The Works of Samuel Johnson, LL. D.: The lives of the most eminent English poets

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J. Buckland [and 40 others], 1787 - English literature
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Page 148 - In this Poem there is no nature, for there is no truth ; there is no art, for there is nothing new. Its form is that of a pastoral, easy, vulgar, and therefore disgusting : whatever images it can supply, are long ago exhausted ; and its inherent improbability always forces dissatisfaction on the mind.
Page 384 - The clauses are never balanced, nor the periods modelled: every word seems to drop by chance, though it falls into its proper place. Nothing is cold or languid; the whole is airy, animated, and vigorous; what is little, is gay; what is great, is splendid.
Page 397 - To see this fleet upon the ocean move, Angels drew wide the curtains of the skies; And heaven, as if there wanted lights above, For tapers made two glaring comets rise.
Page 24 - The most heterogeneous ideas are yoked by violence together ; nature and art are ransacked for illustrations, comparisons, and allusions ; their learning instructs and their subtlety surprises ; but the reader commonly thinks his improvement dearly bought, and, though he sometimes admires, is seldom pleased.
Page 167 - Paradise Lost is one of the books which the reader admires and lays down, and forgets to take up again. None ever wished it longer than it is. Its perusal is a duty rather than a pleasure.
Page 59 - Wash'd from the morning beauties' deepest red ; An harmless flatt'ring meteor shone for hair, And fell adown his shoulders with loose care ; He cuts out a silk mantle from the skies, Where the most sprightly azure...
Page 134 - that though our author had daily about him one or other to read, some persons of man's estate, who, of their own accord, greedily catched at the opportunity of being his readers, that they might as well reap the benefit of what they read to him, as oblige him by the benefit of their reading ; and others of younger years were sent by their parents to the same end...
Page 176 - From his contemporaries he neither courted nor received support : There is in his writings nothing by which the pride of other authors might be gratified, or favour gained ; no exchange of praise, nor solicitation of support.
Page 316 - Latin proverb, were not always the least happy; and as his fancy was quick, so likewise were the products of it remote and new. He borrowed not of any other, and his imaginations were such as could not easily enter into any other man.
Page 148 - We know that they never drove a field, and that they had no flocks to batten; and though it be allowed that the representation may be allegorical, the true meaning is so uncertain and remote, that it is never sought because it cannot be known when it is found.

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