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As the mind of the epigram writer and the caricaturist are of the same sort, these talents are often possessed by the same individuals; and sometimes fatal is the possession to success in greater things. The praise, accompanied, and perhaps excited, by fear of being the next victim, which rewards the efforts of the epigram writers and caricaturists, elevates them into a dangerous height in their own es.. timation, and by giving them a sense of ability and power sufficient to gratify their vanity at the moment, tends to circumscribe their ambition. Why should they toil to obtain further distinction, when, in the circles in which they move, they are looked up to as wits and artists? They can but be admired; and the salutary wish to obtain excellence of a higher sort is consequently annihilated, and they go on through life satisfied with their apparent successs, openly applauded, but probably secretly

the latter instituted prizes for the best poetical contributions, which were put anonymously into a vase, bearing the following inscription from Virgil:-

Noctes atque dies patet atra janua Ditis.

“The gates of hell are open night and day."
Miller! the urn in ancient times, 'tis said,
Held the collected ashes of the dead;
So thine, the wonder of these modern days,
Stands open day and night for lifeless lays.
Leave not unfinished then, the well formed plan,
Complete the work thy classic taste began;
And, oh! in future, ere thou dost inurn 'em,
Remember first to raise a pile and burn 'em.

feared, and therefore disliked. And mark them as they increase in years! their detracting spirit growing greater as their power to prove it becomes less, till at last, like the angry cur, they can only growl, where they could formerly bite; and the minds which, if not early tempted by the easiness and immediateness of success attendant on the efforts of the moment, might have proved a benefii and a blessing to others, fade

away,

and
go

out in uncomfortableness and gloom, mourning over the consciousness that they can neither amuse nor hurt any longer; and the satirical observation, the ready malice, the active envy, and the jealous spite, which, working together in their minds in youth, produced the phosphoric brilliancy of the epigram and caricature-convert, alas! into a dark, offensive, increasing mass of malignant feelings, of the same nature as those in former days, but the shining vapours which they once produced are vanished for ever.

It is possible to envy wits of this description when they are young; but if we see and hear them in their decay, the only feeling which they can excite is salutary and warning compassion.

“ Point d'ennemis ma fille,' enemies, daughter," said the Marchioness de Sévigné to the Countess de Grignan, in one of her letters. Excellent advice! but if it was ever given to an epigrammatist, it was probably given in vain; and few persons have made

6. Have no

more enemies than the known writer of epigrams.

Yet, there have been minds powerful and christian enough to forgive injuries of this kind, and I have pleasure in relating the following anecdote. It is in the field of epigram that academical students of poetical talents usually try their first strength; and some of the best epigrams which I ever read were written by Cambridge scholars, who have since distinguished themselves in the higher branches of literature.* A member of one of the colleges, who was well known for his wit, and who, though no longer a student, was a resident at Cambridge, wrote an epigram on the late Bishop Watson, then residing there also, which was handed about and greatly admired.

Soon after, the epigram-writer, being desirous of obtaining a particular office in the University, called to solicit the vote of the bishop. “ What, Sir!” exclaimed the prelate," do you come to ask me to vote for you? Answer me, Sir, did you not write a certain epigram?” The poorwit blushed, stammered, and with difficulty confessed that he did. “Very well, Sir; very well," returned the bishop; but it does not matter whether you did or not, I think you fit for the place; you shall, therefore, have my vote.

It is gratifying to write, and it is pleasant, no doubt, to read a good epigram; but most persons, I trust, had rather have acted like

* Particularly Archdeacon Wr

Bishop Watson, on this occasion, than have written like his satirist.

I shall now say in recapitulation, that EYEINFLICTERS are practical detractors, and that I have made this noun out of a verb, “ to inflict the eye upon a person,” used by Dr. Parr.

That EYE-INFLICTERS seek the kindred glances of some near relative or intimate friend and then convey the look of satirical meaning backwards and forwards from one eye to the other, like a battledore and shuttlecock.

That there is another species of detraction connected with eye-infliction,—that of shrugs, winks, and sighs.

That any person by this process can stamp a narrator of a story with the brand of falsehood, and what is this but detraction?

That MIMICKS are guilty of both kinds of detraction--detraction acted as well as spoken.

That mimickry is sometimes, I own, no more than an imitation, and would not offend even its object; but that this is mimickry on its good behaviour.

That the CARICATURIST not of fools but of folly ranks only a grade below the satirists in prose and in verse, and that such a caricaturist was the late Sir Henry Bunbury, and is George Cruikshank.

Lastly, that EPIGRAMMATISTs are even more pleasing detractors than caricaturists, and like ihem more wounding than mimicks or mimickry; as epigrams, as well as caricatures, endure and may be handled about.

CHAPTER XI.

ON THE VOCABULARY OF DETRACTION.

HAVING defined its various kinds, I shall now give what I call the Vocabulary of Detraction.

I have found by experience how useful it is to watch the effect of the words we use on ourselves, and observe how much our feelings are under the power even of our own tones and language. I have been surprised to find how much the utterance of a severe word has increased my feeling of resentment towards offending individuals, and how entirely my anger has been subdued when I have unintentionally, perhaps, mentioned them soon after, in words and tones of compassion.

If this be true, those who wish to live in amity with their neighbours and fellow-citizens, should be careful to avoid injurious language respecting them even in joke; for it is impossible to feel proper respect and esteem for our associates, of whom we accustom ourselves to speak with nicknames, or with any depreciating epithet; such epithets as are found in the following list.

The fellow, the old fellow, mother such a

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