Wednesday, 22 March 2017

Well happ'd on, brother-ranger of the brine!

A mixed bag of quotations today.

Formerly no one was allowed to think freely; now it is permitted, but no one is capable of it any more. Now people want to think only what they are supposed to think, and this they consider freedom. Oswald Spengler

A true friend is the greatest of all blessings, and that which we take the least care of all to acquire. Duc De La Rochefoucauld

But we are like the leaves that flowery spring

puts forth, quick spreading in the sun's warm light:

for a brief span of time we take our joy

in our youth's bloom, the future, good or ill,

kept from us, while the twin dark Dooms stand by, 

one bringing to fulfillment harsh old age,

the other, death. The ripeness of youth's fruit

is short, short as the sunlight on the earth,

and once this season of perfection's past,

it's better to be dead than stay alive. 

All kinds of worry come. One man's estate

is failing, and there's painful poverty;

another has no sons—the keenest need

one feels as one goes down below the earth;

sickness wears down another's heart. There's none

Zeus does not give a multitude of ills.

Mimnermus, fragment 2 (tr. M.L. West)

That’s what turns young men and women into writers—the happiness you discover living in books. Paul Auster

A religion without orthodoxy is destined to be swept away by the first breath of doubt. Sir Roger Scruton, '
Gentle Regrets' 

Well happ'd on, brother-ranger of the brine!

This has always been one of my favourite lines of bad verse, spoken by Gorm to Froda in 'Ethelstan; or, The battle of Brunanburgh, a dramatic chronicle', by George Darley. More of this glorious play is here.


  1. Always enjoy the quotes.

    Here is something that I use to try to convince folks that they really have the choice to be offended or not.

    “Take away the complaint, ‘I have been harmed,’ and the harm is taken away,”
    Marcus Aurelius’s “Meditations”

    Hope the situation at the UK parliament isnt as bad as it seems to be. --stout hearts--

    1. Other readers say they like the quotations. I shall find the five commonplace books I compiled after I went down from the university and publish them as e-books.

    2. That would be appreciated. thanks-