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they stand at a stay, like a Stale at Chess, where it is no Mate, but yet the Game cannot stir. But this laft were fitter for a Satyr than for a serious Obfervation. This is well to be weighed, That Boldness is ever blind; for it feeth not dangers and inconveniencies; therefore it is illin Counfel, good in Execution: fo that the right use of Bold perfons is, that they never command in Chief, but be Seconds, and under the direction of others. For in Counsel it is good to fee Dangers, and in Execution not to see them, except they be very great.
Of Goodness, and Goodness of Nature.
Take Goodness in this fenfe, the affecting of the weal of Men, which is that the Grecians call Philanthropia; and the Word Humanity (as it is ufed) is a little too light to express it. Goodness I call the Habit, and Goodness of Nature the Inclination. This of all Vertues and Dignities of the mind is the greatest, being the Character of the Deity; and without it man is a busie, mifchievous wretched thing, no better than a kind of Vermine. Goodness answers to the Theological Vertue, Charity, and admits no excess, but error. The defire of power in excess caused the Angels to fall the defire of knowledg in excess caufed Man to fall; but in Charity there is no excefs,
nefs, neither can Angel or Man come in danger by it. The inclination of Goodness is imprinted deeply in the nature of man; infomuch, that if it iffue not towards men, it will take unto or ther living Creatures; as it is seen in the Turks, a cruel people, who nevertheless are kind to Beafts, and give Alms to Dogs and Birds: Infomuch as Busbechius reporteth, a Christian Boy in Conftantinople had like to have been stoned for gagging, in a waggifhnefs, a long-billed Fowl. Errors indeed, in this Vertue, in Goodness or Charity may be committed. The Italians have an ungracious Proverb, Tanto buon che val niente; So good that he is good for nothing. And one of the Doctors of Italy, Nicolas Macchiavel, had the confidence to put in writing, almost in plain terms, That the Christian Faith had given up good men in prey to thofe that are tyrannical and unjust: which he fpake, because indeed there was never Law, or Sect, or Opinion, did fo much magnifie Goodness as the Chriftian Religion doth: therefore, to avoid the Scandal, and Danger both, it is good to take knowledg of the errors of an Habit fo excellent. Seek the good of other men, but be not bondage to their faces or fancies; for that is but facility or fuftnefs, which taketh fan honelt mind prifolter Neither give thou Afop's Cock a Gem, who would be better pleafed and happier if he had had a Barly Corn. The Example of God teacheth the Leffon truly He fendeth his Rain, and maketh his Sun to shine upon the Fuft and Unjust, but he doth not rais Wealth,
nor fhine Honour and Vertues upon Men equally. Common Benefits are to be communicated with all; but peculiar benefits,with choice. And beware, how in making the Portraiture, thou breakeft the Pattern; for Divinity maketh the love of our Selves the Pattern; the love of our Neighbours but the Portraiture. Sell all thon haft and give it to the poor, and follow me: but fell not all thou haft, except thou come and follow me; that is, except thou have a Vocation, wherei thou mayst do as much good with little means as with great: for otherwife, in feeding the Streams thou drieft the Fountain. Neither is there only a Habit of Goodness directed by right reason but there is in fome men, even in Nature, a difpofition towards it; as on the other fide, there is a natural malignity. For there be that in their Nature do not affect the good of others. The lighter fort of malignity turneth but to a crossnefs, or frowardness, or aptnefs to oppose, difficileness, or the like; but the deeper fort to envy and meer mifchief. Such men in other mens calamities, are as it were in feason, and are ever on the loading part; not fo good as the Dogs that licked Lazarus fores, but like Flies, that are still buzzing upon any thing that is raw; Mifanthropy that make it their practice to bring men to the Bough, and yet have never a Tree for the purpofe in their Gardens, as Tinton had Such difpofitions are the very errors of Human Natures and yet they are the fittest Timber to make great Politicks of Like to knee-Timber,
that is good for Ships that are ordained to be toffed, but not for building Houses, that fhall ftand firm The parts and figns of Goodness are many. If a man be gracious and courteous to Strangers, it fhews he is a Citizen of the World; and that his heart is no Ifland cut off from other Lands, but a Continent that joins to them. If he be compaffionate towards the afflictions of others, it fhews that his heart is like the noble Tree, that is wounded it felf, when it gives the Balm. If he cafily pardons and remits offences, it shews that his mind is planted above Injuries, fo that he cannot be thot. If he be thankful for fmall benefits, it fhews that he weighs mens minds, and not their trash. But above all, if he have Saint Paul's perfection, that he would wish to be an Anathema from Chrift, for the Salvation of his Brethren, it fhews much of a Divine Nature and a kind of conformity with Christ himself.
WE will speak of Nobility, Firft as a Por
Ttion tion of an Estate, then as a Condition of Particular Perfons. A Monarchy, where there is no Nobility at all, is ever a pure and absolute Tyranny, as that of the Turks, for Nobility attempers Soveraignty, and draws the eyes of the
People fomewhat aside from the Line Royal. But for Democracies they need it not: and they are commonly more quiet, and lefs fubject to Sedition, than where there are Stirps of Nobles. For mens eyes are upon the business, and not upon the perfons; or if upon the perfons, it is for the business fake, as fittest, and not for flags and pedigree. We fee the Switzers laft well, notwithstanding their diverfity of Religion, and of Cantons for Utility is their Bond, and not Refpects. The United Provinces of the LowCountries in their Government excel: for where there is an Equality, the Confultations are more indifferent, and the payments and tributes more cheerful. A great and potent Nobility addeth Majefty to a Monarch, but diminisheth Powers and putteth Life and Spirit into the People, but preffeth their Fortune. It is well when Nobles are not too great for Soveraignty, nor for juftice; and yet maintained in that height, as the Infolency of Inferiors may be broken upon them, before it come on too fait upon the Majefty of Kings. A numerous Nobility caufeth Poverty and inconvenience in a State: for it is a furcharge of expence; and befides, it being of Neceflity that many of the Nobility fall in time to be weak in Fortune, it maketh a kind of Difproportion between Honour and Means.
As for Nobility in Particular Perfons, It is a reverend thing to fee an ancient Cattle or Building not in decay; or to fee a fair Timber Tree found and perfect: how much more to behold an An