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And from her chamber window he would catch
KEATS. Isabella. Orlando. My fair Rosalind, I come within an hour of my promise.
Rosalind. Break an hour's promise in love? He that will divide a minute into a thousand parts, and break but a part of the thousandth part of a minute in the affairs of love, it may be said of him, that Cupid hath clapped him o' the shoulder, but I warrant him heart-whole.
As You Like It, Act IV.
O HAPPY is that man an' blest!
Unkenn'd that day.
BURNS. Holy Fair.
Romeo. Ah, Juliet, if the measure of thy joy
Be heap'd like mine, and that thy skill be more,
Receive in either by this dear encounter.
Romeo and Juliet, Act II.
THE garden yields
A soft amusement, a humane delight.
KNOWLEDGE OF CHARACTER.
NATURE is often eclipsed, sometimes conquered, but seldom extinguished. Force makes her more violent in the recoil. Doctrine and precept check the natural affections, but custom alone is that which perfectly subdues and conquers Nature. Every one's natural disposition is best discovered (1.) By familiar acquaintance, for here there is no affectation. (2.) In passions, because these throw off all regard to rules and precepts. (3). In new and extraordinary cases, because here custom forsakes us. BACON. Essays.
As for that second hand knowledge of men's minds, which is to be had from the relation of others, it will be sufficient to observe of it, that defects and vices are best learned from enemies-virtues and abilities from friends-manners and times from servants, and opinions and thoughts from intimate acquaintance, for popular fame is light; the judgment of superiors uncertain, before whom men walk more masked and secret. The truest character comes from domestics.*
IT many times falls out, that we deem ourselves much deceived in others, because we first deceived ourselves.
SIR P. SIDNEY.
MACBETH'S SOLILOQUY BEFORE THE MURDER OF DUNCAN.
If it were done, when 'tis done, then 'twere well
But here, upon this bank and shoal of time,—
The character of men or women is perhaps better known by the treatment of those below them than by anything else, for to them they rarely condescend to play the hypocrite.
First, as I am his kinsman and his subject,
And pity, like a naked new-born babe,
That tears shall drown the wind.-I have no spur
BE merry with sorrow, wise men have said,
It seems a lesson truly laid
For those whom sorrows still invade :
Be merry friends!
ye not two sorrows of one,
For of one grief grafted alone
A sourer crab we can graft none :
Be merry friends!
Of griefs to come standing in fray,
In such things as we cannot flee,
Be merry friends!
Man hardly hath a richer thing,
Feeding the flowers of flourishing:
AND therein sat a lady fresh and fayre,
That to her might move cause of merriment;
She could devise, and thousand waies invent
To feede her foolish humour and vaine jolliment.
Faëry Queen, Book II., Canto 6.
It is an observation of Plutarch (in his Life of Lysander), that he who over-reaches by a false oath declares that he fears his enemy, but despises his God.
COMMON Swearing, if it have any serious meaning at all, argues in man a perpetual distrust of his own reputation, and is an acknowledgment that he thinks his bare word not to be worthy of credit.
I'LL take thy word for faith, nor ask thine oath;
WHEN thou dost tell another jest, therein
* Sport that wrinkled Care derides,
And Laughter holding both his sides.
Pick out of tales the mirth, but not the sin;
Which is thy best stake, when griefs make thee tame.
THE perjurer's a devil let loose; what can
up his hands, that dares mock God and man?
BUT saints whom oaths and vows oblige,
For if the devil, to serve his turn,
Can tell truth, why the saints should scorn,
For breaking of an oath, and lying,
'Tis the temptation of the devil
So in the wicked there's no vice,
A saint should be a slave to conscience,