Public Domain Books
The GOLDEN DREAM; or, the INGENUOUS CONFESSION.
To shew the Depravity of human Nature, and how apt the Mind is to be misled by Trinkets and false Appearances, Mrs. Two-Shoes does acknowledge, that after she became rich, she had like to have been too fond of Money; for on seeing her Husband receive a very large Sum, her Heart went pit pat, pit pat, all the Evening, and she began to think that Guineas were pretty Things. To suppress this Turbulence of Mind, which was a Symptom of approaching Avarice, she said her Prayers earlier than usual, and at Night had the following Dream; which I shall relate in her own Words.
“Methought, as I slept, a Genii stept up to me with a FrenchCommode, which having placed on my Head, he said, now go and be happy; for from henceforth every Thing you touch shall turn to Gold. Willing to try the Experiment, I gently touched the Bed-post and Furniture, which immediately became massy Gold burnished, and of surprizing Brightness. I then touched the Walls of the House, which assumed the same Appearance, and looked amazingly magnificent. Elated with this wonderful Gift, I rang hastily for my Maid to carry the joyful News to her Master, who, as I thought, was then walking in the Garden. Sukey came, but in the Extacy I was in, happening to touch her Hand, she became instantly an immovable Statue. Go, said I, and call your Master; but she made no reply, nor could she stir. Upon this I shrieked, and in came my dear Husband, whom I ran to embrace; when no sooner had I touched him, but he became good for nothing; that is, good for nothing but his Weight in Gold; and that you know could be nothing, where Gold was so plenty. At this instant up came another Servant with a Glass of Water, thinking me ill; this I attempted to swallow, but no sooner did it touch my Mouth, than it became a hard solid Body, and unfit for drinking. My Distress now grew insupportable! I had destroyed, as I thought, my dear Husband, and my favourite Servant; and I plainly perceived, that I should die for want in the midst of so much Wealth. Ah, said I, why did I long for Riches! Having enough already, why did I covet more? Thus terrified, I began to rave, and beat my Breast, which awaked Sir Charles, who kindly called me from this State of Inquietude, and composed my Mind.”
This Scene I have often considered as a Lesson, instructing me, that a Load of Riches bring, instead of Felicity, a Load of Troubles; and that the only Source of Happiness is Contentment. Go, therefore, you who have too much, and give it to those who are in want; so shall you be happy yourselves, by making others happy. This is a Precept from the Almighty, a Precept which must be regarded; for The Lord is about your Paths, and about your Bed, and spieth out all your Ways.
An Anecdote, respecting TOM TWO-SHOES, communicated by a Gentleman, who is now writing the History of his Life. It is generally known, that Tom Two-Shoes went to Sea when he was a very little Boy, and very poor; and that he returned a very great Man, and very rich; but no one knows how he acquired so much Wealth but myself, and a few Friends, who have perused the Papers from which I am compiling the History of his Life.
After Tom had been at Sea some Years, he was unfortunately cast away, on that Part of the Coast of Africa inhabited by the Hottentots. Here he met with a strange Book, which the Hottentots did not understand, and which gave him some Account of Prester John’s Country; and being a Lad of great Curiosity and Resolution he determined to see it; accordingly he set out on the Pursuit, attended by a young Lion, which he had tamed and made so fond of him, that he followed him like a Dog, and obeyed all his Commands; and indeed it was happy for him that he had such a Companion; for as his Road lay through large Woods and Forests, that were full of wild Beasts and without Inhabitants, he must have been soon starved or torn in Pieces, had he not been both fed and protected by this noble Animal.
Tom had provided himself with two Guns, a Sword, and as much Powder and Ball as he could carry; with these Arms, and such a Companion, it was mighty easy for him to get Food; for the Animals in these wild and extensive Forests, having never seen the Effects of a Gun, readily ran from the Lion, who hunted on one Side, to Tom, who hunted on the other, so that they were either caught by the Lion, or shot by his Master; and it was pleasant enough, after a hunting Match, and the Meat was dressed, to see how Cheek by Joul they sat down to Dinner.
When they came info the Land of Utopia, he discovered the Statue of a Man created on an open Plain, which had this Inscription on the Pedestal: On May-day in the Morning, when the Sun rises, I shall have a Head of Gold. As it was now the latter End of April, he stayed to see this wonderful Change; and in the mean time, enquiring of a poor Shepherd what was the Reason of the Statue being erected there, and with that Inscription, he was informed, that it was set up many Years ago by an ArabianPhilosopher, who travelled all the World over in Search of a real Friend; that he lived with, and was extremely fond of a great Man who inhabited the next Mountain; but that on some Occasion they quarrelled, and the Philosopher, leaving the Mountain, retired into the Plain, where he erected this Statue with his own Hands, and soon after died. To this he added, that all the People for many Leagues round came there every May Morning, expecting to see the Stone-head turned to Gold.
Tom got up very early on the first of May to behold this amazing Change, and when he came near the Statue he saw a Number of People, who all ran away from him in the utmost Consternation, hating never before seen a Lion follow a Man like a Lap-dog. Being thus left alone, he fixed his Eyes on the Sun, then rising with resplendent Majesty, and afterwards turned to the Statue, but could see no Change in the Stone.–Surely, says he to himself, there is some mystical Meaning in this! This Inscription must be an Ænigma, the hidden Meaning of which I will endeavour to find; for a Philosopher would never expect a Stone to be turned to Gold; accordingly he measured the Length of the Shadow, which the Statue gave on the Ground by the Sun shining on it, and marked that particular Part where the Head fell, then getting a Chopness (a Thing like a Spade) and digging, he discovered a Copper-chest, full of Gold, with this Inscription engraved on the Lid of it.
Thy WIT, Oh Man! whoever thou art, Hath disclos’d the Ænigma, And discover’d the GOLDEN HEAD. Take it and use it, But use it with WISDOM; For know, That GOLD, properly employ’d, May dispense Blessings, And promote the Happiness of Morals; But when hoarded up, Or misapply’d, Is but Trash, that makes Mankind miserable. Remember The unprofitable Servant, Who hid his Talent in a Napkin; And The profligate Son, Who squander’d away his Substance and fed with the Swine. As thou hast got the GOLDEN HEAD, Observe the Golden Mean, Be Good and be happy.
This Lesson, coming as it were from the Dead, struck him with such Awe, and Reverence for Piety and Virtue, that, before he removed the Treasure, he kneeled down, and earnestly and fervently prayed that he might make a prudent, just and proper Use of it. He then conveyed the Chest away; but how he got it to England, the Reader will be informed in the History of his Life. It may not be improper, however, in this Place, to give the Reader some Account of the Philosopher who hid this Treasure, and took so much Pains to find a true and real Friend to enjoy it. As Tom had Reason to venerate his Memory, he was very particular in his Enquiry, and had this Character of him;–that he was a Man well acquainted with Nature and with Trade; that he was pious, friendly, and of a sweet and affable Disposition. That he had acquired a Fortune by Commerce, and having no Relations to leave it to, he travelled through Arabia, Persia, India, Libiaand Utopia in search of a real Friend. In this Pursuit he found several with whom he exchanged good Offices, and that were polite and obliging, but they often flew off for Trifles; or as soon as he pretended to be in Distress, and requested their Assistance, left him to struggle with his own Difficulties. So true is that Copy in our Books, which says, Adversity is the Touchstone of Friendship. At last, however, he met with the Utopian Philosopher, or the wise Man of the Mountain, as he is called, and thought in him he had found the Friend he wanted; for though he often pretended to be in Distress, and abandoned to the Frowns of Fortune, this Man always relieved him, and with such Chearfulness and Sincerity, that concluding he had found out the only Man to whom he ought to open both his Purse and his Heart, he let him so far into his Secrets, as to desire his Assistance in hiding a large Sum of Money, which he wanted to conceal, lest the Prince of the Country, who was absolute, should, by the Advice of his wicked Minister, put him to Death for his Gold. The two Philosophers met and hid the Money, which the Stranger, after some Days, went to see, but found it gone. How was he struck to the Heart, when he found that his Friend, whom he had often tried, and who had relieved him in his Distress, could not withstand this Temptation, but broke through the sacred Bonds of Friendship, and turned even a Thief for Gold which he did not want, as he was already very rich. Oh! said he, what is the Heart of Man made of? Why am I condemned to live among People who have no Sincerity, and who barter the most sacred Ties of Friendship and Humanity for the Dirt that we tread on? Had I lost my Gold and found a real Friend, I should have been happy with the Exchange, but now I am most miserable. After some Time he wiped off his Tears, and being determined not to be so imposed on, he had Recourse to Cunning and the Arts of Life. He went to his pretended Friend with a chearful Countenance, told him he had more Gold to hide, and desired him to appoint a Time when they might go together, and open the Earth to put it into the same Pot; the other, in Hopes of getting more Wealth, appointed the next Evening. They went together, opened the Ground, and found the Money they had first placed there, for the artful Wretch, he so much confided in, had conveyed it again into the Pot, in order to obtain more. Our Philosopher immediately took the Gold, and putting it into his Pocket, told the other he had now altered his Mind, and should bury it no more, till he found a Man more worthy of his Confidence. See what People lose by being dishonest. This calls to my Mind the Words of the Poet:
A Wit’s a Feather, and a Chief’s a Rod, An honest Man’s the noblest Work of God. Remember this Story, and take Care whom you trust; but don’t be covetous, sordid and miserable; for the Gold we have is but lent us to do Good with. We received all from the Hand of God, and every Person in Distress hath a just Title to a Portion of it.
A Letter from the Printer, which he desires may be inserted.
I have done with your Copy, so you may return it to the Vatican, if you please; and pray tell Mr. Angelo to brush up the Cuts, that, in the next Edition, they may give us a good Impression.
The Foresight and Sagacity of Mrs. Margery’s Dog calls to my Mind a Circumstance, which happened when I was a Boy. Some Gentlemen in the Place where I lived had been hunting, and were got under a great Tree to shelter themselves from a Thunder Storm; when a Dog that always followed one of the Gentlemen leaped up his Horse several Times, and then ran away and barked. At last, the Gentlemen all followed to see what he would be at; and they were no sooner gone from the Tree, but it was shivered in Pieces by Lightning! ’Tis remarkable, that as soon as they came from the Tree the Dog appeared to be very well satisfied, and barked no more. The Gentleman after this always regarded the Dog as his Friend, treated him in his Old Age with great Tenderness, and fed him with Milk as long as he lived.
My old Master Grierson had also a Dog, that ought to be mentioned with Regard; for he used to set him up as a Pattern of Sagacity and Prudence, not only to his Journeymen, but to the whole Neighbours. This Dog had been taught a thousand Tricks, and among other Feats he could dance, tumble, and drink Wine and Punch till he was little better than mad. It happened one Day, when the Men had made him drunk with Liquor, and he was capering about, that he fell into a large Vessel of boiling Water. They soon got him out, and he recovered; but he was very much hurt, and being sensible, that this Accident arose from his losing his Senses by Drinking, he would never taste any strong Liquor afterwards.–My old Master, on relating this Story, and shewing the Dog, used to address us thus, Ah, my Friends, had you but half the Sense of this poor Dog here, you would never get fuddled, and be Fools. I am, Sir, Your’s, &c. W.B.
The BOOKS usually read by the Scholars of Mrs. TWO-SHOES, are these, and are sold at Mr. NEWBERY’S at the Bible and Sun in St. Paul’s Church-yard.
1. The Christmas-Box, Price 1d.
2. The History of Giles Gingerbread, 1d.
3. The New-Year’s-Gift, 2d.
4. The Easter-Gift, 2d.
5. The Whitsuntide-Gift, 2d.
6. The Twelfth-Day-Gift, 1s.
7. The Valentine’s-Gift, 6d.
8. The FAIRING or Golden Toy, 6d.
9. The Royal Battledore, 2d.
10. The Royal Primer, 3d.
11. The Little Lottery-Book, 3d.
12. The Little Pretty Pocket-Book, 6d.
13. The Infant Tutor, or pretty Little Spelling-Book, 6d.
14. The Pretty Book for Children, 6d.
15. Tom Trapwit’s Art of being Merry and Wife, 6d.
16. Tom Trip’s History of Birds and Beasts, Price 6d.
17. Food for the Mind, or a New Riddle Book, 6d.
18. Fables in Verse and Prose by Æsop, and your old Friend Woglog, 6d.
19. The Holy Bible abridged, 6d.
20. The History of the Creation, 6d.
21. A new and noble History of England, 6d.
22. Philosophy for Children, 6d.
23. Philosophy of Tops and Balls, 1s.
24. Pretty Poems for Children 3 Foot high, 6d.
25. Pretty Poems for Children 6 Foot high, 1s.
26. Lilliputian Magazine, or Golden Library, 1s.
27. Short Histories for the Improvement of the Mind, 1s.
28. The New Testament, adapted to the Capacities of Children, 1s.
29. The Life of our Blessed SAVIOUR, 1s.
30. The Lives of the Holy Apostles and Evangelists, 1s.
31. The Lives of the Fathers of the Christian Church for the first four Centuries, 1s.
32. A Concise Exposition of the Book of Common Prayer, with the Lives of its Compilers, 1s.
33. The Museum for Youth, 1s.
34. An Easy Spelling Dictionary for those who would write correctly, 1s.
35. A Pocket Dictionary for those who would know the precise Meaning of all the Words in the English Language, 3s.
36. A Compendious History of England, 2s.
37. The Present State of Great Britain, 2s.
38. A Little Book of Letters and Cards, to teach young Ladies and Gentlemen how to write to their Friends in a polite, easy and elegant Manner, 1s.
39. The Gentleman and Lady’s Key to Polite Literature; or, A Compendious Dictionary of Fabulous History, 2s.
40. The News-Readers Pocket-Book; or, A Military Dictionary, 2s.
41. A Curious Collection of Voyages, selected from the Writers of all Nations, 10 Vol. Pr. bound 1l.
42. A Curious Collection of Travels, selected from the Writers of all Nations, 10 Vol; Pr. bound 1l.
By the KING’S Royal Patent,
Are Sold by J. NEWBERY, at the Bible and Sun in St. Paul’s Church-Yard.
1. Dr. James’s Powders for Fevers, the Small-Pox, Measles, Colds, &c. 2s. 6d.
2. Dr. Hooper’s Female Pills, 1s.
3. Mr. Greenough’s Tincture for Teeth, 1s.
4. Ditto for the Tooth-Ach, 1s.
5. Stomachic Lozenges for the Heart-burn, Cholic, Indigestion, &c. 1s. 6d.
6. The Balsam of Health, or, (as it is by some called) the Balsam of Life, 1s. 6d.
7. The Original Daffy’s Elixir, 1s. 3d.
8. Dr. Anderson’s Scots Pills, 1s.
9. The Original British Oil, 1s.
10. The Alterative Pills, which are a safe, and certain Cure for the King’s Evil, and all Scrophulous Complaints, 5s. the Box, containing 40 Doses.–See a Dissertation on these Disorders sold at the Place above-mentioned, Price 6d.