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"he ought, his life will be honourable, and his death happy."
As the pronounced these words, fhe vanished from his fight. But though her features at that moment, inftead of infpiring their ufual horror, feemed to difplay a kind of languishing beauty, yet as Uranio, in fpite of his utmoft efforts, could never prevail upon himself to love her, he neither regretted her departure, nor wished for her return. But though he rejoiced in her abfence, he treasured up her counfels in his heart, and grew happy by the practice of them.
He afterwards betook himself again to merchandize; and having in a fhort time acquired a competency fufficient for the real enjoyments of life, he retreated to a little farm which he had bought for that purpofe, and where he determined to continue the remainder of his days. Here he employed his time in planting, gardening, and husbandry, in quelling all diforderly paffions, and in forming his mind by the leffons of Adverfity. He took great delight in a little cell or hermitage in his garden, which stood under a tuft of trees, encompaffed with eglantine and honey-fuckles. Adjoining to it was a cold bath, formed by a fpring iffuing from a rock, and over the door was written in large characters the following infcription.
Beneath this mofs-grown roof, within this cell,
What PALACE can display fo fair a train?
He lived to a good old age; and died honoured and lamented.
The Value of Life fixed by Hope and Fear. An Laftern [Advent. N° 114.]
LMET, the Dervife, who watched the facred lamp in the fepulchre of the PROPHET, as he one day rofe up from the devotions of the morning, which he had performed at the gate of the temple with his body turned towards the eaft and his forehead on the earth, faw before him a man in fplendid apparel, attended by a long retinue, who gazed ftedfaftly at him with a look of mournful complacence, and feemed defirous to speak, but unwilling to offend.
The Dervife, after a fhort filence, advanced, and faluting him with the calm dignity which independance confers upon humility, requested that he would reveal his purpose.
"ALMET," faid the firanger, "thou feeft before "thee a man, whom the hand of profperity has over"whelmed with wretchednefs. Whatever I once de"fired as the means of happiness, I now poffefs; but I "am not yet happy, and therefore I defpair. I regret "the lapfe of time, because it glides away without en"joyment; and as I expect nothing in the future but "the vanities of the past, I do not wish that the future "fhould arrive. Yet I tremble left it should be cut off; "and my heart finks when I anticipate the moment in "which eternity fhall close over the vacuity of my life "like the fea upon the path of a fhip, and leave no "traces of my existence more durable than the furrow
"which remains after the waves have united. If in "the treafuries of thy wisdom, there is any precept to "obtain felicity, vouchfafe it to me: for this purpose "I am come; a purpose which yet I feared to reveal, left like all the former it fhould be disappointed.' Almet liftened, with looks of aftonishment and pity, to this complaint of a being, in whom reafon was known to be a pledge of immortality: but the ferenity of his countenance foon returned; and ftretching out his hand towards heaven, " Stranger," faid he, " the know
ledge which I have received from the PROPHET, I I ◄ will communicate to thee."
As I was fitting one evening at the porch of the temple, penfive and alone, mine eye wandered among the multitude that was fcattered before me; and while I remarked the wearinefs and follicitude which was visible in every countenance, I was fuddenly ftruck with a fenfe of their condition. Wretched mortals, faid I, to what purpose are ye bufy? If to produce happiness, by whom is it enjoyed? Do the linens of Egypt, and the filks of Perfia, beftow felicity on those who wear them, equal to the wretchednefs of yonder flaves whom I fee leading the camels that bring them? Is the fineness of the texture, or the fplendor of the tints, regarded with delight by thofe, to whom cuftom has rendered them familiar? Or can the power of habit render others infenfible of pain, who live only to traverse the defart; a fcene of dreadful uniformity, where a barren level is bounded only by the horizon; where no change of profpect, or variety of images, relieves the traveller from a fenfe of toil and danger, of whirlwinds which in a moment may bury him in the fand, and of thirst which the wealthy have given half their poffeffions to allay? Do thofe on whom hereditary diamonds fparkle with unregarded luftre, gain from the poffeffion, what is loft by the wretch who seeks them in the mine; who lives excluded from the common bounties of nature; to whom even the viciffitude of day and night is not known; who fighs in perpetual darknefs, and whofe life is one mournful alternative of infenfibility and labour? If those are not happy who poffefs, in proportion as thofe are wretched who bestow, how vain a dream-is the life of man! and if there is indeed fuch difference in the value of existence, how shall we acquit of partiality, the hand by which this difference has been made?
While my thoughts thus multiplied, and my heart burned within me, I became fer.fible of a sudden influence from above. The streets and the crowds of Mecca difappeared; I found myself fitting on the declivity of a mountain, and perceived at my right hand an
angel, whom I knew to be Azoran, the minifter of reproof. When I saw him, I was afraid. I caft mine eye upon the ground, and was about to deprecate his anger, when he commanded me to be filent. "Almet," faid he," thou haft devoted thy life to meditation, that thy "counfel might deliver ignorance from the mazes of error, and deter prefumption from the precipice of 46 guilt; but the book of nature thou haft read without "understanding. It is again open before thee; look 66 up, confider it and be wife.”
I looked up, and beheld an inclosure, beautiful as the gardens of Paradise, but of a small extent. Thro' the middle there was a green walk; at the end, a wild defart; and beyond, impenetrable dark nefs. The walk was shaded with trees of every kind, that were covered at once with bloffoms and fruit; innumerable birds were finging in the branches; the grafs was intermingled with flowers, which impregnated the breeze with fragrance, and painted the path with beauty: on one fide flowed a gentle tranfparent ftream, which was juft heard to murmur over the golden fands that sparkled at the bottom; and on the other were walks and bowers, fountains, grottos, and cafcades, which diverfified the fcene with endless variety, but did not conceal the bounds.
While I was gazing in a tranfport of delight and wonder on this enchanting fpot, I perceived a man ftealing along the walk with a thoughtful and deliberate pace: his eyes were fixed upon the earth, and his arms croffed on his bofom; he fometimes started, as if a fud
den pang had feized him: his countenance expreffed follicitude and terror; he looked round with a figh, and having gazed a moment on the defart that lay before him, he feemed as if he wifhed to ftop, but was impelled forward by fome invisible power: his features, however, foon fettled again into a calm melancholy; his eye was again fixed on the ground; and he went on, as before, with apparent reluctance, but without emotion. I was ftruck with this appearance; and turning haftily to the Angel, was about to enquire what could produce fuch infelicity in a being, furrounded with
with every object that could gratify every sense; but
I turned again toward the Angel, impatient to enquire from what fecret fource happinefs was derived, in a fituation fo different from that in which it might have been expected; but he again prevented my request: "Almet," faid he, "remember what thou haft feen, "and let this memorial be written upon the tablets of "thy heart. Remember, Almet, that the world in "which thou art placed, is but the road to another; "and that happiness depends not upon the path, but "the end: the value of this period of thy existence, is "fixed by hope and fear. The wretch who wished to "linger in the garden, who looked round upon its "limits with terror, was deftitute of enjoyment, be"cause he was deftitute of hope, and was perpetually
tormented by the dread of lofing that which yet he "did not enjoy: the fong of the birds had been re"peated till it was not heard, and the flowers had fo "often recurred that their beauty was not feen the "river glided by unnoticed; and he feared to lift his
eye to the profpect, left he should behold the wafte