The Works of Samuel Johnson, Volume 9

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Bell & Bradfute, James M'Cleish, and William Blackwood, 1806 - English literature
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Page 319 - Whatever withdraws us from the power of our senses ; whatever makes the past, the distant, or the future predominate over the present, advances us in the dignity of thinking beings. Far from me and from my friends be such frigid philosophy, as may conduct us indifferent and unmoved over any ground which has been dignified by wisdom, bravery, or virtue. That man is little to be envied, whose patriotism would not gain force upon the plain of Marathon, or whose piety would not grow warmer among the...
Page 319 - ... dignity of thinking beings. Far from me and from my friends, be such frigid philosophy as may conduct us indifferent and unmoved over any ground which has been dignified by wisdom, bravery, or virtue. That man is little to be envied, whose patriotism would not gain force upon the plain of Marathon, or whose piety would not grow warmer among the ruins of lona ! We came too late to visit monuments : some care was necessary for ourselves.
Page 118 - The only end of writing is to enable the readers better to enjoy life, or better to endure it...
Page 72 - ... in the centre, and its turrets sparkle in the skies ; to trace back the structure through all its varieties to the simplicity of...
Page 179 - I sat down on a bank, such as a writer of Romance might have delighted to feign. I had indeed no trees to whisper over my head, but a clear rivulet streamed at my feet. The day was calm, the air soft, and all was rudeness, silence, and solitude. Before me, and on either side, were high hills, which by hindering the eye from ranging, forced the mind to find entertainment for itself. Whether I spent the hour well I know not; for here I first conceived the thought of this narration.
Page 69 - Acorns, so Men are by some unaccountable power driven one against another, till they lose their motion, that Vultures may be fed. Others think they have observed something of contrivance and policy among these...
Page 59 - ... pleasures. But at fifty no man easily finds a woman beautiful as the Houries, and wise as Zobeide. I inquired and rejected, consulted and deliberated, till the sixtysecond year made me ashamed of gazing upon girls. I had now nothing left but retirement ; and for retirement I never found a time, till disease forced me from public employment.
Page 43 - He that instructs must offer to the mind something to be imitated, or something to be avoided ; he that pleases must offor new images to his reader, and enable him to form a tacit comparison of his own state with that of others. • The greater part of travellers tell nothing, because their method of travelling supplies them with nothing to be told.
Page 199 - A man of the Hebrides, for of the women's diet I can give no account, as soon as he appears in the morning, swallows a glass of whisky; yet they are not a drunken race...
Page 59 - Such was my scheme, and such has been its consequence. With an insatiable thirst for knowledge, I trifled away the years of improvement ; with a restless desire of seeing different countries, I have always resided in the same city ; with the highest expectation of connubial felicity, I have lived unmarried ; and with unalterable resolutions of contemplative retirement, I am going to die within the walls of Bagdat.

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