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THE DESOBLIGEANT.

CALAIS.

WHEN a man is difcontented with himself, it has one advantage however, that it puts him into an excellent frame of mind for making a bargain. Now there being no travelling through France and Italy without a chaife-and nature generally prompting us to the thing we are fitteft for, I walk'd out into the coachyard to buy or hire fomething of that kind to my purpofe: an old Defobligeant in the furtheft corner of the court, hit my fancy at first fight, fo I inftantly got into it, and finding it in tolerable harmony with my feelings, I ordered the

waiter

A chaife, fo called in France, from its holding but one perfon.

waiter to call Monfieur Deffein the mafter of the hôtel-but Monfieur Deffein being gone to vefpers, and not caring to face the Francifcan whom I faw on the oppofite fide of the court, in conference with a lady juft arrived at the inn-I drew the taffeta curtain betwixt us, and being determined to write my journey, I took out my pen and ink, and wrote the preface to it in the Defobligeant.

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PREFACE

IN THE

DESOBLIGEANT.

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IT must have been obferved by many a peripatetic philofopher, That nature has fet up by her own unquestionable authority certain boundaries and fences to circumfcribe the difcontent of man: fhe has effected her purpose in the quieteft and easiest manner by laying him under almost infuperable obligations to work out his ease, and to fuflain his fufferings at home. It is there only that she has provided him with the most suitable objects to partake of his happinefs, and bear a part of that burden which in all coun tries and ages, has ever been too heavy for one pair of shoulders. 'Tis true' we are endued with an imperfect power of fpreading our happiness fometimes beyond

ber

her limits, but 'tis fo ordered, that from the want of languages, connections, and dependencies, and from the difference in education, customs and habits, we lie under fo many impediments in communicating our sensations out of our own fphere, as often amount to a total impoffibility.

It will always follow from hence, that the balance of fentimental commerce is always against the expatriated adventurer: he muft buy what he has little occafion for at their own price-his conversation will feldom be taken in exchange for theirs without a large discount-and this, by the by, eternally driving him into the hands of more equitable brokers for fuch converfation as he can find, it requires no great fpirit of divination to guefs at

his party

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This

This brings me to my point; and naturally leads me (if the fee-faw of this Defobligeant will but let me get on) into the efficient as well as the final caufes of travelling

Your idle people that leave their native country and go abroad for fome reafon or reasons which may be derived from one of these general causesInfirmity of body,

Imbecility of mind, or

Inevitable neceffity.

The first two include all those who travel by land or by water, labouring with pride, curiofity, vanity or fpleen, fubdivided and combined in infinitum.

The third clafs includes the whole. army of peregrine martyrs; more efpecially those travellers who fet out upon their travels with the benefit of the cler

gy,

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