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Some books are to be tasted, others to be swallowed, and some few to be chewed and digested. Of Studies.
Reading maketh a full man, conference a ready man, and writing an exact man.
Ibid. Histories make men wise; poets, witty; the mathematics, subtile; natural philosophy, deep; moral, grave; logic and rhetoric, able to contend.
Ibid. The greatest vicissitude of things amongst men is the vicissitude of sects and religions." Of Vicissitude of Things. Books must follow sciences, and not sciences books.
Proposition touching Amendment of Laws. Knowledge is power. – Nam et ipsa scientia potestas est.
Meditationes Sacræ. De Hæresibus.
Whence we see spiders, flies, or ants entombed and preserved forever in amber, a more than royal tomb.8
Historia Vitæ et Mortis; Sylva Sylvarum, Cent. i. Exper. 100. When you wander, as you often delight to do, you wander indeed, and give never such satisfaction as the curious time requires. This is not caused by any natural defect, but first for want of election, when you, having a large and fruitful mind, should not so much labour what to speak as to find what to leave unspoken. Rich soils are often to be weeded.
Letter of Expostulation to Coke.
1 The vicissitude of things. - STERNE: Sermon xvi. GIFFORD: Contemplation.
2 A wise man is strong ; yea, a man of knowledge increaseth strength. Proverbs xxiv. 5.
Knowledge is more than equivalent to force. — Johnson : Rasselas, chap. xiii.
3 The bee enclosed and through the amber shown,
MARTIAL: book iv. line 31 (Hay's translation).
HERRICK : On a Fly buried in Amber.
POPE : Epistle to Dr. Arbuthnot, line 169.
“ Antiquitas sæculi juventus mundi." These times are the ancient times, when the world is ancient, and not those which we account ancient ordine retrogrado, by a computation backward from ourselves."
Advancement of Learning. Book i. (1605.) For the glory of the Creator and the relief of man's estate.
Ibid. The sun, which passeth through pollutions and itself remains as pure as before.?
Book ü. It [Poesy] was ever thought to have some participation of divineness, because it doth raise and erect the mind by submitting the shews of things to the desires of the mind.
Ibid. 1 As in the little, so in the great world, reason will tell you that old age or antiquity is to be accounted by the farther distance from the beginning and the nearer approach to the end, the times wherein we now live being in propriety of speech the most ancient since the world's creation. - GEORGE HAKEWILL: An Apologie or Declaration of the Power and Providence of God in the Government of the World. London, 1627.
For as old age is that period of life most remote from infancy, who does not see that old age in this universal man ought not to be sought in the times nearest his birth, but in those most remote from it ? - PASCAL : Preface to the Treatise on Vacuum.
It is worthy of remark that a thought which is often quoted from Francis Bacon occurs in [Giordano] Bruno's "Cena di Cenere.” published in 1584 : I mean the notion that the later times are more aged than the earlier. WHEWELL: Philosophy of the Inductive Sciences, vol. ä. p. 198. London, 1847.
We are Ancients of the earth,
Tennyson : The Day Dream. (L'Enroi.) 2 The sun, though it passes through dirty places, yet remains as pure as before. – Advancement of Learning (ed. Dewey).
The sun, too, shines into cesspools and is not polluted. — DIOGENES LAERTIUS, Lib. vi. sect. 63.
Spiritalis enim virtus sacramenti ita est ut lux : etsi per immundos transeat, non inquinatur (The spiritual virtue of a sacrament is like light : although it passes among the impure, it is not polluted). – Saint AUGUSTINE : Works, vol. iii., In Johannis Evang. cap. i. tr. v. sect. 15.
The sun shineth upon the dunghill, and is not corrupted. — LYLY : Euphues, The Anatomy of Wit (Arber's reprint), p. 43.
The sun reflecting upon the mud of strands and shores is unpolluted in his beam. — TAYLOR : Holy Living, chap. i. p. 3.
Truth is as impossible to be soiled by any outward touch as the sunbeam. — Miltox: The Doctrine and Discipline of Divorce.
Sacred and inspired divinity, the sabaoth and port of all men's labours and peregrinations.
Advancement of Learning. Book ii. Cleanness of body was ever deemed to proceed from a due reverence to God."
Ibid. States as great engines move slowly.
Ibid, The world's a bubble, and the life of man Less than a span.”
The World. Who then to frail mortality shall trust But limns on water, or but writes in dust.
Ibid. What then remains but that we still should cry For being born, and, being born, to die? 8
Ibid. For my name and memory, I leave it to men's charitable speeches, to foreign nations, and to the next ages.
From his Will. My Lord St. Albans said that Nature did never put her precious jewels into a garret four stories high, and therefore that exceeding tall men had ever very empty heads."
Apothegms. No. 17.
i Cleanliness is indeed next to godliness. — JOHN WESLEY (quoted): Journal, Feb. 12, 1772.
According to Dr. A. S. Bettelheim, rabbi, this is found in the Hebrew fathers. He cites Phinehas ben Yair, as follows: “ The doctrines of religion are resolved into carefulness ; carefulness into vigorousness ; vigorousness into guiltlessness; guiltlessness into abstemiousness ; abstemiousness into cleanliness ; cleanliness into godliness," – literally, next to godliness. 2 Whose life is a bubble, and in length a span. — Browne: Pastoral üi.
Our life is but a span. – New England Primer. 3 This line frequently occurs in almost exactly the same shape among the minor poems of the time: “Not to be born, or, being born, to die." — DrumMOND : Poems, p. 44. BISHOP King: Poems, etc. (1657), p. 145.
4 Tall men are like houses of four stories, wherein commonly the uppermost room is worst furnished. — HOWELL (quoted): Letter i. book i. sect. ii. (1621.)
Often the cockloft is empty in those whom Nature hath built many stories high. – FULLER: Andronicus, sect. ri. par. 18, 1.
Such as take lodgings in a head
BUTLER: Hudibras, part i, canto i. line 161.
Like the strawberry wives, that laid two or three great strawberries at the mouth of their pot, and all the rest were little ones. I
Apothegms. No. 54. Sir Henry Wotton used to say that critics are like brushers of noblemen's clothes.
No. 64. Sir Amice Pawlet, when he saw too much haste made in any matter, was wont to say, “Stay a while, that we may make an end the sooner.”
No. 76. Alonso of Aragon was wont to say in commendation of age, that age appears to be best in four things, — old wood best to burn, old wine to drink, old friends to trust, and old authors to read.?
No. 97. Pyrrhus, when his friends congratulated to him his victory over the Romans under Fabricius, but with great slaughter of his own side, said to them, “ Yes; but if we have such another victory, we are undone.” 8 No. 193.
Cosmus, Duke of Florence, was wont to say of perfidious friends, that “We read that we ought to forgive our enemies; but we do not read that we ought to forgive our friends."
No. 206. Cato said the best way to keep good acts in memory was to refresh them with new.
1 The custom is not altogether obsolete in the U. S. A.
2 Is not old wine wholesomest, old pippins toothsomest, old wood burns brightest, old linen wash whitest? Old soldiers, sweetheart, are surest, and old lovers are soundest. - WEBSTER: Westward Hoe, act ii. sc. 2.
Old friends are best. King James used to call for his old shoes ; they were easiest for his feet. - SELDEN: Table Talk. Friends.
Old wood to burn ! Old wine to drink! Old friends to trust! Old authors to read !- Alonso of Aragon was wont to say in commendation of age, that age appeared to be best in these four things. – MELCHIOR : Floresta Española de Apothegmas o sentencias, etc., ii. 1, 20.
What find you better or more honourable than age ? Take the preheminence of it in everything, – in an old friend, in old wine, in an old pedigree. — SHAKERLEY MARMION (1602–1639): The Antiquary.
I love everything that's old, -old friends, old times, old manners, old books, old wine. — GOLDSMITH: She Stoops to Conquer, act i.
8 There are some defeats more triumphant than victories. — MONTAIGNE: Of Cannibals, chap. xxx.
As the case stands.1
The Old Law. Act ii. Sc. 1. On his last legs.
Act v. Sc. 1. Hold their noses to the grindstone.?
Blurt, Master-Constable. Act ii. Sc. 3. I smell a rat.
Ibid. A little too wise, they say, do ne'er live long *
The Phænix. Act i. Sc. 1. The better day, the better deed.
Act iii. Sc. 1. The worst comes to the worst.
Ibid. ’T is slight, not strength, that gives the greatest lift.?
Michaelmas Term. Act iv. Sc. 1. From thousands of our undone widows One may derive some wit.8
A Trick to catch the Old One. Act i. Sc. 2. Ground not upon dreams; you know they are ever contrary.
The Family of Love. Act iv. Sc. 3. Spick and span new.10
Ibid. A flat case as plain as a pack-staff.11
Act v. Sc. 3.
1 As the case stands. - Mathew HENRY : Commentaries, Psalm cxix. 2 See Heywood, page 11.
3 I smell a rat. Bex Jonson : Tale of a Tub, act w. Sc. 3. BUTLER : Hurlibras, part i. canto i. line 281.
I begin to smell a rat. CERVANTES: Don Quixote, book iv. chap. X. 4 See Shakespeare, page 97. 5 The better day, the worse deed. HENRY : Commentaries, Genesis iii.
6 Worst comes to the worst. — CERVANTES : Don Quixote, part i. book iii. chap. v. MARSTON : The Dutch Courtezan, act iii. sc. 1.
7 It is not strength, but art, obtains the prize. – Pope : The Niad, bouk xxiii. line 383.
8 Some undone widow sits upon mine arm. – MASSINGER : A New Way to pay Old Debts, act v. sc. 1.
9 For drames always go by contraries. — LOVER : The Angel's Whisper. 10 Spick and span new. — FORD: The Lover's Melancholy, act i. sc. 1. FARQUHAR: Preface to his Works.
11 Plain as a pike-staff. — Terence in English (1641). BUCKINGHAM : Speech in the House of Lords, 1675. Gil Blas (Smollett's translation), book zii. chap. viii. Byrom : Epistle to a Friend.