william cowper Quotes
William Cowper QuotesBirth Date: 1731-11-26 (Monday, November 26th, 1731)
Date of Death: 1800-04-25 (Friday, April 25th, 1800)
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- Absence from whom we love is worse than death, And frustrate hope severer than despair.
- But oars alone can ne'er prevail To reach the distant coast; The breath of Heaven must swell the sail, Or all the toil is lost.
- Reasoning at every step he treads, Man yet mistakes his way, While meaner things, whom instinct leads, Are rarely known to stray.
- Fate steals along with silent tread, Found oftenest in what least we dread, Frowns in the storm with angry brow, But in the sunshine strikes the blow.
- True Charity, a plant divinely nurs'd.
- 'Regions Caesar never knew Thy posterity shall sway; Where his eagles never flew, None invincible as they.' Such the bard's prophetic words, Pregnant with celestial fire, Bending as he swept the chords Of his sweet but awful lyre.
- Sweet stream that winds through yonder glade, Apt emblem of a virtuous maid Silent and chaste she steals along, Far from the world's gay busy throng: With gentle yet prevailing force, Intent upon her destined course; Graceful and useful all she does, Blessing and blest where'er she goes; Pure-bosom'd as that watery glass, And Heaven reflected in her face.
- Candid, and generous, and just, Boys care but little whom they trust, An error soon corrected- For who but learns in riper years That man, when smoothest he appears Is most to be suspected?
- Thus neither the praise nor the blame is our own.
- I believe no man was ever scolded out of his sins.
- An honest man, close-buttoned to the chin, Broadcloth without, and a warm heart within.
- Shine by the side of every path we tread With such a luster, he that runs may read.
- Toll for the brave - The brave! that are no more; All sunk beneath the wave, Fast by their native shore!
- And still to love, though prest with ill, In wintry age to feel no chill, With me is to be lovely still, My Mary!
- Visits are insatiable devourers of time, and fit only for those who, if they did not that, would do nothing.
- Beware of desp'rate steps! The darkest day (Live till tomorrow) will have passed away.
- Misses! the tale that I relate This lesson seems to carry - Choose not alone a proper mate, But proper time to marry.
- Misery still delights to trace Its semblance in another's case.
- No voice divine the storm allay'd, No light propitious shone; When, snatch'd from all effectual aid, We perish'd, each alone; But I beneath a rougher sea, And whelmed in deeper gulphs than he.
- Oh! for a closer walk with God, A calm and heav'nly frame; A light to shine upon the road That leads me to the Lamb!
- What peaceful hours I once enjoyed! How sweet their memory still! But they have left an aching void The world can never fill.
- And Satan trembles when he sees The weakest saint upon his knees.
- God moves in a mysterious way, His wonders to perform; He plants his footsteps in the sea, And rides upon the storm.
- Behind a frowning providence He hides a smiling face.
- Deep in unfathomable mines Of never failing skill, He treasures up his bright designs, And works his sovereign will.
- His purposes will ripen fast, Unfolding every hour; The bud may have a bitter taste, But sweet will be the flower.
- Blind unbelief is sure to err, And scan his work in vain; God is his own interpreter, And he will make it plain.
- There is a fountain fill'd with blood Drawn from Emmanuel's veins; And sinners, plung'd beneath that flood, Lose all their guilty stains.
- Glory, built On selfish principles, is shame and guilt.
- Thus happiness depends, as Nature shows, Less on exterior things than most suppose.
- Freedom has a thousand charms to show, That slaves, howe'er contented, never know.
- Manner is all in all, whate'er is writ, The substitute for genius, sense, and wit.
- Low ambition and the thirst of praise.
- Lights of the world, and stars of human race.
- Remorse, the fatal egg by Pleasure laid.
- How much a dunce that has been sent to roam Excels a dunce that has been kept at home!
- No wild enthusiast ever yet could rest, Till half mankind were like himself possess'd.
- 'Tis hard if all is false that I advance, A fool must now and then be right by chance.
- He would not, with a peremptory tone, Assert the nose upon his face his own.
- A moral, sensible, and well-bred man Will not affront me, and no other can.
- Pernicious weed! whose scent the fair annoys, Unfriendly to society's chief joys, Thy worst effect is banishing for hours The sex whose presence civilizes ours.
- I cannot talk with civet in the room, A fine puss-gentleman that's all perfume.
- The solemn fop; significant and budge; A fool with judges, amongst fools a judge.
- His wit invites you by his looks to come, But when you knock it never is at home.
- I pity bashful men, who feel the pain Of fancied scorn and undeserved disdain, And bear the marks upon a blushing face, Of needless shame, and self-impos'd disgrace.
- Our wasted oil unprofitably burns, Like hidden lamps in old sepulchral urns.
- But that disease when soberly defined Is the false fire of an o'erheated mind.
- But Conversation, choose what theme we may, And chiefly when religion leads the way, Should flow, like waters after summer show'rs, Not as if raised by mere mechanic powers.
- A business with an income at its heels Furnishes always oil for its own wheels.
- Absence of occupation is not rest, A mind quite vacant is a mind distressed.
- Philologists, who chase A panting syllable through time and space, Start it at home, and hunt it in the dark To Gaul, to Greece, and into Noah's ark.
- I praise the Frenchman [Voltaire], his remark was shrewd - How sweet, how passing sweet, is solitude! But grant me still a friend in my retreat Whom I may whisper - solitude is sweet.
- I am monarch of all I survey, My right there is none to dispute; From the center all round to the sea I am lord of the fowl and the brute.
- O solitude! where are the charms That sages have seen in thy face? Better dwell in the midst of alarms Than reign in this horrible place.
- I am out of humanity's reach. I must finish my journey alone, Never hear the sweet music of speech; I start at the sound of my own.
- Society friendship and love Divinely bestow'd upon man, O had I the wings of a dove How soon I would taste you again!
- Religion! what treasure untold Resides in that heavenly word!
- My friends, do they now and then send A wish or a thought after me? O tell me I yet have a friend, Though a friend I am never to see.
- There is mercy in every place, And mercy, encouraging thought! Gives even affliction a grace And reconciles man to his lot.
- Though on pleasure she was bent, She had a frugal mind.
- The dogs did bark, the children screamed, Up flew the windows all; And every soul cried out, 'Well done!' As loud as he could bawl.
- A hat not much the worse for wear.
- Now let us sing - Long live the king, And Gilpin, long live he; And, when he next doth ride abroad, May I be there to see!
- God made the country, and man made the town.
- Oh for a lodge in some vast wilderness, Some boundless contiguity of shade, Where rumor of oppression and deceit, Of unsuccessful or successful war, Might never reach me more.
- Mountains interposed Make enemies of nations, who had else Like kindred drops, been mingled into one.
- Slaves cannot breathe in England; if their lungs Receive our air, that moment they are free! They touch our country, and their shackles fall.
- England, with all thy faults, I love thee still- My country! and, while yet a nook is left Where English minds and manners may be found, Shall be constrained to love thee.
- There is a pleasure in poetic pains Which only poets know.
- O Popular Applause! what heart of man Is proof against thy sweet seducing charms?
- Variety's the very spice of life, That gives it all its flavour.
- His head, Not yet by time completely silvered o'er, Bespoke him past the bounds of freakish youth, But strong for service still, and unimpaired.
- I was a stricken deer that left the herd Long since.
- Dream after dream ensues; And still they dream that they shall still succeed; And still are disappointed.
- Great contest follows, and much learned dust Involves the combatants; each claiming truth, And truth disclaiming both.
- From reveries so airy, from the toil Of dropping buckets into empty wells, And growing old in drawing nothing up.
- Riches have wings, and grandeur is a dream.
- Detested sport, That owes its pleasures to another's pain.
- Who loves a garden loves a greenhouse too.
- So manifold, all pleasing in their kind, All healthful, are the employs of rural life, Reiterated as the wheel of time, Runs round; still ending, and beginning still.
- Now stir the fire, and close the shutters fast, Let fall the curtains, wheel the sofa round, And, while the bubbling and loud-hissing urn Throws up a steamy column, and the cups, That cheer but not inebriate, wait on each, So let us welcome peaceful evening in.
- 'Tis pleasant, through the loopholes of retreat, To peep at such a world; to see the stir Of the great Babel, and not feel the crowd.
- O Winter, ruler of the inverted year!
- With spots quadrangular of diamond form, Ensanguined hearts, clubs typical of strife, And spades, the emblems of untimely graves.
- Silently as a dream the fabric rose - No sound of hammer or of saw was there.
- But war's a game, which, were their subjects wise, Kings would not play at.
- The still small voice is wanted.
- Acquaint thyself with God, if thou would'st taste His works. Admitted once to his embrace, Thou shalt perceive that thou was blind before: Thine eye shall be instructed; and thine heart Made pure shall relish with divine delight Till then unfelt, what hands divine have wrought.
- Give what Thou canst, without Thee we are poor; And with Thee rich, take what Thou wilt away.
- There is in souls a sympathy with sounds; And as the mind is pitched the ear is pleased With melting airs or martial, brisk, or grave: Some chord in unison with what we hear Is touched within us, and the heart replies.
- Here the heart May give a useful lesson to the head, And Learning wiser grow without his books.
- Knowledge, a rude unprofitable mass, The mere materials with which wisdom builds, Till smoothed and squared and fitted to its place, Does but encumber whom it seems to enrich. Knowledge is proud that he has learned so much; Wisdom is humble that he knows no more.
- Nature is but a name for an effect, Whose cause is God.
- Not a flower But shows some touch, in freckle, streak or stain, Of his unrivall'd pencil.
- But many a crime deem'd innocent on earth Is register'd in Heaven; and these no doubt Have each their record, with a curse annex'd. Man may dismiss compassion from his heart, But God will never.
- I would not enter on my list of friends, (Though graced with polish'd manners and fine sense, Yet wanting sensibility) the man Who needlessly sets foot upon a worm. An inadvertent step may crush the snail That crawls at evening in the public path; But he that has humanity, forewarn'd, Will tread aside, and let the reptile live.
- A self-made man? Yes, and one who worships his creator.
- Absence of proof is not proof of absence.
- Existence is a strange bargain. Life owes us little; we owe it everything. The only true happiness comes from squandering ourselves for a purpose.
- It chills my blood to hear the blest Supreme Rudely appealed to on each trifling theme.
- Ye who, borne about in chariots and sedans know no fatigue but that of idleness.
- Ever let the Fancy roam, Pleasure never is at home.
- No man can be a patriot on an empty stomach.
- The innocent seldom find an uncomfortable pillow.
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