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Page 20 - In the works of the two authors we may read their manners and natural inclinations, which are wholly different. Virgil was of a quiet, sedate temper; Homer was violent, impetuous, and full of fire. The chief talent of Virgil was propriety of thoughts and ornament of words; Homer was rapid in his thoughts, and took all the liberties, both of numbers » and of expressions, which his language and the age in which he lived allowed him.
Page 31 - Tis sufficient to say, according to the proverb, that here is God's plenty. We have our forefathers and great grand-dames all before us, as they were in Chaucer's days: their general characters are still remaining in mankind, and even in England, though they are called by other names than those of Monks, and Friars, and Canons, and Lady Abbesses, and Nuns; 'for mankind is ever the same, and nothing lost out of nature, though everything is altered.
Page 30 - Tales the various manners and humours (as we now call them) of the whole English nation, in his age. Not a single character has escaped him. All his pilgrims are severally distinguished from each other; and not only in their inclinations, but in their very physiognomies and persons.
Page 329 - A creature of a more exalted kind Was wanting yet, and then was Man design'd ; Conscious of thought, of more capacious breast, For empire form'd, and fit to rule the rest...
Page 294 - And two Ghosts join their Packs to hunt her o'er the Plain. This dreadful Image so possess'd her Mind, That desp'rate any Succour else to find, She ceas'd all farther hope; and now began To make reflection on th...
Page 35 - ... when. the reason ceases for which they were enacted. As for the other part of the argument, that his thoughts will lose of their original beauty, by the innovation...
Page 30 - Even the grave and serious characters are distinguished by their several sorts of gravity, their discourses are such as belong to their age, their calling and their breeding — such as are becoming of them and of them only.
Page 39 - He has taken some pains with my poetry ; but nobody will be persuaded to take the same with his. If I had taken to the church (as he affirms, but which was never in my thoughts), I should have had more sense, if not more grace, than to have turned myself out of my benefice by writing libels on my parishioners.
Page 335 - And fill the assembly with a shining train. A way there is in heaven's expanded plain, Which, when the skies are clear, is seen below, And mortals by the name of "Milky" know. The groundwork is of stars ; through which the road Lies open to the Thunderer's abode.