I remember a passage in Goldsmiths Vicar of Wakefield, which he was afterwards fool enough to expunge: I do not love a man who is zealous for nothing. There was another fine passage too which he struck out: When I was a young man, being anxious to distinguish myself, I was perpetually starting new propositions. But I soon gave this over; for I found that generally what was new was false.
Life of Johnson (Boswell).1Vol. vii. Chap. viii. 1779.
Note 1. From the London edition, 10 volumes, 1835.
Dr. Johnson, it is said, when he first heard of Boswells intention to write a life of him, announced, with decision enough, that if he thought Boswell really meant to write his life he would prevent it by taking Boswells!Thomas Carlyle: Miscellanies, Jean Paul Frederic Richter. [back]