Death finds us mid our play-thingssnatches us, As a cross nurse might do a wayward child, From all our toys and baubles. His rough call Unlooses all our favourite ties on earth; And well if they are such as may be answerd In yonder world, where all is judged of truly. Old Play; and see Seneca, Epi. XXIII.
And when obedient nature knows his will, A fly, a grapestone, or a hair can kill. Prior.Ode to the Memory of Villiers, Line 53. [The ripping of a hang-nail is sufficient to despatch us. We are afraid of inundations from the sea when a glass of wine, if it goes the wrong way, is enough to suffocate us. Seneca, Epi. XXIII. Pope Adrian IV, was choked by a fly.]
What day, what hour, but knocks at human hearts, To wake the soul to sense of future scenes? Deaths stand like Mercurys, in every way, And kindly point us to our journeys end. Dr. Young.Night VII. Line 2.
The sense of death is most in apprehension; And the poor beetle, that we tread upon, In corporal sufferance finds a pang as great As when a giant dies. Shakespeare.Measure for Measure, Act III. Scene 1. (Isabella to her brother.)
The weariest and most loathed worldly life That age, ache, penury, and imprisonment Can lay on nature, is a paradise To what we fear of death. Shakespeare.Measure for Measure, Act III. Scene 1. (Claudio to Isabella.)
As man, perhaps, the moment of his breath, Receives the lurking principle of death; The young disease, that must subdue at length, Grows with his growth, and strengthens with his strength. Pope.Essay on Man, Epi. II. Line 133.
Death hath ten thousand several doors For men to take their exits. John Webster.The Duchess of Malfy; Massinger.The Parliament of Love, Act IV. Scene 2.Death hath a thousand doors to let out life; Massinger.A Very Woman, Act V. Scene 4.
When I remember all The friends so linkd together, Ive seen around me fall, Like leaves in wintry weather; I feel like one who treads alone Some banquet hall deserted, Whose lights are fled, whose garlands dead, And all but he departed. Tom Moore.Oft in the Stilly Night, Stanza 2.
When in this vale of years I backward look, And miss such numbers, numbers too of such, Firmer in health, and greener in their age, And stricter on their guard, and fitter far To play lifes subtle game, I scarce believe I still survive. Dr. Young.Night IV. Line 124.
Devouring famine, plague, and war, Each able to undo mankind, Deaths servile emissaries are, Nor to these alone confind, He hath at will More quaint and subtle ways to kill; A smile or kiss, as he will use the art, Shall have the cunning skill to break a heart. Shirley.Cupid and Death.
Still at the last, to his beloved bowl He clung, and cheerd the sadness of his soul; For though a man may not have much to fear, Yet death looks ugly, when the view is near. Crabbe.The Borough, Letter XVI.