It is therefore an unspeakable Blessing to be born in those Parts of the World where Wisdom and Knowledge flourish; tho it must be confest, there are, even in these Parts, several poor uninstructed Persons, who are but little above the Inhabitants of those Nations of which I have been here speaking; as those who have had the Advantages of a more liberal Education, rise above one another by several different Degrees of Perfection. For to return to our Statue in the Block of Marble, we see it sometimes only begun to be chipped, sometimes rough-hewn and but just sketched into an human Figure; sometimes we see the Man appearing distinctly in all his Limbs and Features, sometimes we find the Figure wrought up to a great Elegancy, but seldom meet with any to which the Hand of a Phidias or Praxiteles could not give several nice Touches and Finishings.
Discourses of Morality, and Reflections upon human Nature, are the best Means we can make use of to improve our Minds, and gain a true Knowledge of our selves, and consequently to recover our Souls out of the Vice, Ignorance, and Prejudice, which naturally cleave to them. I have all along profest myself in this Paper a Promoter of these great Ends; and I flatter my self that I do from Day to Day contribute something to the polishing of Mens Minds: at least my Design is laudable, whatever the Execution may be. I must confess I am not a little encouraged in it by many Letters, which I receive from unknown Hands, in Approbation of my Endeavours; and must take this Opportunity of returning my Thanks to those who write them, and excusing my self for not inserting several of them in my Papers, which I am sensible would be a very great Ornament to them. Should I publish the Praises which are so well penned, they would do Honour to the Persons who write them; but my publishing of them would I fear be a sufficient Instance to the World that I did not deserve them.
* * * * *
No. 216. Wednesday, November 7, 1711. Steele.
Siquidem hercle possis, nil prius, neque
Verum si incipies, neque perficies naviter,
Atque ubi pati non poteris, cum nemo expetet,
Infecta pace ultro ad eam venies indicans
Te amare, et ferre non posse: Actum est, ilicet,
Peristi: eludet ubi te victum senserit.
To Mr. SPECTATOR,
This is to inform you, that Mr. Freeman  had no sooner taken Coach, but his Lady was taken with a terrible Fit of the Vapours, which, ’tis feared will make her miscarry, if not endanger her Life; therefore, dear Sir, if you know of any Receipt that is good against this fashionable reigning Distemper, be pleased to communicate it for the Good of the Publick, and you will oblige