The Works of Samuel Johnson, LL. D.

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Page 26 - In narratives, where historical veracity has no place, I cannot discover why there should not be exhibited the most perfect idea of virtue; of virtue not angelical, nor above probability, for what we cannot credit we shall never imitate, but the highest and purest that humanity can reach...
Page 415 - by what chance thou hast been brought hither ; I have been now twenty years an inhabitant of the wilderness, in which I never saw a man before.
Page 413 - ... in compliance with the varieties of the ground, and to end at last in the common road.
Page 440 - Piety is the only proper and adequate relief of decaying man. He that grows old without religious hopes, as he declines into imbecility, and feels pains and sorrows...
Page 416 - We rise in the morning of youth, full of vigour, and full of expectation ; we set forward with spirit and hope, with gaiety and with diligence, and travel on a while in the straight road of piety towards the mansions of rest.
Page 22 - In the romances formerly written, every transaction and sentiment was so remote from all that passes among men, that the reader was in very little danger of making any applications to himself...
Page 381 - ALL joy or sorrow for the happiness or calamities of others is produced by an act of the imagination, that realises the event however fictitious, or approximates it however remote, by placing us, for a time, in 'the condition of him whose fortune we contemplate; so that we feel, while the deception lasts, whatever motions would be excited by the same good or evil happening to ourselves.
Page 22 - ... among men, that the reader was in very little danger of making any applications to himself; the virtues and crimes were equally beyond his...
Page 14 - The task of an author is, either to teach what is not known, or to recommend known truths, by his manner of adorning them; either to let new light in upon the mind, and open new scenes to the prospect, or to vary the dress and situation of common objects, so as to give them fresh grace and more powerful attractions...
Page 415 - At length not fear but labour began to overcome him ; his breath grew short, and his knees trembled, and he was on the point of lying down in resignation to his fate, when he beheld through the brambles the glimmer of a taper. He...

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