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C.N. Douglas, comp.  Forty Thousand Quotations: Prose and Poetical.  1917.
 
Sir Walter Raleigh
 
        A beggar that is dumb, you know,
May challenge double pity.
  1
        Abused mortals! did you know
Where joy, heart’s-ease, and comforts grow;
You’d scorn proud towers,
And seek them in these bowers,
Where winds sometimes our woods perhaps may shake,
But blustering care could never tempest make,
Nor murmurs e’er come nigh us,
Saving of fountains that glide by us.
  2
        Cowards fear to die; but courage stout,
Rather than live in snuff, will be put out.
  3
        Even such is time, that takes on trust
Our youth, our joys, our all we have,
And pays us but with age and dust,
Who in the dark and silent grave,
When we have wandered all our ways,
Shuts up the story of our days!
But from this earth, this grave, this dust,
My God shall raise me up, I trust!
  4
        Fain would I but I dare not; I dare, and yet I may not;
I may, although I care not for pleasure when I play not.
  5
        Go, Soul, the Body’s guest,
  Upon a thankless errand;
Fear not to touch the best,
  The truth shall be thy warrant.
Go, since I needs must die,
And give them all the lie.
  6
        No mortal thing can bear so high a price,
But that with mortal thing it may be bought.
  7
        Shall I, like an hermit, dwell
On a rock or in a cell?
  8
        Yet stab at thee who will,
No stab the soul can kill!
  9
  A beggar that is dumb, you know, may challenge double pity.  10
  A flatterer is said to be a beast that biteth smiling. But it is hard to know them from friends, they are so obsequious and full of protestations; for as a wolf resembles a dog, so doth a flatterer a friend.  11
  According to Solomon, life and death are in the power of the tongue; and as Euripides truly affirmeth, every unbridled tongue in the end shall find itself unfortunate; for in all that ever I observed in the course of worldly things, I ever found that men’s fortunes are oftener made by their tongues than by their virtues, and more men’s fortunes overthrown thereby, also, than by their vices.  12
  Because all men are apt to flatter themselves, to entertain the addition of other men’s praises is most perilous.  13
  Better were it to be unborn than to be ill-bred.  14
  Death, which hateth and destroyeth a man, is believed; God, which hath made him and loves him, is always deferred.  15
  Except thou desire to hasten thine end, take this for a general rule, that thou never add any artificial heat to thy body by wine or spice.  16
  Fain would I climb, yet fear I to fall.  17
  Flatterers are the worst kind of traitors, for they will strengthen thy imperfections, encourage thee in all evils, correct thee in nothing, but so shadow and paint thy follies and vices as thou shalt never, by their will, discover good from evil, or vice from virtue.  18
  God is absolutely good; and so, assuredly, the cause of all that is good.  19
  Have ever more care that thou be beloved of thy wife, rather than thyself besotted on her; and thou shalt judge of her love by these two observations: first, if thou perceive she have a care of thy estate, and exercise herself therein; the other, if she study to please thee, and be sweet unto thee in conversation, without thy instruction; for love needs no teaching nor precept.  20
 
 
  History hath triumphed over Time, which besides it, nothing but Eternity hath triumphed over.  21
  If any friend desire thee to be his surety, give him a part of what thou hast to spare; if he press thee further, he is not thy friend at all, for friendship rather chooseth harm to itself than offereth it. If thou be bound for a stranger, thou art a fool; if for a merchant, thou puttest thy estate to learn to swim.  22
  If thou be subject to any great vanity or ill (from which I hope God will bless thee), then therein trust no man; for every man’s folly ought to be his greatest secret.  23
  If thy friends be of better quality than thyself, thou mayest be sure of two things: the first, that they will be more careful to keep thy counsel, because they have more to lose than thou hast; the second, they will esteem thee for thyself, and not for that which thou dost possess.  24
  In a word, we may gather out of history a policy no less wise than eternal; by the comparison and application of other men’s forepassed miseries with our own like errors and ill deservings.  25
  It is observed in the course of worldly things, that men’s fortunes are oftener made by their tongues than by their virtues; and more men’s fortunes overthrown thereby than by vices.  26
  It is plain there is not in nature a point of stability to be found; everything either ascends or declines; when wars are ended abroad, sedition begins at home; and when men are freed from fighting for necessity, they quarrel through ambition.  27
  It were better for a man to be subject to any vice than to drunkenness; for all other vanities and sins are recovered, but a drunkard will never shake off the delight of beastliness.  28
  It would be an unspeakable advantage, both to the public and private, if men would consider that great truth, that no man is wise or safe but he that is honest.  29
  Jest not openly at those that are simple, but remember how much thou art bound to God, who hath made thee wiser. Defame not any woman publicly, though thou know her to be evil; for those that are faulty cannot endure to be taxed, but will seek to be avenged of thee; and those that are not guilty cannot endure unjust reproach.  30
  Less pains in the world a man cannot take than to hold his tongue.  31
  Let thy servants be such as thou mayest command, and entertain none about thee but yeomen, to whom thou givest wages; for those that will serve thee without thy hire will cost thee treble as much as they that know thy fare.  32
  Life is a tragedy.  33
  Never add artificial heat to thy body by wine or spice until thou findest that time hath decayed thy natural heat.  34
  No man is esteemed for gay garments but by fools and women.  35
  No one can take less pains than to hold his tongue. Hear much, and speak little; for the tongue is the instrument of the greatest good and greatest evil that is done in the world.  36
  O eloquent, just and mightie Death! whom none could advise, thou hast perswaded; what none hath dared, thou hast done; and whom all the world hath flattered, thou only hast cast out of the world and despised: thou hast drawne together all the farre stretchéd greatnesse, all the pride, crueltie and ambition of men, and covered it all over with these two narrow words, Hic jacet!  37
  Our bodies are but the anvils of pain and disease, and our minds the hives of unnumbered cares.  38
  Our immortal souls, while righteous, are by God himself beautified with the title of his own image and similitude.  39
  Our souls, piercing through the impurity of flesh, behold the highest heaven, and thence bring knowledge to contemplate the ever-during glory and termless joy.  40
  Passions are likened best to floods and streams; the shallow murmur, but the deep are dumb.  41
  Remember the divine saying, He that keepeth his mouth, keepeth his life.  42
  Speaking much is a sign of vanity, for he that is lavish in words is a niggard in deed.  43
  Take special care that thou delight not in wine; for there never was any man who came to honor, or preferment that loved it; for it transformeth a man into a beast, decayeth health, poisoneth the breath, destroyeth natural heat, brings a man’s stomach to an artificial heat, deformeth the face, rotteth the teeth, and to conclude, maketh a man contemptible, soon old, and despised of all wise and worthy men; hated in thy servants, in thyself, and companions; for it is a bewitching and infectious vice.  44
  Take special care that thou never trust any friend or servant with any matter that may endanger thine estate; for so shalt thou make thyself a bond-slave to him that thou trustest, and leave thyself always to his mercy.  45
  Tell zeal it lacks devotion.  46
  The best time for marriage will be towards thirty, for as the younger times are unfit, either to choose or to govern a wife and family, so, if thou stay long, thou shalt hardly see the education of thy children, who, being left to strangers, are in effect lost; and better were it to be unborn than ill-bred; for thereby thy posterity shall either perish, or remain a shame to thy name.  47
  The bodies of men, munition, and money may justly be called the sinews of war.  48
  The difference between a rich man and a poor man is this—the former eats when he pleases, and the latter when he can get it.  49
  The gain of lying is nothing else but not to be trusted of any, nor to be believed when we say the truth.  50
  The longer it possesseth a man the more he will delight in it, and the elder he groweth the more he shall be subject to it; for it dulleth the spirits, and destroyeth the body as ivy doth the old tree, or as the worm that engendereth in the kernal of the nut.  51
  The mind hath not reason to remember that passions ought to be her vassals, not her masters.  52
  The most divine light only shineth on those minds which are purged from all worldly dross and human uncleanliness.  53
  The necessity of war, which among human actions is the most lawless, hath some kind of affinity with the necessity of law.  54
  The tongue is the instrument of the greatest good and the greatest evil that is done in the world.  55
  There is no error which hath not some appearance of probability resembling truth, which, when men who study to be singular find out, straining reason, they then publish to the world matter of contention and jangling.  56
  There never was a man of solid understanding, whose apprehensions are sober, and by a pensive inspection advised, but that he hath found by an irresistible necessity one true God and everlasting being.  57
  Thou may’st be sure that he that will in private tell thee of thy faults, is thy friend, for he adventures thy dislike, and doth hazard thy hatred; for there are few men that can endure it, every man for the most part delighting in self-praise, which is one of the most universal follies that bewitcheth mankind.  58
  To live thy better, let thy worst thoughts die.  59
  Trust few men; above all keep your follies to yourself.  60
  What thou givest after thy death, remember that thou givest it to a stranger, and most times to an enemy; for he that shall marry thy wife will despise thee, thy memory, and thine, and shall possess the quiet of thy labors, the fruit which thou hast planted, enjoy thy love, and spend with joy and ease what thou hast spared and gotten with care and travail.  61
  Whosoever commands the sea, commands the trade; whosoever commands the trade of the world, commands the riches of the world, and consequently the world itself.  62
  Ye pretty daughters of the earth and sun.  63
 
 
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