The great Danger in these latter kind of Genius’s, is, lest they cramp their own Abilities too much by Imitation, and form themselves altogether upon Models, without giving the full Play to their own natural Parts. An Imitation of the best Authors is not to compare with a good Original; and I believe we may observe that very few Writers make an extraordinary Figure in the World, who have not something in their Way of thinking or expressing themselves that is peculiar to them, and entirely their own.
 It is odd to consider what great Genius’s are sometimes thrown away upon Trifles.
I once saw a Shepherd, says a famous Italian Author, [who ] used to divert himself in his Solitudes with tossing up Eggs and catching them again without breaking them: In which he had arrived to so great a degree of Perfection, that he would keep up four at a time for several Minutes together playing in the Air, and falling into his Hand by Turns. I think, says the Author, I never saw a greater Severity than in this Man’s Face; for by his wonderful Perseverance and Application, he had contracted the Seriousness and Gravity of a Privy-Councillor; and I could not but reflect with my self, that the same Assiduity and Attention, had they been rightly applied, might have made him a greater Mathematician than Archimedes.
[Footnote 1: that]
[Footnote 2: The Camisars, or French Prophets, originally from the Cevennes, came into England in 1707. With violent agitations and distortions of body they prophesied and claimed also the power to work miracles; even venturing to prophesy that Dr Ernes, a convert of theirs, should rise from the dead five months after burial.]
[Footnote 3: The]
[Footnote 4: Not a new paragraph in the first issue.]
[Footnote 5: in]
[Footnote 7: Not a new paragraph in the first issue.]
[Footnote 8: that]
* * * * *
No. 161. Tuesday, Sept. 4, 1711. Budgell.
agitat festos: Fususque per herbam,
Ignis ubi in medio et Socii cratera coronant,
Te libans, Lenaee, vocat: pecorisque magistris
Velocis Jaculi certamina ponit in ulmo,
Corporaque agresti nudat praedura Palaestra.
Hanc olim veteres vitam coluere Sabini,
Hanc Remus et Frater: Sic fortis Etruria crevit,
Scilicet et rerum facta est pulcherrima Roma.’
Virg. ‘G.’ 2.
I am glad that my late going into the Country has encreased the Number of my Correspondents, one of whom sends me the following Letter.