Boswell's Life of Johnson: Life (v.l, 1709-1765; v.2 1765-1776; v.3, 1776-1780; v.4, 1780-1784)

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Page 340 - Canst thou not minister to a mind diseas'd ; Pluck from the memory a rooted sorrow; Raze out the written troubles of the brain ; And with some sweet oblivious antidote Cleanse the stuffd bosom of that perilous stuff Which weighs upon the heart?
Page 116 - In misery's darkest caverns known, His useful care was ever nigh, Where hopeless anguish pour'd his groan, And lonely want retir'd to die. No summons mock'd by chill delay, No petty gain disdain'd by pride, The modest wants of every day The toil of every day supplied.
Page 155 - Tis night, and the landscape is lovely no more ; I mourn, but, ye woodlands, I mourn not for you; For morn is approaching, your charms to restore, Perfumed with fresh fragrance, and glittering with dew: Nor yet for the ravage of Winter I mourn ; Kind Nature the embryo blossom will save. But when shall Spring visit the mouldering urn? O, when shall it dawn on the night of the grave?
Page 253 - tis all a cheat, Yet fool'd with hope, men favour the deceit ; Trust on and think to-morrow will repay ; To-morrow's falser than the former day ; Lies worse ; and while it says we shall be blest With some new joys, cuts off what we possest.
Page 97 - Why," said Johnson, smiling and rolling himself about, " that is because, dearest, you're a dunce." When she some time afterwards mentioned this to him, he said, with equal truth and...
Page 205 - Johnson, indeed, had thought more upon the subject of acting than might be generally supposed. Talking of it one day to Mr. Kemble, he said, 'Are you, Sir, one of those enthusiasts who believe yourself transformed into the very character you represent ?' Upon Mr. Kemble's answering that he had never felt so strong a persuasion himself ; 'To be sure not, Sir, (said Johnson ; ) the thing is impossible. And if Garrick really believed himself to be that monster, Richard the Third, he deserved to be hanged...
Page 94 - ... seasonable application of a trivial saying, or in forging an apposite tale ; sometimes it playeth in words and phrases, taking advantage from the ambiguity of their...
Page 116 - Of every friendless name the friend. Yet still he fills affection's eye, Obscurely wise, and coarsely kind; Nor, letter'd arrogance, deny Thy praise to merit unrefin'd.
Page 94 - ... in one knows not what, and springeth up one can hardly tell how. Its ways are unaccountable and inexplicable, being answerable to the numberless rovings of fancy and windings of language. It is, in short, a manner of speaking out of the simple and plain way — such as reason teacheth and proveth things by — which by a pretty surprising uncouthness in conceit or expression doth affect and amuse the fancy, stirring in it some wonder, and breeding some delight thereto.
Page 15 - An eminent foreigner, when he was shown the British Museum, was very troublesome with many absurd inquiries. ' Now there, Sir,' said he, ' is the difference between an Englishman and a Frenchman. A Frenchman must be always talking, whether he knows any thing of the matter or not; an Englishman is content to say nothing, when he has nothing to say.

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