Memoirs of George Selwyn and His Contemporaries, Volume 4

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Page 175 - When I first entered Ranelagh, it gave an expansion and gay sensation to my mind, such as I never experienced anywhere else. But, as Xerxes wept when he viewed his immense army, and considered that not one of that great multitude would be alive a hundred years afterwards, so it went to my heart to consider that there was not one in all that brilliant circle, that was not afraid to go home and think ; but that the thoughts of each individual there, would be distressing when alone.
Page 176 - Farewell ! a long farewell, to all my greatness ! This is the state of man : to-day he puts forth The tender leaves of hope, to-morrow blossoms, And bears his blushing honours thick upon him . The third day comes a frost, a killing frost, And, — when he thinks, good easy man, full surely His greatness is a-ripening, — nips his root, And then he falls, as I do.
Page 38 - Those poets, who owe their best fame to his skill, Shall still be his flatterers, go where he will ; Old Shakespeare receive him with praise and with love, And Beaumonts and Bens be his Kellys above.
Page 333 - Oppress'd with numbers in th' unequal field, His men discourag'd, and himself expell'd, Let him for succour sue from place to place, Torn from his subjects, and his son's embrace. First let him see his friends in battle slain, And their untimely fate lament in vain: And when at length the cruel war shall cease, On hard conditions may he buy his peace: Nor let him then enjoy supreme command ; But fall, untimely, by some hostile hand, And lie unburied on the barren sand!
Page 37 - As an actor confest without rival to shine ; As a wit, if not first, in the very first line : Yet, with talents like these, and an excellent heart, The man had his failings — a dupe to his art. Like an ill-judging beauty, his colours he spread, And beplastered with rouge his own natural red. On the stage he was natural, simple, affecting ; 'Twas only that when he was off he was acting.
Page 150 - I ever looked on Lord Keppel as one of the greatest and best men of his age ; and I loved, and cultivated him accordingly. He was much in my heart, and I believe I was in his to the very last beat. It was after his trial at Portsmouth that he gave me this picture. With what zeal and anxious affection I attended him through that his agony of glory, what part my son took in the early flush and enthusiasm of his virtue, and the pious passion with which he attached himself to all my connexions...
Page 38 - Twas only that when he was off he was acting. With no reason on earth to go out of his way, He turn'd and he varied full ten times a day : Though secure of our hearts, yet confoundedly sick If they were not his own by finessing and trick : He cast off his friends as a huntsman his pack, For he knew, when he pleased, he could whistle them back. Of praise a mere glutton, he swallow'd what came, And the puff of a dunce he mistook it for fame ; Till his relish, grown callous almost to disease, Who pepperM...
Page 334 - To fight with caution, not to tempt the sword : 1 warn'd thee, but in vain ; for well I knew What perils youthful ardour would pursue ; That boiling blood would carry thee too far. Young as thou wert in dangers, raw to war ! O curst essay of arms, disastrous doom, Prelude of bloody fields and fights to come.
Page 195 - I've bought the best champagne from Brooks. From liberal Brooks, whose speculative skill Is hasty credit, and a distant bill. Who, nursed in clubs, disdains a vulgar trade, Exults to trust, and blushes to be paid.
Page 38 - Though secure of our hearts yet confoundedly sick, If they were not his own by finessing and trick : He cast off his friends, as a huntsman his pack, For he knew when he pleased he could whistle them back. Of praise a mere glutton, he swallow'd what came, And the puff of a dunce he mistook it for fame ; Till his relish, grown callous almost to disease, Who pepper'd the highest was surest to please. But let us be candid, and speak out our mind, If dunces applauded, he paid them in kind.

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