Macaulay's Life of Samuel Johnson: With a Selection from His Essay on Johnson

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Page 84 - When, upon some slight encouragement, I first visited your Lordship, I was overpowered, like the rest of mankind, by the enchantment of your address, and could not forbear to wish that I might boast myself Le vainqueur du vainqueur de la terre...
Page 85 - Seven years, my lord, have now past, since I waited in your outward rooms, or was repulsed from your door ; during which time I have been pushing on my work through difficulties, of which it is useless to complain, and have brought it, at last, to the verge of publication, without one act of assistance,l one word of encouragement, or one smile of favour. Such treatment I did not expect, for I never had a patron before.
Page 45 - Many of the greatest men that ever lived have written biography. Boswell was one of the smallest men that ever lived ; and he has beaten them all.
Page 86 - I have protracted my work till most of those whom I wished to please have sunk into the grave, and success and miscarriage are empty sounds. I therefore dismiss it with frigid tranquillity, having little to fear or hope from censure or from praise.
Page 65 - Sir, that is all visionary. I would not give half a guinea to live under one form of government rather than another. It is of no moment to the happiness of an individual. Sir, the danger of the abuse of power is nothing to a private man. What Frenchman is prevented passing his life as he pleases? ' SIR ADAM : ' But, sir, in the British constitution it is surely of importance to keep up a spirit in the people, so as to preserve a balance against the crown.
Page 85 - Is not a patron, my lord, one who looks with unconcern on a man struggling for life in the water, and, when he has reached ground, encumbers him with help? The notice which you have been pleased to take of my labours, had it been early, had been kind ; but it has been delayed till I am indifferent, and cannot enjoy it; till I am solitary, and cannot impart it; till I am known, and do not want it.
Page 8 - Hervey," said the old philosopher many years later, " was a vicious man ; but he was very kind to me. If you call a dog Hervey, I shall love him.
Page 83 - An author who has enlarged the knowledge of human nature, and taught the passions to move at the command of virtue;' and Numbers 44 and 100, by Mrs.
Page 73 - All his books are written in a learned language, in a language which nobody hears from his mother or his nurse, in a language in which nobody ever quarrels, or drives bargains, or makes love, in a language in which nobody ever thinks.
Page 85 - In this work, when it shall be found that much is omitted, let it not be forgotten that much likewise is performed; and though no book was ever spared out of tenderness to the author, and the world is little solicitous to know whence...

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