O blessed health! cried my father, making an exclamation, as he turned over the leaves to the next chapter, thou art above all gold and treasure; ’tis thou who enlargest the soul,⁠—and openest all its powers to receive instruction and to relish virtue.⁠—He that has thee, has little more to wish for;⁠—and he that is so wretched as to want thee,⁠—wants everything with thee.

I have concentrated all that can be said upon this important head, said my father, into a very little room, therefore we’ll read the chapter quite through.

My father read as follows:

“The whole secret of health depending upon the due contention for mastery betwixt the radical heat and the radical moisture”⁠—You have proved that matter of fact, I suppose, above, said Yorick. Sufficiently, replied my father.

In saying this, my father shut the book,⁠—not as if he resolved to read no more of it, for he kept his forefinger in the chapter:⁠⸺⁠nor pettishly,⁠—for he shut the book slowly; his thumb resting, when he had done it, upon the upper-side of the cover, as his three fingers supported the lower side of it, without the least compressive violence.⁠⸺⁠

I have demonstrated the truth of that point, quoth my father, nodding to Yorick, most sufficiently in the preceding chapter.

Now could the man in the moon be told, that a man in the earth had wrote a chapter, sufficiently demonstrating, That the secret of all health depended upon the due contention for mastery betwixt the radical heat and the radical moisture,⁠—and that he had managed the point so well, that there was not one single word wet or dry upon radical heat or radical moisture, throughout the whole chapter,⁠—or a single syllable in it, pro or con, directly or indirectly, upon the contention betwixt these two powers in any part of the animal œconomy⁠⸺⁠

“O thou eternal Maker of all beings!”⁠—he would cry, striking his breast with his right hand (in case he had one)⁠—“Thou whose power and goodness can enlarge the faculties of thy creatures to this infinite degree of excellence and perfection,⁠—What have we Moonites done?”