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Samuel Johnson, a man of high intellect and rational judgment intended to show the relationship between hope in its extreme forms and the onset of insanity. “The Young Author,” several Rambler essays, and Rasselas, respectively, reflects Johnson's own personal struggle with madness and the way that excessive hope or complete lack of hope contributes to mental instability. Hope is a necessary element of human existence and it must be properly controlled and balanced with the function of reason. Hope that is excessive or unreasonable leads to mental imbalance, whereas rational and proper use of hope can aid mental health. In these three works Johnson deals primarily with two types of hope. Phantom hope, which is inspired by the imagination, overthrows reason and leads to idleness and despair. Reasonable hope, which is controlled by the intellect, motivates action, and inspires perseverance even under the most daunting circumstances. Whereas phantom hope leads to insanity, real hope leads to accomplishment. Johnson claimed that hope is the “blessing to mankind” when it is regulated by reason; it is the curse of man when it is inspired by the imagination. Hope, it can be said, plays an important role in both the cause and the cure of madness.