Miscellaneous and fugitive pieces [chiefly of Johnson, ed. by T. Davies]. By S. Johnson, Volume 2

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Page 55 - ON THE BRAVERY OF THE ENGLISH COMMON SOLDIERS2*, By those who have compared the military genius of the English with that of the French nation, it is remarked, that "the French officers will always lead, if the soldiers will follow;" and that "the English soldiers will always follow, if their officers will lead." In all pointed sentences, some degree of accuracy must be sacrificed to conciseness; and, in this comparison, our officers seem to lose what our soldiers gain.
Page 333 - The reciprocal civility of authors is one of the most risible scenes in the farce of life. Who would not have thought, that these two luminaries of their age had ceased to endeavour to grow bright by the obscuration of each other? yet the animadversions thus weak, thus precipitate, upon a book thus injured in the transcription, quickly passed the press ; and...
Page 341 - It is the heaviest stone that melancholy can throw at a man, to tell him he is at the end of his nature ; or that there is no further state to come, unto which this seems progrcssional, and otherwise made in vain...
Page 213 - He was the first man who brought the ships to contemn castles on shore, which had been thought ever very formidable, and were discovered by him to make a noise only, and to fright those who could rarely be hurt by them. He was the first that infused that proportion of courage into the seamen...
Page 360 - But his innovations are sometimes pleasing, and his temerities happy : he has many verba ardenlia, forcible expressions, which he would never have found, but by venturing to the utmost verge of propriety ; and flights which would never have been reached, but by one who had very little fear of the shame of falling.
Page 258 - Being once asked by a friend, who had often admired his patience under great provocations, whether he knew what it was to be angry, and by what means he had so entirely suppressed that impetuous and ungovernable passion? he answered, with the utmost frankness and sincerity, that he was naturally quick of resentment, but that he had by daily prayer and meditation, at length attained to this mastery over himself.
Page 357 - A perusal of the Religio Medici will not much contribute to produce a belief of the author's exemption from this father-sin; pride is a vice, which pride itself inclines every man to find in others, and to overlook in himself.
Page 334 - There are many things delivered rhetorically, many expressions therein merely tropical, and as they best illustrate my intention ; and therefore also there are many things to be taken in a soft and flexible sense, and not to be called unto the rigid test of reason.
Page 207 - Blake, with his associates, declared that, notwithstanding the change in the administration, they should still be ready to discharge their trust, and to defend the nation from insults, injuries, and encroachments. " It is not," said Blake, " the business of a seaman to mind state affairs, but to hinder foreigners from fooling us.
Page 334 - ... his life has been a miracle of thirty years ; which to relate were not history, but a piece of poetry, and would sound like a fable.

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