The Idea of a University

indifference on those modes or accidents to which the vulgar give the names of good and evil.”

Rasselas in a few days found the philosopher in a room half darkened, with his eyes misty, and his face pale. “Sir,” said he, “you have come at a time when all human friendship is useless; what I suffer cannot be remedied, what I have lost cannot be supplied. My daughter, my only daughter, from whose tenderness I expected all the comforts of my age, died last night of a fever.” “Sir,” said the prince, “mortality is an event by which a wise man can never be surprised; we know that death is always near, and it should therefore always be expected.” “Young man,” answered the philosopher, “you speak like one who has never felt the pangs of separation.” “Have you, then, forgot the precept,” said Rasselas, “which you so powerfully enforced?… consider that external things are naturally variable, but truth and reason are always the same.” “What comfort,”

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