John Dryden Quotes (236 Quotes)


    Our author by experience finds it true, 'Tis much more hard to please himself than you.

    How blessed is he, who leads a country life, Unvexd with anxious cares, and void of strife Who studying peace, and shunning civil rage, Enjoyd his youth, and now enjoys his age All who deserve his love, he makes his own And, to be lovd himself, needs only to be known.

    A man so various, that he seem'd to be Not one, but all mankind's epitome Stiff in opinions, always in the wrong, Was everything by starts, and nothing long But in the course of one revolving moon Was chymist, fiddler, statesman, and buffoon.

    We first make our habits, and then our habits make us.

    The sooner you treat your son as a man, the sooner he will be one.



    For every inch that is not fool is rogue.



    And, wide as his command, Scattered his Maker's image through the land.

    Boldness is a mask for fear, however great.

    Our souls sit close and silently within, And their own web from their own entrails spin And when eyes meet far off, our sense is such, That, spider-like, we feel the tenderest touch.

    Dying bless the hand that gave the blow.

    He trudg'd along unknowing what he sought, And whistled as he went, for want of thought.

    She feared no danger, for she knew no sin.

    It is madness to make fortune the mistress of events, because by herself she is nothing and is ruled by prudence.

    While yet a young probationer, And candidate of heaven.

    You see through love, and that deludes your sight, As what is straight seems crooked through the water.

    He was exhaled his great Creator drew His spirit, as the sun the morning dew.

    Well may they boast themselves an ancient Nation For they were bred e'er manners were in fashion

    The wise and wealthy love the surest way
    And are content to thrive and to obey.

    And new-laid eggs, which Baucis' busy care Turn'd by a gentle fire and roasted rare.


    Railing and praising were his usual themes and both showed his judgment in extremes. Either over violent or over civil, so everyone to him was either god or devil.

    So softly death succeeded life in her, She did but dream of heaven, and she was there.


    Plots, true or false, are necessary things, To raise up commonwealths and ruin kings.

    The secret pleasure of a generous act Is the great minds great bribe.

    Softly sweet, in Lydian measures, Soon he sooth'd his soul to pleasures. War, he sung, is toil and trouble Honour but an empty bubble Never ending, still beginning, Fighting still, and still destroying. If all the world be worth the winning, Think, oh think it worth enjoying Lovely Thais sits beside thee, Take the good the gods provide thee.

    Reason to rule, but mercy to forgive The first is law, the last prerogative.

    Our fond begetters, who would never die,
    Love but themselves in their posterity.

    When he spoke, what tender words he used So softly, that like flakes of feathered snow, They melted as they fell.

    And virtue, though in rags, will keep me warm.

    He raised a mortal to the skies She drew an angel down.


    One of the greatest, most noble, and most sublime poems which either this age or nation has produced.


    They who would combat general authority with particular opinion, must first establish themselves a reputation of understanding better than other men.

    Love reckons hours for months, and days for years And every little absence is an age.

    Mere poets are sottish as mere drunkards are, who live in a continual mist, without seeing or judging anything clearly. A man should be learned in several sciences, and should have a reasonable, philosophical and in some measure a mathematical head, to be a complete and excellent poet.

    Anger will never disappear so long as thoughts of resentment are cherished in the mind. Anger will disappear just as soon as thoughts of resentment are forgotten.

    Beauty, like ice, our footing does betray; Who can tread sure on the smooth, slippery way: Pleased with the surface, we glide swiftly on, And see the dangers that we cannot shun.

    We must beat the iron while it is hot, but we may polish it at leisure.

    So poetry, which is in Oxford made An art, in London only is a trade.

    He Shakespeare was the man who of all modern, and perhaps ancient poets, had the largest and most comprehensive soul . . . He was naturally learned he needed not the spectacles of books to read nature he looked inwards, and found her there.

    Bacchus' blessings are a treasure, Drinking is the soldier's pleasure

    In squandering wealth was his peculiar art Nothing went unrewarded, but desert. Beggard by fools, whom still he found too late H had his jest, and they had his estate.

    O gracious God how far have we Profan'd thy heavenly gift of poesy.

    Not Heavn itself upon the past has powr But what has been, has been, and I have had my hour.

    What passions cannot music raise or quell?


    More John Dryden Quotations (Based on Topics)


    Man - Love - Mind - Literature - Life - Age - Poets - Pleasure - Fool - Sense & Perception - Soul - Law & Regulation - Nature - Youth - Pain - Kings & Queens - War & Peace - Beauty - Anger - View All John Dryden Quotations

    Related Authors


    William Butler Yeats - T. S. Eliot - Lord Byron - Edgar Allan Poe - Dante Alighieri - Sylvia Plath - Robert Service - Novalis - Edward Young - A. E. Housman


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