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C.N. Douglas, comp.  Forty Thousand Quotations: Prose and Poetical.  1917.
 
Herbert
 
        All foreign wisdom doth amount to this,
To take all that is given, whether wealth,
Or love, or language; nothing comes amiss:
A good digestion turneth all to health.
  1
        Be calm in argument; for fierceness makes
Error a fault, and truth discourtesy.
Why should I feel another man’s mistakes
More than his sicknesses or poverty?
In love I should: but anger is not love,
Nor wisdom neither; therefore gently move.
Calmness is great advantage; he that lets
Another chafe may warm him at his fire,
Mark all his wand’rings and enjoy his frets,
As cunning fencers suffer heat to tire.
  2
        Bees work for man, and yet they never bruise
  Their Master’s flower, but leave it having done,
As fair as ever and as fit to use;
  So both the flower doth stay and honey run.
  3
        Chase brave employments with a naked sword
Throughout the world.
  4
        Could not that wisdom which first broached the wine,
Have thicken’d it with definitions?
And jagg’d his seamless coat, had that been fine,
With curious questions and divisions?
But all the doctrine which he taught and gave
Was clear as heav’n, from whence it came:
At least those beams of truth, which only save,
Surpass in brightness any flame,
Love God, and love your neighbor; watch and pray;
Do as you would be done unto:
O dark instructions, ev’n dark as day!
Who can these gordian knots undo?
  5
        Dare to be true. Nothing can need a lie;
A fault, which needs it most, grows two thereby.
  6
        Dresse and undresse thy soul; mark the decay
And growth of it; if, with thy watch, that too
Be down, then winde up both; since we shall be
Most surely judged, make thy accounts agree.
  7
        Drink not the third glass, which thou canst not tame,
When once it is within thee; but before
Mayst rule it, as thou list; and pour the shame,
Which it would pour on thee, upon the floor.
  It is most just to throw that on the ground,
  Which would throw me there, if I keep the round.
  8
        Envy not greatness: for thou mak’st thereby
Thyself the worse, and so the distance greater.
  9
        For wealth, without contentment, climbs a hill,
To feel those tempests which fly over ditches.
  10
        I made a posy while the day ran by;
Here will I smell my remnant out, and tie
        My life within this band.
But time did beckon to the flowers, and they
By noon most cunningly did steal away,
        And wither’d in my hand.
  11
        Jest not at preacher’s language or expression:
How know’st thou but thy sins made him miscarry?
  12
        Judge not the preacher; for he is thy judge:
If thou mislike him, thou conceiv’st him not.
God calleth preaching folly. Do not grudge
To pick out treasures from an earthen pot.
The worst speaks something good.
  13
        Let thy mind still be bent, still plotting, where,
And when, and how thy business may be done,
Slackness breeds worms; but the sure traveller,
Though he alights sometimes, still goeth on.
  14
        Lose not thyself, nor give thy humors way;
God gave them to thee under lock and key.
  15
        Money, thou bane of bliss, and source of woe,
Whence cam’st thou, that thou art so fresh and fine?
I know thy parentage is base and low:
Man found thee poor and dirty in a mine.
  16
        O day most calm, most bright,
  The fruit of this, the next world’s bud,
Th’ indorsement of supreme delight,
  Writ by a friend, and with his blood;
The couch of time, care’s balm and bay;
  The week were dark, but for thy light;
Thy torch doth show the way.
  17
        Only a sweet and virtuous soul,
Like seasoned timber, never gives.
  18
        Play not for gain, but sport. Who plays for more
Than he can lose with pleasure, stakes his heart;
Perhaps his wife’s too, and whom she hath bore.
  19
        Religion stands on tiptoe in our land,
Ready to pass to the American strand.
  20
 
 
        Resort to sermons, but to prayers most:
Praying’s the end of preaching.
  21
        Rise, heart! thy Lord is risen. Sing His praise
  Without delays.
Who takes thee by the hand, that thou likewise
  With Him mayst rise—
That as His death condemned thee to dust,
His life may make thee gold, and much more just.
  22
        Shall I, to please another wine-sprung minde,
  Lose all mine own? God hath giv’n me a measure
Short of His can and body; must I find
  A pain in that, wherein he finds a pleasure.
  23
        Summe up at night what thou hast done by day;
And in the morning what thou hast to do.
Dresse and undresse thy soul; mark the decay
And growth of it: if, with thy watch, that too
  Be down, then winde up both; since we shall be
  Most surely judg’d, make thy accounts agree.
  24
        Sweet day, so cool, so calm, so bright,
  The bridal of the earth and sky,
The dew shall weep thy fall to-night;
  For thou must die.
  25
        Sweet Spring, full of sweet dayes and roses,
  A box where sweets compacted lie,
My musick shows ye have your closes,
  And all must die.
  26
        Take not His name, who made thy mouth, in vain;
It gets thee nothing, and hath no excuse.
  27
        The drunkard forfeits man and doth divest
All worldly right, save what he hath by beast.
  28
        The fineness which a hymn or psalm affords
Is when the soul unto the lines accords.
  29
        The Sundaies of man’s life,
Thredded together on time’s string,
Make bracelets to adorn the wife
Of the eternal, glorious King.
On Sunday heaven’s gates stand ope;
Blessings are plentiful and rife,
      More plentiful than hope.
  30
        When once thy foot enters the church, be bare.
God is more there than thou: for thou art there
Only by His permission. Then beware,
And make thyself all reverence and fear.
  31
        When them dost tell another jest, therein
Omit the oaths which true wit cannot need;
Pick out of tales the mirth, but not the sin;
He pares his apple that will cleanly feed.
  32
        Who did leave His Father’s throne,
To assume thy flesh and bone?
Had He life, or had He none?
If He had not liv’d for thee,
Thou hadst died most wretchedly
And two deaths had been thy fee.
  33
        Who goes to bed, and doth not pray,
Maketh two nights to every day!
  34
                    Who is the honest man?
He that doth still and strongly good pursue,
To God, his neighbor, and himself most true:
Whom neither force nor fawning can
Unpin, or wrench from giving all their due.
  35
        Wit’s an unruly engine, wildly striking
  Sometimes a friend, sometimes the engineer:
Hast thou the knack? pamper it not with liking;
  But if thou want it, buy it not too deare.
Many affecting wit beyond their power,
Have got to be a deare fool for an houre.
  36
  A dwarf on a giant’s shoulders sees further of the two.  37
  A sad, wise valor is the brave complexion.  38
  A verse may find him who a sermon flies, and turn delight into a sacrifice.  39
  All are not merry that dance lightly.  40
  All comes from, and will go to others.  41
  All may have, if they dare try, a glorious life or grave.  42
  Be calm in arguing; for fierceness makes error a fault, and truth discourtesy.  43
  Be not too presumptuously sure in any business; for things of this world depend upon such a train of unseen chances that if it were in man’s hands to set the tables, yet is he not certain to win the game.  44
  Bibles laid open, millions of surprises.  45
  Build castles in Spain.  46
  Corn is cleaned with wind, and the soul with chastening.  47
  Couldst thou both eat thy cake and have it?  48
  Deceive not thy physician, confessor, nor lawyer.  49
  Destiny is always dark.  50
  Do well and right, and let the world sink.  51
  Fierceness makes error a fault and truth discourtesy.  52
  Fly the pleasure that bites to-morrow.  53
  From small fire comes oft no small mishap.  54
  Get to live; then live and use it, else it is not true that thou hast gotten. Surely use alone makes money not a contemptible stone.  55
  God’s mill grinds slow, but sure.  56
  Half the world knows not how the other half lives.  57
  He hath no leisure who useth it not.  58
  He that will learn to pray, let him go to sea.  59
  He—the country parson—is not witty or learned or eloquent, but holy.  60
  Hell is full of good meanings and wishings.  61
  Help thyself, and God will help thee.  62
  His bark is worse than his bite.  63
  If any speak ill of thee, fly home to thy own conscience and examine thy heart. If thou art guilty, it is a just correction; if not guilty, it is a fair instruction.  64
  If I have but enough for myself and family, I am steward only for myself: if I have more, I am but a steward of that abundance for others.  65
  If the wise erred not, it would go hard with the fools.  66
  In cloths cheap handsomeness doth bear the bell.  67
  In the husband, wisdom; in the wife, gentleness.  68
  It is a poor sport that is not worth the candle.  69
  Keep good company, and you shall be of the number.  70
  Knowledge is folly unless grace guide it.  71
  Least at thine own things laugh.  72
  Let thy mind’s sweetness have its operation upon thy body, clothes, and habitation.  73
  Lie not, neither to thyself nor men nor God. Let mouth and heart be one—beat and speak together, and make both felt in action. If is for cowards to lie.  74
  Love and a cough cannot be hid.  75
  O day most calm, most bright, the fruit of this, the next world’s bud.  76
  On Sunday heaven’s gates stand open.  77
  One good mother is worth a hundred school masters.  78
  One hour’s sleep before midnight is worth three after.  79
  Persons unmask their evilest qualities when they do quarrel.  80
  Praise the sea, but keep on land.  81
  Prosperity lets go the bridle.  82
  Pursue not a victory too far. He hath conquered well that hath made his enemy fly; thou mayest beat him to a desperate resistance, which may ruin thee.  83
  Quick believers need broad shoulders.  84
  Reason lies between the spur and the bridle.  85
  Restore to God His due in tithe and time.  86
  Speak fitly, or be silent wisely.  87
  Sunday observe; think, when the bells do chime, ’tis angels’ music; therefore come not late.  88
  Sweet Spring! full of sweet days and roses; a box where sweets compacted lie.  89
  That from small fires comes oft no small mishap.  90
  The back door robs the house.  91
  The dark grave, which knows all secrets, can alone reclaim the fatal doubt once cast on a woman’s name.  92
  The eyes have one language everywhere.  93
  The offender never pardons.  94
  The virtue of a coward is suspicion.  95
  This book of stars lights to eternal bliss.  96
  Those that God loves, do not live long.  97
  Thou that hast given so much to me, give one thing more—a grateful heart.  98
  Though punishment be slow, still it comes.  99
  We live in an age that hath more need of good example than precepts.  100
  Where the drink goes in, there the wit goes out.  101
  Who sweeps a room, as for Thy laws, makes that and the action fine.  102
  Words are women; deeds are men.  103
  Wouldst thou unlock the door to cold despair and knowing pensiveness?  104
 
 
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