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exalt their place. So then Passive Good is, as was said, either conservative or perfective.
To resume the good of conservation or comfort, which consisteth in the fruition of that which is agreeable to our natures ; it seemeth to be the most pure and natural of pleasures, but yet the softest and the lowest. And this also receiveth a difference, which hath neither been well judged of, nor well inquired : for the good of fruition or contentment is placed either in the sincereness of the fruition, or in the quickness and vigour of it ; the one superinduced by the equality, the other by vicissitude ; the one having less mixture of evil, the other more impression of good. Which of these is the greater good, is a question controverted ; but whether man's nature may not be capable of both, is a question not inquired.
The former question being debated between Socrates and a sophist, Socrates placing felicity in an equal and constant peace of mind, and the sophist in much desiring and much enjoying, they fell from argument to ill words: the sophist saying that Socrates's felicity was the felicity of a block or stone; and Socrates saying that the sophist's felicity was the felicity of one that had the itch, who did nothing but itch and scratch. And both these opinions do not want their supports : for the opinion of Socrates is much upheld by the general consent even of the Epicures themselves, that virtue beareth a great part in felicity; and if so, certain it is, that virtue hath more use in clearing perturbations than
in compassing desires. The sophist's opinion is much favoured by the assertion we last spake of, that good of advancement is greater than good of simple preservation; because every obtaining a desire hath a shew of advancement, as motion though in a circle hath a shew of progression.
But the second question, decided the true way, maketh the former superfluous. For can it be doubted, but that there are some who take more pleasure in enjoying pleasures than some other, and yet nevertheless are less troubled with the loss or leaving of them ? so as this same, “ Non uti ut
, “ non appetas, non appetere ut non metuas, sunt “ animi pusilli et diffidentis.” And it seemeth to me, that most of the doctrines of the philosophers are more fearful and cautionary than the nature of things requireth. So have they increased the fear of death in offering to cure it: for when they would have a man's whole life to be but a discipline or preparation to die, they must needs make men think that it is a terrible enemy, against whom there is no end of preparing. Better saith the poet:
« Qui finem vitæ extremum inter munera ponat
“ Naturæ.” So have they sought to make men's minds too uniform and harmonical, by not breaking them sufficiently to contrary motions: the reason whereof I suppose to be, because they themselves were men dedicated to a private, free, and unapplied course of life. For as we see, upon the lute or like instrument, a ground, though it be sweet and have shew
of many changes, yet breaketh not the hand to such strange and hard stops and passages, as a set song or voluntary; much after the same manner was the diversity between a philosophical and a civil life. And therefore men are to imitate the wisdom of jewellers; who, if there be a grain, or a cloud, or an ice which may be ground forth without taking too much of the stone, they help it ; but if it should lessen and abate the stone too much, they will not meddle with it: so ought men so to procure serenity as they destroy not magnanimity.
Having, therefore, deduced the good of man which is private and particular, as far as seemeth fit; we will now return to that good of man which respecteth and beholdeth society, which we may term Duty; because the term of Duty is more proper to a mind well framed and disposed towards others, as the term of virtue is applied to a mind well formed and composed in itself: though neither can a man understand virtue without some relation to society, nor Duty without an inward disposition. This part may seem at first to pertain to science civil and politic: but not if it be well observed ; for it concerneth the regimen and government of every man over himself, and not over others. And as in architecture the direction of framing the posts, beams, and other parts of building, is not the same with the manner of joining them and erecting the building; and in mechanicals, the direction how to frame an instrument or engine, is not the same with the manner of setting it on work and
employing it, (and yet nevertheless in expressing of the one you incidently express the aptness towards the other ;) so the doctrine of conjugation of men in society differeth from that of their conformity thereunto.
This part of Duty is subdivided into two parts; the common duty of every man, as a man or member of a state ; the other, the respective or special duty of every man, in his profession, vocation, and place. The first of these is extant and well laboured, as hath been said. The second likewise I may report rather dispersed than deficient; which manner of dispersed writing in this kind of argument I acknowledge to be best: for who can take upon him to write of the proper duty, virtue, challenge, and right of every several vocation, profession and place? For although sometimes a looker on may see more than a gamester, and there be a proverb more arrogant than sound, “That the vale best discovereth the hill;" yet there is small doubt but that men can write best, and most really and materially, in their own professions; and that the writing of speculative men of active matter, for the most part, doth seem to men of experience, as Phormio's argument of the wars seemed to Hannibal, to be but dreams and dotage. Only there is one vice which accompanieth them that write in their own pro fessions, that they magnify them in excess. But generally it were to be wished, as that which would make learning indeed solid and fruitful, that active men would or could become writers.
In which kind I cannot but mention, “ honoris “ causa,” your majesty's excellent book touching the Duty of a King: a work richly compounded of divinity, morality, and policy, with great aspersion of all other arts ; and being, in mine opinion, one of the most sound and healthful writings that I have read ; not distempered in the heat of invention, nor in the coldness of negligence; not sick of business, as those are who lose themselves in their order, nor of convulsions, as those which cramp in matters impertinent ; not savouring of perfumes and paintings, as those do who seek to please the reader more than nature beareth ; and chiefly well disposed in the spirits thereof, being agreeable to truth and apt for action; and far removed from that natural infirmity, whereunto I noted those that write in their own professions to be subject, which is, that they exalt it above measure : for your majesty hath truly described, not a King of Assyria or Persia in their extern glory, but a Moses or a David, pastors of their people. Neither can I ever leese out of my remembrance, what I heard your majesty in the same sacred spirit of government deliver in a great cause of judicature, which was, “ That Kings ruled " by their laws, as God did by the laws of nature; " and ought as rarely to put in use their supreme
prerogative, as God doth his power of working " miracles.” And yet notwithstanding, in your book of a free monarchy, you do well give men to understand, that you know the plenitude of the power and right of a King, as well as the circle of his office