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and such a temptation, or offered violence to any of his exorbitant desires. This is a delight that grows and improves under thought and reflection ; and while it exercises, does also endear itself to the mind; at: the same time employing and enflaming the meditations.
And tell me so of any outward enjoyment that mortality is capable of. We are generally at the mercy of men's rapine, avarice, and violence, whether we shall be happy or no: for if I build my felicity on my estate, I am happy as long as the tyrant, or the railer will give me leave to be so. But if I can make my duty my delight; if I can feast, and please, and caress my mind with the pleasures of worthy speculations or virtuous practices ; let greatness and malice vex and abridge me if they can. My pleasures are as free as my will ; no more to be controuled than my choice, or the unlimited range
of my thoughts and my desires.
This discourse is commended in the Tatler, No. 205, Vol. IV. in these terms: “ This admirable discourse was preached at court, where the preacher was too wise a man not to believe the greatest argument in that place, against the pleasures then in vogue, must be, that they lost greater pleasures by prosecuting the courses, they were in. This charming discourse has in it whatsoever wit and wisdom can put together. This gentleman has a talent of making all his faculties bear to the great end of his hallowed profession. Happy genius! he is the better man for being a wit."
South distinguished himself likewise by his controversy with Sherlock, on the subject of the Trinity. His tracts on this subject are, 1. Animadversions upon Dr. Sherlock's book, entitled" Vindication," &c. 2. Tritheism charged upon Dr. Sherlock's new notion of the Trinity in the Godhead.
Sherlock had defined the Trinity to be Three eternal minds, of which two proceeded from the Father; and the three rendered one by a reciprocal consciousness. South treats this notion in the following ludicrous manner :
The soul of Socrates, (says he) vitally joined with a female body, would certainly make a woman; and yet according to this author's principle (affirming that it is the soul only which makes the person) Socrates with such a change of body, would continue the same person, and consequently be the same Socrates still. And in like manner for Xantippe, the conjunction of her soul with another sex, would certainly make the whole compound a man; and nevertheless Xantippe would continue the same person, and the same Xantippe still; save only, I confess, that upon such exchange of bodies with her husband Socrates, she would have more right to wear the breeches than she had before.
This sarcastic illustration of the consequences of Sherlock's doctrine is said to have contained an allusion to the particular domestic situation of that divine, who resembled Socrates in the point of matrimonial felicity.
During the heat of this controversy, Dr. T. Burnet published his Archæologia, in which he assails with considerable force the divine authority of the Old Testament. These three divines, forming a Trinity not in unity, excited the sportive wit of some cotemporary poew, who satyrizes them in the following humorous ballad, to the tune of A Soldier and a Sailor, &c.
A Dean and a Prebendary
The Dean, he said that truly,
When Preb. replied like thunder,
Now while these two were raging,
That all the books of Moses,
That as for father Adam,
Thus in this battle royal,
She therefore slily waiting,