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become comparatively easy, in time, like every other habit. Thus, even men with the commonest brains and the most slender powers will accomplish much, if they will but apply themselves wholly and indefatigably to one thing at a time. “The longer I live," said a successful man, “the more I am certain that the great difference between men — between the feeble and the powerful, the great and the insignificant is energy, invincible determination, a purpose once fixed; and then — death or victory!"
"If what shone afar so grand
Turn to nothing in thy hand,
On again! the virtue lies
In the struggle, not the prize."
1.- PATHOS AND PATRIOTISM. — Grattan. I do not give up my country. I see her in a swoon, but she is not dead. Though in her tomb she lies helpless and motionless, still there is on her lips a spirit of life, and on her cheek a glow of beauty.
“Thou art not conquered ; beauty's ensign yet ,
Is crimson in thy lips, and in thy cheeks,
And Death's pale flag is not advancëd there." While a plank of the vessel sticks together, I will not
* For Part I., see page 91 ; Part II., pago 195 ; Part III., pago 291.
leave her. Let the courtier present his flimsy sail, and carry the light bark of his faith with every new breath of wind; I will remain anchored here, with fidelity to the fortunes of my country, faithful to her freedom, faithful to her fall!
2.- INDIGNANT DENIAL. — Knowles.
Lucius. Justice will be defeated.
Virginius. Who says that ?
He lies in the face of the gods. She is immutable,
Immaculate, and immortal! And, though all
The guilty globe should blaze, she would spring up
Through the fire, and soar above the crackling pile,
With not a downy feather ruffled by
Its fierceness !
3. — HORROR AND ALARM. — Shakspeare.
Approach the chamber, and destroy your sight
With a new Gorgon. — Do not bid me speak:
See, and then speak yourselves. - Awake! awake!
Ring the alărum-bell ! — Murder and treason!
Banquo and Donalbain! Malcolm, awake!
Shake off this downy sleep, death's counterfeit,
And look on death itself! — up, up, and see
The great doom's image! — Malcolm! Banquo !
As from your graves rise up, and walk like sprites
To countenance this horror !
4. - DYING FOR FREEDOM. — Byron.
They never fail who die
In a great cause! The block may soak their gore; '
Their heads may sodden in the sun; their limbs.
Be strung to city gates and castle walls ;
But still their spirit walks abroad. Though ycars
Elapse, and others share as dark a doom,
They but augment the deep and sweeping thoughts
Which overpower all others, and conduct
The world, at last, to freedom!
5.- REMORSE AND DESPONDENCY. Shakspeare.
I have lived long enough: my way of life
Is fallen into the sear, the yěllow leaf;
And that which should accompany old age,
As honor, love, obedience, troops of friends,
I must not look to have; but, in their stead,
Curses, not loud, but deep,— mouth-honor — breath!
Which the poor heart would fain deny, but dare not.
6. — Eulogy. — Shakspeare.
This was the noblest Roman of them all :
All the conspirators, save only he,
Did that they did in envy of great Cæsar;
He, only, in a general honest thought,
And common good to all, made one of them.
His life was gentle ; and the elements
So mixed in him, that Nature might stand up,
And say to all the world, “ This was a man!”
7. — IMPROVE THE PRESENT MOMENT. — Dryden. Happy the man, and happy he alone,
He who can call to-day his own:
He who, secure within, can say,
TO-MORROW! do thy worst, for I have lived TO-DAY!
Be fair or foul, or rain or shine,
The joys I have possessed, in spite of fate are mine.
Not Heaven itself upon the past has power;
But what has been, has been, and I have had my hour.
8. — THE MURDERER'S CONFESSION. — Horace Smith.
The country's amenity brings no serenity;
Each rural sound seeming a menace or screaming ;
Not a bird or a beast but cries, “Murder!
There goes the offender!
Dog him, waylay him, encompass him, stay him,
And make him surrender!"
Nerves a thousand times stronger could bear it no longer!
Grief, sickness, compunction, dismay in conjunction,
Nights and days ghost-prolific, more grim and terrific
Than judges and juries,
Make the heart writhe and falter more than gibbet and
halter ! Arrest me, secure me, seize, handcuff, immure me! I own my transgression — will make full confession! Quick ! quick! let me plunge in some dark-vaulted duide
geon, Where, though tried and death-fated, I may not be baited By fiends and by furies !
9. — BRUTUS TO Cassius. — Shakspeare.
There is no terror, Cassius, in your threats ;
For I am armed so strong in honesty
That they pass by me as the idle wind,
Which I respect not. I did send to you
For certain sums of gold, which you denied me;-
For I can raise no money by vile means.
0, Heaven! I had rather coin my heart,
And drop my blood for drachmas, than to wring
From the hard hands of peasants their vile trash
By any indirection. — I did send
To you for gold to pay my legions,
Which you denied me. Was that done like Cassius?
Should I have answered Caius Cassius so?
When Marcus Brutus grows so covetous,
To lock such rascal counters from his friends,
Be ready, gods, with all your thunderbolts,
Dash him to pieces !
10. — MILTON ON HIS BLINDNESS.
01 dark, dark, .dark, amid the blaze of noon,
Irrev'ocably dark — total eclipse -
Without all hope of day!
0, first created beam, and thou, great Word,
“Let there be light," and light was over all,
Why am I thus bereaved thy prime decree?
CXL.- HAMLET'S SOLILOQUY ON DEATH.
Coil' n., tumult ; bustle.
| BOD'KIN, n., a large needle ; an ade Cast, n., a tinge ; a slight coloring. cient term for a small dagger. BOURN (burn or boorn) n., a limit or Far'DEL, n., a little pack ; a burden. bound.
A-wrY' (a-ri'), ad., not in a straight Pith, n., force ; energy.
direction. SHUFFLED, pp., shifted off.
QUI-Estus (Latin), n., final rest. OUT-RA'GEOUS, a., intolerable. Con’TU-ME-LY, n., insolence. RUB, n., difficulty ; pinch.
CON-SUM-MA’TION, n., completion. The reader should study the author's meaning in this Soliloquy. In the fifth, sixth Kines, &c., he seems to mean simply this : “Death - sleep — they are equal ; they do not differ; and if, by the sleep of death, we could throw off all our cares and troubles, such a sleep would be desirable indeed." But the thought of what may come after death immediately checks him in his suicidal speculations.
To be — or not to be — that is the question !
Whether 't is nobler in the mind to suffer
The slings and arrows of outrageous fortune,-
Or, to take arms against a sea of troubles,
And, by opposing, end them! — To die, — to sleep;
No more ;— and, by a sleep, to say we end
The heart-ache, and the thousand natural shocks
That flesh is heir to,-'t is a consummation
Devoutly to be wished !
To die,– to sleep ;-
To sleep? perchance to dream ;-ay, there's the rub;
For, in that sleep of death, what dreams may come,
When we have shuffled off this mortal coil,
Must give us pause.— There's the respect* '
That makes calamity of so long life!
For who would bear the whips and scorns of time,
The oppressor's wrong, the proud man's contumely,
The pangs of despised love, the law's delay,
The insolence of office, and the spurns
That patient merit of the unworthy takes,
When he himself might his quietus make
With a bare bodkin? -
That is, the consideration. Shakspeare often uses the word in this sense.