« AnteriorContinua »
To breathe th' enliv'ning spirit, and to fix
The gen'rous purpose in the glowing breast.-Thomson. 15. Dread o'er the scene the ghost of Hamlet stalksOthello rages-poor Monimia mourns
And Belvidera pours her soul in love.
Terror alarms the breast-the comely tear
Steals o'er the cheek. Or else the comic muse
Holds to the world a picture of itself,
And raises, sly, the fair impartial laugh.
Sometimes she lifts her strain, and paints the scenes
Of beauteous life; whate'er can deck mankind,
Or charm the heart, the generous Bevil show'd.-Thomson 16. Then Commerce brought into the public walk
The busy merchant; the big warehouse built;
Rais'd the strong crane; choak'd up the loaded street
The boat, light skimming, stretch'd its oary wings;
While deep, the various voice of fervent toil,
From bank to bank, increas'd; whence ribb'd with oal.,
To bear the British thunder, black and bold,
The roaring vessel rush'd into the main.-Thomson.
17. 'Tis from high life high characters are drawn;
A saint in crape is twice a saint in lawn.
A judge is just; a chancellor juster still;
A gownman learn'd; a bishop-what you will:
Wise, if a minister; but, if a king,
More wise, more learn'd, more just, more every thing.-Pope.
18. "Tis education forms the common mind;
Just as the twig is bent, the tree's inclin'd.
A smart freethinker? All things in an hour.-Pope.
19. See what a grace was seated on his brow;
New lighted, on a heaven-kissing hill;
Where every god did seem to set his seal,
To give the world assurance of a man.-Shakespeare.
20. The cloud-capt towers, the gorgeous palaces,
III.-Examples of SUSPENSION; or a delaying of the Sense.
1. AS beauty of person, with an agreeable carriage, pleases the eye, and that pleasure consists in observing that all the parts have a certain elegance, and are proportioned to each other; so does decency of behaviour obtain the approbation of all with whom we converse, from the order, consistency, and moderation of our words and actions. Spectator.
2. If Pericles, as historians report, could shake the firmest resolutions of his hearers, and set the passions of all Greece in a ferment, when the public welfare of his country, or the fear of hostile invasions, was the subject! what may we not expect from that orator, who, with a becoming energy, warns his audience against those evils, which have no remedy, when once undergone, either from prudence or time?-Spectator.
3. Though there is a great deal of pleasure in contemplating the material world, by which I mean that system of bodies into which nature has so curiously wrough the mass of dead matter, with the several relations which those bodies bear to one another; there is still something more wonderful and surprising, in contemplating the world of life, or those various animals with which every part of the universe is furnished. Spectator.
4. Since it is certain that our hearts cannot deceive us in the love of the world, and that we cannot command ourselves enough to resign it, though we every day wish ourselves disengaged from its allurements; let us not stand upon a formal taking of leave, but wean ourselves from them, while we are in the midst of them.-Spectator.
5. When a man has got such a great and exalted soul, as that he can look upon life and death, riches and poverty, with indifference, and closely adheres to honesty, in whatever shape she presents herself; then it is that virtue appears with such a brightness, as that all the world must admire her beauties.-Cicero.
6. To hear a judicious and elegant discourse from the pulpit, which would in print make a noble figure, murdered by him who had learning and taste to compose it, but, having been neglected as to one important part of his education, knows not how to deliver it, otherwise than with a tone between singing and saying, or with a nod of his head, to enforce, as with a hammer, every emphatical word, or with the same unanimated monotony in which he was used to repeat Quæ genus at Westminister school: what can be imagined more lamentable? Yet what more common !-Burgh.
7. Having already shown how the fancy is affected by the works of nature, and afterwards considered, in general, both the works of nature and art, how they mutually assist and complete each other, in forming such scenes and prospects, as are most apt to delight the
mind of the beholder, I shall, in this paper, throw together some re flections on that particular art, which has a more immediate tendency than any other, to produce those primary pleasures of the imagination, which have hitherto been the subject of this discourse.-Spec
8. The causes of good and evil are so various and uncertain, so often entangled with each other, so diversified by various relations, and so much subject to accidents which cannot be foreseen; that he who would fix his condition upon incontestable reasons of preference, must live and die inquiring and deliberating.-Johnson.
9. He, wno through the vast immensity can pierce,
May tell, why heaven has made us as we are.-Pope.
10. In that soft season, when descending showers
11. Nor fame I slight, nor for her favours call;
As soothing folly, or exalting vice;
And if the muse must flatter lawless sway,
But the fall'n ruins of another's fame;
Then teach me, heav'n, to scorn the guilty bays;
Oh, grant me honest fame, or grant me none.-Pope
12. As one, who long in populous city pent,
IV-Examples of PARENTHESIS; or words interposed in Sentences.
1. THOUGH good sense is not in the number, nor always, it must be owned, in the company of the sciences; yet it is (as the most sensible of the poets has justly observed) fairly worth the seven.--Melmoth.
2. An elevated genius, employed in little things, appears (to use the simile of Longinus) like the sun in his evening declination: he remits his splendour, but retains his magnitude; and pleases more, though he dazzles less.-Johnson.
3. The horror with which we entertain the thoughts of death (or indeed of any future evil) and the uncertainty of its approach, fill a melancholy mind with innumerable apprehensions and suspicions.— Spectator.
4. If envious people were to ask themselves, whether they would exchange their entire situations with the persons envied, (I mean their minds, passions, notions, as well as their persons, fortunes, dignities, &c.) I presume the self-love common to all human nature, would generally make them prefer their own condition.—Shenstone. 5. Notwithstanding all the care of Cicero, history informs us, that Marcus proved a mere blockhead; and that nature (who, it seems, was even with the son for her prodigality to the father) rendered him incapable of improving, by all the rules of eloquence, the precepts of philosophy, his own endeavours, and the most refined conversation in Athens-Spectator.
6. The opera (in which action is joined with music, in order to entertain the eye at the same time with the ear) I must beg leave (with all due submission to the taste of the great) to consider as a forced conjunction of two things, which nature does not allow to go together. Burgh.
7. As to my own abilities in speaking (for I shall admit this charge, although experience has convinced me, that what is called the power of eloquence, depends, for the most part, upon the hearers, and that the characters of public speakers are determined by that degree of favour which you vouchsafe to each) if long practice, I say, hath given me any proficiency in speaking, you have ever found it devoted to my country-Demosthenes.
8. When Socrates' fetters were knocked off (as was usual to be done on the day that the condemned person was to be executed) being seated in the midst of his disciples, and laying one of his legs over the other, in a very unconcerned posture, he began to rub it where it had been galled by the iron; and (whether it was to show the indifference with which he entertained the thoughts of his approaching death, or (after his usual manner) to take every occasion of philosophising upon some useful subject) he observed the pleasure of that sensation which now arose in those very parts of his leg, that just before had been so much pained by fetters. Upon this he reflected on the nature of pleasure, and pain in general, and how constantly they succeeded one another.-Spectator.
9 Let us (since life can little more supply
Shakespeare's Two Gentlemen of Verona.
11. That man i' th' world, who shall report, he has
The queen of earthly queens.-Shakespeare's Henry VIII.
12. Forthwith (behold the excellence, the power,
Which God hath in his mighty angels plac'd)
Their arms away they threw, and to the hills
Light as the lightning's glimpse, they ran, they flew ;
Uplifted, bore them in their hands.-Paradise Lost.
1. ONE day, when the Moon was under an eclipse, she complained thus to the Sun of the discontinuance of his favours. My dearest friend, said she, Why do you not shine upon me as you used to do? Do I not shine upon thee? said the Sun: I am very sure that I intend it. Ono, replies the Moon; but I now perceive the reason. I see that dirty planet the Earth is got between us.-Dodsley's Fables. 2. Searching every kingdom for a man who has the least comfort in life, Where is he to be found? In the royal palace.What, his Majesty? Yes; especially if he be a despot.-Art of Thinking.
3. You have obliged a man; very well! What would you have more? Is not the consciousness of doing good a sufficient reward?— Art of Thinking.
4. A certain passenger at sea had the curiosity to ask the pilot of the vessel, what death his father died of. What death? said the pilot. Why he perished at sea, as my grandfather did before him. And are you not afraid of trusting yourself to an element that has proved thus fatal to your family? Afraid! By no means; Is not your father dead? Yes, but he died in his bed. And why then, returned the pilot, are you not afraid of trusting yourself in your bed?—Art of Thinking.