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´╗┐Title: A Book of Epigrams
Author: Various
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.
Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "A Book of Epigrams" ***

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                               A BOOK OF
                                EPIGRAMS


                              GATHERED BY
                             Ralph A. Lyon

                                EVANSTON
                            William S. Lord
                                  1902



                                EPIGRAMS



                                 POETRY


    She comes like the hushed beauty of the night,
      But sees too deep for laughter;
    Her touch is a vibration and a light
      From worlds before and after.

                                                     [Charles E. Markham



                                 POETRY


    Poetry? Can I define it, you inquire?
      Yes; by your pleasure,
    Poetry is Thought, in princeliest attire,
      Treading a measure.

                                                       [Duffield Osborne



                         THE YEAR'S MINSTRELSY


    Spring, the low prelude of a lordlier song;
      Summer, a music without hint of death:
    Autumn, a cadence lingeringly long:
      Winter, a pause;--the Minstrel-Year takes breath.

                                                         [William Watson



                                THE SUN


    All the World's bravery that delights our eyes,
    Is but thy several liveries;
    Thou the rich dye on them bestow'st,
    Thy nimble Pencil paints this landscape as thou go'st.

                                                         [Abraham Cowley



                                FAREWELL


    I strove with none, for none was worth my strife.
      Nature I loved, and next to nature, art.
    I warm'd both hands before the fire of life:
      It sinks; and I am ready to depart.

                                                   [Walter Savage Landor



                                  LIFE


    As a shaft that is sped from a bow unseen to an unseen mark,
    As a bird that gleams in the firelight, and hurries from dark to dark,
    As the face of the stranger who smiled as we passed in the crowded
              street,--
    Our life is a glimmer, a flutter, a memory, fading, yet sweet!

                                                [William Cranston Lawton



                 EPIGRAM ON THE DEATH OF EDWARD FORBES.


    Nature, a jealous mistress, laid him low.
      He woo'd and won her; and, by love made bold,
    She showed him more than mortal man should know,
      Then slew him lest her secret should be told.

                                                          [Sydney Dobell



                         ON LONGFELLOW'S DEATH


    No puissant singer he, whose silence grieves
      To-day the great West's tender heart and strong;
    No singer vast of voice: yet one who leaves
      His native air the sweeter for his song.

                                                         [William Watson



                             DANIEL WEBSTER


    We have no high cathedral for his rest,
      Dim with proud banners and the dust of years;
    All we can give him is New England's breast
      To lay his head on--and his country's tears.

                                                 [Thomas William Parsons



                              EUGENE FIELD


    Fades his calm face beyond our mortal ken,
      Lost in the light of lovelier realms above;
    He left sweet memories in the hearts of men
      And climbed to God on little children's love.

                                                       [Frank L. Stanton



                           THE DEBTOR CHRIST

                          _Quid Mihi Et Tibi_


    What, woman, is my debt to thee,
      That I should not deny
    The boon thou dost demand of me?
      "I gave thee power to die."

                                                           [John B. Tabb



                              TWO SPIRITS


    A spirit above and a spirit below,
    A spirit of joy and a spirit of woe;
    The spirit above is the spirit divine,
    The spirit below is the spirit of wine.

                                                              [Anonymous



                             ON A SUN-DIAL


    With warning hand I mark Time's rapid flight
    From life's glad morning to its solemn night;
    Yet, through the dear God's love, I also show
    There's Light above me by the Shade below.

                                                [John Greenleaf Whittier



                               BORROWING

                           _From the French_


    Some of your hurts you have cured,
    And the sharpest you still have survived,
    But what torments of grief you endured
    From evils which never arrived!

                                                    [Ralph Waldo Emerson



                                 YOUTH


    The Tear, down Childhood's cheek that flows,
    Is like the dew-drop on the Rose;
    When next the Summer breeze comes by,
    And waves the bush, the Flower is dry.

                                                       [Sir Walter Scott



                              MY TROUBLES


    I wrote down my troubles every day;
      And after a few short years,
    When I turned to the heartaches passed away,
      I read them with smiles, not tears.

                                                    [John Boyle O'Reilly



                              SENSIBILITY


    The soul of Music slumbers in the shell,
    Till waked and kindled by the Master's spell;
    And feeling Hearts--touch them but lightly--pour
    A thousand melodies unheard before!

                                                          [Samuel Rogers



                            IS LOVE SO BLIND


    The records of ancient times declare
      That hapless Love is blind,
    Yet many's the virtue, sweet and rare,
      That only Love can find.

                                                       [Henry W. Allport



                                SYMPATHY


    What gem hath dropp'd and sparkles o'er his chain?
    The Tear most sacred, shed for other's pain,
    That starts at once--bright--pure--from Pity's mine,
    Already polish'd by the Hand Divine.

                                                             [Lord Byron



                                 GRIEF


    What cannot be preserved when Fortune takes,
    Patience her injury a mockery makes.
    The robb'd, that smiles, steals something from the Thief;
    He robs himself, that spend a bootless Grief.

                                                    [William Shakespeare



                              OPPORTUNITY


    It is a hag whom Life denies his kiss
      As he rides questward in knight-errant wise;
    Only when he hath passed her is it his
      To know too late the Fairy in disguise.

                                                         [Madison Cawein



                              COMPETITION


    The race is won! As victor I am hailed
      With deafening cheers from eager throats; and yet
      Gladder the victory could I forget
    The strained, white faces of the men who failed.

                                                           [Julia Shayer



                                SLANDER


    Oh! many a shaft, at random sent,
    Finds mark the archer little meant;
    And many a Word, at random spoken,
    May soothe or wound a Heart that's broken.

                                                       [Sir Walter Scott



                                  VICE


    Vice is a monster of so frightful mien,
    As to be hated needs but to be seen;
    Yet seen too oft, familiar with her face,
    We first endure, then pity, then embrace.

                                                         [Alexander Pope



                                TALKING


    Words learn'd by rote, a Parrot may rehearse,
    But talking is not always to converse;
    Not more distinct from Harmony divine,
    The constant creaking of a Country Sign.

                                                         [William Cowper



                       THINKERS, PAST AND PRESENT


    God, by the earlier sceptic, was exiled;
    The later is more lenient grown and mild:
    He sanctions God, provided you agree
    To any other other name for deity.

                                                         [William Watson



                           THE COOK WELL DONE


    Why call me a bloodthirsty, gluttonous sinner
      For pounding my chef when my peace he subverts?
    If I can't thrash my cook when he gets a poor dinner,
      Pray how shall the scamp ever get his desserts?

                                                                [Martial



                              "U" AND "I"


    The difference between you and me
      Is this, dear--more's the pity--
    You're summering in the mountains,
      I'm simmering in the city!

                                                             [Ogden Ward



                          THE FIVE DOUBLE U'S


    Winsomeness, wardrobe, words of eloquence,
    Wisdom, and wealth, bring men to consequence.
    That's something which a man in vain pursues
    Who is not blest with these five w's.[1]

                           [_From the Sanskrit_ (Tr. by Chas. R. Lanman)


[1]The Sanskrit word for each of these five things begins with w.



                                    WEALTH


    Can wealth give Happiness? look round, and see
    What gay distress! what splendid misery!
    Whatever Fortune lavishly can pour,
    The mind annihilates, and calls for more.

                                                           [Edward Young



                               EQUITY--?


    The meanest man I ever saw
    Allus kep' inside o' the law;
    And ten-times better fellers I've knowed
    The blame gran' jury's sent over the road.

                                                   [James Whitcomb Riley



                     A WHOLLY UNSCHOLASTIC OPINION


    Plain hoss-sense in poetry-writin'
    Would jest knock sentiment a-kitin'!
    Mostly poets is all star-gazing'
    And moanin' and groanin' and paraphrasin'!

                                                   [James Whitcomb Riley



                               GOLDEN ROD


    It is the twilight of the year
      And through her wondrous wide abode
    The autumn goes, all silently,
      To light her lamps along the road.

                                                   [Charles Hanson Towne



                                 GRACE


    Thou canst not move thy staff in air,
      Or dip thy paddle in the lake,
    But it carves the bow of beauty there,
      And the ripples in rhyme the oar forsake.

                                                    [Ralph Waldo Emerson



                            FROM THE FRENCH


    Says Marmontel, The secret's mine
    Of Racine's art-of-verse divine.
    To do thee justice, Marmontel,
    Never was secret kept so well.

                                                         [William Watson



                               TWO POETS


    A peacock's-tail-like splendour hath this Muse,
    With eyes that see not throng'd, and gorgeous hues.
    The swan's white grace that other wears instead,
    Stately with stem-like throat and flower-like head.

                                                         [William Watson



                                TOMORROW


    'Tis so far fetch'd, this morrow, that I fear
    'Twill be both very old and very dear.
    Tomorrow I will live, the fool doth say,
    Why e'en to-day's too late, the wise lived yesterday.

                                                              [Anonymous



                                QUATRAIN


    Fear not the menace of the By-and-by;
    To-day is ours, tomorrow Fate must give;
    Stretch out your hands and eat, although ye die--
    Better to die than never once to live.

                                                          [Richard Hovey



                          ON MODERN STATESMEN


    Midas, they say, possess'd the art of old,
    Of turning whatso'er he touch'd to gold.
    This modern statesmen can reverse with ease;
    Touch them with gold, they'll turn to what you please.

                                                              [Anonymous



                                ON FOLLY


    The world of fools has such a store,
      That he who would not see an ass
    Must bide at home and bolt his door,
      And break his looking-glass.

                                          [From the French of La Monnoye



                           ON THE ENBANKMENT


    The impassive stony Sphinx kissed by the amorous moon;
    The little coster-girl, a Covent Garden rose;
    Three thousand years apart! And yet alike for once in this--
    Tonight, each has a secret she will not disclose.

                                                [William Theodore Peters



                                  LOVE


    That happy minglement of Hearts,
      Where, changed as chemic compounds are,
    Each with its own Existence parts,
      To find a new one, happier far!

                                                           [Thomas Moore



                                  LOVE


    A mighty Pain to Love it is,
    And 'tis a Pain that Pain to miss;
    But of all Pains, the greatest Pain
    It is to Love, and Love in vain.

                                                         [Abraham Cowley



                           ON WOMEN AND HYMEN


    Whether tall men, or short men, are best,
      Or bold men, or modest and shy men,
    I can't say, but I this can protest,
      All the fair are in favour of Hy-men.

                                                              [Anonymous



                           PETER AND HIS WIFE


    After such years of dissension and strife,
    Some wonder that Peter should weep for his wife;
    But his tears on her grave are nothing surprising,--
    He's laying her dust, for fear of its rising.

                                                            [Thomas Hood



                          WHICH WAY DID HE GO?

                             (An Obituary)


    His earthly warfare now is o'er
      And closed his life sublime;
    From this cold world he vanished for
      A brighter, warmer clime.

                                                       [Frank L. Stanton



                           WAR'S GLORIOUS ART


    One to destroy is murder by the law,
    And gibbets keep the lifted hand in awe:
    To murder thousands takes a spacious name,
    War's Glorious art, and gives immortal Fame.

                                                           [Edward Young



                                ETERNITY


    The One remains, the many change and pass;
    Heaven's light forever shines, Earth's shadows fly;
    Life, like a dome of many-coloured glass,
    Stains the white radiance of Eternity.

                                                   [Percy Bysshe Shelley





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