W. Gurney (William Gurney) Benham.

Cassell's book of quotations, proverbs and household words .. online

. (page 52 of 198)
Online LibraryW. Gurney (William Gurney) BenhamCassell's book of quotations, proverbs and household words .. → online text (page 52 of 198)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook

luave, and the puff oblique, or puff by
impli<Ation« Ib»

No scandal about Queen Elizabeth, I hope.

Act «, i.

Where ttey do agree on the stage, their

unanimity is wonderfuL Act t, 2,

Inconsolable to the minuet in Ariadne. lb.

The Spanish fleet thou can'st not

It is not yet in light lb,

AnoystermaybeoroMedinbya. Act 3^1,

You shall see them on a beautiful quarto
page, where a neat rivulet of text shall
meander through a meadow of margin.

School for Scandal. Act 1, i.

The malice of a good thing is the barb
that makes it stick. -'*•

I leave my character behind me. Act Sy i»

Here's to the maiden of bashful fifteen ;

Here's to the widow of fifty ;
Here's to the flaunting, extravagant quean.

And here's to the housewife that's thrifty.
Lot the toast pass 1
Drink to the lass !
I'll warrant she'll prove an excuse for the

glasa. "^^ ^» ^*

An unforgiving eye, and a damned dis-
inheriting comitenance. Act 4i -^*

When ingratitude barbs the dart of injury,
the wound has double danger in it

Act 4, S,
There is no trusting to appearances.

Act 6. i,

I must mafry the girl first, and ask his
consent afterwards.

St Patrick's Day. Act 1, 1.

I ne'er could any lustre see

In eyes that would not look on me ;

I ne^er saw nectar on a lip

But where my own did hope to sip.

The Duenna. Act i, 3,

But. to the charms which I adore,
'Tis religion to be true. lb.

At twenty she mocks at the duty you taught
her —

Oh. what a plague is an obetioato daughter !


"Sad I a heart for falsehood framed
I ne'er could injure you. Act 1, 6,

A bumper of good liquor

Will end a contest quicker

Hian justice, judge, or vicar. Act f , 3,

Conscience has no more to do with gal-
lantry than it has with politics. Act f, 4,

Soft pity never leaves the gentle breast
Where love has been received a welcome
guest -^»

Humanity always becomes a conqueror.
Piaarro. Act 1, 1,

Silence is the gratitude of true affection.

Act «, 1,

The Bight Honourable gentleman is in-
debted to his memoij for his jests, and to
his imagination for his facts.
Bheridanlana. 8peeeh%nr$plytoMr,I>undai,

I have a silent sorrow here
A grief I'll ne'er impart The Btraii|«r.


zed by Google



You write with ease to show your breeding,
But easy writing's curst hard reading.
Life of Sheridan. (Moore). Clio's Frotest,

Believe not each accusing tongue.

As most weak persons do ;
But still believe that story wrong

Which ought not to be true. JLttrlbntad.

Hushed be that sigh, be dry that tear,
Nor let us lose our Heaven here.
Dry be that tear !

Dry be That Tear.


Thou lowest scoundrel of the scoundrel kind.
Extract of all the dre^ of all mankind.

Satire. On Mr. Fatrbrother {as mentioned
in a letter to Dean Swift, Aprils, 1736),

JAMES SHIRLEY (1596-1666).
The glories of our blood and state *

Are shadows, not substantial things ;
There is no armour against fate ;
Death lays his icy hand on kings.
Sceptre and crown
Mus1> tumble down,
And in the dust be equal made
With the poor crooked scythe and spade.

The Contention of AJax and Ulysses.
Only the actions of the just
Smell sweet and blossom in their dust.f lb.

Death calls ye to the crowd of common men.
Son^. Cupid and Death
How little room
Do we take up in death, that living know
No bounds ! The Wedding.



When you have lived longer in this world
and outhved the enthusiastic and pleasing
illusions of youth, you will find your lovo
and pity for the race increase tenfold, your
admirauon and attachment to any particular
party or opinion fall away altogether.

John In^lesant. Vol. 1. Chap. 6,

All creeds and opinions are nothing but
the mere result of cnance and temperament.


Nothing but the Infinite pity is sufficient
for the infinite pathos of human life. lb.

* Printed "birth and state " in Percy's
t Set Tate and Brady's Psalter :—
•' The sweet remembrance of the Jast
Shall flourish when he sleeps in dust.*'
, « . . —Psalm 112.

In Percy s "Reliqnes," Shirley's line is printed,
" Smell sweet and blossom in the dust."

Your northern religions, harsh and bitter
as your sides. Vol. f , chap. 6,

"The Church of England," 1 said, 9ee>
ing that Mr. Inglesant paused, " is no doubt
a compromise." Chap. 19.


There have been many most excellent
poeto that never verified, and now swarm
many versifiers that need never answer to
the name of poete.

Apology for Poetry. Part t. Subdivisions

of Poetry.
The moral commonplaces.

The PoeVs Work and Parts. Sec. 1.

With a tale, forsooth, he comethunto you

with a tale which holdeth children from

play, and old men from the chimney comerj

The Poet Monarch ofaU Human Sciences.

The bitter but wholesome iambic.

Or Iambic ? or Satiric ? See. S.

Certainly, I must confess mine own bar-
barousness , I never heard the old song of
Percy and Douglas, that I found not my
heart moved more than with a trumpet.

Or Traffic f

Philip of Maoedon reckoned a horse-race
won at Olympus among his three fearful
felicities. Jb.

Scoffing cometh not of wisdom.

Objections Staled,

Poetiy is the companion of campa.

That Poetry is the Nurse of Abuse.

Admitted into the company of paper-
blurrers. Causes of Defect .

You cannot hear the planet-like music of
poetry Last Summary.

Knitting and withal singing , and it
seemed that her voice comforted her hands
to work. ( Jlrcadla. Book 1.

Thev are never alone that are acoom-
paniea with noble thoughts. lb.

There is no man suddenly either ex-
cellently good or extremely evil. {| lb.

A noble cause doth ease much a grievous
case. Jb,

That only disadvantage of honest hearts,
creduUty. Book 5.

t This resembles a passage in ** Lore's Laltour's

Lost " : —

••Which his ftUr tongue— conceit's expositor—
Delivers in such apt and gracious words.
That aged ears play truant at his tebles.
And younger hearings are quite raviahM."
S See Richard Giflbrd (p. 142) :—
** Verse sweetens toil."
I From the Latin : *' Nemo repente*'* eta.


zed by Google



O fhe oowardioe of a gailtj conscience !

Arcadia. Book t.

Nothins is achieved before it be thoroughly
attempted. Jb.

Who shoots at the midday sun, though he
be tore he shaQ never hit the mark, yet as
sure he is he shall shoot higher than he who
aims at a bush. lb.

He waters, ploughs and soweth in the
■and. Jb,

My dear, my better half. Book 3.

'Sear acquaintance dotb. diminish reverent
lear. Jb,

No u no n^ative in a woman's mouth.

Have I caught my heavenly jewel P

Astrophal and Stella. No. t.

With how sad steps, O Moon, thou dimb'st
tiie skies!

How silently and with how wan a face !

No. SL

Come Sleep, O Sleep! the certain knot of

The baiting place of wit, the balm of woe,

The poor man's wealth, the prisoner's re-

The indifferent judge between the hi^h
and low No, S9,

That sweet enemy, France. No. ^/.

Love fears nothing else but anger. Son^

To hear him speak, and sweetly smile
Ton were in Faradise the while.*

Friend's Passion for his AstrophaL
A sweet attractive kind of grace ;

A full assurance ^ven by looks—
Continual comfort m a face,

The lineaments of Gospel books. [b.

Was never eye did see that face.

Was never ear did hear that tongue,
Was never mind did mind his ^race

That ever thought the travail long. Jb.

Lor*, but women's rum cattle to deal with,

the first man found that to his cost,
And I reckon if s just through a woman the

last man on earth' 11 be lost.

Da^onat Ballads. MoU Jarvi* o* Morlcy,

JOHN SKELTON (1460 T- 1629 T).
Much mirth and no madness.
All good and no badness,

So joyoaeiVf

So maidenly.

So womanly.
Her demeaning.

To Mistress Margaret Hussey.

* Also attributed to Mattbaw Roydon. and to
Sdxnaad Spenaer.

Laymen say, indeed.

How they take no heed

Their selv sheep to feed,

But plucK awav and pull

The fleeces of their wool. Colin Cloutf

It is a wyly mouse

That can build his dwellinge house

Within the cattes eare. Jb,

Thou madde Marche hare.

Replycatlon against Certayne Ton< Bcolers.


And now the matchless deed's achieved.
Determined, dared, and done.

Boni to David. St. 86.

SAMUEL SMILES (1812-1904).

No laws, however stringent, can make the
idle industrious, the thriftless provident, or
the drunken sober. Belf-Help. Chap. 1,

His life was ... an illustration of the
truth of the saying that those who have
most to do, and are willing to work, will
find the most time. Jb.

Cecil's despatch of business was extra-
ordinary, his maxim being, '*The shortest
way to do many things is to do only one
thing at once." Chap. 9,

** Punctuality," said Louis XIV., " is the
politeness of kmgs." It is also the duty of

gentlemen, and the necessity of men of
usiness. Jb.

Trade tries character. Jb.

We learn wisdom from failure much more
than from success. We often discover what
will do, by finding out what will not do ;
and probably he who never made a mistake
never made a discovery. Chap. 11.

His (Dr. Priestley's) appointment Tto act as

astronomer to Captain Cook's expeaition to

the southern seaslliad been cancelled, as the

Board of Longituae objected to his theology.

Invention and Industry. Chap. S,

This extraordinary metal [iron], the soul
of every manufacture, and the mainspring
perhaps, of civilised society. Chap. ^.

ADAM SMITH a723-1790).

The propensity to truck, barter, and
exchange one thmg for another ... is
common to all men, and to be found in no
other race of animals.

The Wealth of HaUons. Booh 1., ehap. t

No society can surely be flourishing and
happy, of which the far greater part of the
members are jKwr and miserable. Chap. 8,

Science is the great antidote to the poison
of enthusiasm and superstition.

Book 5, part 5, art, 3,

t Partly translated ftom the " Apocalypse of
OoUas," by Walter Mapes.


zed by Google



ALEXANDER SMITH (1880-1867).

Xiike a pale martyr in his shirt of fire.

Jl Life Drama. Sc, t.
In winter, when the dismal rain

Came down in slantins lines,
And wind, that grand old harper, smote

His thunder-luirp of pines. Ih,

A poem, round and perfect as a star. lb,

HORACE SMITH a779-1849).
Were I, O GK>d, in churchless lands re-
Far from all Toice of teachers or divines,
My Bool would find, in fiowers of thy
Priests, sermons, shrines !

Hymn to the Flowers.
In losing fortune, manjr a lucky elf
Has found himself.

Moral JUchemy. St, 12,
When Love owes to Nature his charms,
How vain are the lessons of Art !

Horace In London. Book i, ode IS,
Our charity hegins at home.
And mostly ends where it begins.

Book f , ode 15,

HORACE SMITH (1779-1849) and

JAMES SMITH a775-1839).
I saw them go : one horse was blind,
The tails of both hxmg down behind,
Their shoes were on their feet,
R^eeted Addresses. The BabyU DebtU,
{Imitation of Wordtworth,)
And if vou*ll blow to me a kiss,

I'll blow a kiss to you. lb.

Hence, dear delusion, sweet enchantment

hence ! An Addrett without a Fhanix,

By " S, T, P." ♦

Thinking is but an idle waste of thought,

And naught is every thing, and every t^g

is naught.

Cui Bono, 8t, 8, {Imitation of Byron.)

I prophesied that, though I never told

anybody. Hampshire ^rmer^s Address,

{Imitation of JFm, Cobbett,)

Midnight, yet not a nose

From Tower Hill to Piccadilly snored !t

The Rebuilding, {Imitation of Southey,)
** In the name of the Prophet— figs ! **

Johnson's Ohost,


(b. 1826).
Comes at times a stillness as of even.

Line» written for the Unveiling of the
Albert Memorial^ Edinburgh,

* These initials were used to puzzle the critics,
this address being not an imitation,
t See Bonthey, p. 841 : *' Curse of Kehsma."

JAMES SMITH (1776-1839).

Lax in their g^ters, laser in their gait.

The Theatre.


If we oould push ajar the gates of life.
And stana within, and all GK>d's worldngi

"We could interpret all this doubt and strife.

And for each mvstery oould find a key.
Butnot to-day. Then be content, poor heart!
God*s plans, like lilies pure and white,
We mustnot tear the close-shutleavesapart—
Time will reveal the calyxes of gold.



D.D.t (1808-1895).
My countiT, 'tis of thee,
Sweet land of liberty —

Of thee I sing. Hatlonal Hymn.

[Rev.] SYDNEY SMITH a771-1846).

A Curate — ^there is something which ex-
cites compassion in the very name of a
Curate! Periecutin^ Blthope.

It is safest to be moderately Imso— to be
flexible in shame, and to be always ready
for what is generous, good, and just^ when
anything is to be gamed by virtue.

Cathollo Qnestioii.

All great alterations in human affairs are
produced by compromise. lb.

And, from long reddenoe upon your living,
are become a kind of holy vegetable.

Peter Plymley*t Letten. No, 1,

I do not mean to be disrespectful, but the
attempt of the Lords to stop the progress of
reform, reminds me very forcibly of the
great storm of Sidmouth, and of the conduct
of the excellent Mrs. Partington on that
occasion. In the winter of lo24, there set
in a great flood upon that town — the tide
rose to an incredible height: the waves
rushed in upon the houses, and evervthing
was threat^ed with destruction. In the
midst of this sublime and terrible storm.
Dame Partington, who lived upon the beach,
was seen at the door of her house with mop
and pattens, trundling her mop, squeesdng
out ue sea water, and vigorously pushing
away the Atlantic Ocean. The Atlantio
was roused. Mrs. Partington's spirit wae
up ; but I need not tell you that the contest
was unequaL The Atlantic Ocean beat
Mrs. Partington. She was excellent at a
slop or a puddle, but she should not have
meddled with a tempest.

Bpeeeh at Taunton. Oct., 28SL

t Of whom O. W. Holmes wrote, " Fate tried
to conceal him by naming him Smith."— Beonloa
Poem, "TheBoys.*


zed by Google



Awiaa man struggling with adversitj ii
laid by some heathen writer to be a spectacle
on wbich the gods might look down with
Itrmon on Xbm Dntles of the Qneen. 1837.

What hiflhopa like best in their clergy is
A dropping-down-deadness of mamier.

Pint Letter to Archdeaeon Singleton.

"Let me get my arms about you/' says
the bear. *' I have not the smallest inten-
tion of squeeadng you."

Second Letter to Archdeacon Bin^eton.

The common precaution of a foolometer,
with which no public man should be un-
provided, lb.

His [Lord John Russell's] worst failure is
that he is utterly ignorant of all moral fear ;
there is nothing he would not undertake.
I believe he would perform the operation
for the stone, build St. Peter's, or assume
(with or without ten minutes' notice) the
command of the Channel Fleet. lb.

Bather too dose an imitation of that
language which is used in the apostolic
occapation of trafficking in fish.

Third Letter to Archdeacon Bln^eton.

I hke, my dear Lord, the road you are
travelling, but I don't like the pace you are
driving; too similar to that of the son of
Kimehi. I always feel myself inclined to
cry out, Gtently, John— gently down hill.
Put on the drag.

Letter to Lord John RusselL

Men who prefer any load of infamy, how-
erer great, to any pressure of taxation,
however light.

PetitioB to the House of Congest
at Washington.

£rin go hragh ! A far better anthem
would be, Erin go bread and cheese.

Fraiment on the Irish Roman
Catholic Church.
Serenely full, the epicure would say^
*'Fate cannot harm me: I have omed to-
day." Recipe for Salad.
The good of ancient times let others state,
I think it lacky I was bom so late.

Modem Changes. (Tran$lation of Ovid^t

We shall generally find that the triangular
person has got into the square hole, the
oblong into the triangular, and a square
person has squeezed himself into the round
hole. Sketches of Moral Philosophy.

We can inform Jonathan what are the
inevitable consequences of being too fond

• "A brave man slmggling with sdveniity is«
■P'^ctacle for the gods."— Sknica, (See Miscells-
MOOS, ** Naturalised Sayinga.")

of glory :— Taxes upon every article which
enters the mouth, or covers the back, or is
placed on the foot . . • taxes on everything
on earth, and in the waters under the earth.
Review of Seybert's Btatlstloal Annals
of the United States.

Who reads an American book, or goes to
an American plaTi or looks at an American
picture or statue? lb.

The motto I proposed for the [Edinburgh]
Review was : Tenui musam meditamur
arena — "We cultivate Uterature upon a
little oatmeal." Preface to Works.

" It requires," he used to say, " a surgical
operation to get a joke well mto a S<x>tch
Sayings. Memoir by Ladg Holland. Vol, 1.

No one minds what ZQHitej says — it i» not
more than a week ago that I heard him
speak disrespsctf ully of the equator. lb.

Scotland, that knuckle- end of England,
that land of Calvin, oatcakes and sulMiur.


Avoid shame, but do not seek glory —
nothing so expensive as glory. lb.

No furniture so charming as books. lb.

Daniel Webster struck me much like a
steam-eng^e in trousers. lb.

Heat, ma'am ! It was so dreadful here
that I found there was nothing left for it
but to take off my flesh and sit in my bones.


Macaulay is like a book in breeches . . .
He has occasional flashes of silence that
make his conversation perfectly delightful.


As the French say, there are three sexes
— ^men, women, and clergymen. Tb,

You find plenty of jMOople willing enough
to do the good Samaritan, without the oil
and the twopence. lb.

Poverfy is no disgrace to a man, but it is
confounaedly inconvenient. lb,

I think it was Jekyll who used to say that
the further he went west, the more con-
vinced he felt that the wise men came from
the east. lb.

Praise is the best diet for us, after all.
Wit and Wisdom of Rev. Sydney Smith.



Dusting, darning, drudgingi nothing is great

or smallj
Nothing IS mean or iiksome, love will
h^ow it all.

Hilda amon^ the Broken Gods.

Book 2, midUf Saint-wife,

God giveth speech to all, song to the few.

Olri^ Orange. £oo/li 1. Editorial, I. IS.


zed by Google




M.D. (1721-1771).
Not to th' ensanguined field of death alone
Is Valour limited: she sits serene
In the deliberate council ; sagely scans
The source of action; weighs, prevents,
provides. The Regicide. Act 1, 1,

Simple woman
Is weak in intellect, as well as frame.
And judges often from the partial voice
That soothes her wishes most. Act i, 6.

To exult
Even o'er an enemy oppressed, and heap
Affliction on the afflicted, is the mark
And the mean triumph of a dastard soul.

Act i, 7.
True courage scorns
To vent her prowess in a storm of words ;
And, to the valiant, actions speak aloua Ih,

What consolation can the wretched bring ?

Acts, L
Few live exempt
From disappointment and disgrace, who run
Ambition^s rapid course. Act 4, ^«

There fled the purest soul that ever dwelt
In mortal clay. The Regicide. Act 6, 8.

The blast that blows loudest is soon over-

The Reprisal. Act i, 6, (Song),
'Tis infamous, I grant it, to be poor.

Advice. Line t.
What though success will not attend on all P
Who bravely dares, must sometimes risk

a ^aii. /. sar.

Too coy to flatter, and too proud to serve.
Thine be the joyless dignity to starve.

Mourn, hapless Caledonia, mourn
Thy banished peace, thy laurels torn !

The Tears of Scotland.
What foreign arms could never quell
By civil rage and rancour fell. lb,

Thv spirit, Independence, let me share !

Lord of the lion -heart and eagle-eye,
Thy steps I follow with my bosom bare,

Ivor heed the storm that howls along the
sky. Ode to Independence.

Some folks are wise, and some are other-
wise. Roderick Random. Chap. 6.
He was formed for the ruin of our sex.

Chap. ei.

Death*8 like the best bower anchor, as the
saying is, it will bring us all up. Chap. S^,

Got pless my heart, liver, and lungs.

Chap. 26.

By this time the Demon of Discord, with

her sooty wings, had breathed her influence

UiK)n our counsels. Chap, S3,

Thy fatal shafts unerring move ;

I bow before thine altar. Love ! Chap, 40,

It was his [Tom Bowling*s] opinion that
no honest man would swerve from the

Principles in which he was bred, whether
'urkish, Protestant, or Roman. Chap. 4^.

I consider the world as made for mo, not
me for the world. It is my maxim therefore
to enjoy it while I can, and let futurity shift
for itself Chap 45

A prodigy in learning. 2b.

1 make good the old saying, we sailors get
money like horses, and speua it like asses

Peregrine Pickle. Chap, t.

The painful ceremony of receiving and
returning visits. Chap. 5.

1*11 be damn*d if the dog ha'nH given me
some stuff to make me love him.* Chap. 15

Mr Pickle himself • . . was a mere
dragon among the chambermaids.

Chap. St
Every person of importance ought to
write his own memoirs, provided he has
honesty enough to tell the truth.f

The AdYentnres of Ferdinand
Count Fathom. Chap 1.

The genteel comedy of the polite world.

I a*n*t dead, but I'm speechless.

Chap, 42.
To a man of honour (said I) the un-
fortunate need no introduction. Chap, 6t,

Facts are facts, as the saying is.
The AdYontures of Sir Laancelot OreaTes.

Chap. S.
I think for my part one half of the nation
is mad— and the other not very sound.

Chap. 6,
True patriotism is of no party.

Chap 9. (Heading),
A seafaring man mav have a sweetheart
in every port ; but he should steer clear of a
wife as* he would avoid a quicksand.

Chap. 21.
Hark ye, Clinker, you are a moet no-
torious offender. You stand convicted of
sickness, hunger, wretchedness, and want
Humphry Clinker.

Her ladyship's brain was a perfect mill fox
projects. lb,

Edinburgh is a hot-bed of genius. lb.

The Great Cham of literature. [S. John-
son.] Letter to WUkes.

• Slightly altered from Shakespeare : •' If the
rascal,^ etc {\k 293).

t Quoted as a " jodicious ob8e.*-vntion *' q(
Cftrdioal do Rot^.


zed by Google



w. soi^erville: (1675-1742).

My boarse-sounding horn
Inrites the« to the Chase, the sport of kings ;
Image of war, withoat its guilt.

The Chaie. Book 1.

Hail, happy Britain ! highly- favoured isle.
And Heaven^s peculiar care ! lb.

With countenance hlithe.
And with a coortly grin, the fawning

Salutes thee cowering, his wide opening

Upward he cnrls, and Ms large sloe-hlack

Helt in soft hlandishments and hnmhle joy


Fortune is like a widow won.

And truckles to the bold alone.*

The Portone-Hnnter. Canto t.
TTie hest elixir is a friend. The Hip.

The power of kings (if rightly understood)
Is but a grant from Heaven of doing good.

Vlablas. No, It, The Two Springs. Moral.

CRcv.] ROBERT SOUTH (1634-1716).
Speedi was given to the ordinary sort of
men whereby to communicate their mind;
Imt to wiae men whereby to conceal it


THOMAS SOUTHERN (1660-1746).

I shall contrive some means,
Some friendly intervals, to visit thee.

Spartan Dame.
Do pity me.
Pity's akin to love. Oroonoko. Act f , 1.
"Lore stops at nothing hut possession.

Act S, t.
Bemerober who you are,
Aprince, bom for the good of other men ;
Wnoee god-like office is to draw the sword
Against oppression, and set free mankind.

Ael 3, S.

Honour should be concerned in honour^s

canxe. lb.

Lying's a certain mark of cowardice.

Act 6, ft.
And when they're worn,
Hacked, hewn with constant service, thrown

To rust in peace, and rot in hospitals.

Loyal Brother.
If marriages
Are made in Heaven, they should be happier.
Isabella; or, The Fatal Marriage. Act 4, g.
There ia no courage but in innocence ;
No constancy but in an honest cause.

The Fate of Capua.

• Stt Botler (p. 49) : " honour {a like a widow.

ROBERT SOUTHEY (1774-1848).
Of saintly paleness. Joan of Arc Book L

He in his heart
Felt that misgiving which precedes belief
Li what was disbelieved. lb,

Happy those
Who in the after-iuiys shall live, when Time
Hath spoken, and the multitude of years
Taught wisdom to mankind ! t lb.

Death ! to the happy thou art terrible ;

Online LibraryW. Gurney (William Gurney) BenhamCassell's book of quotations, proverbs and household words .. → online text (page 52 of 198)