Quotes from George Herbert

Source: John Bartlett (1820-1905). Familiar Quotations, 10th ed. 1919.

    To write a verse or two is all the praise
That I can raise.
    Sweet day, so cool, so calm, so bright,
The bridal of the earth and sky.
    Sweet spring, full of sweet days and roses,
A box where sweets compacted lie.
    Only a sweet and virtuous soul,
Like seasoned timber, never gives.
    Like summer friends,
Flies of estate and sunneshine.
          The Answer.
    A servant with this clause
  Makes drudgery divine;
Who sweeps a room as for Thy laws
  Makes that and th’ action fine.
          The Elixir.
    A verse may find him who a sermon flies,
And turn delight into a sacrifice.
          The Church Porch.
    Dare to be true: nothing can need a lie;
A fault which needs it most, grows two thereby. 1
          The Church Porch.
    Chase brave employment with a naked sword
Throughout the world.
          The Church Porch.
    Sundays observe; think when the bells do chime,
’T is angels’ music.
          The Church Porch.
    The worst speak something good; if all want sense,
God takes a text, and preacheth Pa-ti-ence.
          The Church Porch.
    Bibles laid open, millions of surprises.
    Religion stands on tiptoe in our land,
Ready to pass to the American strand.
          The Church Militant.
    Man is one world, and hath
Another to attend him.
    If goodness lead him not, yet weariness
May toss him to my breast.
          The Pulley.
    The fineness which a hymn or psalm affords
If when the soul unto the lines accords.
          A True Hymn.
    Wouldst thou both eat thy cake and have it? 2
          The Size.
    Do well and right, and let the world sink. 3
          Country Parson. Chap. xxix.
    His bark is worse than his bite.
          Jacula Prudentum.
    After death the doctor. 4
          Jacula Prudentum.
    Hell is full of good meanings and wishings. 5
          Jacula Prudentum.
    No sooner is a temple built to God, but the Devil builds a chapel hard by. 6
          Jacula Prudentum.
    God’s mill grinds slow, but sure. 7
          Jacula Prudentum.
    The offender never pardons. 8
          Jacula Prudentum.
    It is a poor sport that is not worth the candle.
          Jacula Prudentum.
    To a close-shorn sheep God gives wind by measure. 9
          Jacula Prudentum.
    The lion is not so fierce as they paint him. 10
          Jacula Prudentum.
    Help thyself, and God will help thee. 11
          Jacula Prudentum.
    Words are women, deeds are men. 12
          Jacula Prudentum.
    The mouse that hath but one hole is quickly taken. 13
          Jacula Prudentum.
    A dwarf on a giant’s shoulders sees farther of the two. 14
          Jacula Prudentum.
Note 1.
And he that does one fault at first,
And lies to hide it, makes it two.
Isaac Watts: Song xv. [back]
Note 2.
See Heywood, Quotation 129. Isaac Bickerstaff: Thomas and Sally. [back]
Note 3.
Ruat cœlum, fiat voluntas tua (Though the sky fall, let Thy will be done).—Sir Thomas Browne: Religio Medici, part ii. sect. xi. [back]
Note 4.
After the war, aid.—Greek proverb.

After me the deluge.—Madame de Pompadour. [back]
Note 5.
Hell is paved with good intentions.—Dr. Samuel Johnson (Boswell’s Life of Johnson, Annus 1775). [back]
Note 6.
See Burton, Quotation 80. [back]
Note 7.
Though the mills of God grind slowly, yet they grind exceeding small.—Friedrich Von Logau (1614–1655): Retribution (translation). [back]
Note 8.
They ne’er pardon who have done the wrong.—John Dryden: The Conquest of Grenada. [back]
Note 9.
God tempers the wind to the shorn lamb.—Laurence Sterne: Sentimental Journey. [back]
Note 10.
The lion is not so fierce as painted.—Thomas Fuller: Expecting Preferment. [back]
Note 11.
God helps those who help themselves.—Sidney. Discourses on Government, sect. xxiii. Benjamin Franklin: Poor Richard’s Almanac. [back]
Note 12.
Words are men’s daughters, but God’s sons are things.—Dr. Madden: Boulter’s Monument (supposed to have been inserted by Dr. Johnson, 1745). [back]
Note 13.
See Chaucer, Quotation 30. [back]
Note 14.
See Burton, Quotation 5. [back]

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