[ 80 ]

thinking, ---- and so according to that
--- You puzzle me to death,
cried my uncle Toby. --

  ---- 'Tis owing to this, replied my fa-
ther, that in our computations of time,
we are so used to minutes, hours, weeks,
and months, ---- and of clocks ( I wish
there was not a clock in the kingdom) to
measure out their several portions to us,
and to those who belong to us, ---- that
'twill be well, if in time to come, the
succession of our ideas be of any use or
service to us at all.

  Now, whether we observe it or no,
continued my father, in every sound man's
head, there is a regular succession of
ideas of one sort or other, which follow
each other in train just like ---- A train
of artillery ? said my uncle Toby. -- A train
             4              of

[ 81 ]

of a fiddle stick ! -- quoth my father, --
which follow and succeed one another in
our minds at certain distances, just like
the images in the inside of a lanthorn
turned round by the heat of a candle. --
I declare, quoth my uncle Toby, mine
are more like a smoak-jack. ---- Then, bro-
ther Toby, I have nothing more to say to
you upon the subject, said my father.


  ---- WHAT a conjuncture was
here lost ! ---- My father
in one of his best explanatory moods, --
in eager pursuit of a metaphysic point in-
to the very r egions where clouds and
thick darkness would soon have encom-
passed it about ; ------ my uncle Toby
in one of the finest dispositions for it in
the world ; -- his head like a smoak-jack ;
---- the funnel unswept, and the ideas
  VOL.        F            whirl-

[ 82 ]

whirling round and round about in it,
all obfuscated and darkened over with
fuliginous matter ! ---- By the tomb stone
of Lucian ---- if it is in being, ---- if
not, why then, by his ashes ! by the ashes
of my dear Rabelais, and dearer Cervantes,
---- my father and my uncle Toby's dis-
course upon TIME and ETERNITY, -- was
a discourse devoutly to be wished for ! and
the petulancy of my father's humour in
putting a stop to it, as he did, was a
robbery of the Ontologic treasury, of such
a jewel, as no coalition of great occasions
and great men, are ever likely to restore
to it again.

C H A P. XX.

THO' my father persisted in not
going on with the discourse, -- yet
he could not get my uncle Toby's smoak-

[ 83 ]

jack out of his head, -- piqued as he was
at first with it ; ---- there was something
in the comparison at the bottom, which
hit his fancy ; for which purpose resting
his elbow upon the table, and reclining
the right side of his head upon the palm
of his hand, -- but looking first steadfast-
ly in the fire, ---- he began to commune
with himself and philosophize about it :
but his spirits being wore out with the
fatigues of investigating new tracts, and
the constant exertion of his faculties upon
that variety of subjects which had taken
their turn in the discourse, ---- the idea of
the smoak-jack soon turned all his ideas
upside down, -- so that he fell asleep al-
most before he knew what he was about.

  As for my uncle Toby, his smoak-jack
had not made a dozen revolutions, before
             F 2              he

[ 84 ]

he fell asleep also. ---- Peace be with them
both. ---- Dr. Slop is engaged with the
midwife, and my mother above stairs. --
Trim is busy in turning an old pair of
jack-boots into a couple of mortars to be
employed in the siege of Messina next sum-
mer, ---- and is this instant boring the
touch holes with the point of a hot
poker. ---- All my heroes are off my
hands ; ---- 'tis the first time I have had
a moment to spare, -- and I'll make use of
it, and write my preface.

                          T  H  E

[ 85 ]


A U T H O R ' S  P R E F A C E.

N O, I'll not say a word about it, --
here it is ; ---- in publishing it, ----
I have appealed to the world, ---- and to
the world I leave it ; ---- it must speak for

  All I know of the matter is, ---- when
I sat down, my intent was to write a good
book ; and as far as the tenuity of my
understanding would hold out, -- a wise,
aye, and a discreet, ---- taking care only,
as I went along, to put into it all the wit
and the judgment (be it more or less)
which the great author and bestower of
them had thought fit originally to give
             F 3              me,

[ 86 ]

me, ---- so that, as your worships see, --
'tis just as God pleases.

  Now, Agelastes (speaking dispraisingly)
sayeth, That there may be some wit in
it, for aught he knows, ---- but no judg-
ment at all. And Triptolemus and Phu-
agreeing thereto, ask, How is it
possible there should ? for that wit and
judgment in this world never go toge-
ther ; inasmuch as they are two opera-
tions differing from each other as wide as
east is from west. -- So, says Locke, -- so
are farting and hickuping, say I. But in
answer to this, Didius the great church
lawyer, in his code de fartandi et illustrandi
, doth maintain and make fully
appear, That an illustration is no argu-
ment, -- nor do I maintain the wiping of
a looking-glass clean, to be a syllogism ;
---- but you all, may it please your wor-

[ 87 ]

ships, see the better for it, ---- so that
the main good these things do, is only
to clarify the understanding, previous to
the application of the argument itself, in
order to free it from any little motes, or
specks of opacular matter, which if left
swiming therein, might hinder a concep-
tion and spoil all.
  Now, my dear Anti-Shandeans, and
thrice able critics, and fellow-labourers,
(for to you I write this Preface) ---- and
to you, most subtle statesmen and dis-
creet doctors (do -- pull off your beards)
renowned for gravity and wisdom ; --
Monopolos, my politician, -- Didius, my
counsel ; Kysarcius, my friend ; -- Phutato-
, my guide; -- Gastripheres, the preserv-
er of my life ; Somnolentius, the balm and
repose of it, -- not forgetting all others as
well sleeping as waking, -- ecclesiastical as
civil, whom for brevity, but out of no
             F 4              resent-

[ 88 ]

resentment to you, I lump all together.
------ Believe me, right worthy,

  My most zealous wish and fervent
prayer in your behalf, and in my own
too, in case the thing is not done already
for us, ---- is that the great gifts and
endowments both of wit and judgment,
with every thing which usually goes along
with them, ------ such as memory, fan-
cy, genius, eloquence, quick parts, and
what not, may this precious moment
without stint or measure, let or hinder-
ance, be poured down warm as each of
us could bear it, -- scum and sediment an'
all ; (for I would not have a drop lost)
into the several receptacles, cells, cellules,
domiciles, dormitories, refectories, and
spare places of our brains, -- in such sort,
that they might continue to be injected
and tunn'd into, according to the true

[ 89 ]

intent and meaning of my wish, until
every vessel of them, both great and
small, be so replenished, saturated and
fill'd up therewith, that no more, would
it save a man's life, could possibly be got
either in or out.

  Bless us ! -- what noble work we should
make ! --- how should I tickle it off !
---- and what spirits should I find myself
in, to be writing away for such readers !
-- and you, -- just heaven ! ---- with what
raptures would you sit and read, ---- but
oh ! ---- 'tis too much, ---- I am sick, ----
I faint away deliciously at the thoughts
of it ! ---- 'tis more than nature can bear !
---- lay hold of me, -- I am giddy, -- I
am stone blind, ---- I'm dying, ---- I am
gone. ---- Help ! Help ! Help ! -- But
hold, -- I grow something better again,
for I am beginning to foresee, when this is
over, that as we shall all of us conti-
             3              nue

[ 90 ]

nue to be great wits, -- we should never
agree amongst ourselves, one day to an
end : ---- there would be so much satire
and sarcasm, ---- scoffing and flouting,
with raillying and reparteeing of it, ----
thrusting and parrying in one corner or
another, ---- there would be nothing but
mischief amongst us. -- Chaste stars ! what
biting and scratching, and what a racket
and a clatter we should make, what with
breaking of heads, and rapping of
knuckles, and hitting of sore places, ----
there would be no such thing as living
for us.

  But then again, as we should all of us
be men of great judgment, we should
make up matters as fast as ever they went
wrong ; and though we should abominate
each other, ten times worse than so many
devils or devilesses, we should neverthe-
less, my dear creatures, be all courtesy

[ 91 ]

and kindness, ---- milk and honey, ----
'twould be a second land of promise, ----
a paradise upon earth, if there was such a
thing to be had, -- so that upon the whole
we should have done well enough.

  All I fret and fume at, and what most
distresses my invention at present, is how
to bring the point itself to bear ; for as
your worships well know, that of these
heavenly emanations of wit and judgment,
which I have so bountifully wished both
for your worships and myself, -- there is
but a certain quantum stored up for us all,
for the use and behoof of the whole race
of mankind ; and such small modicums of
'em are only sent forth into this wide
world, circulating here and there in one
by corner or another, -- and in such nar-
row streams, and at such prodigious in-
tervals from each other, that one would

[ 92 ]

wonder how it holds out, or could be suf-
ficient for the wants and emergencies of
so many great states, and populous em-

  Indeed there is one thing to be consi-
dered, that in Nova Zembla, North Lap-
, and in all those cold and dreary
tracts of the globe, which lie more di-
rectly under the artick and antartick cir-
cles, ---- where the whole province of a
man's concernments lies for near nine
months together, within the narrow com-
pass of his cave, ---- where the spirits are
compressed almost to nothing, ---- and
where the passions of a man, with every
thing which belongs to them, are as frigid
as the zone itself ; -- there the least quan-
tity of judgment imaginable does the busi-
ness, -- and of wit, -- there is a total and
an absolute saving, -- for as not one spark

[ 93 ]

is wanted, -- so not one spark is given.
Angels and ministers of grace defend us !
What a dismal thing would it have been to
have governed a kingdom, to have fought
a battle, or made a treaty, or run a match,
or wrote a book, or got a child, or held a
provincial chapter there, with so plentiful a
of wit and judgment about us ! for
mercy's sake ! let us think no more about
it, but travel on as fast as we can south-
wards into Norway, ---- crossing over
Swedeland, if you please, through the
small triangular province of Angermania
to the lake of Bothnia; coasting along it
through east and west Bothnia, down to
Carelia, and so on, through all those states
and provinces which border upon the far
side of the Gulf of Finland, and the north
east of the Baltick, up to Petersbourg, and
just stepping into Ingria ; ------ then
stretching over directly from thence

[ 94 ]

through the north parts of the Russian
empire -- leaving Siberia a little upon the
left hand till we get into the very heart of
Russian and Asiatick Tartary.

  Now throughout this long tour which
I have led you, you observe the good
people are better off by far, than in the
polar countries which we have just left :
-- for if you hold your hand over your
eyes, and look very attentively, you may
perceive some small glimmerings (as it
were) of wit, with a comfortable provi-
sion of good plain houshold judgment,
which taking the quality and quantity of
it together, they make a very good shift
with, -- and had they more of either the
one or the other, it would destroy the
proper ballance betwixt them, and I am
satisfied moreover they would want occa-
sions to put them to use.
             2              Now,

[ 95 ]

  Now, Sir, if I conduct you home
again into this warmer and more luxuri-
ant island, where you perceive the spring
tide of our blood and humours runs high,
-- where we have more ambition, and
pride, and envy, and lechery, and other
whoreson passions upon our hands to go-
vern and subject to reason, -- the height of
our wit and the depth of our judgment,
you see, are exactly proportioned to the
length and breadth of our necessities, -- and
accordingly, we have them sent down
amongst us in such a flowing kind of de-
cent and creditable plenty, that no one
thinks he has any cause to complain.

  It must however be confessed on this
head, that, as our air blows hot and cold,
---- wet and dry, ten times in a day, we
have them in no regular and settled way ;
---- so that sometimes for near half a

[ 96 ]

century together, there shall be very little
wit or judgment, either to be seen or
heard of amongst us : ---- the small chan-
nels of them shall seem quite dried up, --
then all of a sudden the sluices shall break
out, and take a fit of running again like
fury, -- you would think they would ne-
ver stop : ---- and then it is, that in writ-
ing and fighting, and twenty other gal-
lant things, we drive all the world be-
fore us.

  It is by these observations, and a wary
reasoning by analogy in that kind of ar-
gumentative process, which Suidas calls
dialectick induction, -- that I draw and set
up this position as most true and veri-
table :

  That of these two luminaries, so much
of their irradiations are suffered from

[ 97 ]

time to time to shine down upon us ; as
he, whose infinite wisdom which dispenses
every thing in exact weight and measure,
knows will just serve to light us on our
way in this night of our obscurity ; so
that your reverences and worships now
find out, nor is it a moment longer in my
power to conceal it from you, That the
fervent wish in your behalf with which I
set out, was no more than the first insi-
nuating How d'ye of a caressing prefacer
stifling his reader, as a lover sometimes
does a coy mistress into silence. For alas !
could this effusion of light have been as
easily procured, as the exordium wished
it -- I tremble to think how many thou-
sands for it, of benighted travellers (in
the learned sciences at least) must have
groped and blundered on in the dark, all
the nights of their lives, -- running their
heads against posts, and knocking out
  VOL. III.        G            their

[ 98 ]

their brains without ever getting to their
journies end ; ---- some falling with their
noses perpendicularly into sinks, -- others
horizontally with their tails into kennels.
Here one half of a learned profession tilt-
ing full butt against the other half of it,
and then tumbling and rolling one over
the other in the dirt like hogs. ---- Here
the brethren, of another profession, who
should have run in opposition to each
other, flying on the contrary like a flock
of wild geese, all in a row the same way.
-- What confusion ! -- what mistakes !
-- fiddlers and painters judging by their
eyes and ears, -- admirable ! -- trusting to
the passions excited in an air sung, or a
story painted to the heart, ---- instead of
measuring them by a quadrant.

  In the foreground of this picture, a
statesman turning the political wheel, like
                          a brute,

[ 99 ]

a brute, the wrong way round -- against
the stream of corruption, -- by heaven ! --
instead of with it.

  In this corner, a son of the divine
Esculapius, writing a book against pre-
destination ; perhaps worse, -- feeling his
patient's pulse, instead of his apothecary's
-- a brother of the faculty in the back
ground upon his knees in tears, -- drawing
the curtains of a mangled victim to beg
his forgiveness ; -- offering a fee, -- instead
of taking one.

  In that spacious HALL, a coalition of the
gown, from all the barrs of it, driving a
damn'd, dirty, vexatious cause before
them, with all their might and main, the
wrong way ; ---- kicking it out of the
great doors, instead of, in, ---- and with
such fury in their looks, and such a de-
             G 2              gree