The Literary Correspondence of John Pinkerton, Esq, Volume 1

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H. Colburn, 1830 - Literary historians - 447 pages
 

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Page 335 - Or wherefore his characters thus without fault ? Say, was it, that vainly directing his view To find out men's virtues, and finding them few, Quite sick of pursuing each troublesome elf, He grew lazy at last, and drew from himself ? Here Douglas retires from his toils to relax, The scourge of impostors, the terror of quacks.
Page 91 - I dare to say, anything you do write ; but I am not overjoyed at your wading into the history of dark ages, unless you use it as a canvas to be embroidered with your own opinions, and episodes, and comparisons with more recent times. That is a most entertaining kind of writing. In general, I have seldom wasted time on the origin of nations, unless for an opportunity of smiling at the gravity of the author, or at the absurdity of the manners of those ages...
Page 74 - ... those he dislikes. If Boileau was too stern to admit the pliancy of grace, he compensates by good sense and propriety. He is like (for I will drop animals) an upright magistrate, whom you respect, but whose public justice and severity leave an awe that discourages familiarity.
Page 228 - I should have been very foolish if I had attempted to sneer at you or your pursuits. Mine have always been light and trifling, and tended to nothing but my casual amusement; I will not say, without a little vain ambition of showing some parts; but never with industry sufficient to make me apply to anything solid. My studies, if they could be called so, and my productions, were alike desultory. In my latter age I discovered the futility both of my objects and writings: I felt how insignificant is...
Page 179 - M'Pherson and Pinkerton may be introduced. " You must know the origin of this matter :— on my leaving London I went to Beaconsfield,* where the hospitable owner entered very cordially into my plan, which I partly communicated to you, of writing the History of the Revolutions of Ireland, &c. so as to give the spirit rather than the letter of our melancholy Annals. He advised me to be as brief as possible upon every thing antecedent to Henry II.; and, in full conviction of the force of his advice,...
Page 226 - I should read with pleasure any work that consists of a vocabulary so totally new to me ? Many years ago, when my faculties were much less impaired, I was forced to quit Dow's History of Indostan, because the Indian names made so little impression on me, that I went backward instead of forward, and was every minute reverting to the former page to find about whom I was reading.
Page 407 - The ancient loose bracea were followed by tight hose, covering thigh and leg ; but, as manners advanced, these began to seem indecent, (being linen, fitting close, and showing every joint and form) ; and the haut-de-chausses (or top of the hose) began to be used. At first it was very short, and loose as a philibeg; was lengthened by degrees; and Henry IV. of France wears it down to within three or four inches of the knee, and gathered like a petticoat tucked. Louis XIII.
Page 443 - Earl of Athol. The Earl of Cowrie's house, which was originally built by the Countess of Huntly about the year 1520, remains. In the year 1746 it was given by the magistrates to William Duke of Cumberland, who sold it to government for the purpose of containing barracks for a company of artillery. This house stands at the south end of the street called the Watergate. It was the scene of one of the most problematical events in Scottish history, that is, the execution of what is called the Cowrie Conspiracy....
Page 73 - Fielding had as much humour, perhaps, as Addison ; but, having no idea of grace, is perpetually disgusting. His innkeepers and parsons are the grossest of their profession ; and his gentlemen are awkward when they should be at their case.
Page 395 - Cracowes, resembling the devil's claws, which were fastened to the knees with chains of gold and silver, and thus were they garmented which were lyons in the hall, and hares in the field.

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