Reference > Quotations > C.N. Douglas, comp. > Forty Thousand Quotations > Primary Author Index
C.N. Douglas, comp.  Forty Thousand Quotations: Prose and Poetical.  1917.
  A pilgrimage is an admirable remedy for over-fastidiousness and sickly refinement.  1
  A work of art is said to be perfect in proportion as it does not remind the spectator of the process by which it was created.  2
  As the falcon launched trustingly heavenward is lost to view, the course of the higher poetry often soars beyond the ken of the multitude; and, as the humble birds carol blithely round our dwellings, so the meeker lays of the muse linger tunefully about the heart.  3
  Credulity is perhaps a weakness almost inseparable from eminently truthful characters.  4
  Do not give to thy friends the most agreeable counsels, but the most advantageous.  5
  Explain it as we may, a martial strain will urge a man into the front rank of battle sooner than an argument, and a fine anthem excite his devotion more certainly than a logical discourse.  6
  Far better one unpurchased heart than glory’s proudest name.  7
  Fashion seldom interferes with nature without diminishing her grace and efficiency.  8
  Had we a privilege of calling up by the power of memory only such passages as were pleasing, unmixed with such as were disagreeable, we might then excite at pleasure an ideal happiness, perhaps more poignant than actual sensation.  9
  If conversation be an art, like painting, sculpture, and literature, it owes its most powerful charm to nature; and the least shade of formality or artifice destroys the effect of the best collection of words.  10
  It has been said that self-respect is the gate of heaven, and the most cursory observation shows that a degree of reserve adds vastly to the latent force of character.  11
  It is amusing to detect character in the vocabulary of each person. The adjectives habitually used, like the inscriptions on a thermometer, indicate the temperament.  12
  Legitimately produced, and truly inspired, fiction interprets humanity, informs the understanding, and quickens the affections. It reflects ourselves, warns us against prevailing social follies, adds rich specimens to our cabinets of character, dramatizes life for the unimaginative, daguerreotypes it for the unobservant, multiplies experience for the isolated or inactive, and cheers age, retirement and invalidism with an available and harmless solace.  13
  Let us recognise the beauty and power of true enthusiasm; and whatever we may do to enlighten ourselves and others, guard against checking or chilling a single earnest sentiment.  14
  Literature is so common a luxury that the age has grown fastidious.  15
  No man flatters the woman he truly loves.  16
  Poetry is the overflowing of the soul.  17
  Professed authors who overestimate their vocation are too full of themselves to be agreeable companions. The demands of their egotism are inveterate. They seem to be incapable of that abandon which is the requisite condition of social pleasure; and bent upon winning a tribute of admiration, or some hint, which they can turn to the account of pen-craft, there is seldom in their company any of the delightful unconsciousness which harmonizes a circle.-  18
  Society is the offspring of leisure; and to acquire this forms the only rational motive for accumulating wealth, notwithstanding the cant that prevails on the subject of labor.  19
  The art of walking is at once suggestive of the dignity of man. Progressive motion alone implies power, but in almost every other instance it seems a power gained at the expense of self-possession.  20
  The eye speaks with an eloquence and truthfulness surpassing speech. It is the window out of which the winged thoughts often fly unwittingly. It is the tiny magic mirror on whose crystal surface the moods of feeling fitfully play, like the sunlight and shadow on a still stream.  21
  The French have a significant saying, that a woman who buys her complexion will sell it.  22
  The man who becomes a critic by trade ceases, in reality, to be one at all.  23
  The mind’s only perfect vassal.  24
  The soul, by an instinct stronger than reason, ever associates beauty with truth.  25
  There are beauties of character which, like the night-blooming cereus, are closed against the glare and turbulence of every-day life, and bloom only in shade and solitude, and beneath the quiet stars.  26
  There is a policy in manner. I have heard one, not inexperienced in the pursuit of fame, give it his earnest support, as being the surest passport to absolute and brilliant success.  27
  There is a strength of quiet endurance as significant of courage as the most daring feats of prowess.  28
  There is more or less of pathos in all true beauty. The delight it awakens has an indefinable, and, as it were, luxurious sadness, which is perhaps one element of its might.  29
  There is to the poetical sense a ravishing prophecy and winsome intimation in flowers that now and then, from the influence of mood or circumstance, reasserts itself like the reminiscence of childhood, or the spell of love.  30
  To a nice ear, the quality of a voice is singularly affecting. Its depth seems to be allied to feeling; at least, the contralto notes alone give an adequate sense of pathos. They are born near the heart.  31
  To analyze the charms of flowers is like dissecting music; it is one of those things which it is far better to enjoy than to attempt to understand.  32
  To be a good traveler argues one no ordinary philosopher. A sweet landscape must sometimes be allowed to atone for an indifferent supper, and an interesting ruin charm away the remembrance of a hard bed.  33
  Travel gives a character of experience to our knowledge, and brings the figures upon the tablet of memory into strong relief.  34
  We read of a fountain in Arabia upon whose basin is inscribed, “Drink, and away;” but how delicious is that hasty draught, and how long and brightly the thought of its transient refreshment dwells in the memory.  35
  Whatever is genuine in social relations endures, despite of time, error, absence, and destiny; and that which has no inherent vitality had better die at once. A great poet has truly declared that constancy is no virtue, but a fact.  36
  Whoever has set his whole heart upon book-making had better be sought in his works, for it is only the lees of his cup of life which he offers, in person, to the warm lips of his fellows.  37
  Without the definiteness of sculpture and painting, music is, for that very reason, far more suggestive. Like Milton’s Eve, an outline, an impulse, is furnished, and the imagination does the rest.  38

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