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But there is no such man: for, brother, men
Can counsel, and speak comfort to that grief
Which they themselves not feel, but tasting it*
Their counsel turns to passion, which before
Would give preceptial medicine to rage,
Fetter strong madness in a silken thread,
Charm ache with air, and agony with words:
No, no; 'tis all men's office to speak patience
To those that wring under the load of sorrow;
But no man's virtue, nor sufficiency,

To be so moral, when he shall endure

The like himself: therefore give me no counsel:
My griefs cry louder than advertisement.

Antonio. Therein do men from children nothing differ.
Leonato. I pray thee, peace: I will be flesh and blood;
For there was never yet philosopher

That could endure the tooth-ache patiently; †
However they have writ the style of gods,
And made a push at chance and sufferance.

Much Ado about Nothing, Act V.

BUT patience is more oft the exercise
Of saints, the trial of their fortitude,
Making them each his own deliverer,
And victor over all

That tyranny or fortune can inflict.

Samson Agonistes.


WHAT, though not all

Of mortal offspring can attain the heights
Of envied life; though only few possess
Patrician honours, or imperial state,
Yet Nature's care to all her children just
With richer treasures and an ampler state,
Endows at large whatever happy man

Will deign to use them. His the city's pomp

* We have all of us sufficient fortitude to bear the misfortunes of others. ROCHEFOUCAULD.

+ Philosophy triumphs easily over past, and over future, evils, but present

evils triumph over philosophy.

The rural honours his. Whate'er adorns
The princely dome, the column, and the arch,
The breathing marble, and the sculptured gold,
Beyond the proud possessor's narrow claim,
His tuneful breast enjoys. For him the Spring
Distils her dews, and from the silken gem
Its lucid leaves unfolds; for him the hand
Of Autumn tinges every fertile branch

With blooming gold, and blushes like the morn :
Each pleasing hour sheds tribute from her wings;
And still new beauties meet his lonely walk
And loves unfelt attract him. Not a breeze
Flies o'er the meadow, not a cloud imbibes
The setting sun's effulgence, not a strain
From all the tenants of the warbling shade
Ascends, but whence his bosom can partake
Fresh pleasure, unreproved.

AKENSIDE. Pleasures of Imagination.

BUT let not man's unequal views
Presume o'er Nature and her laws;
'Tis his with grateful joy to use

The indulgence of the Sovereign Cause;
Secure that health and beauty springs
Through this majestic frame of things
Beyond what he can reach to know,
And that Heaven's all-subduing will,
With good the progeny of ill,
Attempereth every state below.

AKENSIDE. Ode on the Winter Solstice.


This mournful Truth is every where confess'd,

Slow rises worth, by Poverty distrest.


JOHNSON. London.

WANT is a bitter and a hateful good
Because its virtues are not understood.

Prudence at once and fortitude it gives,
And, if in patience taken, mends our lives;
For even that indigence which brings me low,
Makes me myself, and Him above to know;


A good which none would challenge, few would choose,

A fair possession which mankind refuse.

If we from wealth to poverty descend,

Want gives to know the flatterer from the friend.


TRIFLES, light as air,

Are to the jealous, confirmations strong

As proofs of holy writ.


Othello, Act III.


IF you wish to appear agreeable in society you must consent to be taught many things which you know already.


THE true art of being agreeable, is to appear well pleased with all the company, and rather to seem well entertained with them, than to bring entertainment to them. A man thus disposed, perhaps, may not have much learning, nor any wit; but if he has common sense, and something friendly in his behaviour, it conciliates men's minds more than the brightest parts without this disposition; and when a man of such a turn comes to old age he is almost sure to be treated with respect. Spectator. THE character in conversation which commonly passes for agreeable is made up of civility and falsehood.


GOOD nature is more agreeable in conversation than wit, and gives a certain air to the countenance which is more amiable than beauty. It shows virtue in the fairest light, and takes off in some measure from the deformity of vice, and makes even folly and impertinence supportable.


Spectator, No. 223.

Canterbury. HEAR him but reason in divinity,
And, all-admiring, with an inward wish
You would desire the king were made a prelate :
Hear him debate of commonwealth affairs,
You would say,—it hath been all in all his study;
List his discourse of war, and you shall hear

A fearful battle render'd you in music:
Turn him to any cause of policy,

The Gordian Knot of it he will unloose,
Familiar as his garter; that, when he speaks,
The air, a charter'd libertine, is still,

And the mute wonder, lurketh in men's ears,
To steal his sweet and honey'd sentences;
So that the art and practic part of life
Must be the mistress to this theoric.

Henry V., Act I.

THE faculties of the orator are not exercised, indeed, as in other sciences, within certain precise and determinate limits: on the contrary, eloquence is the most comprehensive of the whole circle of arts. Thus he alone can justly be deemed an orator, who knows how to employ the most persuasive arguments upon every question; who can express himself suitable to the dignity of the subject, with all the powers of grace and harmony, in a word, who can penetrate into every minute circumstance, and manage the whole train of incidents to the greatest advantage of his cause.

MELMOUTH. Dialogue on Oratory ascribed to Pliny.


BUT quiet to quick bosoms is a hell,

And there hath been thy bane; there is a fire
And motion of the soul which will not dwell
In its own narrow being, but aspire
Beyond the fitting medium of desire;
And but once kindled, quenchless evermore,
Preys upon high adventure, nor can tire
Of aught but rest; a fever at the core,
Fatal to him who bears, to all who ever bore.

This makes the madmen who have made men mad

By their contagion, conquerors and kings,
Founders of sects and systems, to whom add
Sophists, bards, statesmen, all unquiet things
Which stir too strongly the soul's secret springs,
And are themselves the fools to those they fool;
Envied, yet how unenviable! what stings

Are theirs! One breast laid open were a school,
Which would unteach mankind the lust to shine or rule.

Their breath is agitation, and their life
A storm whereon they ride, and sink at last,
And yet so nursed and bigoted to strife,
That should their days, surviving perils past,
Melt to calm twilight, they feel overcast
With sorrow and supineness, and so die;
Even as a flame unfed, which runs to waste
With its own flickering, or a sword laid by,
Which eats into itself, and rusts ingloriously.

He who ascends to mountain-tops, shall find
The loftiest peaks most wrapt in clouds and snow;
He who surpasses or subdues mankind,
Must look down on the hate of those below.
Though high above the sun of glory glow,
And far beneath the earth and ocean spread,
Round him are icy rocks, and loudly blow
Contending tempests on his naked head,
And thus reward the toil that to those summits led.
Childe Harold, Canto 3.

No superiority yields any satisfaction save that which we possess or obtain over those with whom we immediately compare ourselves. It follows therefore that the pleasures of ambition which are supposed to be peculiar to high stations, are in reality common to all conditions. It is not what one possesses that constitutes the pleasure, but what one possesses more than the other. Philosophy smiles at the contempt with which the rich and great speak of the petty strifes and competitions of the poor; not reflecting that these strifes and competitions are just as reasonable as their own, and the pleasure which success affords the same.

PALEY. Moral Philosophy.

AMBITION, that high and glorious passion which makes such havoc among the sons of men, arises from a proud desire of honour and distinction; and when the splendid trappings in which it is usually caparisoned are removed, will be found to consist of the mean materials of envy, pride, and covetousness. BURTON. Anatomy.

BUT 'tis a common proof

That lowliness is young ambition's ladder,*

* Well it is known that ambition can creep as well as soar. The pride of no person in a flourishing condition is more justly to be dreaded than that

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