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What is birth to man if it shall be a stain to world was furnished with these authors of the his dead ancestors to have left such an offspring ? first eminence, there grew up another set of
SIR P. SIDNEY. | writers, who gained themselves a reputation by
the remarks which they made on the works of He that boasts of his ancestors, the founders and raisers of a family, doth confess that he
those who preceded them.
ADDISON: Spectator, No. 61. hath less virtue.
We may observe that in the first ages of the Human and mortal though we are, we are, nevertheless, not mere insulated beings, without
world, when the great souls and masterpieces
of human nature were produced, men shined relation to the past or future. Neither the point
by a noble simplicity of behaviour, and were of time nor the spot of earth in which we physically live bounds our rational and intellectual
strangers to those little embellishments which
are so fashionable in our present conversation. enjoyments. We live in the past by a knowl
And it is very remarkable, that notwithstanding edge of its history, and in the future by hope
| we fall short at present of the ancients in poand anticipation. By ascending to an association with our ancestors; by contemplating their
etry, painting, oratory, history, architecture, and
all the noble arts and sciences which depend example, and studying their character; by par
more upon genius than experience, we exceed taking their sentiments, and imbibing their spirit;
them as much in doggerel humour, burlesque, by accompanying them in their toils; by sympa
and all the trivial arts of ridicule. We meet thizing in their sufferings and rejoicing in their successes and their triumphs, we mingle our
with more raillery among the moderns, but
more good sense among the ancients. own existence with theirs, and seem to belong
ADDISON: Spectator, No. 249. to their age. We become their contemporaries, live the lives which they lived, endure what! It is pleasant to see a verse of an old poet they endured, and partake in the rewards which revolting from its original sense, and siding with they enjoyed. DANIEL WEBSTER. la modern subject.
ADDISON. The happiest lot for a man, as far as birth is
The poetical fables are more ancient than the concerned, is that it should be such as to give l astrological influences, that were not known to him but little occasion to think much about it. I the Greeks till after Alexander the Great. WHATELY.
BENTLEY. In reference to nobility in individuals, nothing was ever better said than by Bishop Warburton
| In ancient authors a parenthetical form of -as is reported in the House of Lords, on the
writing is even more common than among modoccasion of some angry dispute which had arisen
erns. between a peer of noble family and one of a
He calls up the heroes of former ages from a new creation. He said that “high birth was a state of inexistence to adorn and diversify his thing which he never knew any one disparage,
BROOME: except those who had it not; and he never knew
On the Odyssey. any one make a boast of it who had anything else to be proud of." ... And it is curious that In this age we have a sort of reviviscence, a person of so exceptionable a character that no not, I fear of the power, but of a taste for the one would like to have him for a father, may power, of the early times. ColeriDGE. confer a kind of dignity on his great-great-greatgrandchildren. ... If he were to discover that
What English readers, unacquainted with he could trace up his descent distinctly to a man Greek or Latin, will believe me when we conwho had deserved hanging for robbery-not a fess we derive all that is pardonable in us from traveller of his purse, but a king of his empire,
ancient fountains ?
DRYDEN. or a neighbouring state of a province-he would be likely to make no secret of it, and even to be
In tragedy and satire I maintain, against some better pleased, inwardly, than if he had made
critics, that this age and the last have excelled out a long line of ancestors who had been very
the ancients; and I would instance in Shakehonest farmers.
Some are offended because I turned these tales into modern English; because they look
on Chaucer as a dry, old-fashioned wit, not ANCIENTS. worth reviving.
DRYDEN. o account for this, we must consider that The heathen poet in commending the charity the first race of authors, who were the great of Dido to the Trojans spoke like a Christian. heroes in writing, were destitute of all rules and
DRYDEN. arts of criticism; and for that reason, though they excel later writers in greatness of genius, The critics of a more exalted taste may dis. they fall short of them in accuracy and correct- cover such beauties in the ancient poetry as may ness. The moderns cannot reach their beauties, escape the comprehension of us pigmies of a but can avoid their imperfections. When the 1 more limited genius,
It is an unaccountable vanity to spend all our made. All the metaphysical discoveries of all time raking into the scraps and imperfect re- the philosophers from the time of Socrates to mains of former ages, and neglecting the clearer the northern invasion are not to be compared in notices of our own.
GLANVILL. importance with those which have been made in The sages of old live again in us, and in opin-1
England every fifty years since the time of Elizaions there is a metempsychosis.
beth. There is not the least reason to believe
that the principles of government, legislation, GLANVILL.
and political economy were better understood The love of things ancient doth argue stayed in the time of Augustus Cæsar than in the time ness, but levity and want of experience maketh of Pericles. In our own country, the sound apt unto innovation.
HOOKER. doctrines of trade and jurisprudence have been Many times that which deserveth approbation
within the lifetime of a single generation dimly would hardly find favour if they which propose
hinted, boldly propounded, defended, systemait were not to profess themselves scholars, and
tized, adopted by all reflecting men of all parfollowers of the ancients.
ties, quoted in legislative assemblies, incorpo
rated into laws and treaties. Among the ancients there was not much deli
LORD MACAULAY: History, May, 1828. cacy of breeding, or that polite deference and respect which civility obliges us either to express Seeing every nation affords not experience or counterfeit towards the persons with whom and tradition enough for all kind of learning; we converse.
therefore we are taught the languages of those
people who have been most industrious after Nothing conduces more to letters than to ex
MILTON. amine the writings of the ancients, provided the plagues of judging and pronouncing against But, after all, if they have any merit, it is to them be away; such as envy, bitterness, pre. be attributed to some good old authors whose cipitation, impudence, and scurril scoffing. works I study.
POPE: BEN JONSON.
On Pastoral Poetry. They think that whatever is called old must These passages in that book were enough to have the decay of time upon it, and truth too humble the presumption of our modern sciolists, were liable to mould and rottenness,
if their pride were not as great as their ignorLOCKE. ance.
Sir W. TEMPLE. Though the knowledge they have left us be! All the writings of the ancient Goths were worth our study, yet they exhausted not all its composed in verse, which were called runes, or treasures : they left a great deal for the industry viises, and from thence the term of wise came. and sagacity of after-ages. LOCKE.
Sir W. TEMPLE. In the philosophy of history the moderns have! It was the custom of those former ages, in very far surpassed the ancients. It is not, in- | their over-much gratitude, to advance the first deed, strange that the Greeks and Romans should authors of any useful discovery among the numnot have carried the science of government, or ber of their gods. Bishop WILKINS. any other experimental science, so far as it has been carried in our time; for the experimental sciences are generally in a state of progression. They were better understood in the seventeenth
ANGELS. century than in the sixteenth, and in the eighteenth century than in the seventeenth. But this Though sometimes effected by the immediate constant improvement, this natural growth of fiat of the divine will, yet I think they are most knowledge, will not altogether account for the ordinarily done by the ministration of angels. immense superiority of the modern writers. The
Sir M. Hale. difference is a difference not in degree, but of kind. It is not merely that new principles have
Angels are spirits immaterial and intellectual, been discovered, but that new faculties seem to
the glorious inhabitants of those sacred palaces be exerted. It is not that at one time the human
where there is nothing but light and immortalintellect should have made but small progress,
ity; no shadow of matter for tears, discontentand at another time have advanced far; but that
ments, griess, and uncomfortable passions to work at one time it should have been stationary, and
upon; but all joy, tranquillity, and peace, even at another time constantly proceeding. In taste
for ever and ever, do dwell. HOOKER. and imagination, in the graces of style, in the
The obedience of men is to imitate the obearts of persuasion, in the magnificence of public dience of angels, and rational beings on earth works, the ancients were at least our equals. are to live unto God, as rational beings in They reasoned as justly as ourselves on subjects | heaven live unto him. which required pure demonstration. But in the moral sciences they made scarcely any advance.
The supposition that angels assume bodies During the long period which elapsed between need not startle us, since some of the most an. the fifth century before the Christian era and the cient and most learned fathers seemed to believe fifteenth after it, little perceptible progress was I that they had bodies.
Superior beings above us, who enjoy perfect The sun should not set upon our anger, happiness, are more steadily determined in their neither should he rise upon our confidence. choice of good than we, and yet they are not We should freely forgive, but forget rarely. I less happy or less free than we. LOCKE. | will not be revenged, and I owe to my enemy;
but I will remember, and this I owe to myself. Loa
C. C. COLTON. ANGER.
When anger rises, think of the consequences.
CONFUCIUS. There is no other way but to meditate and Had I a careful and pleasant companion, that ruminate well upon the effects of anger,-how should show me my angry face in a glass, I it troubles man's life; and the best time to do I should not at all take it ill. Some are wont to this is to look back upon anger when the fit is have a looking-glass held to them while they thoroughly over. Seneca saith well, “that an
wash, though to little purpose; but to behold a ger is like rain, which breaks itsell upon that it man's self so unnaturally disguised and disorfalls." The Scripture exhorteth us “to possess dered, will conduce not a little to the impeachour souls in patience:" whosoever is out of pa
ment of anger.
PLUTARCH. tience is out of possession of his soul. ... Anger is certainly a kind of baseness; as it
To be angry, is to revenge the faults of others appears well in the weakness of those subjects / upon ourselves.
Pope. in whom it reigns,-children, women, old folks, | If anger is not restrained, it is frequently sick folks. Only men must beware that they | more hurtful to us than the injury that procarry their anger rather with scorn than with
SENECA. fear; so that they may seem rather to be above the injury than below it; which is a thing easily ! Anger is a transient hatred; or, at least, very done, if a man will give law to himself in it. I like it.
SOUTH. ... To contain anger from mischief, though it |
It might have pleased in the heat and hurry take hold of a man, there be two things whereof of his r
of his rage, but must have displeased in cool, you must have special caution: the one of ex
SOUTH. treme bitterness of words, especially if they be aculeate and proper; for “ communia male | Anger is like the waves of a troubled sea; dicta" are nothing so much; and again, that in | when it is corrected with a soft reply, as with a anger a man reveal no secrets; for that makes little strand, it retires, and leaves nothing behim not fit for society: the other, that you do | hind but froth and shells--no permanent misnot peremptorily break off in any business in chief.
JEREMY TAYLOR. a fit of anger; but howsoever you show bitterness, do not act anything that is not revocable. The anger of an enemy represents our faults
LORD BACON: or admonishes us of our duty with more heartiEssay LVIII.: Of Anger. I
ness than the kindness of a friend.
JEREMY TAYLOR. There is no affectation in passion; for that putteth a man out of his precepts, and in a new
Be careful to discountenance in children any. case there custom leaveth him.
thing that looks like rage and furious anger. LORD BACON.
TILLOTSON. Choleric and quarrelsome persons will engage To be angry about trifies is mean and childone into their quarrels. LORD BACO ish; to rage and be furious is brutish; and to
maintain perpetual wrath is akin to the practice He does anger too much honour who calls it
and temper of devils; but to prevent and sup. madness, which being a distemper of the brain,
press rising resentment is wise and glorious, is and a total absence of all reason, is innocent of
manly and divine.
Dr. I. WATTS. all the ill effects it may produce, whereas anger is an affected madness, compounded of pride and
Adam Smith, in his Theory of Moral Sentifolly, and an intention to do commonly more ments, seems to consider as the chief point of mischief than it can bring to pass.
distinction between anger and hatred, the necesLORD CLARENDON. sity to the gratification of the former that the
object of it should not only be punished, but Never do anything that can denote an angry punished by means of the offended person, and mind; for, although everybody is born with a on account of the particular injury inflicted. certain degree of passion, and, from untoward Anger requires that the offender should not circumstances, will sometimes feel its operation, only be made to grieve in his turn, but to grieve and be what they call “ out of humour,” yet a for that particular wrong which has been done sensible man or woman will never allow it to be | by him. The natural gratification of this pas. discovered. Check and restrain it; never make sion tends, of its own accord, to produce all the any determination until you find it has entirely political ends of punishment: the correction of subsided; and always avoid saying anything the criminal, and example to the public. that you may wish unsaid.
Annot, on Bacon's Essay, of Anger.
Aristotle, in his Rhetoric, . . . defines anger All fear is in itself painful; and when it conto be “ a desire, accompanied by mental uneasi. duces not to safety is painful without use. Every ness, of avenging one's self, or, as it were, in consideration, therefore, by which groundless flicting punishment for something that appears terrors may be removed, adds something to an unbecoming slight, either in things which human happiness. It is likewise not unworthy concern one's self, or some of one's friends." of remark, that, in proportion as our cares are And he hence infers that, if this be anger, it employed upon the future, they are abstracted must be invariably felt towards some individual, from the present, from the only time which we not against a class or description of persons. can call our own, and of which, if we neglect
WHATELY: the apparent duties, to make provision against Annot. on Bacon's Essay, Of Anger. | visionary attacks, we shall certainly counteract
our own purpose ; for he, doubtless, mistakes
his true interest who thinks that he can increase ANGLING.
his safety when he impairs his virtue.
Dr. S. JOHNSON: Rambler, No. 29. Angling was, after tedious study, a rest to his mind, a cheerer of his spirits, a diverter of sadness, a calmer of unquiet thoughts, a moderator of passions, a procurer of contentedness. IZAAK WALTON.
ANTIQUITIES. I have known a very good fisher angle dili The great magazine for all kinds of treasure
We gently four or six hours for a river carp, and not is supposed to be the bed of the Tiber. have a bite.
IZAAK WALTON. may be sure, when the Romans lay under the
apprehensions of seeing their city sacked by a He that reads Plutarch shall find that angling | barbarous enemy, that they would take care to was not contemptible in the days of Mark | bestow such of their riches that way as could Antony and Cleopatra. IZAAK WALTON.
best bear the water.
A man that is in Rome can scarce see an ANTICIPATION.
object that does not call to mind a piece of a Latin poet or historian.
ADDISON. As the memory relieves the mind in her
| There are in Rome two sets of antiquities, vacant moments, and prevents any chasms of
the Christian and the Heathen: the former, thought by ideas of what is passed, we have
though of a fresher date, are so embroiled with other faculties that agitate and employ her for
fable and legend that one receives but little what is to come. These are the passions of
ADDISON. hope and fear.
By these two passions we reach forward into | The antiquaries are for cramping their subfuturity, and bring up to our present thoughts ject into as narrow a space as they can; and for objects that lie hid in the remotest depths of reducing the whole extent of a science into a time. We suffer misery and enjoy happiness
few general maxims.
ADDISON. before they are in being; we can set the sun and stars forward, or lose sight of them by Several supercilious critics will treat an author wandering into those retired parts of eternity, with the greatest contempt if he fancies the old when the heavens and earth shall be no more. Romans wore a girdle.
ADDISON. ADDISON: Spectator, No. 471.
| Our admiration of the antiquities about I would not anticipate the relish of any hap. | Naples and Rome does not so much arise out piness, nor feel the weight of any misery, before of their greatness as uncommonness. it actually arrives. ADDISON.
ADDISON. The problem is, whether a man constantly! When a man sees the prodigious pains our and strongly believing that such a thing shall | forefathers have been at in these barbarous be, it don't help any thing to the effecting of the buildings, one cannot but fancy what miracles thing.
Lord Bacon. of architecture they would have left us had they We shall find our expectation of the future to been instructed in the right way. be a gift more distressful even than the former.
ADDISON. To fear an approaching evil is certainly a most As for the observation of Machiavel, traduc. disagreeable sensation; and in expecting an ing Gregory the Great, that he did what in him approaching good we experience the inquietude | lay to extinguish all heathen antiquities : I do of wanting actual possession,
not find that those zeals last long; as it appeared Thus, whichever way we look, the prospect in the succession of Sabinian, who did revive is disagreeable. Behind, we have left pleasures the former antiquities.
the former antiquities. LORD BACON. we shall never enjoy, and therefore regret; and before, we see pleasures which we languish to In matters of antiquity, if their originals possess, and are consequently uneasy till we escape due relation, they fall into great obscuri. possess them,
GOLDSMITH: ties, and such as future ages seldom reduce into Citizen of the World, Letter XLIV. la resolution.
Sir T. BROWNE.
An antiquary) is one that has his being in Antiquity, what is it else (God only excepted) this age, but his life and conversation is in the but man's authority born some ages before us ? days of old. He despises the present age as Now, for the truth of things, time makes no alan innovation, and slights the future; but has a teration; things are still the same they are, let great value for that which is past and gone, the time be past, present, or to come. Those like the madman that fell in love with Cleo things which we reverence for antiquity, what patra. All his curiosities take place of one an- were they at their first birth? Were they false? other according to their seniority, and he values —time cannot make them true. Were they them not by their abilities, but their standing. true ?-time cannot make them more true. The He has a great veneration for words that are circumstance, therefore, of time, in respect of stricken in years and are grown so aged that truth and error is merely impertinent. they have outlived their employments. . . . He JOHN HALES, THE EVER-MEMORABLE: values things wrongfully upon their antiquity,
Of Inquiry and Private Judgment in forgetting that the most modern are really the
Religion. most ancient of all things in the world, like
It is looked upon as insolence for a man to those that reckon their pounds before their shil
adhere to his own opinion against the current lings and pence, of which they are made up.
stream of antiquity.
LOCKE. Samuel BUTLER : Characters.
He had ... that sort of exactness which It is with antiquity as with ancestry; nations would have made him a respectable antiquary. are proud of the one, and individuals of the
LORD MACAULAY. other.
C. C. COLTON.
The dearest interests of parties have freThe ancient pieces are beautiful because they quently been staked on the results of the reresemble the beauties of nature; and nature searches of antiquaries. will ever be beautiful which resembles those
LORD MACAULAY. beauties of antiquity.
It is considerable that some urns have had In the dark recesses of antiquity, a great poet / inscriptions on them expressing that the lamps may and ought to feign such things as he finds he finds were burning.
BISHOP WILKINS. not there, if they can be brought to embellish that subject which he treats. DRYDEN.
Low The prints which we see of antiquities may
ANXIETY. contribute to form our genius and to give us
This fear of any future difficulties or misfor. great ideas.
tune is so natural to the mind, that were a man's We have a mistaken notion of antiquity, call- sorrows and disquietudes summed up at the end ing that so which in truth is the world's nonage. of his life, it would generally be found that he
had suffered more from the apprehension of
such evils as never happened to him, than from The volumes of antiquity, like medals, may I those evils which had really befallen him. To very well serve to amuse the curious; but the this we may add, that among those evils which works of the moderns, like the current coin of | befall us, there are many which have been more a kingdom, are much better for immediate use:
painful to us in the prospect than by their actual the former are often prized above their intrinsic
pressure. ADDISON : Spectator, No. 505. value, and kept with care; the latter seldom pass for more than they are worth, and are often Anxiety is the poison of human life. It is subject to the merciless hands of sweating critics the parent of many sins, and of more miseries. and clipping compilers: the works of antiquity In a world where everything is doubtful, where were ever praised, those of the moderns read : you may be disappointed, and be blessed in disthe treasures of our ancestors have our esteem, appointment,-what means this restless stir and and we boast the passion : those of contempo commotion of mind? Can your solicitude alter rary genius engage our heart, although we blush the cause or unravel the intricacy of human to own it: the visits we pay the former resem events? Can your curiosity pierce through the ble those we pay the great : the ceremony is cloud which the Supreme Being hath made imtroublesome, and yet such as we would not choose penetrable to mortal eye? To provide against to forego: our acquaintance with modern books every important danger 'by the employment of is like sitting with a friend; our pride is not the most promising means is the office of wis. fattered in the interview, but it gives more in-dom; but at this point wisdom stops, ternal satisfaction. GOLDSMITH:
BLAIR. Citizen of the World, Letter LXXV. Considering the casualties of wars, transmigrations, especially that of the general flood,
APATHY. there might probably be an obliteration of all There are some men formed with feelings so those monuments of antiquity that ages prece. blunt, that they can hardly be said to be awake dent at some time have yielded.
during the whole course of their lives. Sir M. HALE.