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Extra resources for A Character of King Charles the Second by George Savile, Marquis of Halifax
It is thought an unsociable Quality in a Court to do ones Duty better than other Men. Nothing is less forgiven than setting Patterns Men have no mind to follow. Men are so unwilling to displease a Prince, that it is as dangerous to inform him right, as to serve him wrong. Where Men get by pleasing, and lose by serving, the choice is so easy that no body can miss it. Princes, their Secrets. Men are so proud of Princes Secrets, that they will not see the danger of them. When a Prince trusteth a Man with a dangerous Secret, he would not be sorry to hear the Bell toll for him.
He could not so properly be said to have a Wit very much raised, as a plain, gaining, well-bred, recommending kind of Wit. But of all Men that ever liked those who had Wit, he could the best endure those who had none. This leaneth more towards a Satire than a Compliment, in this respect, that he could not only suffer Impertinence, but at sometimes seemed to be pleased with it. He encouraged some to talk a good deal more with him, than one would have expected from a Man of so good a Taste: He should rather have order’d his Attorney-General to prosecute them for a Misdemeanour, in using Common-sense so scurvily in his Presence.
He was said to be as little constant as they were thought to be. Though he had no Love, he must have some Appetite, or else he could not keep them for meer ease, or for the Love of sauntring; Mistresses are frequently apt to be uneasy; they are in all Respects craving Creatures; so that though the taste of those Joys might be flattened, yet a Man who loved Pleasure so as to be very unwilling to part with it, might (with the Assistance of his Fancy, which doth not grow old so fast) reserve some supplemental Entertainments, that might make their personal Service be still of use to him.