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LAURENCE STERNE. 1713-1768. Go, poor devil
, get thee gone ; why should I hurt thee? This world surely is wide enough to hold both thee and me. Tristram Shandy. Vol. ii. Ch. xii.
Great wits jump.*
Vol. iii. Ch. ix.
Our armies swore terribly in Flanders, cried my uncle Toby,--but nothing to this.
Vol. iii. Ch. xi.
The accusing spirit, which flew up to heaven's chancery with the oath, blushed as he gave it in; and the recording angel, as he wrote it down, dropped a tear upon the word and blotted it out for ever.
Vol. vi. Ch. viii.
‘They order,' said I, this matter better in France.'
Sentimental Journey. Page 1. I pity the man who can travel from Dan to Beersheba, and cry, 'T is all barren.
Ibid. In the Street. Calais. Disguise thyself as thou wilt, still, slavery, said I, still thou art a bitter draught.
Ibid. The Passport. The Hotel at Paris. The iron entered his soul.+ Ibid. The Captive. Paris.
God tempers the wind to the shorn lamb. I
Ibid. Maria. * A proverbial phrase. † Psalm cv. 18. Book of Common Prayer.
Dieu mesure le froid à la brebis tondue.-HENRI ESTIENNE. Pre. mices, etc., p. 47, a collection of Proverbs, published in 1594. To a close shorn sheep God gives wind by measure.
HERBERT. Jacula Prudentuin.
EDMUND BURKE.* 1730-1797.
On the French Revolution.
THE swinish multitude.
It is now sixteen or seventeen years since I saw the Queen of France, then the Dauphiness, at Versailles ; and surely never lighted on this orb, which she hardly seemed to touch, a more delightful vision.
I saw her just above the horizon, decorating and cheering the elevated sphere she just began to move in; glittering like the morning star, full of life, and splendour, and joy.
Little did I dream that I should have lived to see such disasters fallen upon her in a nation of gallant men, in a nation of men of honour and of cavaliers. I thought ten thousand swords must have leaped from their scabbards to avenge even a look that threatened her with insult. But the age of chivalry is gone.
The cheap defence of nations, the nurse of manly sentiment and heroic enterprise, is gone.
Vice itself lost half its evil, by losing all its grossness.
Kings will be tyrants from policy when subjects are rebels from principle.
You had that action and counteraction, which in the
* Rev. Robert Hall in his Apology for the Freedom of the Press, says of Mr. Burke, ‘His imperial fancy has laid all nature under tribute, and has collected riches from every scene of the creation and every walk of art.'
natural and in the political world, from the reciprocal struggle of discordant powers, draws out the harmony of the universe. *
On the French Revolution.
The worthy gentlemen who has been snatched from us at the moment of the election, and in the middle of the contest, whilst his desires were as warm, and his hopes as eager as ours, has feelingly told us what shadows we are, what shadows we pursue.
Speech at Bristol on declining the Poll. 1780. There is, however, a limit at which forbearance ceases to be a virtue.
The Present State of the Nation.
When bad men combine, the good must associate ; else they will fall, one by one, an unpitied sacrifice, in a contemptible struggle.
Thoughts on the Present Discontents. All those instances to be found in history, whether real or fabulous, of a doubtful public spirit, at which morality is perplexed, reason is staggered, and from which affrighted nature recoils, are their chosen and almost sole examples for the instruction of youth.
First Letter on a Regicide Peace. I would rather sleep in the corner of a little country churchyard than in the tomb of all the Capulets.
Letter to Matthew Smith. It has all the contortions of the sybil without the inspiration.
Prior's Life of Burke.
* Mr. Breen, in his Modern English Literature, says: 'This remarkable thought, Alison, the historian, has turned to good account; it occurs so often in his disquisitions, that he seems to have made it the staple of all wisdom and the basis of every truth.'
+ When Croft's Life of Dr. Young was spoken of as a good imitation
All government, indeed every human benefit and enjoyment, every virtue, and every prudent act, is founded on compromise and barter.
Speech on Conciliation with America.
RICHARD HURD. 5720-1808.
N this awfully stupendous manner, at which reason
stands aghast, and faith herself is half confounded, was the grace of God to man at length manifested.
Sermons. Vol. ii. p. 287.
PATRICK HENRY. 1736-1799.
CA “ÆSAR had his Brutus — Charles the First, his
Cromwell—and George the Third—(*Treason !' cried the speaker)—may profit by their example. If this be treason, make the most of it. Speech, 1765.
Give me liberty, or give me death!
Speech, March, 1775.
of Dr. Johnson's style, “No, no,” said he, “it is not a good imitation of Johnson ; it has all his pomp without his force; it has all the nodosities of the oak without its strength; it has all the contortions of the sybil without the inspiration.”'
THOMAS PAINE. 1737-1809.
ND the final event to himself (Mr. Burke) has been
that, as he rose like a rocket, he fell like the stick.
Letter to the Addressers.
These are the times that try men's souls.
The Crisis. No. 1. The sublime and the ridiculous are often so nearly related, that it is difficult to class them separately. One step above the sublime makes the ridiculous, and one step above the ridiculous makes the sublime again.*
Age of Reason. Part ii. ad fin. (note.)
JOSEPH FOUCHÉ. 1763-1820.
T is more than a crime, it is a political fault ;t
words which I record because they have been repeated and attributed to others.
Memoirs of Fouché.
T is a maxim with me that no man was ever written out of reputation but by himself.
MONK's Life of Bentley, p. go.
* Probably the original of Napoleon's celebrated mot, 'Du sublime au ridicule il n'y a qu'un pas.'
+ Commonly quoted, 'It is worse than a crime, it is a blunder,' and attributed to Talleyrand.