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Page 389 - When a true genius appears in the world, you may know him by this sign, that the dunces are all in confederacy against him.
Page 148 - Sundays than other days? is not that the chief day for traders to sum up the accounts of the week, and for lawyers to prepare their briefs? But I would fain know, how it can be pretended, that the churches are misapplied? where are more appointments and rendezvouses of gallantry? where more care to appear in the foremost box with greater advantage of dress? where more meetings for business, where more bargains driven of all sorts? and where so many conveniences or enticements to sleep?
Page 324 - ... which used to be the standard of propriety and correctness of speech, was then, and, I think, has ever since continued, the worst school in England for that accomplishment; and .so will remain till better care be taken in the education of our young nobility, that they may set out into the world with some foundation of literature, in order to qualify them for patterns of politeness.
Page 263 - I have consulted the star of his nativity by my own rules, and find he will infallibly die upon the 29th of March next, about eleven at night, of a raging fever: therefore I advise him to consider of it, and settle his affairs in time.
Page 311 - This single stick, which you now behold ingloriously lying in that neglected corner, I once knew in a flourishing state in a forest: it was full of sap, full of leaves, and full of boughs: but now, in vain does the busy art of man pretend to vie with nature, by tying that...
Page 140 - To offer at the restoring of that, would indeed be a wild project: it would be to dig up foundations ; to destroy at one blow all the wit, and half the learning of the kingdom ; to break the entire frame and constitution of things; to ruin trade, extinguish arts and sciences, with the professors of them; in short, to turn our courts, exchanges, and shops into deserts...
Page 399 - To be vain, is rather a mark of humility, than pride. Vain men delight in telling what honours have been done them, what great company they have kept, and the like, by which they plainly confess that these...
Page 327 - ... beside the obvious inconvenience of utterly destroying our etymology, would be a thing we should never see an end of. Not only the several towns and counties of England have a different way of pronouncing, but even here in London they clip their words after one manner about the court, another in the city, and a third -in the suburbs : and in a few years, it is probable, will all differ from themselves, as fancy or fashion shall direct : all which reduced to writing would entirely confound orthography.
Page 398 - The common fluency of speech in many men, and most women, is owing to a scarcity of matter, and a scarcity of words; for whoever is a master of language, and hath a mind full of ideas, will be apt, in speaking, to hesitate upon the choice of both; whereas common speakers have only one set of ideas, and one set of words to clothe them in, and these are always ready at the mouth. So people come faster out of a church when it is almost empty, than when a crowd is at the door.