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rasselas, prince of abyssinia-及15嫗

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an in the world察and which察as  they are horrid察are ordained to be rare。  Let us not imagine evils  which we do not feel察nor injure life by misrepresentations。  I  cannot bear that querulous eloquence which threatens every city  with a siege like that of Jerusalem察that makes famine attend on  every flight of locust察and suspends pestilence on the wing of  every blast that issues from the south。
;On necessary and inevitable evils which overwhelm kingdoms at once  all disputation is vain察when they happen they must be endured。   But it is evident that these bursts of universal distress are more  dreaded than felt察thousands and tens of thousands flourish in  youth and wither in age察without the knowledge of any other than  domestic evils察and share the same pleasures and vexations察whether  their kings are mild or cruel察whether the armies of their country  pursue their enemies or retreat before them。  While Courts are  disturbed with intestine competitions and ambassadors are  negotiating in foreign countries察the smith still plies his anvil  and the husbandman drives his plough forward察the necessaries of  life are required and obtained察and the successive business of the  season continues to make its wonted revolutions。
;Let us cease to consider what perhaps may never happen察and what察 when it shall happen察will laugh at human speculation。  We will not  endeavour to modify the motions of the elements or to fix the  destiny of kingdoms。  It is our business to consider what beings  like us may perform察each labouring for his own happiness by  promoting within his circle察however narrow察the happiness of  others。
;Marriage is evidently the dictate of Nature察men and women were  made to be the companions of each other察and therefore I cannot be  persuaded but that marriage is one of the means of happiness。;
;I know not察─said the Princess察 whether marriage be more than one  of the innumerable modes of human misery。  When I see and reckon  the various forms of connubial infelicity察the unexpected causes of  lasting discord察the diversities of temper察the oppositions of  opinion察the rude collisions of contrary desire where both are  urged by violent impulses察the obstinate contest of disagreeing  virtues where both are supported by consciousness of good  intention察I am sometimes disposed to think察with the severer  casuists of most nations察that marriage is rather permitted than  approved察and that none察but by the instigation of a passion too  much indulged察entangle themselves with indissoluble compact。;
;You seem to forget察─replied Rasselas察 that you have察even now  represented celibacy as less happy than marriage。  Both conditions  may be bad察but they cannot both be worse。  Thus it happens察when  wrong opinions are entertained察that they mutually destroy each  other and leave the mind open to truth。;
;I did not expect察─answered察the Princess察 to hear that imputed  to falsehood which is the consequence only of frailty。  To the  mind察as to the eye察it is difficult to compare with exactness  objects vast in their extent and various in their parts。  When we  see or conceive the whole at once察we readily note the  discriminations and decide the preference察but of two systems察of  which neither can be surveyed by any human being in its full  compass of magnitude and multiplicity of complication察where is the  wonder that察judging of the whole by parts察I am alternately  affected by one and the other as either presses on my memory or  fancy拭 We differ from ourselves just as we differ from each other  when we see only part of the question察as in the multifarious  relations of politics and morality察but when we perceive the whole  at once察as in numerical computations察all agree in one judgment察 and none ever varies in his opinion。;
;Let us not add察─said the Prince察 to the other evils of life the  bitterness of controversy察nor endeavour to vie with each other in  subtilties of argument。  We are employed in a search of which both  are equally to enjoy the success or suffer by the miscarriage察it  is therefore fit that we assist each other。  You surely conclude  too hastily from the infelicity of marriage against its  institution察will not the misery of life prove equally that life  cannot be the gift of Heaven拭 The world must be peopled by  marriage or peopled without it。;
;How the world is to be peopled察─returned Nekayah察 is not my care  and need not be yours。  I see no danger that the present generation  should omit to leave successors behind them察we are not now  inquiring for the world察but for ourselves。;

CHAPTER XXIX ´ THE DEBATE ON MARRIAGE CONTINUED。

;THE good of the whole察─says Rasselas察 is the same with the good  of all its parts。  If marriage be best for mankind察it must be  evidently best for individuals察or a permanent and necessary duty  must be the cause of evil察and some must be inevitably sacrificed  to the convenience of others。  In the estimate which you have made  of the two states察it appears that the incommodities of a single  life are in a great measure necessary and certain察but those of the  conjugal state accidental and avoidable。  I cannot forbear to  flatter myself that prudence and benevolence will make marriage  happy。  The general folly of mankind is the cause of general  complaint。  What can be expected but disappointment and repentance  from a choice made in the immaturity of youth察in the ardour of  desire察without judgment察without foresight察without inquiry after  conformity of opinions察similarity of manners察rectitude of  judgment察or purity of sentiment
;Such is the common process of marriage。  A youth and maiden察 meeting by chance or brought together by artifice察exchange  glances察reciprocate civilities察go home and dream of one another。   Having little to divert attention or diversify thought察they find  themselves uneasy when they are apart察and therefore conclude that  they shall be happy together。  They marry察and discover what  nothing but voluntary blindness before had concealed察they wear out  life in altercations察and charge Nature with cruelty。
;From those early marriages proceeds likewise the rivalry of  parents and children此 the son is eager to enjoy the world before  the father is willing to forsake it察and there is hardly room at  once for two generations。  The daughter begins to bloom before the  mother can be content to fade察and neither can forbear to wish for  the absence of the other。
;Surely all these evils may be avoided by that deliberation and  delay which prudence prescribes to irrevocable choice。  In the  variety and jollity of youthful pleasures察life may be well enough  supported without the help of a partner。  Longer time will increase  experience察and wider views will allow better opportunities of  inquiry and selection察one advantage at least will be certain察the  parents will be visibly older than their children。;
;What reason cannot collect察─and Nekayah察 and what experiment has  not yet taught察can be known only from the report of others。  I  have been told that late marriages are not eminently happy。  This  is a question too important to be neglected察and I have often  proposed it to those whose accuracy of remark and comprehensiveness  of knowledge made their suffrages worthy of regard。  They have  generally determined that it is dangerous for a man and woman to  suspend their fate upon each other at a time when opinions are  fixed and habits are established察when friendships have been  contracted on both sides察when life has been planned into method察 and the mind has long enjoyed the contemplation of its own  prospects。
;It is scarcely possible that two travelling through the world  under the conduct of chance should have been both directed to the  same path察and it will not often happen that either will quit the  track which custom has made pleasing。  When the desultory levity of  youth has settled into regularity察it is soon succeeded by pride  ashamed to yield察or obstinacy delighting to contend。  And even  though mutual esteem produces mutual desire to please察time itself察 as it modifies unchangeably the external mien察determines likewise  the direction of the passions察and gives an inflexible rigidity to  the manners

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