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narrow Bounds for a Passion, which, if let loose, will admit of none.

We can be angry with Persons, not only for their Faults, but their good Qualities and Accomplishments, when they excel, or come too near, Us or our Favourites : not only for doing amiss, but for doing their Duty, if it interfere with any of our Designs or Humours, Nay, we can be

angry with them for having done their Duty to us; done the kindest Thing they could for us, reminded us of our Failings, though in a friendly Way; or shewn themselves in any Instance more concerned for us, than we are for ourselves. We can be angry with Persons, even when they have done us Kindnesses ; for not doing us such great ones, or not fo foon, or not in such a Manner, as we would have had them : though perhaps they were not bound to do us any. And we can be extremely angry with them for having any Degree of Regard to their own Interests, when ours are concerned : first looking upon ourselves as all the World, and the rest of Mankind as nothing; then fired with the utmost Indignation, that this should be disputed.

But in lesser Matters, we can be angry with Men even for their natural Tempers,

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they happen to be more gravely, or more chearfully, or any Way differently, turned from our own: for their not liking the same Employments or Amusements, their not falling into the fame Opinions and Ways of thinking, sometimes on the most trifling Subjects ; nay, for not perceiving and acknowledging immediately the Strength of an Argument, or the Weight of an Authority.

Again, we can be angry for the unkind Words or Actions, to which we ourselves have given the Provocation : and will make no Allowances for little Unreasonablenesses in others, where we have, perhaps by great ones, set the Pattern, and thrown the Temptation in their Way. We can be angry at those who are employed by us, for mistaking or not succeeding in Cases, where they have done as well as ever they could, and certainly did not contrive to be ignorant or fail on Purpose to

be angry at them for mere accidental Misfortunes in our Affairs : Things, which were not provided against, beCause they were not to be expected; or which a reasonable Degree of Care proved insufficient to provide against; or, it may be, which all the Care in the World could not have prevented. Nay, in our idlest Diversions, we can be as vehemently discomposed, as about the most important Business. And, in the general Course of our Behaviour, we can be impatient about every Thing, if we have been made uneasy about any Thing: and quite out of Humour, perhaps for a considerable Time together, without either having, or almost thinking we have, any Manner of Provocation to it. Indeed something of this, in too many, seems constitutional: and, so far as it is, ought to have Allowances made for it by every one, except those who are liable to it. But they themselves cannot reflect too seriously, how often and how much they make all about them suffer for no Cause at all; and those most, whom they ought least : how strangely and wildly unreasonable they are, when under the Power of this bad Spirit: and how firmly they are obliged to watch against it continually, and free themselves, when seized by it, as soon as possibly they can.


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In all these Instances, Anger is so evidently unjust, that happily no Pretence can be made for indulging it. But there are others, in which, Faults having been really committed, a Plea for resenting is really furnished ; and


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yet, if we resolve to act rightly and wisely, no Resentment at all must be shewn or entertained. We have not been received perhaps with the good Breeding, or treated with the Regard or good Humour, that we might expect : Expressions, not so prudent or obliging, have dropt from Persons in Relation to us : Things, in which we meant no Harm, have been taken wrong: Our Desires and Inclinations have not been consulted, when they ought: Our Opinion or Recommendation hath been too little attended to: Our Advice or Directions too little observed : or some one or another of a thousand Matters of this Sort hath happened. And doubtless every one of them, supposing the Fact to have been as we imagine, is a Fault: and, though of a slighter Sort, should be carefully avoided by those, with whom we live ; and, let me add, by ourselves too. But, alas, they with whom we live, and we ourselves too, are Creatures, naturally subject to such Faults. Indiscretions and Thoughtlessness, odd Humours and Perverseness, little Partialities and Prejudices, ever were and will be amongst Men, even the better Kind of Men. And therefore what can be done ? Either we must all give and take



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Offence almost every Hour of our Lives; or we must be content to make mutual Allowances, and put good Constructions on Things: wink at what had better not be seen ; forget as soon as possible, what we could not help seeing; and teach those by our Example, who, we think, have need to learn, friendly Dispositions, and respectful Behaviour. This is the only Way of mending Matters : and shameful as it is to our Species, half the Uneasinesses, that we feel in Life, proceed from our not tak

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2. The next part of the Rule before-mentioned is, that we be angry only with such Persons as we ought.

And here immediately occurs a criminal Use of this Paffion, almost too shocking to mention : I mean, when we are angry with our Maker. For against whom elfe is it, that our Displeasure is pointed, when we murmur at the Distribution of Things here, either because our own Condition is less agreeable than we would have it, or that of others more prosperous, than we imagine they deserve ? The former is direct Rebellion of the Heart against the Dispositions of infinite Wisdom and Goodness: an Arrogance, which in Creatures otherwise innocent would be monstrous

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