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Every object has a bright and a dark side; and I have endeavoured to look at things as Cicero has done. By some however I may be thought to have followed too much my own dream of happiness; and in such a dream indeed I have often passed a solitary hour. It was Castle-building once ; now it is no longer so. But whoever would try to realize it, would not perhaps repent of his endeavour.
Page 69, line 22. The day arrives, the moment wished and feared ; A Persian Poet has left us a beautiful thought on this subject, which the reader, if he has not met with it, will be glad to know, and, if he has, to remember.
Thee on thy Mother's knees, a new-born child,
be thine, when all around thee weep. For my version I am in a great measure indebted to Sir William Jones.
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The anecdote here alluded to, is related by Valerius Maximus, Lib. iv. c. 4.
Page 71, line 25. Suffer these little ones to come to me !" In our early Youth, while yet we live only among those we love, we love without restraint, and our hearts overflow in every look, word, and action. But when we enter the world and are repulsed by strangers, forgotten by friends, we grow more and more timid in our approaches even to those we love best.
How delightful to us then are the little caresses of children! All sincerity, all affection, they fly into our arms; and then, and then only, we feel our first confidence, our first pleasure.
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he reveres The brow engraven with the Thoughts of Years ; This is a law of Nature. Age was anciently synonymous with power; and we may always observe that the old are held in more or less honour as men are more or less virtuous. “ Shame,” says Homer, “ bids the youth beware how he accosts the man of many years." “ Thou shalt rise up before the hoary head, and honour the face of an old man." Leviticus.
Among us, and wherever birth and possessions give rank and authority, the young and the profligate are seen continually above the old and the worthy: there Age can never find its due respect. But among many of the ancient nations it was otherwise ; and they reaped the benefit of it. Rien ne maintient plus les mæurs, qu'une extrême subordination des jeunes gens envers les vieillards. Les uns et les autres seront contenus, ceux-là par le respect qu'ils auront pour les vieillards, et ceux-ci par le respect qu'ils auront pour eux-mêmes.-MontESQUIEU.
Page 72, line 14. Like Her most gentle, most unfortunate, Before I went into Germany, I came to Brodegate in Leicestershire, to take my leave of that noble Lady Jane Grey, to whom I was exceeding much beholding. Her parents, the Duke and Duchess, with all the Household, Gentlemen and Gentlewomen, were hunting in the park. I found her in her chamber, reading Phædo Platonis in Greek, and that with as much delight as some Gentlemen would read a merry tale in Boccace. After salutation, and duty done, with some other talk, I asked her, why she would lose such pastime in the park ? Smiling, she answered me;
" I wist, all their sport in the park is but a shadow to that pleasure which I find in Plato."-Roger Ascham.
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Then is the Age of AdmirationDante in his old age was pointed out to Petrarch when a boy; and Dryden to Pope.
Who does not wish that Dante and Dryden could have known the value of the homage that was paid them, and foreseen the greatness of their young admirers ?
Page 73, line 17. Scenes such as Milton sought, but sought in vain: He had arrived at Naples ; and was preparing to visit Sicily and Greece, when, hearing of the troubles in England, he thought it proper to hasten home.
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And Milton's self, I began thus far to assent ... to an inward prompting which now grew daily upon me, that by labour and intent study, (which I take to be my portion in this life) joined with the strong propensity of nature, I might perhaps leave something so written to aftertimes, as they should not willingly let it die.—Milton.
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'twas at matin-time. Love and devotion are said to be nearly allied. Boccaccio fell in love at Naples in the church of St. Lorenzo; as Petrarch had done at Avignon in the church of St. Clair.
Page 76, line 15. Lovely before, oh, say how lovely now! Is it not true, that the young not only appear to be, but really are most beautiful in the presence of those they love? It calls forth all their beauty.
Page 78, line 9. And feeling hearts-touch them but rightly-pour A thousand melodies unheard before! Xenophon has left us a delightful instance of conjugal affection.
The King of Armenia not fulfilling his promise, Cyrus entered the country, and, having taken him and
all his family prisoners, ordered them instantly before him. Armenian, said he, you are free ; for you are now sensible of your error.
And what will you give me, if I restore your wife to you ?--All that I am able.What, if I restore your children?—All that I am ableAnd you, Tigranes, said he, turning to the Son, What would you do, to save your wife from servitude ? Now Tigranes was but lately married, and had a great love for his wife. Cyrus, he replied, to save her from servitude, I would willingly lay down my
life. Let each have his own again, said Cyrus; and, when he was departed, one spoke of his clemency; and another of his valour; and another of his beauty and the graces of his person. Upon which Tigranes asked his wife, if she thought him handsome. Really, said she, I did not look at him.-At whom then did you look ?- At him who said he would lay down his life for me.-Cyropædia, L. III.
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Through the night, Hers the mournful privilege, “ adsidere valetudini, fovere deficientem, satiari vultu, complexu.”—TACITUS.
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She sits silent by, We may have
friends in life ; but we can only have one mother; a discovery,' says Gray, 'which I never made till it was too late.'
The child is no sooner born than he clings to his