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Sceptre and crown

Must tumble down,

And in the dust be equal made

With the poor crooked scythe and spade.

Some men with swords may reap the field,
And plant fresh laurels where they kill:
But their strong nerves at last must yield;
They tame but one another still:
Early or late

They stoop to fate,

And must give up their murmuring breath
When they, pale captives, creep to death.

The garlands wither on your brow;
Then boast no more your mighty deeds;
Upon Death's purple altar now

See where the victor-victim bleeds:
All heads must come

To the cold tomb;

Only the actions of the just

Smell sweet, and blossom in their dust.



OFT may the spirits of the dead descend
To watch the silent slumbers of a friend;
To hover round his evening walk unseen,
And hold sweet converse on the dusky green,
To hail the spot where first their friendship grew,
And heaven and nature opened to their view!
Oft, when he trims his cheerful hearth, and sees
A smiling circle emulous to please,

There may these gentle guests delight to dwell
And bless the scene they loved in life so well.
S. ROGERS. Pleasures of Memory.

O, WOULD the fairest of mortal kind
Aye keep the holy truths in mind,
That kindred spirits their motions see
And watch their ways with anxious ee,
And grieve for the guilt of humanitye.


Queen's Wake.

"TIS sweet to think the pure ethereal being,
Whose mortal form reposes with the dead,
Still hovers round unseen yet not unseeing,
Benignly smiling o'er the mourner's bed!

She comes in dreams, a thing of light and lightness;
I hear her voice in still small accents tell
Of realms of bliss, and never fading brightness,
Where those who loved on earth together dwell.
Oh, yet a while, blest shade, thy flight delaying,
Thy kindred soul with mystic converse cheer
To her rapt gaze in visions bland displaying
The unearthly glories of thy happier sphere!

Yet, yet remain! till freed like thee delighted
She spurns
the thraldom of encumbering clay,
Then, as on earth, in tend'rest love united,
Together seek the realm of endless day.*

BARHAM. Ingoldsby Legends.

AT our old pastimes in the hall

We gambol'd, making vain pretence
Of gladness, with an awful sense
Of one mute Shadow watching all.

We paused: the winds were in the beech:
We heard them sweep the winter land;
And in a circle hand-in-hand

Sat silent, looking each at each.

Then echo-like our voices rang;
We sung, tho' every eye was dim,
A merry song we sang with him
Last year: impetuously we sang:

My sprightly neighbour! gone before
To that unknown and silent shore,
Shall we not meet, as heretofore

Some summer morning-
When from thy cheerful eyes a ray
Hath struck a bliss upon the day,
A bliss that would not go away,
A sweet fore-warning?

C. LAMB. Hester.

We ceased: a gentler feeling crept

Upon us: surely rest is meet:

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They rest," we said, "their sleep is sweet,"
And silence follow'd, and we wept.

Our voices took a higher range;

Once more we sang: "They do not die
Nor lose their mortal sympathy,

Nor change to us, although they change.”

TENNYSON. In Memoriam.


REVENGE is a kind of wild justice; which the more it spreads in human nature, the more ought the law to weed it out. For the first injury only offends the law, but revenge entirely sets aside its authority. Certainly in taking revenge a man is but even with his enemy, whereas by forgiving he becomes his superior. For 'tis a princely thing to pardon. And Solomon says 'tis the glory of a man to pass over a transgression. What is past is irrevocable, and wise men find it enough to regard what is present and to come, and those therefore do but trifle and disquiet themselves in vain who labour about what is past. BACON. Essays.

A MORE glorious victory cannot be gained over another man, than this, that when the injury began on his part, the kindness should begin on ours.


THE best sort of revenge is not to be like him who did the injury.



ABSENCE, hear thou my protestation

Against thy strength,

Distance, and length;

Do what thou canst for alteration:

For hearts of truest mettle

Absence doth join, and Time doth settle.

Who loves a mistress of such quality,

He soon hath found

Affection's ground

Beyond time, place, and all mortality.

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ALONE I tread this path;-for aught I know,


Timing my steps to thine.

WORDSWORTH. The Excursion.

LARA was not there,

Nor sent, nor came he, till conjecture grew
Cold in the many, anxious in the few.

Lara, Canto I.

ABSENCE, like death, sets a seal on the image of those we have loved; * we cannot realize the intervening changes which time may have effected.

GOLDSMITH. Preface to the Life of Parnell.

I AM not sure if the ladies understand the full value of the influence of absence, nor do I think it wise to teach it them, lest, like the Clelias and Mandanes of yore, they should resume the humour of sending their lovers into banishment. Distance, in truth, produces in idea the same effect as in real perspective. Objects are softened, and rounded, and rendered doubly graceful; the harsher and more ordinary points of character are mellowed down, and those by which it is remembered are the more striking outlines that mark sublimity, grace, or beauty. Waverley, Chap. XXIX.


And all that fills the heart of friends,
When first they feel with secret pain
Their lives, thenceforth have separate ends

And never can be one again.

LONGFELLOW. Fire of Driftwood.


SAE true his heart, sae smooth his speech,

His breath like caller air;

His very foot has music in't
As he comes up the stair--
And will I see his face again?
And will I hear him speak?
I'm downright dizzy wi' the thought,
In troth I'm like to greet.

If Colin's weel, and weel content,
I hae nae mair to crave;
And gin I live to keep him sae,
I'm blest aboon the lave:
And will I see his face again?
And will I hear him speak?

I'm downright dizzy wi' the thought,
In troth I'm like to greet.



THOUGH a man has all other perfections and wants discretion, he will be of no great consequence in the world; but if he has this single talent in perfection, and but a common share of others, he may do what he pleases in his particular station of life. Spectator, No. 225.

THERE seems to be no part of knowledge in fewer hands, than that of discerning when to have done.

SWIFT. Tale of a Tub.


THERE are numbers in the world who do not want sense to make a figure, so much as an opinion of their own abilities, to put them upon recording their observations, and allowing them the same importance which they do to those which others print. SHENSTONE.

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MR. BOYLE, in the preface to his essays, makes an apology for the frequent use of the word "perhaps," ""it seems," 'tis not improbable," as implying a diffidence of the justice of his opinions; and this diffidence arose, as he informs us, from repeated observations, that what pleased him for a while, was afterwards disgraced by some farther, or more recent discovery.


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