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[206] next day, at the festival on Mount Lyceum, of be holding a whole people as happy as this sequestered family. Converse so delightful might have charmed away the night without the aid of sleep, had they not been invited to repose by the mild light of the moon shining through the window, the murmuring wind in the leaves of the poplars, and the distant noise of the Achelous, which falls roaring from the summit of Mount Lyceum.

The young patrician wits of Athens doubtless laughed over Plato's ideal republic. Campanella's City of the Sun was looked upon, no doubt, as the distempered vision of a crazy state prisoner. Bacon's college, in his New Atlantis, moved the risibles of fat-witted Oxford. More's Utopia, as we know, gave to our language a new word, expressive of the vagaries and dreams of fanatics and lunatics. The merciless wits, clerical and profane, of the court of Charles II. regarded Harrington's romance as a perfect godsend to their vocation of ridicule. The gay dames and carpet knights of Versailles made themselves merry with the prose pastoral of St. Pierre; and the poor old enthusiast went down to his grave without finding an auditory for his lectures upon natural society.

The world had its laugh over these romances. When unable to refute their theories, it could sneer at the authors, and answer them to the satisfaction of the generation in which they lived, at least by a general charge of lunacy. Some of their notions were no doubt as absurd as those of the astronomer in Rasselas, who tells Imlac that he has for five years possessed the regulation of the weather, and

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