The Rambler, by S. Johnson (Google eBook)

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Page 263 - Happy the man - and happy he alone He who can call today his own, He who, secure within, can say 'Tomorrow, do thy worst, for I have...
Page 274 - If a man was to compare the effect of a single stroke of a pickaxi or of one impression of the spade, with the general design and last result, he would be overwhelmed by the sense of their disproportion ; yet those petty operations, incessantly continued, in time surmount the greatest difficulties, and mountains are levelled, and oceans bounded, by the slender force of human beings.
Page 39 - O Thou whose power o'er moving worlds presides, Whose voice created, and whose wisdom guides, On darkling man in pure effulgence shine, And cheer the clouded mind with light divine. Tis thine alone to calm the pious breast, With silent confidence and holy rest : From thee, great God ! we spring, to thee we tend, Path, motive, guide, original, and end...
Page 24 - If the world be promiscuously described, I cannot see of what use it can be to read the account; or why it may not be as safe to turn the eye immediately upon mankind, as upon a mirror which shows all that presents itself without discrimination.
Page 263 - There is certainly no greater happiness than to be able to look back on a life usefully and virtuously employed, to trace our own progress in existence, by such tokens as excite neither shame nor sorrow.
Page 24 - ... it, to initiate youth by mock encounters in the art of necessary defence, and to increase prudence without impairing virtue.
Page 39 - ... he who has so little knowledge of human nature, as to seek happiness by changing any thing but his own dispositions, will waste his life in fruitless efforts, and multiply the griefs which he purposes to remove*.
Page 280 - ... to the beneficent Author of it ? Thus to enjoy the blessings he has sent, is virtue and obedience ; and to reject them merely as means of pleasure, is pitiable ignorance, or absurd perverseness. Infinite goodness is the source of created existence ; the proper tendency of every rational being, from the highest order of raptured seraphs, to the meanest rank of men, is to rise incessantly from lower degrees of happiness to higher. They have each faculties assigned them for various orders of delights.
Page 56 - Yet by some such fortuitous liquefaction was mankind taught to procure a body at once in a high degree solid and transparent, which might admit the light of the sun, and exclude the violence of the wind; which might extend the sight of the philosopher to new ranges of existence, and charm him at one time with the unbounded extent of the material creation, and at another with the endless subordination of animal life; and, what is yet of more importance, might supply the decays of nature, and succour...
Page 26 - I cannot discover why there should not be exhibited the most perfect idea of virtue; of virtue not angelical, nor above probability, for what we cannot credit we shall never imitate, but the highest and purest that humanity can reach, which, exercised in such trials as the various revolutions of things shall bring upon it, may, by conquering some calamities, and enduring others, teach us what we may hope, and what we can perform.

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