Critical and Miscellaneous Essays, Volume 1

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Brown and Taggard, 1860

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Page 286 - Are we a piece of machinery, which, like the /Eolian harp, passive, takes the impression of the passing accident ; or do these workings argue something within us above the trodden clod ? I own myself partial to such proofs of those awful and important realities : a God that made all things, man's immaterial and immortal nature, and a world of weal or wo beyond death and the grave.
Page 77 - We state Fichte's character, as it is known and admitted by men of all parties among the Germans, when we say that so robust an intellect, a soul so calm, so lofty, massive, and immovable, has not mingled in philosophical discussion since the time of Luther.
Page 12 - ... intellect vehement, rugged, irresistible, crushing in pieces the hardest problems ; piercing into the most hidden combinations of things, and grasping the most distant; an imagination vague, sombre, splendid, or appalling, brooding over the abysses of being, wandering through infinitude, and summoning before us, in its dim religious light, shapes of brilliancy, solemnity, or terror ; a fancy of exuberance literally unexampled...
Page 289 - Address might be unsafe to trifle with. Doubtless this stern hymn was singing itself, as he formed it, through the soul of Burns : but to the external ear, it should be sung with the throat of the whirlwind.
Page 274 - All that remains of Burns, the Writings he has left, seem to us, as we hinted above, no more than a poor mutilated fraction of what was in him ; brief, broken glimpses of a genius that could never show itself complete ; that wanted all things for completeness : culture, leisure, true effort, nay even length of life.
Page 187 - Audacious ; but, that seat soon failing, meets A vast vacuity : all unawares, Fluttering his pennons vain, plumb down he drops Ten thousand' fathom deep, and to this hour Down had been falling, had not by ill chance The strong rebuff of some tumultuous cloud, Instinct with fire and nitre, hurried him As many miles aloft...
Page 273 - Peasant show himself among us; "a soul like an ^Eolian harp, in whose strings the vulgar wind, as it passed through them, changed itself into articulate melody." And this was he for whom the world found no fitter business than quarrelling with smugglers and vintners, computing excise dues upon tallow, and gauging ale-barrels!
Page 53 - The wayward mystic gloom of Calderon, the lurid fire of Dante, the auroral light of Tasso, the clear icy glitter of Racine...
Page 1 - Blood hath been shed ere now, i' the olden time, Ere humane statute purged the gentle weal ; Ay, and since too, murders have been perform'd Too terrible for the ear : the time has been, That, when the brains were out, the man would die, And there an end...
Page 371 - Nemesis visiting the sins of the fathers upon the children to the third and fourth generation...

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