Gold once out of the earth is no more due unto it; what was unreasonably committed to the ground, is reasonably resumed from it; let monuments and rich fabricks, not riches, adorn mens ashes. Sir Thomas BrowneHydriotaphia. Ch. III.
To extend our memories by monuments, whose death we daily pray for, and whose duration we cannot hope, without injury to our expectations in the advent of the last day, wore a contradiction to our belief. Sir Thomas BrowneHydriotaphia. Ch. V.
You shall not pile, with servile toil, Your monuments upon my breast, Nor yet within the common soil Lay down the wreck of power to rest, Where man can boast that he has trod On him that was the scourge of God. Edward EverettAlaric the Visigoth.
Exegi monumentum ære perennius Regalique situ pyramidum altius, Quod non imber edax, non Aquilo impotens Possit diruere aut innumerabilis Annorum series et fuga temporum. Non omnis moriar, multaque pars mei Vitabit Libitinam. I have reared a memorial more enduring than brass, and loftier than the regal structure of the pyramids, which neither the corroding shower nor the powerless north wind can destroy; no, not even unending years nor the flight of time itself. I shall not entirely die. The greater part of me shall escape oblivion. HoraceCarmina. III. 30. 1.
Incisa notis marmora publicis, Per quæ spiritus et vita redit bonis Post mortem ducibus. Marble statues, engraved with public inscriptions, by which the life and soul return after death to noble leaders. HoraceCarmina. IV. 8.
Soldats, du haut ces Pyramide quarante siècles vous contemplent. Soldiers, forty centuries are looking down upon you from these pyramids. Napoleon. To his army before the Battle of the Pyramids, July 2, 1797. Also quoted twenty centuries.
Let it rise! let it rise, till it meet the sun in his coming; let the earliest light of the morning gild it, and the parting day linger and play on its summit. Daniel WebsterAddress on Laying the Corner Stone of the Bunker Hill Monument. Works. Vol. I. P. 62.
If we work upon marble it will perish. If we work upon brass time will efface it. If we rear temples they will crumble to dust. But if we work upon mens immortal minds, if we imbue them with high principles, with the just fear of God and love of their fellow men, we engrave on those tablets something which no time can efface, and which will brighten and brighten to all eternity. Daniel WebsterSpeech in Faneuil Hall. (1852).