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WHOEVER pays a visit that is not desired, or talks longer than the listener is willing to attend, is guilty of an injury that he cannot repair, and takes away that which he cannot give. DR. JOHNSON. Idler, No. 14.
Lord Plaus. I WOULD not have my visits troublesome. Manly. The only way to be sure not to have 'em troublesome, is to make 'em when people are not at home; for your visits, like , other good turns, are most obliging when made or done to a man in his absence.
WYCHERLEY. The Plain Dealer, Act I.
SOCIETY is now one polish'd horde,
Form'd of two mighty tribes, the bores and bored.
BYRON. Don Juan.
HE that holds to his appointment, and does not keep you ing, shows that he has regard for your time as well as his own. SMILES. Self Help.
THERE is nothing which we receive with so much reluctance as advice. We look upon the man who gives it as offering an affront to our understanding, and treating us like children or idiots. We consider the instruction as an implicit censure, and the zeal which any one shows for our good, on such an occasion as a piece of presumption or impertinence. The truth of it is, the person who pretends to advise, does, in that particular, exercise a superiority over us, and can have no other reason for it, but that, in comparing us with himself, he thinks us defective either in our conduct or our understanding. For these reasons, there is nothing so difficult as the art of making advice agreeable; * and
Marcus Antoninus in his Commentaries observes :-In the behaviour of Alexander, the grammarian, I remarked as worthy of imitation, how far he was from being censorious, and that he never laid hold in a reproachful manner of any impropriety in speech, or cavilled at any provincial or harsh expression, but would himself dexterously, and in a genteel manner give the very phrase that ought to have been used, either by way of answer, assent, or joint inquiry concerning the matter itself, without taking the least notice of the blundering expression, or in some other handsome manner would admonish of the mistake.
'Tis not enough your council shall be true,
Blunt truths more mischief than nice falsehoods do;
indeed all the writers, both ancient and modern, have distinguished themselves among one another, according to the perfection at which they arrived in this art. How many devices have been made use of, to render this bitter portion palateable! Some convey their instructions to us in the best chosen words, others in the most harmonious numbers, some in point of wit, and others in short proverbs.
No part of conduct asks for skill more nice,
His friends were summon'd on a point so nice;
POPE. January and May.
HE that complies against his will,
Hudibras, Part III., Canto 3.
АH! gentle dames! it gars me greet
BURNS. Tam O'Shanter.
A Father's advice to his Son going to travel.
Men must be taught as if you taught them not,
POPE. Essay on Criticism.
Grapple them to thy soul with hooks of steel;
Bear it that the oppressor may beware of thee.
But not express'd in fancy; rich, not gaudy:
For the apparel oft proclaims the man ;
And they in France, of the best rank and station,
Hamlet, Act I.
All's Well that Ends Well. Act I.
Advice to a Spendthrift.
Knowell. WHAT would I have you do? I'll tell you, kins
Learn to be wise, and practice how to thrive,
And you be left like an unsavory snuff,
I'd have you sober, and contain yourself,
Which is an airy and mere borrow'd thing,
BEN JONSON. Every Man in His Humour, Act I., Scene 1.
Value of Consultation and Advice.
IF I might venture to appeal to what is so much out of fashion at Paris, I mean to experience, I should tell you that in my course I have known, and, according to my measure, have cooperated with great men; and I have never yet seen any plan which has not been mended by the observations of those who were much inferior in understanding to the person who took the lead in the business.†
WOULD you both please, and be instructed too,
HERACLITUS saith well, "Dry light is ever the best ;" and certain it is, that the light that a man receiveth by counsel from another, is drier and purer than that which cometh from his own
* They who are apt to remind us of their ancestors, only put us upon making comparisons to their own disadvantage.
Spectator, No. 612.
+ This might instruct the proudest esteemer of his own parts how useful it is to consult with others, even such as come short of him, in capacity, quickness, and penetration; for since none see all, and we generally have different prospects of the same thing, according to our different, I may say, positions to it, it is not incongruous to think, nor beneath any man to try whether another may not have notions of things which have escaped him, and which his reason would make use of if they came into his mind. LOCKE. Conduct of the Understanding.
understanding and judgment; which is ever infused and drenched in his affection and customs. So as there is as much difference between the counsel that a friend giveth, and that a man giveth himself, as there is between the counsel of a friend and of a flatterer; for there is no such flatterer as a man's self, and there is no such remedy against flattery of a man's self as the liberty of a friend.
BACON. Essay on Friendship.
It has been well observed that few are better qualified to give others advice, than those who have taken the least of it themselves.
Ode written in the Year 1746.
How sleep the brave who sink to rest
Iago. GOOD name, in man or woman, dear my lord,
Is the immediate jewel of their souls:
Who steals my purse, steals trash; 'tis something, nothing;
'Twas mine, 'tis his, and has been slave to thousands; But he that filches from me my good name,
Robs me of that which not enriches him,
And makes me poor
Othello, Act III.
Though the sound of fame
May for a moment soothe, it cannot slake
The fever of vain longing, and the name
So honour'd but assumes a stronger, bitterer claim.
BYRON. Childe Harold, Canto III.