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Frank J. Wilstach, comp.  A Dictionary of Similes.  1916.
 
Critic
 
Critics are like a kind of flies, that breed,
In wild fig-trees, and when they are grown up feed
Upon the raw fruit of the nobler kind,
And by their nibbling in the outward rind
Open the pores, and make way for the sun
To ripen it sooner, than he would have done.
            —Samuel Butler
  1
  Criticism is like champagne, nothing more execrable if bad, nothing more excellent if good; if meagre, muddy, vapid, and sour, both are fit only to engender colic and wind; but if rich, generous, and sparkling, they communicate a genial glow to the spirits, improve the taste, and expand the heart.
            —C. C. Colton
  2
  Critics avaunt! for you are fish of prey, and feed, like sharks, upon an infant play.
Beat every monster of the deep away; let’s a fair trial have, and a clear sea.
            —William Congreve
  3
  A critic is like an idler amusing himself with a spy-glass; he looks at the defects of a work through the end that magnifies, then inverts the instrument to discover the virtues.
            —Edward Parsons Day
  4
  The theatre is like a Turkish seraglio: The critics are the eunuchs.
            —George Farquhar
  5
  The critics … like Cerberus, are posted at all the avenues of literature, and who settle the merits of every performance.
            —Oliver Goldsmith
  6
  A critic should be a pair of snuffers. He is oftener an extinguisher; and not seldom a thief.
            —Julius Charles Hare
  7
  Critics are a kind of freebooters in the republic of letters, who, like deer, goats, and divers other graminivorous animals, gain their subsistance by gorging upon buds and leaves of the young shrubs of the forest, thereby robbing them of verdure, and retarding their progress to maturity.
            —Washington Irving
  8
  But some will say, Criticks are a kind of Tinkers, that make more faults than they mend ordinarily.
            —Ben Jonson
  9
  The eyes of critics, whether in commending or carping, are both on one side, like a turbot’s.
            —Walter S. Landor
  10
Critics, like surgeons, blest with curious art,
Should mark each passage to the human heart;
But not, unskillful, yet with lordly air,
Read surgeon’s lectures while they scalp and tear.
            —Robert Lloyd
  11
  Some critics are like chimney-sweepers; they put out the fire below, and frighten the swallows from the nests above; they scrape a long time in the chimney, cover themselves with soot, and bring nothing away but a bag of cinders, and then sing out from the top of the house, as if they had built it.
            —Henry W. Longfellow
  12
  A young critic is like a boy with a gun; he often fires at every living thing he sees; he thinks only of his own skill, not of the pain he is giving.
            —Henry W. Longfellow
  13
  Critics are the eunuchs of art; they talk about what they cannot do.
            —Vladimir de Pachmann
  14
  A critic is a legless man who teaches running.
            —Channing Pollock
  15
  Critics, like weather-cocks, are not infallible.
            —Lewis Rosenthal
  16
  The eye of the critic is often, like a microscope, made so very fine and nice that it discovers the atoms, grains, and minutest particles, without ever comprehending the whole, comparing the parts, or seeing at once the harmony.
            —Jonathan Swift
  17
  A true critic, in the perusal of a book, is like a dog at a feast, whose thoughts and stomach are wholly set upon what the guests fling away, and consequently is apt to snarl most when there are fewest bones.
            —Jonathan Swift
  18
  Critics are like brushers of noblemen’s clothes.
            —Sir Henry Wotton
  19
 
 
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