« AnteriorContinuar »
TRUTH is born with us; and we must do violence to
nature, to shake off our veracity.
THERE cannot be a greater treachery, than firft to raise
a confidence, and then deceive it.
By others faults, wife men correct their own.
No man hath a thorough taste of profperity, to whom adverfity never happened.
WHEN our vices leave us, we flatter ourselves that we leave them.
Ir is as great a point of wisdom to hide ignorance, as to discover knowledge.
PITCH upon that courfe of life which is the most excellent; and habit will render it the moft delightful.
CHA P. III.
USTOM is the plague of wife men, and the idol of fools.
As to be perfectly juft, is an attribute of the divine nature; to be fo to the utmost of our abilities, is the glory of man.
No man was ever caft down with the injuries of fortune, unless he had before suffered himself to be deceived by her favours.
ANGER may glance into the breast of a wise man, but refts only in the bofom of fools.
NONE more impatiently fuffer injuries, than those that are most forward in doing them.
By taking revenge, a man is but even with his enemy; but in paffing it over, he is fuperior.
To err is human; to forgive, divine.
A MORE glorious victory cannot be gained over another C 3
man, than this, that when the injury began on his part, the kindness should begin on ours.
THE prodigal robs his heir, the miser robs himself.
We should take a prudent care for the future, but fo as to enjoy the prefent. It is no part of wisdom to be miferable to-day, because we may happen to be fo to-morrow.
To mourn without measure is folly; not to mourn at all, infenfibility.
SOME Would be thought to do great things, who are but tools and inftruments; like the fool who fancied he played upon the organ, when he only blew the bellows.
THOUGH a man may become learned by another's learning; he never can be wife but by his own wisdom.
He who wants good fenfe, is unhappy in having learning, for he has thereby more ways of expofing himself.
It is ungenerous to give a man occafion to blush at his own ignorance in one thing, who perhaps may excel us in
No object is more pleafing to the eye, than the fight of a man whom you have obliged; nor any mufic fo agreeable to the ear, as the voice of one that owns you for his bene factor.
THE Coin that is moft current among mankind is flattery; the only benefit of which is, that by hearing what we are not, we may be instructed what we ought to be.
THE character of the person who commends you, is to be confidered, before you fet a value on his efteem. The wife man applauds him whom he thinks moft virtuous, the reft of the world him who is moft wealthy.
THE temperate man's pleasures are durable, because they are regular; and all his life is calm and ferene, because it is innocent.
A GOOD man will love himself too well to lofe, and his neighbour too well to win, an estate by gaming. The love of gaming will corrupt the best principles in the world.
CHA P. IV.
AN angry man who fuppreffes his paffions, thinks worse
than he speaks; and an angry man that will chide, fpeaks worse than he thinks.
A GOOD word is an easy obligation; but not to speak ill requires only our filence, which cofts us nothing.
IT is to affectation the world owes its whole race of coxcombs. Nature in her whole drama never drew fuch a part; fhe has fometimes made a fool, but a coxcomb is always of his own making.
It is the infirmity of little minds to be taken with every appearance, and dazzled with every thing that fparkles; but great minds have but little admiration, because few things appear new to them.
It happens to men of learning, as to ears of corn; they fhoot and raise their heads high, while they are empty; but when full, and fwelled with grain, they begin to flag and droop.
He that is truly polite, knows how to contradict with respect, and to please without adulation; and is equally remote from an infipid complaifance, and a low familiarity.
THE failings of good men are commonly more published in the world than their good deeds; and one fault of a deferving man, shall meet with more reproaches, than all his virtues, praise fuch is the force of ill-will, and ill-nature.
It is harder to avoid cenfure, than to gain applaufe; for this may be done by one great or wife action in an age; but с C4
to escape cenfure, a man muft pafs his whole life without faying or doing one ill or foolish thing.
WHEN Darius offered Alexander ten thousand talents to divide Afia equally with him, he answered, the earth cannot bear two funs, nor Afia two kings. Parmenio, a friend of Alexander's, hearing the great offers Darius had made, faid, were I Alexander I would accept them. So would I, replied Alexander, were I Parmenio.
NOBILITY is to be confidered only as an imaginary dif tinction, unless accompanied with the practice of thofe generous virtues by which it ought to be obtained. Titles of honour conferred upon fuch as have no perfonal merit, are at best but the royal ftamp fet upon bafe metal.
THOUGH an honourable title may be conveyed to pofterity, yet the ennobling qualities which are the foul of greatnefs, are a fort of incommunicable perfections, and cannot be transferred. If a man could bequeath his virtues by will, and fettle his fenfe and learning upon his heirs, as certainly as he can his lands, a noble descent would then indeed be a very valuable privilege.
TRUTH is always confiftent with itself, and needs nothing to help it out. It is always near at hand, and fits upon our lips, and is ready to drop out before we are aware: whereas a lie is troublefome, and fets a man's invention upon the rack ; and one trick needs a great many more to make it good,
THE pleasure which affects the human mind with the moft lively and tranfporting touches, is the fenfe that we act in the eye of infinite wisdom, power, and goodness, that will crown our virtuous endeavours here with a happiness hereafter, large as our defires, and lafting as our immortal fouls; without this the highest state of life is infipid, and with it the lowest is a paradise.
ONOURABLE age is not that which standeth in length of time, nor that is measured by number of but wisdom is the grey hair unto man, years; and unspotted life is old age.
WICKEDNESS, condemned by her own witnefs, is very timorous, and being preffed with confcience, always forecafteth evil things: for fear is nothing elfe, but a betraying of the fuccours which reafon offereth.
A WISE man will fear in every thing. He that contemneth fmall things, fhall fall by little and little.
A RICH man beginning to fall is held up of his friends; but a poor man being down is thruft away by his friends; when a rich man is fallen he hath many helpers; he speaketh things not to be spoken, and yet men justify him: the poor man flipt and they rebuked him; he spoke wifely, and could have no place. When a rich man speaketh, every man holdeth his tongue, and look, what he faith they extol it to the clouds; but if a poor man speak, they fay, what fellow is this?
MANY have fallen by the edge of the sword, but not fo many as have fallen by the tongue. Well is he that is defended from it, and hath not paffed through the venom thereof; who hath not drawn the yoke thereof, nor been bound in her bonds; for the yoke thereof is a yoke of iron, and the bands thereof are bands of brafs; the death thereof is an evil death.
Mr fon, blemish not thy good deeds, neither ufe uncom fortable words, when thou giveft any thing. Shall not the dew affuage the heat? fo is a word better than a gift. Lo;