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inferiors; the other delighted only with the cause and foundation of it to cherish and protect them. To one therefore religion is but a convenient disguise, to the other a vigorous motive of action.
For, without such ties of real and solid honour, there is no way of forming a monarch, but after the Machiavelian scheme, by which a prince must ever seem to have all virtues, but really be master of none; he is to be liberal, merciful, and just, only as they serve his interests; while, with the noble art of hypocrisy, empire would be to be extended, and new conquests be made by new devices, by which prompt address his creatures might insensibly give law in the business of life, by leading men in the entertainment of it.
Thus, when words and show are apt to pass for the substantial things they are only to express, there would need no more to enslave a country but to adorn a court; for while every man's vanity makes him believe himself capable of becoming luxury, enjoyments are a ready bait for suff er ngs and the hopes of preferment invitations to servitude; which slavery would be coloured with all the agreements, as they call it, imaginable. The noblest arts and artists, the finest pens and most elegant minds, jointly employed to set it off with the various embellishments of sumptuous entertainments, charming assemblies, and polished discourses, and those apostate abilities of men, the adored monarch might profusely and skilfully encourage, while they flatter his virtue, and gild his vice at so high a rate, that he, without scorn of the one, or love of the other, would alternately and occasionally use both: so that his bounty should support him in his rapines, his mercy in his cruelties.
'Nor is it to give things a more severe look than is natural, to suppose such must be the consequences
of a prince's having no other pursuit than that of his own glory; for if we consider an infant born into the world, and beholding itself the mightiest thing in it, itself the present admiration and future prospect of a fawning people, who profess themselves great or mean, according to the figure he is to make amongst them, what fancy would not be debauched to believe they were but what they professed themselves his mere creatures, and use them as such, by purchasing with their lives a boundless renown, which he, for want of a more just prospect, would place in the number of his slaves, and the extent of his territories? Such undoubtedly would be the tragical effects of a prince's living with no religion, which are not to be surpassed but by his having a false one.
If ambition were spirited with zeal, what would follow, but that his people should be converted into an army, whose swords can make right in power, and solve controversy in belief? And if men should be stiff-necked to the doctrine of that visible church, let them be contented with an oar and a chain, in the midst of stripes and anguish, to contemplate on Him whose yoke is easy and whose burden is light.
With a tyranny begun on his own subjects, and indignation that others draw their breath independent of his frown or smile, why should he not proceed to the seizure of the world? And if nothing but the thirst of sway were the motive of his actions, why should treaties be other than mere words, or solemn national compacts be any thing but an halt in the march of that army, who are never to lay down their arms until all men are reduced to the necessity of hanging their lives on his wayward will; who might supinely, and at leisure, expiate his own sins, by other men's sufferings, while he daily meditates new slaughter and conquests?
For mere man, when giddy with unbridled power, is an insatiate idol, not to be appeased with myriads offered to his pride, which may be puffed up by the adulation of a base and prostrate world into an opinion that he is something more than human, by being something less: and, alas, what is there that mortal man will not believe of himself, when complimented with the attributes of God? He can then conceive thoughts of a power as omnipresent as his. But, should there be such a foe of mankind now upon earth, have our sins so far provoked Heaven, that we are left utterly naked to his fury? Is there no power, no leader, no genius, that can conduct and animate us to our death, or to our. defence? Yes; our great God never gave one to reign by his permission, but he gave to another also to reign by his grace.
All the circumstances of the illustrious life of our prince seem to have conspired to make him the check and bridle of tyranny; for his mind has been strengthened and confirmed by one continued struggle, and Heaven has educated him by adversity to a quick sense of the distresses and miseries of mankind, which he was born to redress. In just scorn of the trivial glories and light ostentations of power, that glorious instrument of Providence moves, like that, in a steady, calm, and silent course, independent either of applause or calumny; which renders him, if not in a political, yet in a moral, a philosophic, an heroic, and a Christian sense, an absolute monarch; who satisfied with this unchangeable, just, and ample glory, must needs turn all his regards from himself to the service of others; for he begins his enterprises with his own share in the success of them; for integrity bears in itself its reward, nor can that which depends not on event ever know disappointment.
With the undoubted character of a glorious captain, and (what he much more values than the most splendid titles) that of a sincere and honest man, he is the hope and stay of Europe, an universal good; not to be engrossed by us only, for distant potentates implore his friendship, and injured empires court his assistance. He rules the world, not by an invasion of the people of the earth, but the address of its princes; and, if that world should be again roused from the repose which his prevailing arms had given it, why should we not hope that there is an Almighty, by whose influence the terrible enemy that thinks himself prepared for battle may find he is but ripe for destruction ?-and that there may be in the womb of time great incidents, which may make the catastrophe of a prosperous life as unfortunate as the particalar scenes of it were successful?-for there does not want a skilful eye and resolute arm to observe and grasp the occasion. A prince, who from
N° 517. THURSDAY, OCTOBER 23, 1712.
Heu pietas! beu prisca fides !
Mirror of ancient faith!
VIRG. Æn. vi. 878.
WE last night received a piece of ill news at our club, which very sensibly afflicted every one of us. I question not but my readers themselves will be troubled at the hearing of it. To keep them no longer in suspense, sir Roger de Coverley is dead. He departed this life at his house in the country, after a few weeks sickness. Sir Andrew Freeport has a letter from one of his correspondents in those parts, that informs him the old man caught a cold at the county-sessions, as he was very warmly promoting an address of his own penning, in which he succeeded according to his wishes. But this particular comes from a whig justice of peace, who was always sir Roger's enemy and antagonist. I have letters both from the chaplain and captain Sentry, which mention nothing of it, but are filled with many particulars to the honour of the good old man. I have likewise a letter from the butler, who took so much care of me last summer when I was at the knight's house. As my friend the butler mentions, in the simplicity of his heart several circumstances the others have passed over in silence, I shall give my reader a copy of his letter, without any alteration or diminution.
Knowing that you was my old master's good friend, I could not forbear sending you the