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of poetry, tropes, allegories, personifications, with the whole heathen mythology, were instantly discarded; a classical allusion was considered as a piece of antiquated foppery; capital letters were no more allowed in print than letters-patent of nobility were permitted in real life; kings and queens were dethroned from their rank and station in legitimate tragedy or epic poetry, as they were decapitated elsewhere; rhyme was looked upon as a relic of the feudal system, and regular metre was abolished, along with regular government. Authority and fashion, elegance or arrangement, were hooted out of countenance as pedantry and prejudice. Everyone did that which was good in his own eyes. The object was to reduce all things to an absolute level; and a singularly affected and outrageous simplicity prevailed in dress and manners, in style and sentiment.
A thorough adept in this school of poetry and philanthropy is jealous of all excellence but his own. He sees nothing but himself and the universe. He hates all greatness and all pretentions to it, whether well or ill-founded. His egotism is in some respects a madness; for he scorns even the admiration of himself, thinking it a presumption in anyone to suppose that he has taste or sense enough to understand him. He hates all science and all art; he hates chemistry; he hates conchology; he hates Voltaire; he hates Sir Isaac Newton; he hates wisdom; he hates wit; he hates metaphysics, which he says are unintelligible, and yet he would be thought to understand them; he hates prose; he hates all poetry but his own; he hates the dialogues in Shakespeare; he hates music, dancing and painting; he hates Reubens; he hates Rembrandt; he hates Raphael; he hates Titian; he hates Vandyke; he hates the antique; he hates the Apollo Belvidere; he hates the Venus of Medicis. This is the reason that so few people take an interest in his writings, because he takes an interest in nothing that others do!
Richard on the Vanity of State.
Of comfort no man speak:
Let's talk of graves, of worms and epitaphs;
Bores through his castle wall, and farewell king!
I live with bread like you, feel want,
Taste grief, need friends: subjected thus,
How can you say to me, I am a king?
-Richard II, iii., 2.
THE TONE OF ADORATION.
(See Tone Drill No. 3.)
[The tone of Adoration. indicates a deep love, mingled with reverence. While human beings may inspire this feeling, it arises more often from the contemplation of Divinity.]
O thou eternal One! whose presence bright
Being above ali beings! Mighty One.
Whom none can comprehend and none explore,
Embracing all, supporting, ruling o'er;
Being whom we call God, and know no more!
Creator, yes. Thy wisdom and thy word
Created me. Thou source of life and good.
Thy light, thy love, in their bright plenitude
Its heavenly flight beyond this little sphere,
O thoughts ineffable! O visions blest!
Though worthless our conceptions all of thee,
Yet shall thy shadowed image fill our breast,
TONE OF REMORSE.
(See Tone Drill No. 166.)
[The tone of Remorse proclaims agony of mind. It indicates that something troubles the conscience.]
Dream of Richard III.
Give me another horse!-bind up my wounds!—
Is there a murderer here? No;-yes; I am:
I am a villain. Yet I lie; I am not.
Fool, of thyself speak well:-Fool, do not flatter.
Perjury, foul perjury, in the high'st degree;
Nay, wherefore should they? since that I myself
Methought, the souls of all that I had murder'd
Wolsey on His Fall.
Farewell, a long farewell, to all my greatness!