Aptitude found in the understanding and is often inherited. Genius coming from reason and imagination, rarely.
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To see him act is like reading Shakespeare by flashes of lightning.
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My case is a species of madness, only that it is a derangement of the Volition, and not of the intellectual faculties.
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Advice is like snow; the softer it falls the longer it dwells upon, and the deeper it sinks into the mind.
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There are three classes into which all the women past seventy that ever I knew were to be divided: 1. That dear old soul; 2. That old woman; 3. That old witch.
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Some men are like musical glasses; to produce their finest tones you must keep them wet.
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Poor little Foal of an oppressed race! I love the languid patience of thy face.
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Exclusively of the abstract sciences, the largest and worthiest portion of our knowledge consists of aphorisms: and the greatest and best of men is but an aphorism.
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The principle of the Gothic architecture is infinity made imaginable.
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Forth from his dark and lonely hiding-place, (Portentous sight!) the owlet Atheism, sailing on obscene wings athwart the noon, drops his blue-fringed lids, and holds them close, and hooting at the glorious sun in Heaven, cries out, Where is it?
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Look through the whole history of countries professing the Romish religion, and you will uniformly find the leaven of this besetting and accursed principle of action -- that the end will sanction any means.
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How deep a wound to morals and social purity has that accursed article of the celibacy of the clergy been! Even the best and most enlightened men in Romanist countries attach a notion of impurity to the marriage of a clergyman. And can such a feeling be without its effect on the estimation of the wedded life in general? Impossible! and the morals of both sexes in Spain, Italy, France, and. prove it abundantly.
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He who begins by loving Christianity better than truth, will proceed by loving his own sect or church better than Christianity, and end in loving himself better than all.
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An instinctive taste teaches men to build their churches with spire steeples which point as with a silent finger to the sky and stars.
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Reviewers are usually people who would have been, poets, historians, biographer, if they could. They have tried their talents at one thing or another and have failed; therefore they turn critic.
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How inimitably graceful children are in general before they learn to dance!
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An orphan's curse would drag to hell, a spirit from on high; but oh! more horrible than that, is a curse in a dead man's eye!
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Nothing is so contagious as enthusiasm.
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To most men experience is like the stern lights of a ship, which illuminate only the track it has passed.
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Friendship is a sheltering tree.
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And though thou notest from thy safe recess old friends burn dim, like lamps in noisome air love them for what they are; nor love them less, because to thee they are not what they were.
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As it must not, so genius cannot be lawless; for it is even that constitutes its genius -- the power of acting creatively under laws of its own origination.
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Good and bad men are less than they seem.
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Alas! they had been friends in youth; but whispering tongues can poison truth.
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The three great ends which a statesman ought to propose to himself in the government of a nation, are -- 1. Security to possessors; 2. Facility to acquirers; and, 3. Hope to all.
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Greatness and goodness are not means, but ends.
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Our own heart, and not other men's opinion, forms our true honor.
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People of humor are always in some degree people of genius.
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The wise only possess ideas; the greater part of mankind are possessed by them.
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Oh worse than everything, is kindness counterfeiting absent love.
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Language is the armory of the human mind, and at once contains the trophies of its past and the weapons of its future conquests.
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The most happy marriage I can imagine to myself would be the union of a deaf man to a blind woman.
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He is the best physician who is the most ingenious inspirer of hope.
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What comes from the heart, goes to the heart.
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No one does anything from a single motive.
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I do not call the sod under my feet my country; but language -- religion -- government -- blood -- identity in these makes men of one country.
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Our quaint metaphysical opinions, in an hour of anguish, are like playthings by the bedside of a child deathly sick.
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You see how this House of Commons has begun to verify all the ill prophecies that were made of it -- low, vulgar, meddling with everything, assuming universal competency, and flattering every base passion -- and sneering at everything noble refined and truly national. The direct tyranny will come on by and by, after it shall have gratified the multitude with the spoil and ruin of the old institutions of the land.
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Plagiarists are always suspicious of being stolen from.
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I wish our clever young poets would remember my homely definitions of prose and poetry; that is, prose = words in their best order; --poetry = the best words in the best order.
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That willing suspension of disbelief for the moment, which constitutes poetic faith.
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In politics, what begins in fear usually ends in folly.
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And the Devil did grin, for his darling sin is pride that apes humility.
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What is a epigram? A dwarfish whole. Its body brevity, and wit its soul.
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Why are not more gems from our great authors scattered over the country? Great books are not in everybody's reach; and though it is better to know them thoroughly than to know them only here and there, yet it is a good work to give a little to those who have not the time nor means to get more.
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Every reform, however necessary, will by weak minds be carried to an excess, which will itself need reforming.
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A religion, that is, a true religion, must consist of ideas and facts both; not of ideas alone without facts, for then it would be mere Philosophy; -- nor of facts alone without ideas, of which those facts are symbols, or out of which they arise, or upon which they are grounded: for then it would be mere History.
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Rights! There are no rights whatever without corresponding duties. Look at the history of the growth of our constitution, and you will see that our ancestors never upon any occasion stated, as a ground for claiming any of their privileges, an abstract right inherent in themselves; you will nowhere in our parliamentary records find the miserable sophism of the Rights of Man.
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Oh Sleep! it is a gentle thing, beloved from pole to pole, to Mary Queen the praise be given! She sent the gentle sleep from Heaven, that slid into my soul.
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Swans sing before they die -- t'were no bad thing did certain persons die before they sing.
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All sympathy not consistent with acknowledged virtue is but disguised selfishness.
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The happiness of life is made up of minute fractions -- the little soon forgotten charities of a kiss or smile, a kind look, a heartfelt compliment, and the countless infinitesimal of pleasurable and genial feeling.
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I have seen great intolerance shown in support of tolerance.
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Prose, words in their best order. Poetry, the best words in the best order.
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Humor is consistent with pathos, whilst wit is not.
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Coleridge, Samuel Taylor

No biography at present.

55 quotations