Page images

FAME, LOVE OF, SEEN IN EPITAPHS.- That fame is the uni. versal passion is by nothing more conspicuously discovered than by epitaphs. The generality of mankind are not content to sink ingloriously into the grave, but wish to be paid that tribute or panegyric after their deaths, which in many cases may not be due to the virtues of their lives. If the vanity of the departed has not been provident of monumental honors, the partiality of friends is eager to supply them.Kett.

FAME, REASON FOR DESIRING.—The date of human life is too short to recompense the cares which attend the most private condition: therefore it is, that our souls are made, as it were, too big for it; and extend themselves in the prospect of a longer existence, in good fame, and memory of worthy actions, after our decease. - Steele.

FANATICISM.—Of all things wisdom is the most terrified with epidemical fanaticism, because, of all enemies, it is that against which she is the least able to furnish any kind of resource.Burke.

Fancy.—Fancy restrained may be compared to a fountain, which plays highest by diminishing the aperture. — Golilsmith.

Fashion.-Fashion is, for the most part, nothing but the ostentation of riches.- Locke.

FASTING.–Fasting is, at times, the best medicine; the means of removing incipient disease, and restoring to the body its usual healthful sensations. Howard and Franklin often fasted one day in the week; and Bonaparte, when his system was unstrung, omitted his wonted meal, and took exercise on horseback, as his only remedies.

FATHERS, USE MADE OF THE.—Some divines make the same use of fathers and councils, as our beaus do of their canes, not for support or defence, but mere ornament and show;

[ocr errors]


and cover themselves with fine cobweb distinctions, as gods did with a cloud. — Tom Brown.

Faults.—No one sees the wallet on his own back, though every one carries two packs, one before, stuffed with the faults of his neighbors; the other behind, filled with his own. - Old Proverb.

FAULTS.- We may mend our faults as easily as cover them.

FaultS IN OTHERS.—People are commonly so employed in pointing out faults in those before them, as to forget that some behind may at the same time be descanting on their own.Dilwyn.

FAULTS, OVERCOMING.—It is not so much the being exempt from faults, as the having overcome them, that is an advantage to us; it being with the follies of the mind as with the weeds of a field, which, if destroyed and consumed upon the place of their birth, enrich and improve it more than if none had ever sprung there.-Pope.

FAULT-FINDING.—The lowest people are generally the first to find fault with show or equipago; especially that of a person lately emerged from his obscurity. They never once consider that he is breaking the ice for themselves.-- Shenstone.


FEAR.----Fear sometimes adds wings to the heels, and sometimes nails them to the ground, and fetters them from moving-Montaigne.

FEAST, A FASHIONABLE.— When I behold a fashionable table set out in all its magnificence, I fancy that I see gouts and dropsies, fevers and lethargies, with other innumerable distempers, lying in ambuscade among the dishes. Nature delights in the most plain and simple diet. Every animal, but man, keeps to one dish. Herbs are the food of this species, fish of that, and flesh of a third. Man falls upon everything that comes in his way; not the smallest fruit or excrescence of the earth, scarce a berry or a mushroom can escape him -Addison.

FEASTING OF THE BODY.— He that feasts his body with banquets and delicate fare, and starves his soul for want of spiritual food, is like him that feasts his slave and starves his wife.

FEET, WET.— Wet feet are some of the most effective agents death has in the field. It has peopled more graves than all the gory engines of war. Those who neglect to keep their feet dry are suicides.— Abernethy.

Fiction.—Many works of fiction may be read with safety; some even with profit: but the constant familiarity, even with such as are not exceptionable in themselves, relaxes the mind, which needs hardening; dissolves the heart, which wants fortifying; stirs the imagination, which wants quieting; irritates the passions, which want calming; and, above all, disinclines and disqualifies for active virtues and for spiritual exercises. Though all these books may not be wicked, yet the habitual indulgence in such reading, is a silent mining mischief. Though there is no act, and no moment, in which any open assault on the mind is made, yet the constant habit performs the work of a mental atrophy—it produces all the symptoms of decay; and the danger is not less for being more gradual, and therefore less suspected.--11. More.

FIRMNESS AND PLIANCY. --The firm, without pliancy; and the pliant, without firmness; resemble vessels without water, and water without vessels.--Lavater.

FLATTERER, THE.--A flatterer is said to be a beast that biteth smiling. But it is hard to know them from friends, they are so obsequious and full of protestations; for as a wolf resembles a dog, so doth a flatterer a friend. —Sir W, Ruleigh.



[ocr errors]

FLATTENERS.-Know that flatterers are the worst kind of traitors : for they will strengthen thy imperfections, encour age thee in all evils, correct thee in nothing, but so shadow and paint all thy vices and follies as thou shalt never, by their will, discern good from evil, or vice from virtue. And because all men are apt to flatter themselves, to entertain the additions of other men's praises is most perilous.—Sir IV. Raleigh--to his Son.

FLATTERY.-Flattery is a sort of bad money to which our vanity gives currency Locke.

FLATTERY.—What a blot on the memory of Alexander, that he was so weak as to be pleased with his courtiers imitating his wry neck.—Locke.

FLATTERY.-Flattery, though a base coin, is the necessary pocket-money at court; where, by custom and consent, it has obtained such a currency, that it is no longer a fraudulent, but a legal payment. Chesterfield.

FLATTERY, AGREEABLE.—To be flattered is grateful, even when we know that our praises are not believed by those who pronounce them; for they prove at least our power, and show that our favor is valued, since it is purchased by the meanness of falsehood.—Johnson.


FLATTERY, ENCOURAGED.—Such is the encouragement given to flattery, in the present times, that it is made to sit in the parlor, while honesty is turned out of doors. Flattery is never so agreeable as to our blind side: 'commend a fool for his wit, or a knave for his honesty, and they will receive you into their bosom. —Fielding.

FLATTERY, ILL-MANNERED.—Nothing is so great an instance of ill-manners as flattery. If you flatter all the company, you please none; if you flatter only one or two, you affront the rest.—Swift.

FLATTERY, INDIRECT.—There is an oblique way of reproof, which takes off the sharpness of it; and an address in flattery, which makes it agreeable, though never so gross : but of all flatterers, the most skilful is he who can do what you like, without saying anything which argues he does it for your sake.Pope.

FLATTERY, ITS INFLUENCE.—Flattery corrupts both the receiver and the giver; and adulation is not of more service to the people than to kings.--Burke.

FLATTERY, OF DIFFERENT KINDS.—Deference before company is the genteelest kind of flattery. The flattery of epistles affects one less, as they cannot be shown without an appearance of vanity. Flattery of the verbal kind is gross. In short, applause is of too coarse a nature to be swallowed in the gross, though the extract or tincture be ever so agreeable.- Shenstone.

FLATTERY OF THE DYING.—A death-bed flattery is the worst of treacheries. Ceremonies of mode and compliment are mightily out of season, when life and salvation come to be at stake. — Sir R. L'Estrange.

Folly.–Folly consists in drawing of false conclusions from just principles, by which it is distinguished by madness, which draws just conclusions from false principles.Locke.

Fools.-Fools are very often united in the strictest intimacies, as the lighter kinds of woods are the most closely glued together.-Shenstone.

Fools AND WISE MEN.—To pursue trifles is the lot of humanity; and whether we bustle in a pantomime, or strut at a coronation ; whether we shout at a bonfire, or harangue in a senate-house; whatever object we follow, it will at last surely conduct us to futility and disappointment. The wise

« PreviousContinue »