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John Dryden (1631 – 1700)

Influential English poet, literary critic, and playwright.
John Dryden
Be fair, or foul, or rain, or shine,
The joys I have possessed, in spite of fate, are mine.
Not heaven itself upon the past has power;
But what has been, has been, and I have had my hour.
Dryden quotes
And heaven had wanted one immortal song.
But wild Ambition loves to slide, not stand,
And Fortune's ice prefers to Virtue's land.
Happy, happy, happy pair!
None but the brave,
None but the brave,
None but the brave deserves the fair.

Dryden John quotes
Better one suffer, than a nation grieve.
Dryden John
But far more numerous was the herd of such,
Who think too little, and who talk too much.
John Dryden quotes
In friendship false, implacable in hate,
Resolved to ruin or to rule the state.
John Dryden
A daring pilot in extremity;
Pleas'd with the danger, when the waves went high
He sought the storms; but for a calm unfit,
Would steer too nigh the sands, to boast his wit.
Great wits are sure to madness near alli'd;
And thin partitions do their bounds divide:
Else, why should he, with wealth and honour blest,
Refuse his age the needful hours of rest?
Punish a body which he could not please;
Bankrupt of life, yet prodigal of ease?
And all to leave, what with his toil he won
To that unfeather'd, two-legg'd thing, a son:
Got, while his soul did huddled notions try;
And born a shapeless lump, like anarchy.
Dryden John quotes
And oft with holy hymns he charm'd their ears, And music more melodious than the spheres.
It is sufficient to say, according to the proverb, that here is God's plenty.
Dryden John
A satirical poet is the check of the laymen on bad priests.
John Dryden
Of all the tyrannies on human kind
The worst is that which persecutes the mind.

John Dryden quotes
Let those find fault whose wit's so very small,
They've need to show that they can think at all;
Errors, like straws, upon the surface flow;
He who would search for pearls, must dive below.
Fops may have leave to level all they can;
As pigmies would be glad to lop a man.
Half-wits are fleas; so little and so light,
We scarce could know they live, but that they bite.
John Dryden
Your case no tame expedients will afford,
Resolve on death or conquest by the sword,
Which for no less a stake than life you draw,
And self-defence is Nature's eldest law.
Dryden quotes
Better to hunt in fields, for health unbought,
Than fee the doctor for a nauseous draught.
The wise, for cure, on exercise depend;
God never made his work for man to mend.
Dryden John
Three poets, in three distant ages born,
Greece, Italy, and England did adorn.
The first in loftiness of thought surpassed;
The next, in majesty; in both the last.
The force of Nature could no further go.
To make a third, she joined the former two.
Dryden John quotes
All human things are subject to decay,
And, when fate summons, monarchs must obey.
John Dryden
Railing in other men may be a crime,
But ought to pass for mere instinct in him:
Instinct he follows and no further knows,
For to write verse with him is to transprose.
John Dryden quotes
And kind as kings upon their coronation day.
John Dryden
She hugged the offender, and forgave the offense:
Sex to the last.
Dryden John
Second thoughts, they say, are best.

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