplicity, and have nothing surprising in the thought when divested of that elegance of expression and harmony of numbers with which it is clothed. If the merit of the composition lie in a point of wit, it may strike at first; but the mind anticipates the thought in the second perusal, and is no longer affected by it. When I read an epigram of Martial, the first line recalls the whole; and I have no pleasure in repeating to myself what I know already. But each line, each word in Catullus, has its merit; and I am never tired with the perusal of him. It is sufficient to run over Cowley once; but Parnell, after the fiftieth reading, is as fresh as the first. Besides, it is with books as with women, where a certain plainness of manner and of dress is more engaging than that glare of paint, and airs, and apparel, which may dazzle the eye but reaches not the affections. Terence is a modest and bashful beauty, to whom we grant everything, because he assumes

nothing; and whose purity and nature make a durable though not a violent impression on us.

creatures, to think as well as to act, to cultivate the pleasures of the mind as well as those of the body.

The more these refined arts advance, the more sociable men become. Nor is it possible, that when enriched with science, and possessed of a fund of conversation, they should be contented to remain in solitude, or live with their fellow-citizens in that distant manner which is peculiar to ignorant and barbarous nations. They flock into cities; love to receive and communicate knowledge; to show their wit or their breeding; their taste in conversation or living, in clothes or furniture. Curiosity allures the wise; vanity the foolish; and pleasure both. Particular clubs and societies are everywhere formed; both sexes meet in an easy and sociable manner; and the tempers of men, as well as their behaviour, refine apace. So that, beside the improvements which they receive from knowledge and the liberal arts, it is impossible but they must feel an increase of humanity, from the very habit of conversing together, and contributing to each other's pleasure and entertainment. Thus industry, knowledge, and humanity, are linked together by an indissoluble chain, and are found, from experience as well as reason, to be peculiar to the more polished, and what are commonly denominated the more luxurious ages.

the sword was dropped at once by all the Italian Sovereigns; while the Venetian aristocracy was jealous of its subjects, the Florentine democracy applied itself entirely to commerce; Rome was governed by priests, and Naples by women. War then became the business of soldiers of fortune, who spared one another, and, to the astonishment of the world, could engage a whole day in what they called a battle, and return at night to their camp without the least bloodshed.

What has chiefly induced severe moralists to declaim against refinement in the arts, is the example of ancient Rome, which, joining to its poverty and rusticity virtue and public spirit, rose to such a surprising height of grandeur and liberty; but, having learned from its conquered provinces the Asiatic luxury, fell into every kind of corruption; whence arose sedition and civil wars, attended at last with the total loss of liberty. All the Latin classics whom we peruse in our infancy are full of these sentiments, and universally ascribe the ruin of their state to the arts and riches imported from the East; insomuch that Sallust represents a taste for painting as a vice, no less than lewdness and drinking. And so popular were these sentiments during the latter ages of the republic, that this author abounds in praises of the old rigid Roman virtue, though himself the most egregious instance of modern luxury and corruption; speaks contemptuously of the Grecian eloquence, though the most elegant writer in the world; nay, employs preposterous digressions and declamations to this purpose, though a model of taste and correctness.

[After some farther arguments] Knowledge in the arts of government naturally begets mildness and moderation, by instructing men in the advantages of humane maxims above rigour and severity, which drive subjects into rebellion, and make the return to submission impracticable, by cutting off all hopes of pardon. When the tempers of men are softened, as well as their knowledge improved, this humanity appears still more conspicuous, and is the chief characteristic which distinguishes a civilised age from times of barbarity and ignorance. Factions are then less inveterate, revolutions less tragical, authority less severe, and seditions less frequent. Even foreign wars abate of their cruelty; and after the field of battle, where honour and interest steel men against compassion as well as fear, the combatants divest themselves of the brute, and resume the man.

But it would be easy to prove that these writers mistook the cause of the disorders in the Roman state, and ascribed to luxury and the arts what really proceeded from an ill-modelled government, and the unlimited extent of conquests. Refinement on the pleasures and conveniences of life has no natural tendency to beget venality and corruption. The value which all men put upon any particular pleasure depends on comparison and experience; nor is a porter less greedy of money which he spends on bacon and brandy, than a courtier who purchases champagne and ortolans. Riches are valuable at all times, and to all men, because they always purchase pleasures such as men are accustomed to and desire: nor can anything restrain or regulate the love of money but a sense of honour and virtue; which, if it be not nearly equal at all times, will naturally abound most in ages of knowledge and refinement.


Nor need we fear that men, by losing their ferocity, will lose their martial spirit, or become less undaunted and vigorous in defence of their country or their liberty. The arts have no such effect in enervating either the mind or body. On the contrary, industry, their inseparable attendant, adds new force to both. And if anger, which is said to be the whetstone of courage, loses somewhat of its asperity by politeness and refinement, a sense of honour, which is a stronger, more constant, and more governable principle, acquires fresh vigour by that elevation of genius which arises from knowledge and a good education. Add to this, that courage can neither have any duration, nor be of any use, when not accompanied with discipline and martial skill, which are seldom found among a barbarous people. The ancients remarked that Datames was the only barbarian that ever knew the art of war. And Pyrrhus, seeing the Romans marshal their army with some art and skill, said with surprise, These barbarians have nothing barbarous in their discipline! It is observable that, as the old Romans, by applying themselves solely to war, were almost the only uncivilised people that ever possessed military discipline, so the modern Italians are the only civilised people, among Europeans, that ever wanted courage and a martial spirit. Those who would ascribe this effeminacy of the Italians to their luxury, or politeness, or application to the arts, need but consider the French and English, whose bravery is as incontestable as their love for the arts and their assiduity in commerce. The Italian his-than those of a French or English gentlemen, the torians give us a more satisfactory reason for this rank of men the most civilised in the most civilised degeneracy of their countrymen. They show us how nations.

To declaim against present times, and magnify the virtue of remote ancestors, is a propensity almost inherent in human nature: and as the sentiments and opinions of civilised ages alone are transmitted to posterity, hence it is that we meet with so many severe judgments pronounced against luxury, and even science; and hence it is that at present we give so ready an assent to them. But the fallacy is easily perceived by comparing different nations that are contemporaries; where we both judge more impartially, and can better set in opposition those manners with which we are sufficiently acquainted. Treachery and cruelty, the most pernicious and most odious of all vices, seem peculiar to uncivilised ages, and by the refined Greeks and Romans were ascribed to all the barbarous nations which surrounded them. They might justly, therefore, have presumed that their own ancestors, so highly celebrated, possessed no greater virtue, and were as much inferior to their posterity in honour and humanity as in taste and science. An ancient Frank or Saxon may be highly extolled: but I believe every man would think his life or fortune much less secure in the hands of a Moor or Tartar



We come now to the second position which we proposed to illustrate, to wit, that as innocent luxury or a refinement in the arts and conveniences of life is advantageous to the public, so wherever luxury ceases to be innocent, it also ceases to be beneficial; and when carried a degree farther, begins to be a quality pernicious, though perhaps not the most pernicious, to political society.

Let us consider what we call vicious luxury. No gratification, however sensual, can of itself be esteemed vicious. A gratification is only vicious when it engrosses all a man's expense, and leaves no ability for such acts of duty and generosity as are required by his situation and fortune. Suppose that he correct the vice, and employ part of his expense in the education of his children, in the support of his friends, and in relieving the poor, would any prejudice result to society? On the contrary, the same consumption would arise; and that labour which at present is employed only in producing a slender gratification to one man, would relieve the necessitous, and bestow satisfaction on hundreds. The same care and toil that raise a dish of pease at Christmas, would give bread to a whole family during six months. To say that without a vicious luxury the labour would not have been employed at all, is only to say that there is some other defect in human nature, such as indolence, selfishness, inattention to others, for which luxury in some measure provides a remedy; as one poison may be an antidote to another. But virtue, like wholesome food, is better than poisons, however corrected.

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general preferable to sloth and idleness, which would commonly succeed in its place, and are more hurtful both to private persons and to the public. When sloth reigns, a mean uncultivated way of life prevails amongst individuals, without society, without enjoyment. And if the sovereign, in such a situation, demands the service of his subjects, the labour of the state suffices only to furnish the necessaries of life to the labourers, and can afford nothing to those who are employed in the public service.

I thought this reasoning necessary, in order to give some light to a philosophical question which has been much disputed in England. I call it a philosophical question, not a political one; for whatever may be the consequence of such a miraculous transformation of mankind as would endow them with every species of virtue, and free them from every species of vice, this concerns not the magistrate who aims only at possibilities. He cannot cure every vice by substituting a virtue in its place. Very often he can only cure one vice by another, and in that case he ought to prefer what is least pernicious to society. Luxury, when excessive, is the source of many ills, but is in

Of the Middle Station of Life.

The moral of the following fable will easily discover itself without my explaining it. One rivulet meeting another, with whom he had been long united in strictest amity, with noisy haughtiness and disdain thus bespoke him:- What, brother! still in the same state! Still low and creeping! Are you not ashamed when you behold me, who, though lately in a like condition with you, am now become a great river, and shall shortly be able to rival the Danube or the Rhine, provided those friendly rains continue which have favoured my banks, but neglected yours?' 'Very true,' replies the humble rivulet, you are now, indeed, swollen to a great size; but methinks you are become withal somewhat turbulent and muddy. I am contented with my low condition and my purity.'

Instead of commenting upon this fable, I shall take occasion from it to compare the different stations of life, and to persuade such of my readers as are placed in the middle station to be satisfied with it, as the most eligible of all others. These form the most numerous rank of men that can be supposed susceptible of philosophy, and therefore all discourses of morality ought principally to be addressed to them. The great are too much immersed in pleasure, and the poor too much occupied in providing for the necessities of life, to hearken to the calm voice of reason. The middle station, as it is most happy in many respects, so particularly in this, that a man placed in it can, with the greatest leisure, consider his own happiness, and reap a new enjoyment, from comparing his situation with that of persons above or below him.

the ills follow.

Suppose the same number of men that are at present in Great Britain with the same soil and climate; I ask, is it not possible for them to be happier, by the most perfect way of life that can be imagined, and by the greatest reformation that omnipotence itself could work in their temper and disposition? To assert that they cannot, appears evidently ridiculous. As the land is able to maintain more than all its present inhabitants, they could never, in such a Utopian state, feel any other ills than those which arise from bodily sickness, and these are not the half of human miseries. All other ills spring from some vice, either in ourselves or others; and even many of our diseases proceed from the same origin. Remove the vices, and You must only take care to remove all the vices. If you remove part, you may render By banishing vicious luxury, without curing sloth and an indifference to others, you only diminish industry in the state, and add nothing to men's charity or their generosity. Let us, therefore, rest contented with asserting that two opposite vices in a state may be more advantageous than either of them alone; but let us never pronounce vice in itself advantageous. Is it not very inconsistent for an author to assert in one page that moral distinctions are inventions of politicians for public interest, and in the next page maintain that vice is advantageous to the public? And indeed it seems, upon any system of morality, little less than a contradiction in terms to talk of a vice which is in general beneficial to society.

the matter worse.

Agur's prayer is sufficiently noted-Two things have I required of thee; deny me them not before I die: remove far from me vanity and lies; give me neither poverty nor riches; feed me with food convenient for me, lest I be full and deny thee and say who is the Lord or lest I be poor, and steal, and take the name of my God in vain.' The middle station is here justly recommended, as affording the fullest security for virtue; and I may also add, that it gives opportunity for the most ample exercise of it, and furnishes employment for every good quality which we can possibly be possessed of. Those who are placed among the lower ranks of men have little opportunity of exerting any other virtue besides those of patience, resignation, industry, and integrity. Those who are advanced into the higher stations, have full employment for their generosity, humanity, affability, and charity. When a man lies betwixt these two extremes, he can exert the former virtues towards his superiors, and the latter towards his inferiors. Every moral quality which the human soul is susceptible of, may have its turn, and be called up to action; and a man may, after this manner, be much more certain of his progress in virtue, than where his good qualities lie dormant and without employment.

But there is another virtue that seems principally to lie among equals, and is, for that reason, chiefly calculated for the middle station of life. This virtue is friendship. I believe most men of generous tempers are apt to envy the great, when they consider the large opportunities such persons have of doing good

to their fellow-creatures, and of acquiring the friendship and esteem of men of merit. They make no advances in vain, and are not obliged to associate with those whom they have little kindness for, like people of inferior stations, who are subject to have their proffers of friendship rejected even where they would be most fond of placing their affections. But though the great have more facility in acquiring friendships, they cannot be so certain of the sincerity of them as men of a lower rank, since the favours they bestow may acquire them flattery, instead of good will and kindness. It has been very judiciously remarked, that we attach ourselves more by the services we perform than by those we receive, and that a man is in danger of losing his friends by obliging them too far. I should therefore choose to lie in the middle way, and to have my commerce with my friend varied both by obligations given and received. I have too much pride to be willing that all the obligations should lie on my side, and should be afraid that, if they all lay on his, he would also have too much pride to be entirely easy under them, or have a perfect complacency in my company.


We may also remark of the middle station of life, that it is more favourable to the acquiring of wisdom and ability, as well as of virtue, and that a man so situate has a better chance for attaining a knowledge both of men and things, than those of a more elevated station. He enters with more familiarity into human life, and everything appears in its natural colours before him he has more leisure to form observations; and has, besides, the motive of ambition to push him on in his attainments, being certain that he can never rise to any distinction or eminence in the world without his own industry. And here I cannot forbear communicating a remark, which may appear somewhat extraordinary, namely, that it is wisely ordained by Providence that the middle station should be the most favourable to the improving our natural abilities, since there is really more capacity requisite to perform the duties of that station, than is requisite to act in the higher spheres of life. There are more natural parts, and a stronger genius requisite to make a good lawyer or physician, than to make a great monarch. For, let us take any race or succession of kings, where birth alone gives a title to the crown; the English kings, for instance, who have not been esteemed the most shining in history. From the Conquest to the succession of his present majesty, we may reckon twenty-eight sovereigns, omitting those who died minors. Of these, eight are esteemed princes of great capacity, namely, the Conqueror, Harry II., Edward I., Edward III., Harry V. and VII., Elizabeth, and the late King William. Now, I believe every one will allow, that, in the common run of mankind, there are not eight out of twenty-eight who are fitted by nature to make a figure either on the bench or at the bar. Since Charles VII., ten monarchs have reigned in France, omitting Francis II. Five of those have been esteemed princes of capacity, namely, Louis XI., XII., and XIV., Francis I., and Harry IV. In short, the governing of mankind well requires a great deal of virtue, justice, and humanity, but not a surprising capacity. A certain Pope, whose name I have forgot, used to say, 'Let us divert ourselves, my friends; the world governs itself.' There are, indeed, some critical times, such as those in which Harry IV. lived, that call for the utmost vigour; and a less courage and capacity than what The Hartleian theory at this time found adappeared in that great monarch must have sunk un-mirers and followers in England. DR DAVID HARTder the weight. But such circumstances are rare; LEY, an English physician (1705-1757), having im and even then fortune does at least one half of the bibed from Locke the principles of logic and metabusiness. physics, and from a hint of Newton the doctrine that there were vibrations in the substance of the brain that might throw new light on the phenomena of the mind, formed a system which he developed

Since the common professions, such as law or physic, require equal, if not superior capacity, to what are exerted in the higher spheres of life, it is evident that

the soul must be made of still a finer mould, to shine in philosophy or poetry, or in any of the higher parts of learning. Courage and resolution are chiefly requisite in a commander, justice and humanity in a statesman, but genius and capacity in a scholar. Great generals and great politicians are found in all ages and countries of the world, and frequently start up at once, even amongst the greatest barbarians. Sweden was sunk in ignorance when it produced Gustavus Ericson and Gustavus Adolphus; Muscovy when the Czar appeared; and perhaps Carthage when it gave birth to Hannibal. But England must pass through a long gradation of its Spensers, Johnsons, Wallers, Drydens, before it arise at an Addison or a Pope. A happy talent for the liberal arts and sciences is a kind of prodigy among men. Nature must afford the richest genius that comes from her hands; education and example must cultivate it from the earliest infancy; and industry must concur to carry it to any degree of perfection. No man needs be surprised to see Kouli-Kan among the Persians; but Homer, in so early an age among the Greeks, is certainly matter of the highest wonder.

A man cannot show a genius for war who is not so fortunate as to be trusted with command; and it seldom happens, in any state or kingdom, that several at once are placed in that situation. How many Marlboroughs were there in the confederate army, who never rose so much as to the command of a regiment? But I am persuaded there has been but one Milton in England within these hundred years, because every one may exert the talents of poetry who is possessed of them; and no one could exert them under greater disadvantages than that divine poet. If no man were allowed to write verses but the person who was beforehand named to be laureate, could we expect a poet in ten thousand years!

Were we to distinguish the ranks of men by their genius and capacity, more than by their virtue and usefulness to the public, great philosophers would cer tainly challenge the first rank, and must be placed at the top of mankind. So rare is this character, that perhaps there has not as yet been above two in the world who can lay a just claim to it. At least Galileo and Newton seem to me so far to excel all the rest, that I cannot admit any other into the same class with them.

Great poets may challenge the second place; and this species of genius, though rare, is yet much more frequent than the former. Of the Greek poets that remain, Homer alone seems to merit this character: of the Romans, Virgil, Horace, and Lucretius: of the English, Milton and Pope: Corneille, Racine, Boileau, and Voltaire of the French: and Tasso and Ariosto of the Italians.

Great orators and historians are perhaps more rare than great poets; but as the opportunities for exerting the talents requisite for eloquence, or acquiring the knowledge requisite for writing history, depend in some measure upon fortune, we cannot pronounce these productions of genius to be more extraordinary than the former.

I should now return from this digression, and show that the middle station of life is more favourable to happiness, as well as to virtue and wisdom; but as the arguments that prove this seem pretty obvious, I shall here forbear insisting on them.

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in his elaborate work, published in 1749, under the title of Observations on Man, his Frame, his Duty, and his Expectations. Hartley, besides his theory of the vibrations in the brain, refers all the operations of the intellect to the association of ideas, and represents that association as reducible to the single law, that ideas which enter the mind at the same time acquire a tendency to call up each other, which is in direct proportion to the frequency of their having entered together. His theory of vibrations has a tendency to materialism, but was not designed by its ingenious author to produce such an effect.


DR ADAM SMITH, after an interval of a few years, succeeded to Hutcheson as professor of moral philosophy in Glasgow, and not only inherited his love of metaphysics, but adopted some of his theories, which he blended with his own views of moral science. Smith was born in Kirkaldy in Fifeshire in 1723. His father held the situation of comptroller of customs, but died before the birth of his


The philosophical doctrines of Smith are vastly inferior in value to the language and illustrations he employs in enforcing them. He has been styled the most eloquent of modern moralists; and his work is embellished with such a variety of examples, with such true pictures of the passions, and of life and manners, that it may be read with pleasure and advantage by those who, like Gray the poet, cannot see in the darkness of metaphysics. His leading doctrine, that sympathy must necessarily precede our moral approbation or disapprobation, has been generally abandoned. To derive our moral sentiments,' says Brown, which are as universal as the actions of mankind that come under our review, from the occasional sympathies that warm or sadden us with joys, and griefs, and resentments which are not our own, seems to me very nearly the same sort of error as it would be to derive the waters of an overflowing stream from the sunshine or shade which may occasionally gleam over it.' Mackintosh has also pointed out the error of representing the sympathies in their primitive state, without undergoing any transformation, as continuing exclusively to constitute the moral sentiments-an error which he happily compares to that of the geologist who should tell us that the layers of this planet had always been in the same state, shutting his eyes to transition states and secondary formations. As a specimen of the flowing style and moral illustrations of Smith, we give an extract on


Dr Adam Smith.


At Glasgow university, Smith distinguished himself by his acquirements, and obtained a nomination to Baliol college, Oxford, where he continued for seven years. His friends had designed him for the church, but he preferred trusting to literature and science. He gave a course of lectures in Edinburgh on rhetoric and belles lettres, which, in 1751, recommended him to the vacant chair of professor of logic in Glasgow, and this situation he next year exchanged for the more congenial one of moral philosophy professor. In 1759 he published his Theory of Moral Sentiments, and in 1764 he was prevailed upon to accompany the young Duke of Buccleuch as travelling tutor on the continent. They were absent two years, and on his return, Smith retired to his native town, and pursued a severe system of study, which resulted in the publication, in 1776, of his great work on political economy, An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations. Two years afterwards he was made one of the commissioners of customs, and his latter days were spent in ease and opulence. He died in 1790.

[The Results of Misdirected and Guilty Ambition.]

To attain to this envied situation, the candidates for fortune too frequently abandon the paths of virtue; for unhappily, the road which leads to the one, and that which leads to the other, lie sometimes in very opposite directions. But the ambitious man flatters himself that, in the splendid situation to which he advances, he will have so many means of commanding the respect and admiration of mankind, and will be enabled to act with such superior propriety and grace, that the lustre of his future conduct will entirely cover or efface the foulness of the steps by which he arrived at that elevation. In many governments the candidates for the highest stations are above the law, and if they can attain the object of their ambition, they have no fear of being called to account for the means by which they acquired it. They often endeavour, therefore, not only by fraud and falsehood, the ordinary and vulgar arts of intrigue and cabal, but sometimes by the perpetration of the most enormous crimes, by murder and assassination, by rebellion and civil war, to supplant and destroy those who oppose or stand in the way of their greatness. They more frequently miscarry than succeed, and commonly gain nothing but the disgraceful punishment which is due to their crimes. But though they should be so lucky as to attain that wished-for greatness, they are always most miserably disappointed in the happiness which they expect to enjoy in it. It is not ease or pleasure, but always honour, of one kind or another, though frequently an honour very ill understood, that the ambitious man really pursues. But the honour of his exalted station appears, both in his own eyes and in those of other people, polluted and defiled by the baseness of the means through which he rose to it. Though by the profusion of every liberal expense, though by excessive indulgence in every profligate pleasure-the wretched but usual resource of ruined characters; though by the hurry of public business, or by the prouder and more dazzling tumult of war, he may endeavour to efface, both from his own memory and from that of other people, the remembrance of what he has done, that remembrance never fails to pursue him. He invokes in vain the dark and disma

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