Autobiography of John Younger: Shoemaker, St. Boswells

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J. & J.H. Rutherfurd, 1881 - 457 pages

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Page xiv - They teach the youthful mind to sigh after beauty and happiness which never existed ; to despise the little good which fortune has mixed in our cup, by expecting more than she ever gave ; and in general, take the word of a man who has seen the world, and has studied human nature more by experience than precept ; take my word for it, I say, that books teach us very little of the world.
Page 44 - They, looking back, all the eastern side beheld Of Paradise, so late their happy seat, Waved over by that flaming brand; the gate With dreadful faces thronged and fiery arms. Some natural tears they dropped, but wiped them soon; The world was all before them, where to choose Their place of rest, and Providence their guide.
Page 361 - That light we see is burning in my hall; how far that little candle throws its beams! so shines a good deed in a naughty world...
Page 367 - I do forget to eat my bread. 5 By reason of my groaning voice my bones cleave to my skin. 6 Like pelican in wilderness forsaken I have been : I like an owl in desert am, that nightly there doth moan : 7 I watch, and like a sparrow am on the house-top alone.
Page 130 - Still it lingering haunts the greenest spot On memory's waste. 'Twas odour fled As soon as shed ; 'Twas morning's winged dream ; 'Twas a light, that ne'er can shine again On life's dull stream : Oh ! 'twas light that ne'er can shine again On life's dull stream.
Page 366 - ... strolls among the mantling woods, and kind friends gone away to all the ends of the earth, but dearer than ever in the dim distance. For to the very last he had cherished " Love's youngest hopes, and downy dreams, In memory's light, like glowworm gleams.
Page 369 - The shoemaker of St Boswells,' as he was designated in all parts of Scotland, was an excellent prose writer, a respectable poet, a marvellously gifted man in conversation. His life will be read with great interest ; the simple heartstirring narrative of the life-struggle of a highly-gifted, humble, and honest mechanic, — a life of care, but also a life of virtue.
Page 366 - Mid a' the thoughts that trouble me, The saddest thought of any Is wha may close the other's e'e — May it be me or Nannie? The ane that's left will sairly feel, Amid a world uncanny; I'd rather face auld age mysel
Page 37 - I held out my first little trout : To utter the feelings a' language is vain — But just it was what I can ne'er feel again, Unless in idea : as we rub in life's rust Wearing down into age — ere we drop in the dust — The thoughts of a new birth may weel mak us fain, Were it only a hope to be younglings again ! " Bather a pawkie touch that of John's about the new birth, we are afraid.
Page xii - ... which was much more the effect of use and practice. I do not deny that natural disposition may often give the first rise to it ; but that never carries a man far without use and exercise, and it is practice alone that brings the powers of the mind, as well as those of the body, to their perfection. Many a good poetic vein is buried under a trade, and never produces anything, for want of improvement.

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