Samuel Johnson

(1709 - 1784 / Lichfield / England)

Samuel Johnson Quotes

  • ''Nothing odd will do long. Tristram Shandy did not last.''
    Samuel Johnson (1709-1784), British author, lexicographer. (Originally published 1791). Boswell's Life of Johnson, March 21, 1776, p. 696, Oxford University Press (1980).
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  • ''Just praise is only a debt, but flattery is a present.''
    Samuel Johnson (1709-1784), British author, lexicographer. repr. in Works of Samuel Johnson, vol. 5, eds. W.J. Bate and Albrecht B. Strauss (1969). Rambler (London, Sept. 10, 1751), no. 155.
  • ''If I had no duties, and no reference to futurity, I would spend my life in driving briskly in a post-chaise with a pretty woman.''
    Samuel Johnson (1709-1784), British author, lexicographer. quoted in James Boswell, Life of Samuel Johnson, Sept. 19, 1777 (1791).
  • ''Self-love is often rather arrogant than blind; it does not hide our faults from ourselves, but persuades us that they escape the notice of others.''
    Samuel Johnson (1709-1784), British author, lexicographer. repr. in Works of Samuel Johnson, vol. 5, eds. W.J. Bate and Albrecht B. Strauss (1969). Rambler (London, Sept. 10, 1751), no. 155.
  • ''It matters not how a man dies, but how he lives. The act of dying is not of importance, it lasts so short a time.''
    Samuel Johnson (1709-1784), British author, lexicographer. Oct. 26, 1769. Quoted in James Boswell, Life of Samuel Johnson (1791).
  • ''No place affords a more striking conviction of the vanity of human hopes than a public library.''
    Samuel Johnson (1709-1784), British author, lexicographer. Rambler, no. 106 (London, March 23, 1751), repr. in Works of Samuel Johnson, Yale Edition, vol. 4, eds. W.J. Bate and Albrecht B. Strauss (1969).
  • ''Every quotation contributes something to the stability or enlargement of the language.''
    Samuel Johnson (1709-1784), British author, lexicographer. Dictionary of the English Language, preface (1755).
  • ''It is wonderful to think how men of very large estates not only spend their yearly income, but are often actually in want of money. It is clear, they have not value for what they spend.''
    Samuel Johnson (1709-1784), British author, lexicographer. Quoted in James Boswell, Life of Samuel Johnson, April 10, 1778 (1791).
  • ''I have always considered it as treason against the great republic of human nature, to make any man's virtues the means of deceiving him.''
    Samuel Johnson (1709-1784), British author, lexicographer. Rasselas, in The History of Rasselas, ch. 46 (1759).
  • ''Keeping accounts, Sir, is of no use when a man is spending his own money, and has nobody to whom he is to account. You won't eat less beef today, because you have written down what it cost yesterday.''
    Samuel Johnson (1709-1784), British author, lexicographer. Quoted in James Boswell, Life of Samuel Johnson, 1783 entry (1791).

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Best Poem of Samuel Johnson

On The Death Of Mr. Robert Levet, A Practiser In Physic

CONDEMN'D to Hope's delusive mine,
As on we toil from day to day,
By sudden blasts or slow decline
Our social comforts drop away.

Well tried through many a varying year,
See Levet to the grave descend,
Officious, innocent, sincere,
Of every friendless name the friend.

Yet still he fills affection's eye,
Obscurely wise and coarsely kind;
Nor, letter'd Arrogance, deny
Thy praise to merit unrefined.

When fainting nature call'd for aid,
And hov'ring death prepared the blow,
His vig'rous remedy display'd
The power of art without the ...

Read the full of On The Death Of Mr. Robert Levet, A Practiser In Physic

Autumn

Alas! with swift and silent pace,
Impatient time rolls on the year;
The Seasons change, and Nature's face
Now sweetly smiles, now frowns severe.

'Twas Spring, 'twas Summer, all was gay,
Now Autumn bends a cloudy brow;
The flowers of Spring are swept away,
And Summer fruits desert the bough.

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