Wit and humour, selected from the English poets; with an illustrative essay, and critical comments

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Strona 341 - Though fraught with all learning, yet straining his throat, To persuade Tommy Townshend* to lend him a vote ; Who, too deep for his hearers, still went on refining, And thought of convincing, while they thought of -dining. Though equal to all things, for all things unfit: Too nice for a statesman, too proud for a wit ; For a patriot, too cool ; for a drudge, disobedient ; And too fond of the right, to pursue the expedient. In short, 'twas his fate, unemployed or in place, sir, To eat mutton cold,...
Strona 296 - Like Cato, give his little senate laws, And sit attentive to his own applause ; While wits and templars every sentence raise, And wonder with a foolish face of praise ; Who but must laugh if such a man there be ? Who would not weep if Atticus were he? What though my name stood rubric on the walls, Or plaster'd posts, with claps, in capitals ? Or smoking forth, a hundred hawkers...
Strona 284 - The rest the winds dispers'd in empty air. But now secure the painted vessel glides, The sunbeams trembling on the floating tides ; While melting music steals upon the sky, And soften'd sounds along the waters die : Smooth flow the waves, the zephyrs gently play, Belinda smil'd, and all the world was gay. All but the sylph — with careful thoughts opprest, Th' impending woe sat heavy on his breast.
Strona 301 - His gardens next your admiration call, On every side you look, behold the wall! No pleasing intricacies intervene, No artful wildness to perplex the scene; Grove nods at grove, each alley has a brother, And half the platform just reflects the other.
Strona 287 - Ah cease, rash youth ! desist ere 'tis too late, Fear the just gods, and think of Scylla's fate! Chang'd to a bird, and sent to flit in air, She dearly pays for Nisus' injur'd hair ! But when to mischief mortals bend their will, How soon they find fit instruments of ill ! Just then, Clarissa drew with tempting grace A...
Strona 268 - A man so various that he seemed to be Not one, but all mankind's epitome : Stiff in opinions, always in the wrong, Was everything by starts and nothing long ; But in the course of one revolving moon Was chymist, fiddler, statesman, and buffoon ; Then all for women, painting, rhyming, drinking, Besides ten thousand freaks that died in thinking.
Strona 343 - Though secure of our hearts, yet confoundedly sick If they were not his own by finessing and trick: He cast off his friends as a huntsman his pack, For he knew when he pleased he could whistle them back.
Strona 5 - For, wit lying most in the assemblage of ideas, and putting those together with quickness and variety wherein can be found any resemblance or congruity, thereby to make up pleasant pictures and agreeable visions in the fancy...
Strona 343 - He cherish'd his friend, and he relish'da bumper ; Yet one fault he had, and that one was a thumper. Perhaps you may ask if the man was a miser? I answer, no, no, for he always was wiser : Too courteous, perhaps, or obligingly flat?
Strona 265 - Pleased with the danger, when the waves went high, He sought the storms ; but, for a calm unfit, Would steer too nigh the sands to boast his wit.

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