C.N. Douglas, comp. Forty Thousand Quotations: Prose and Poetical. 1917.
The feast of reason and the flow of soul.
The turnpike road to peoples hearts, I find, Lies through their mouths, or I mistake mankind.
Their various cares in one great point combine The business of their lives, that is to dine.
It is not the quantity of the meat, but the cheerfulness of the guests, which makes the feast; at the feast of the Centaurs they ate with one hand, and had their drawn swords in the other; where there is no peace, there can be no feast.
The latter end of a fray, and the beginning of a feast, Fits a dull fighter, and a keen guest.
Blest be those feasts with simple plenty crownd,
Where all the ruddy family around
Laugh at the jests or pranks that never fail, Or sigh with pity at some mournful tale.
But twas a public feast, and public day,
Quite full, right dull, guests hot, and dishes cold,
Great plenty, much formality, small cheer, And everybody out of their own sphere.
Of all appeals,although
I grant the power of pathos, and of gold,
Of beauty, flattery, threats, a shilling,no
Methods more sure at moments to take hold,
Of the best feelings of mankind, which grow
More tender, as we every day behold,
Than that all-softening, overpowring knell, The tocsin of the soulthe Dinner Bell.