Joseph Addison

(1672-1719 / England)

Joseph Addison Quotes

  • ''Nothing is capable of being well set to music that is not nonsense.''
    Joseph Addison (1672-1719), British essayist. Spectator (London, March 21, 1711), no. 18. On the effect of Italian opera on the English stage.
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  • ''Mirth is like a flash of lightning, that breaks through a gloom of clouds, and glitters for a moment; cheerfulness keeps up a kind of daylight in the mind, and fills it with a steady and perpetual serenity.''
    Joseph Addison (1672-1719), British essayist. Spectator (London, May 17, 1712), no. 381, The Spectator, ed. D.F. Bond (1965).
  • ''There is not a more unhappy being than a superannuated idol.''
    Joseph Addison (1672-1719), British essayist. Spectator (London, May 24, 1711), no. 73, The Spectator, ed. D.F. Bond (1965).
  • ''What sculpture is to a block of marble, education is to an human soul.''
    Joseph Addison (1672-1719), British essayist. Spectator (London, Nov. 6, 1711), no. 215, The Spectator, ed. D.F. Bond (1965).
  • ''Husband a lie, and trump it up in some extraordinary emergency.''
    Joseph Addison (1672-1719), British essayist. Spectator (London, Oct. 11, 1712), no. 507, The Spectator, ed. D.F. Bond (1965).
  • ''If we may believe our logicians, man is distinguished from all other creatures by the faculty of laughter. He has a heart capable of mirth, and naturally disposed to it.''
    Joseph Addison (1672-1719), British essayist. Spectator (London, Sept. 26, 1712), no. 494, The Spectator, ed. D.F. Bond (1965).
  • ''Our disputants put me in mind of the scuttlefish that, when he is unable to extricate himself, blackens the water about him till he becomes invisible.''
    Joseph Addison (1672-1719), British essayist. Spectator (London, Sept. 5, 1712), no. 476, The Spectator, ed. D.F. Bond (1965).
  • ''Admiration is a very short-lived passion that immediately decays upon growing familiar with its object, unless it be still fed with fresh discoveries, and kept alive by a new perpetual succession of miracles rising up to its view.''
    Joseph Addison (1672-1719), British essayist. Spectator, no. 256 (London, December 24, 1711).
  • ''Young men soon give, and soon forget, affronts;
    Old age is slow in both.''
    Joseph Addison (1672-1719), British essayist. Syphax, in Cato, act 2, sc. 5 (1713), Works of Addison, ed. R. Hurd (1883).
  • ''Rides in the whirlwind and directs the storm.''
    Joseph Addison (1672-1719), British essayist. repr. In Works of Addison, ed. R. Hurd (1883). The Campaign, l. 292 (1705).

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Best Poem of Joseph Addison

Ode

The spacious firmament on high,
With all the blue ethereal sky,
And spangled heav'ns, a shining frame,
Their great original proclaim:
Th' unwearied Sun, from day to day,
Does his Creator's power display,
And publishes to every land
The work of an Almighty Hand.

Soon as the evening shades prevail,
The Moon takes up the wondrous tale,
And nightly to the list'ning Earth
Repeats the story of her birth:
Whilst all the stars that round her burn,
And all the planets, in their turn,
Confirm...

Read the full of Ode

Hope

Our lives, discoloured with our present woes,
May still grow white and shine with happier hours.
So the pure limped stream, when foul with stains
Of rushing torrents and descending rains,
Works itself clear, and as it runs refines,
till by degrees the floating mirror shines;
Reflects each flower that on the border grows,
And a new heaven in it's fair bosom shows.

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