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That place that does contain
O blessed letters ! that combine in one
Of what we feel and what doth us befall. DANIEL. Dead men open living men's cyes.
A reader should sit down to a book — especially one of the miscellaneous kind as a well-behaved visitor does to a banquet. The master of the feast exerts himself to satisfy all his guests; but if, after all his care and pains, there should still be something or other put on the table that does not please this or that person's taste, the guests quietly pass it over ; and, not to distress their kind host or damp his spirits, they commend other dishes.
ERASMUS. Believe me, it requires no little confidence to promise help to the struggling, counsel to the doubtful, light to the blind, hope to the despondent, refreshment to the weary. These are indeed great things, if they be accomplished ; trifles, if they exist but in a promise. I, however, aim not so much to prescribe a law for others, as to set forth the law of my own mind; which let the man, who shall have approved of it, abide by ; and let him, to whom it shall appear not reasonable, rejeot it.
PETRARCH. Salmatius had read as much as Grotius, perhaps more; but their different modes of reading made the one an enlightened philosopher, the other a pedant, puffed up with useless erudition. GIBBON.
MY DEAD FRIENDS.
My days among the dead are past ;
Around me I behold,
The mighty minds of old:
And seek relief in woe;
I live in long-passed years;
Partake their hopes and fears,
My place with them will be;
Through all futurity.
THE PLEASURES OF KNOWLEDGE.
WELL and happily has that man conducted his understanding, who has learnt to derive from the exercise of it, regular occupation, and rational delight; who, after having overcome the first pain of application, and acquired a habit of looking inwardly upon his own mind, perceives that every day is multiplying the revelations, confirming the accuracy, and augmenting the number of his ideas; who feels that he is rising in the scale of intellectual beings, gathering new strength with every difficulty which he subdues, and enjoying to-day as his pleasure, that which yesterday he labored at as his toil. There are many consolations in the mind of such a man, which no common life can ever afford; and many enjoyments which it has not to give. It is not the mere cry of moralists, and the flourish of rhetoricians ; but it is NOBLE to seek truth, and it is BEAUTIFUL to find it. It is the ancient feeling of the human heart- that knowledge is better than riches; and it is deeply and sacredly true. To mark the course of human passions as they have flowed on in the ages that are past; to see why nations have risen, and why they have fallen; to speak of heat, and light, and the winds; to know what man has discovered in the heavens above, and in the earth beneath; to hear the chemist unfold the marvellous properties that the Creator has locked up in a speck of earth ; to be told that there are worlds so distant from our own, that the quickness of light, travelling from the world's creation, has never yet reached us; to wander in the creations of poetry and grow warm again, with that eloquence which swayed the democracies of the old world.; to go up with great reasoners to the First Cause of all, and to perceive, in the midst of all this dissolution and decay, and cruel separation, that there is one thing unchangeable, indestructible, and everlasting; it is worth while in the days of our