The English Familiar Essay: Representative Texts

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William Frank Bryan, Ronald Salmon Crane
Ginn, 1916 - English essays - 471 pages
 

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Page 51 - GOD ALMIGHTY first planted a garden. And, indeed, it is the purest of human pleasures ; it is the greatest refreshment to the spirits of man, without which buildings and palaces are but gross handiworks.
Page 23 - STUDIES serve for delight, for ornament, and for ability. Their chief use for delight, is in privateness and retiring: for ornament, is in discourse; and for ability, is in the judgment and disposition of business...
Page 45 - Eat not the heart." Certainly, if a man would give it a hard phrase, those that want friends to open themselves unto are cannibals of their own hearts. But one thing is most admirable (wherewith I will conclude this first fruit of friendship), which is, that this communicating of a man's self to his friend works two contrary effects : for it redoubleth joys and cutteth griefs in halves.
Page 31 - ... it. For these winding and crooked courses are the goings of the serpent, which goeth basely upon the belly, and not upon the feet. There is no vice that doth so cover a man with shame as to be found false and perfidious.
Page 31 - The poet that beautified the sect that was otherwise inferior to the rest, saith yet excellently well : // is a pleasure ' to stand upon the shore, and to see ships tossed upon the sea ; a pleasure to stand in the window of a castle, and to see a battle and the adventures thereof below: but no pleasure is comparable to the standing upon the vantage ground of Truth...
Page 32 - Men fear Death as children fear to go in the dark ; and as that natural fear in children is increased with tales, so is the other. Certainly, the contemplation of death, as the wages of sin and passage to another world, is holy and religious ; but the fear of it, as a tribute due unto nature, is weak. Yet in religious meditations there is sometimes mixture of vanity and of superstition. You shall read in some of the friars...
Page 145 - ... the day in meditation and prayer. As I was here airing myself on the tops of the mountains, I fell into a profound contemplation on the vanity of human life ; and passing from one thought to another, Surely, said I, man is but a shadow, and life a dream.
Page 281 - Far from all resort of mirth, Save the cricket on the hearth, Or the bellman's drowsy charm, To bless the doors from nightly harm; Or let my lamp at midnight hour Be seen in some high lonely tower, Where I may oft out-watch the Bear...
Page 220 - The human species, according to the best theory I can form of it, is composed of two distinct races, the men who borrow, and the men who lend. To these two original diversities may be reduced all those impertinent classifications of Gothic and Celtic tribes, white men, black men, red men. All the dwellers upon earth, " Parthians, and Medes, and Elamites," flock hither, and do naturally fall in with one or other of these primary distinctions.
Page 134 - I intend to form several of my ensuing speculations. Sir Roger, who is very well acquainted with my humour, lets me rise and go to bed when I please, dine at his own table or in my chamber as I think fit, sit still and say nothing without bidding me be merry.

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