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CH A P. XIII. A Project for the Advancement of the
THUS have I (my dear Countrymen) with T incredible pains and diligence, discovered the hidden sources of the Bathos, or, as I may say, broke open the Abysses of this Great Deep. And having now established good and wholesome Laws, what remains but that all true moderns with their utmost might do proceed to put the fame in execution? In order whereto, I think I shall in the second place highly deserve of my Country, by proposing such a Scheme, as may facilitate this great end.
As our Number is confessedly far superior to that of the enemy, there seems nothing wanting but Unanimity among ourselves. It is therefore humbly offered, that all and every individual of the Bathos do enter into a firm association, and incorporate into One regular Body, whereof every member, even the meanest, will fome way contribute to the fupport of the whole ; in like manner, as the weakest reeds, when joined in one bundle, become infrangible. To which end our Art ought to be put upon the same foot with other Arts of this age. The vast improvement of mo. dern manufactures ariseth from their being divided into several branches, and parcelled out to leveral trades: For instance, in Clock-making one artilt makes the balance, another the spring, another the crown-wheels, a fourth the case, and the principal workman puts all together: To this oeconomy we owe the perfection of our modern watches, and doubtless we also might that of our modern Poetry and Rhetoric, were the several parts branched out in the like manner.
Nothing is more evident than that divers perfons, no other way remarkable, have each a strong disposition to the formation of some particular Trope or Figure. Aristotle faith, that the Hyperbole is an ornament fit for young Men of Quality; accordingly we find in those Gentlemen a wonderful propensity toward it, which is marvellously improved by Travelling : Soldiers also and Seamen are very happy in the same Figure. The Periplir?lis or Circumlocution is the peculiar talent of Country Farmers ; thc Proverb and Afologue of oid men at their clubs; the Ellipfis or Speech by half words, of Ministers and Politicians, the Apofic polis of Courtiers, the Litotes or Diminution of Ladies, Whisperers and Backbiters, and the Anadiplolis of common Cryers and Hawkers, who, by redoubling the same words, persuade people to buy their oysters, green hastings, or new ballads. Epitheis may be found in great plenty at Billingsgate, Sarcalm and Irony learned upon the Water,
and the Epiphonema or Exclamation frequently from the Beargarden, and as frequently from the Hear him of the House of Commons.
Now each man applying his whole time and genius upon his particular Figure, would doubtless attain to perfection ; and when each became incorporated and sworn into the Society (as hath been proposed) a Poet or Orator would have no more to do but to send to the particular Traders in each Kind, to the Metaphorist for his Allegories, to the Simile-maker for his Comparisons, to the Ironist for his Sarcasms, to the Apothegmatist for his Sentences, etc, whereby a Dedication or Speech would be composed in a moment, the superior artist having nothing to do but to put together all the Materials.
I therefore propose that there be contrived with all convenient dispatch, at the publick expence, a Rhetorical Cheft of Drawers, consisting of three Stories, the highest for the Deliberative, the middle for the Demonstrative, and the lowest for the Judicial. These shall be divided into Loci, or Places, being repositories for Matter and Argument in the several kinds of oration or writing; and every Drawer shall again be sub-divided into Cells, resembling those of Cabinets for Rarities. The apartment for Peace or War, and that of the Liberty of the Press, may in a very few days be filled with several arguments perfectly new; and the Vituperative Partition will as easily be replenished with a most choice collection, entirely a the growth and manufacture of the present as. Every composer will soon be taught the use of this Cabinet, and how to manage all the Regiters of it, which will be drawn out much in the manre: of those in an Organ.
The Keys of it must be kept in honest hands, by some Reverend Prelate, or Valiant Oficer, ci unquestioned Loyalty and Affection to every prefent Establishment in Church and State ; which will sufficiently guard against any mischief which might otherwise be apprehended from it.
And being lodged in such hands, it may be at discretion let out by the Duy, to several great Orators in both Houses; from whence it is to be hoped much Profit and Gain will also accrue to our Society.
CHA P. XIV. How to make Dedications, Panegyrics, or
Satires, and of the Colours of Honourable and Dishonourable.
TOW of what neceility the foregoing Pro
j ect may prove, will appear from this fin. gle consideration, that nothing is of equal contequence to the success of our Works, as Speed and
Dispatch. Great pity it is, that solid brains are not like other folid bodies, constantly endowed with a velocity in sinking, proportioned to their heaviness : For it is with the Flowers of the Bathos as with those of Nature, which if the careful gardener brings not hastily to market in the Morning, must unprofitably perish and wither before Night. And of all our Productions none is so Thort-lived as the Dedication and Panegyric, which are often but the Praise of a Day, and become by the next, utterly useless, improper, indecent, and false. This is the more to be lamented, inasmuch as these two are the sorts whereon in a manner depends that Profit, which must still be remembered to be the main end of our Writers and Speakers.
We shall therefore employ this chapter in shewing the quickest method of composing them; after which we will teach a short Way to Epic Poetry. And these being confessedly the works of most Importance and Difficulty, it is presumed we may leave the rest to each author's own learning or practice.
First of Panegyric : Every man is bonourable, who is so by Law, Custom, or Title. The Publick are better judges of what is honourable than private Men. The Virtues of great Men, like those of Plants, are inherent in them whether they are exerted or not; and the more strongly inherent, the less they are exerted; as a Man is the