This historic book may have numerous typos and missing text.
Purchasers can download a free scanned copy of the original book
(without typos) from the publisher. Not indexed. Not illustrated.
1900. Excerpt: ... naturally as they were felt. A peaceable
administration of the laws, --those salutary institutions, which,
projected in the cabinet of a sovereign or his council, diffuse
happiness over a whole nation, --excites only the poet's
admiration, the coldest of all the passions. The ancient mythology,
which attributed life and intelligence to all nature, extended its
influence to the pen of the poet. Inspired by the Muse, he sung the
attributes, the adventures, and misfortunes of his fabulous
deities. That Infinite Being, which religion and philosophy have
made known to us, is above such description: the sublimest flights
become puerile on such a subject. The almighty Fiat of Moses
strikes us with admiration, but reason cannot comprehend, nor
imagination describe, the operations of a Deity, at whose command
alone millions of worlds are made to tremble; nor can we read with
any satisfactory pleasure of the devil, in Milton, warring for two
whole days in heaven against the armies of the Omnipotent. The
Ancients knew their advantages, and profited by them accordingly.
Of this the masterly performances we still admire are the best
proofs. But we, who are placed in another clime, and born in
another age, are necessarily at a loss to see those beauties, for
want of being able to place ourselves in the same point of view
with the Greeks and Romans. A circumstantial knowledge of their
situation and manners can only enable us to do this. The
superficial ideas, the poor information we glean from a commentary,
assist us only to seize the more palpable and apparent beauties:
all the graces, all the delicacies of their writings escape us; and
we are apt to abuse their cotemporaries for want of taste, in
lavishing such encomiums on those merits we are too ignorant to
General Books LLC
|Country of origin:
David Josiah Brewer
||246 x 189 x 8mm (L x W x T)
||Paperback - Trade
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