In this paper Addison touches lightly on faults that spoil the pleasures of social intercourse. His censures are the more effective for not being hurled at our heads; we have to gather them for ourselves from his humorous comparisons. Addison had a peculiar right to give his opinions on this subject, for few have ever surpassed him in the charm of conversation. See the testimony of Pope, Swift, Steele and others, quoted by Macaulay in his Essay on Addison.
On this same subject of Conversation there is a charming essay by Cowper (Connoisseur, No. 138; reprinted in Lobban's "English Essays") amid another by R. L. Stevenson (in Memories and Portraits).
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