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Page 124 - Divines can say but what themselves believe ; Strong proofs they have, but not demonstrative ; For, were all plain, then all sides must agree, And faith itself be lost in certainty. To live uprightly then is sure the best, To save ourselves, and not to damn the rest. The soul of Arcite went where heathens go Who better live than we, though less they know.
Page 243 - What English readers, unacquainted with Greek or Latin, will believe me, or any other man, when we commend those authors, and confess we derive all that is pardonable in us from their fountains, if they take those to be the same poets, whom our Ogilbys have translated?
Page 140 - Nor must we understand the language only of the poet, but his particular turn of thoughts and expression, which are the characters that distinguish, and as it were individuate, him from all other writers. When we are come thus far, it is time to look into ourselves ; to conform our genius to his, to give his thought either the same turn, if our tongue will bear it, or if not, to vary but the dress, not to alter or destroy the substance.
Page 41 - Collier, because in many things he has taxed me justly; and I have pleaded guilty to all thoughts and expressions of mine, which can be truly argued of obscenity, profaneness, or immorality; and retract them. If he be my enemy, let him triumph ; if he be my friend, as I have given him no personal occasion to be otherwise, he will be glad of my repentance.
Page 24 - One of our late great poets is sunk in his reputation because he could never forgive any conceit which came in his way; but swept like a drag-net great and small.
Page 95 - There breathes not scarce a man on British ground (An isle for love and arms of old...
Page 26 - I need say little of his parentage, life, and fortunes : they are to be found at large in all the editions of his works. He was employed abroad and favoured by Edward the Third, Richard the Second, and Henry the Fourth, and was poet, as I suppose, to all three of them.
Page 67 - Of fortune, fate, or Providence complain? God gives us what he knows our wants require...
Page 130 - The' attentive audience, thus his will declared: " The cause and spring of motion, from above Hung down on earth the golden chain of love: Great was the" effect, and high was his intent, When peace among the jarring seeds he sent. Fire, flood, and earth, and air, by this were bound, And love, the common link, the new creation crown'd.
Page 122 - Than just to die when I began to live ! Vain men, how vanishing a bliss we crave, Now warm in love, now withering in the grave ! Never, O ! never more to see the sun ! Still dark, in a damp vault, and still alone ! This fate is common ; but I lose my breath Near bliss, and yet not bless'd before my death.