The works of Samuel Johnson [ed. by F.P. Walesby].
Talboys and Wheeler; and W. Pickering, London., 1825
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action allowed ancient appear Aristophanes attempt beauty better called censure character comedy common considered continued copy criticism desire dictionary discovered easily easy editions effect endeavoured English equally examined excellence exhibit expected followed force frequent genius give given greater hands honour hope human imagined importance Italy kind king knowledge known labour language learned least less likewise lives lord manner means mentioned mind nature necessary never NOTE observed occasion once opinion original particular pass passage passions performed perhaps Plautus play poet practice praise present produced proper publick published reader reason received regard remarkable rules scenes seems sense Shakespeare sometimes success suffered sufficient supposed things thought tion tragedy true truth whole writers written
Page 107 - His first defect is that to which mav be imputed most of the evil in books or in men. He sacrifices virtue to convenience, and is so much more careful to please than to instruct, that he seems to write without any moral purpose.
Page 97 - Nothing can please many, and please long, but just representations of general nature. Particular manners can be known to few, and therefore few only can judge how nearly they are copied. The irregular combinations of fanciful invention may delight...
Page 145 - I cannot say he is everywhere alike; were he so, I should do him injury to compare him with the greatest of mankind. He is many times flat, insipid; his comic wit degenerating into clenches, his serious swelling into bombast. But he is always great when some great occasion is presented to him...
Page 105 - His comedy pleases by the thoughts and the language, and his tragedy for the greater part by incident and action. His tragedy seems to be skill, his comedy to be instinct.
Page 48 - To deny the possibility, nay, actual existence, of witchcraft and sorcery is at once flatly to contradict the revealed word of God, in various passages both of the Old and New Testament : and the thing itself is a truth to which every nation in the world hath in its turn borne testimony, either by examples seemingly well attested or by prohibitory laws; which at least suppose the possibility of commerce with evil spirits.
Page 113 - The truth is that the spectators are always in their senses and know from the first act to the last that the stage is only a stage and that the players are only players.
Page 82 - She should have died hereafter ; There would have been a time for such a word. To-morrow, and to-morrow, and to-morrow, Creeps in this petty pace from day to day To the last syllable of recorded time, And all our yesterdays have lighted fools The way to dusty death.
Page 65 - The night has been unruly : where we lay, Our chimneys were blown down : and, as they say, Lamentings heard i...
Page 102 - Shakespeare's plays are not in the rigorous and critical sense either tragedies or comedies, but compositions of a distinct kind; exhibiting the real state of sublunary nature, which partakes of good and evil, joy and sorrow, mingled with endless variety of proportion and innumerable modes of combination ; and expressing the course of the world, in which the loss of one is the gain of another; in which, at the same time, the reveller is hasting to his wine, and the mourner burying his friend...
Page 107 - When he found himself near the end of his work and in view of his reward, he shortened the labour to snatch the profit. He therefore remits his efforts where he should most vigorously exert them, and his catastrophe is improbably produced or imperfectly represented.