The life of Samuel Johnson. [Followed by] The journal of a tour to the Hebrides, Volume 4

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Page 70 - Biron they call him; but a merrier man, Within the limit of becoming mirth, I never spent an hour's talk withal : His eye begets occasion for his wit; For every object that the one doth catch, The other turns to a mirth-moving jest...
Page 101 - The busy day, the peaceful night, Unfelt, uncounted, glided by; His frame was firm, his powers were bright, Though now his eightieth year was nigh. Then, with no throbs of fiery pain, No cold gradations of decay, Death broke at once the vital chain, And freed his soul the nearest way.
Page 270 - 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 77 - Sometimes it lieth in pat allusion to a known story, or in 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 sense, or the affinity of their sound.
Page 35 - My thoughtless youth was wing'd with vain desires, My manhood, long misled by wandering fires, Follow'd false lights, and, when their glimpse was gone, My pride struck out new sparkles of her own. Such was I, such by nature still I am ; Be thine the glory, and be mine the shame. Good life be now my task : my doubts are done ; What more could fright my faith than Three in One...
Page 100 - His ready help was ever nigh, Where hopeless Anguish pour'd his groan, And lonely Want retir'd to die.
Page 186 - There is no arguing with Johnson: for if his pistol misses fire, he knocks you down with the butt end of it.
Page 77 - ... some delight thereto. It raiseth admiration, as signifying a nimble sagacity of apprehension, a special felicity of invention, a vivacity of spirit, and reach of wit more than vulgar; it seeming to argue a rare quickness of parts, that one can fetch in remote conceits applicable; a notable skill, that he can dexterously accommodate them to the purpose before him; together with a lively briskness of humour, not apt to damp those sportful flashes of imagination.
Page 33 - Fancy can hardly forbear to conjecture with what temper Milton surveyed the silent progress of his work, and marked its reputation stealing its way in a kind of subterraneous current, through fear and silence. I cannot but conceive him calm and confident, little disappointed, not at all dejected, relying on his own merit with steady consciousness, and waiting, without impatience, the vicissitudes of opinion, and the impartiality of a future generation.
Page 122 - On Mincio's banks, in Caesar's bounteous reign, If Tityrus found the Golden Age again, Must sleepy bards the flattering dream prolong, Mechanic echoes of the Mantuan song? From Truth and Nature shall we widely stray, Where Virgil, not where Fancy, leads the way? Yes, thus the Muses sing of happy swains, Because the Muses never knew their pains: They boast their peasants...

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