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DEAN SWIFT said that the only advantageous partnerships he knew were those between two sedan-chairmen, or two sawyers in the same pit.
"THAT was excellently observed," say I, when I read a passage in an author, where his opinion agrees with mine. When we differ, there I pronounce him to be mistaken.
To observations, which ourselves we make,
WE think very few people sensible except those who are of our opinion. ROCHEFOUCAULD.
THOSE who are formed to win general admiration are seldom calculated to bestow individual happiness.
ALIKE he thwarts the hospitable end,
POPE. Iliad, Book XV.
THE mind is more exhilarated and gratified by advancing in small things, than by resting on great ones.
WE are born for society and for the intercourse of each other, the faculties with which our organization is endowed, and her disposition to virtue can only be developed in our daily communication with beings of our own species. We ought and must not avoid the society of men, nor bury ourselves in continual solitude. For the inability to commit sin does not constitute sanctity. He alone is holy who, surrounded by temptation and enticement, is enabled to resist their temptation.
ZSCHOKKE. Hours of Meditation.
THOU dost presume too much, poor needy wretch,
Because thy humble cottage or thy tub,
In the cheap sunshine or by shady springs,
Of your necessitated temperance,
Or that unnatural stupidity
That knows not joy nor sorrow; nor your forced,
Falsely exalted, passive fortitude,
Above the active:* this low abject brood
Become your servile mind; but we advance
That knows no bound, and that heroic virtue
But patterns only.
CAREW. Cœlum Britannicum.
ALL who joy would win
Don Juan, Canto II.
Must share it.-Happiness was born a twin.
THOUGH shame it were, could I not look around,
I cannot praise a fugitive and cloistered virtue unexercised and unbreathed, that never sallies out and sees her adversary, but slinks out of the race, where that immortal garland is to be run for, not without dust and heat. Assuredly we bring not innocence into the world, we bring impurity much rather; that which purifies us is trial, and trial is by what is contrary. That virtue, therefore, which is but a youngling in the contemplation of evil, and knows not the utmost that vice promises to her followers, and rejects it, is but a blank virtue, not a pure.
+ Who partakes in another's joys is a more humane character than he who partakes in his griefs. LAVATER.
Constance's Lamentation over her son Arthur.
AND, father cardinal, I have heard you say,
For, since the birth of Cain, the first male child,
There was not such a gracious creature born.
But now will canker sorrow eat my bud,
When I shall meet him in the court of heaven,
Pand. You hold too heinous a respect of grief.
Lies in his bed, walks up and down with me;
King John, Act III.
Kent. DID your letters pierce the queen to any demonstration of grief?
Gent. Ay, sir; she took them, read them in my presence;
And now and then an ample tear trill'd down
Her delicate cheek: it seem'd, she was a queen
Over her passion; who, most rebel-like,
Kent. O, then it moved her.
* And in thy bowers of Camelot or of Usk
Gent. Not to a rage; patience and sorrow strove
Who should express her goodliest. You have seen
Could so become it.
Kent. Made she no verbal question ?
Gent. 'Faith, once or twice she heaved the name of father
Cried, Sisters! sisters !-Shame of ladies! sisters!
The holy water from her heavenly eyes,
And clamour moisten'd: then away she started
To deal with grief alone.
King Lear, Act IV.
THUS long my grief has kept me dumb,
Sure there's a lethargy in mighty woe:
Tears stand congeal'd, and cannot flow;
And the sad soul retires into her inmost room:
But unprovided for a sudden blow,
Like Niobe we marble grow,
And petrify with grief.
DRYDEN. Ode to the Memory of Charles II.
HE that lacks time to mourn, lacks time to mend.
PHILIP VAN ARTEVELDE.
YET had our Pilgrimage bin free,
And Tares had choakt the Corne.
Thus by a Crosse, Salvation runnes;
Whose painfull throes yield many sons,
A silent Teare can pierce Thy throne,
And sweeter aires streame from a grone,
H. VAUGHAN. Silex Scintillans.
OH sacred sorrow by whom souls are tried,
CRABBE. The Parish Register Burials.
Indamora. WHEN graceful sorrow in her pomp appears,
GRIEFE all in sable sorrow fully clad,
Downe hanging his dull head with heavy cheere,
Yet inly being more than seeming sad.†
Faery Queen, Book III., Canto 12.
To mourn without measure is folly, not to mourn at all insensibility.‡
POPE and SWIFT.
On thy sweet infant, as the full-blown rose,
Surcharged with dew, bends o'er its neighb'ring bud.
+ No wringing of the hands and knocking the breast, or wishing oneself unborn; all which are but the ceremonies of sorrow, the pomp and ostentation of an effeminate grief, which speak not so much the greatness of the misery as the smallness of the mind. SOUTH.
Too much sensibility creates unhappiness, too much insensibility creates crime. TALLEYRAND.