Oldalképek
PDF
ePub

BUILDINGS.

HOUSES were built to live in, and not to look on; therefore let use be preferred before uniformity, except where both may be had. Leave the goodly fabrics of houses for beauty only, to the enchanted palaces of the poets, who build them with small cost.

He that buildeth a fair house upon an ill seat, committeth himself to prison. Neither do I: reckon it an ill seat only, where the air is unwholesome, but likewise where the air is unequal; as you shall see many fine seats set upon á knap of ground, environed with higher hills round about it, whereby the heat of the sun is pent in, and the wind gathereth as in troughs : so you shall have, and that suddenly, as great diversity of heat and cold, as if you dwelt in several places. Neither is it ill air only that maketh an ill seat, but ill ways, ill markets, and, if you will consult with Momus, ill neighbours.

I speak not of many more; want of water, , want of wood, shade, and shelter, want of fruitfulness and mixture of grounds of several natures ; want of prospect, want of level grounds; want of places at some near distance, for sports of hunting, hawking, and races; too near the sea, too remote; having the commodity of navigable rivers, or the discommodity of their overflowing;

too far off from great cities, which may hinder business,* or too near them, which lurcheth all provisions, and maketh every thing dear; where a man hath a great living laid together, and where he is scanted. All which, as it is impossible per

many houses

* This is an inconvenience which the nobility and gentry of the present day, are, of all things in the world, careful to avoid, though they run into the other extreme. They cannot now, as in ancient times, be content with dwelling at their paternal mansions in the country, or in the villages near to the metropolis, when their attendance is required at court, or in the parliament, but must forsooth, during the greater part of the year, be all crowded together in the squares and fashionable situations at the court end of the town. However it may be the fashion to ridicule the modes and opinions of our ancestors, I can but admire the wise policy which gave rise to the proclamation of Queen Elizabeth, in 1580, to prevent the erection of new buildings within three miles of the city gates; and directing persons who flocked from all parts to the metropolis, as in the present day, to “provide them“ selves other places abroad in the realm; where “ rest uninhabited, to the decay of divers ancient good bo“ roughs, and towns," &c. also that of James I. in which he commands "all nobleman, knights, and gentlemen, who have “ mansion-houses in the country, to depart with their wives “ and families out of the city and suburbs of London, and to "return to their several habitations, there to continue and “ abide until the end of the summer vacation, to perform the “ duties and charge of their places and service, and likewise “ by house-keeping, to be a comfort unto their neighbours, in “ order to renew and revive the laudable custom of hospi

tality in their respective counties."

King James was wont to be very earnest with the country gentlemen, to go from London to their country houses, and sometimes he would say thus to them: “ Gentlemen, at Lon“ don you are like ships at sea, which shew like nothing; but in

your country villages you are like ships in a river, which " look like great things.”

See LORD Bacon's APOTHEGMS, No. 272.

66

one

haps to find together, so it is good to know them, and think of them, that a man may take as many as he can, and if he have several dwellings, that he may sort them so, that what he wanteth in the he may

find in the other. Cast it also that you may have rooms both for summer and winter. You shall have sometimes fair houses, so full of glass, that one cannot tell where to become to be out of the sun or cold, For embowed windows, I hold them of good use; (in cities, indeed, upright do better, in respect of uniformity towards the street;) for they be pretty retiring places for conference, and besides, they keep both the wind and sun off; for that which would strike almost through the room, doth scarce pass the window,

LORD BACON

BUSINESS.

AFFECTED dispatch is one of the most dangerous things to business that can be; it is like that which the physicians call pre-digestion, or hasty digestion, which is sure to fill the body full of crudities, and secret seeds of diseases. Therefore measure not dispatch by the time of sitting, but by the advancement of the business. And, as in races, it is not the large stride or high lift that makes the speed, so in business the keeping close to the matter, and not taking of it too much-at once, procureth dispatch.

LORD Bacon.

IT is the care of some only to come off speedily for the time, or to contrive some false periods of business, because they may seem men of dispatch; but it is one thing to abbreviate by contracting, another by cutting off, and business so handled at several sittings or meetings goeth commonly backward and forward, in an unsteady manner. I knew a wise man* that had it for a bye word, when he saw men hasten to a conclusion, “ Stay a little, that we may make an end the sooner.

On the other side, true dispatch is a rich thing; for time is the measure of business, as money is of wares, and business is bought at a dear hand where there is small dispatch. The Spartans and Spaniards have been noted to be of small dispatch; Mi venga la muerte de Spagna, “ Let my death come from Spain,” for then it will be sure to be long in coming.

IBID.

ABOVE all things, order, and distribution, and singling out of parts, is the life of dispatch ; so as

* Sir Amias Pawlet, See Lord Bacon's Apothegms, No. 98.

the distribution be not too subtil, for he that doth not divide will never enter well into business, and he that divideth too much, will never come out of it clearly. To choose time is to save time, and an unseasonable motion is but beating the air.

LORD BACON.

CHARITY.

Fair Charity,

Triumphant sister, greatest of the three,
Thy office and thy nature still the same,
Lasting thy lamp, and unconsund thy flame
Shalt stand before the host of Heav'n confest,
For ever blessing, and for ever blest.

DRYDER,

HE that hath pity on another man's sorrow, shall be free from it himself, and he that delightethin, and scorneth the misery of another, shall one time or another fall into it himself.

Make not the hungry soul sorrowful, defer not thy gift to the needy; for if he curse thee in the bitterness of his soul, his prayer shall be heard of Him that made him.*

* The following observation of Selden, may serve as a note, upon the above passage : Tis not the curses that

« ElőzőTovább »