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NO. 9, RUE DU COQ-ST-HONORÉ.
I could not write a grave tale; so, to prove that the world did not know me, I wrote one that was so grave nobody would read it; wherein I think that I had much the best of the argument. The second was written to see if I could not overcome this neglect of the reading world. Ilow far I bave succeeded, Mr Charles Wiley, must ever remain a secret between ourselves. The third has been written, exclusively, to please myself; so it would be no wonder if it displeased every body else; for what two ever thought alike on a subject of the imagination!
I should think criticism to be the perfection of human acquirements, did there not exist this discrepancy in taste. Just as I have made up my mind to adopt the very sagacious hints of one learned reviewer, a pamphlet is put into my hands, containing
the remarks of another, who condemns all that his rival praises, and praises all that his rival condemns. There I am, left like an ass between two locks of hay; so that I have determined to relinquish my animate nature, and remain stationary, like a lock of hay between two asses.
It is now a long time, say the wise ones, since the world has been told all that is new and novel. But the reviewers (the cunning wights !) have adopted an ingenious expedient, to give a freshness to the most trite idea. They clothe it in a language so obscure and metaphysical, that the reader is not about to comprehend their pages without some labour.' This is called a great « range of thought; » and not improperly, as I can testify; for, in my own case, I have frequently ranged the whole universe of ideas, and come back again in