Tis a hydras head contention; the more they strive the more they may: and as Praxiteles did by his glass, when he saw a scurvy face in it, brake it in pieces; but for that one he saw many more as bad in a moment. BurtonAnatomy of Melancholy. Pt. II. Sc. 3. Mem. 7.
So when two dogs are fighting in the streets, When a third dog one of the two dogs meets: With angry teeth he bites him to the bone, And this dog smarts for what that dog has done. Henry FieldingTom Thumb the Great. Act I. Sc. 5. L. 55.
When individuals approach one another with deep purposes on both sides they seldom come at once to the matter which they have most at heart. They dread the electric shock of a too sudden contact with it. Nath. HawthorneThe Marble Faun. Vol. II. Ch. XXII.
Thus when a barber and collier fight, The barber beats the luckless collierwhite; The dusty collier heaves his ponderous sack, And, big with vengeance, beats the barberblack. In comes the brick-dust man. with grime oerspread, And beats the collier and the barberred; Black, red, and white, in various clouds are tossd, And in the dust they raise the combatants are lost. Christopher SmartSoliloquy of the Princess Periwinkle in A Trip to Cambridge. See Campbells Specimens of the British Poets. Vol. VI. P. 185.