Gulliver's Travels Into Several Remote Nations Of The World
online book

Jonathan Swift's Famous Book, Illustrated By Arthur Rackham

Home Main Menu Order Support About Search

Share page  

Previous Contents Next

168             GULLIVER'S TRAVELS
more violently bent upon prosecuting their schemes, driven equally on by hope and despair: that as for himself, being not of an enterprising spirit, he was content to go on in the old forms, to live in the houses his ancestors had built, and act as they did in every part of life, without innovation. That some few other persons of quality and gentry had done the same, but were looked on with an eye of contempt and ill-will, as enemies to art, ignorant, and ill commonwealth's men, preferring their own ease and sloth before the general improvement of their country.
His lordship added, that he would not by any further particulars prevent the pleasure I should certainly take in viewing the grand academy, whither he was resolved I should go. He only desired me to observe a ruined building upon the side of a mountain, about three miles distant, of which he gave me this account: that he had a very con­venient mill within half a mile of his house, turned by a current from a large river, and sufficient for his own family, as well as a great number of his tenants. That, about seven years ago, a club of those projectors came to him, with proposals to destroy this mill, and build another on the side of that mountain, on the long ridge whereof a long canal must be cut for a repository of water, to be conveyed up by pipes and engines to supply the mill, because the wind and air upon a height agitated the water, and thereby made it fitter for motion; and because the water, descend­ing down a declivity, would turn the mill with half the current of a river, whose course is more upon a level. He said that being then not very well with the Court, and pressed by many of his friends, he complied with the pro­posal; and, after employing an hundred men for two years, the work miscarried, the projectors went off, laying the blame entirely upon him, railing at him ever since, and putting others upon the same experiment, with equal assur­ance of success, as well as equal disappointment.
In a few days we came back to town, and his Excellency,
Previous Contents Next