For as our modern wits behold, Mounted a pick-back on the old, Much farther off, much further he, Raisd on his aged Beast, could see. ButlerHudibras. Pt. I. Canto II. L. 971. Same idea in Macaulay Essay on Sir James Mackintosh.
Etiam illud adjungo, sæpius ad laudem atque virtutem naturam sine doctrina, quam sine natura valisse doctrinam. I add this also, that natural ability without education has oftener raised man to glory and virtue, than education without natural ability. CiceroOratio Pro Licinio Archia. VII.
Every person is responsible for all the good within the scope of his abilities, and for no more, and none can tell whose sphere is the largest. Gail HamiltonCountry Living and Country Thinking. Men and Women.
To the very last, he [Napoleon] had a kind of idea; that, namely, of la carrière ouverte aux talentsthe took to him that can handle them. LockhartSir Walter Scott in London and Westminster Review, 1838.
A Traveller at Sparta, standing long upon one leg, said to a Lacedæmonian, I do not believe you can do as much. True, said he, but every goose can. PlutarchLaconic Apothegms. Remarkable Speeches of Some Obscure Men.
Illud tamen in primis testandum est, nihil præcepta atque artes valere nisi adjuvante natura. One thing, however, I must premise, that without the assistance of natural capacity, rules and precepts are of no efficacy. QuintilianPromium. I. 4.
Parvus pumilio, licet in monte constiterit; colossus magnitudinem suam servabit, etiam si steterit in puteo. A dwarf is small even if he stands on a mountain; a colossus keeps his height, even if he stands in a well. SenecaEpistles. 76.
We shall generally find that the triangular person has got into the square hole, the oblong into the triangular, and a square person has squeezed himself into the round hole. Sydney SmithSketches of Moral Philosophy.