A tale of a tub. The battle of the books [and essays

Front Cover
J. Johnson, 1801

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Page 89 - Look on this globe of earth, you will find it to be a very complete and fashionable dress. What is that which some call land, but a fine coat faced with green? or the sea, but a waistcoat of water-tabby.
Page 219 - I am glad, answered the bee, to hear you grant at least that I am come honestly by my wings and my voice; for then, it seems, I am obliged to Heaven alone for my flights and my music; and Providence would never have bestowed on me two such gifts, without designing them for the noblest ends. I visit indeed all the flowers and blossoms of the field and...
Page 98 - ... and, according to the laudable custom, gave rise to that fashion. Upon which the brothers, consulting their father's will, to their great astonishment found these words ; item, I charge and command my said three sons to wear no sort of silver fringe upon or about their said coats, etc., with a penalty, in case of disobedience, too long here to insert.
Page 217 - ... he at last happened to alight upon one of the outward walls of the spider's citadel, which, yielding to the unequal weight, sunk down to the very foundation. Thrice he endeavoured to force his passage, and thrice the centre shook. The spider within, feeling the terrible convulsion, supposed at first that nature was approaching to her final dissolution...
Page 168 - But when a man's fancy gets astride on his reason, when imagination is at cuffs with the senses, and common understanding as well as common sense is kickt out of doors...
Page 148 - Method, to get a thorough Insight into the Index, by which the whole Book is governed and turned, like Fishes by the Tail.
Page 159 - ... Whether a tincture of malice in our natures makes us fond of furnishing every bright idea with its reverse; or whether reason, reflecting upon the sum of things, can, like the sun, serve only to enlighten one half of the globe, leaving the other half by necessity under shade and darkness ; or whether fancy, flying up to the imagination of what is highest and best, becomes overshot, and spent, and weary, and suddenly falls, like a dead bird of paradise, to the ground...
Page 220 - ... by a lazy contemplation of four inches round, by an overweening pride, feeding and engendering on itself, turns all into excrement and venom, producing nothing at all, but flybane and a cobweb ; or that which, by a universal range, with long search, much study, true judgment, and distinction of things, brings home honey and wax.
Page 158 - ... till having soared out of his own reach and sight, not well perceiving how near the frontiers of height and depth border upon each other, with the same course and wing he falls down plum into the lowest bottom of things, like one who travels the east into the west, or like a strait line drawn by its own length into a circle.
Page 90 - ... as to his body, there can be no dispute : but examine even the acquirements of his mind, you will find them all contribute in their order towards furnishing out an exact dress : to instance no more ; is not religion a cloak ; honesty a pair of shoes worn out in the dirt ; selflove a surtout ; vanity a shirt ; and conscience a pair of breeches ; which, though a cover for lewdness as well as nastiness, is easily slipt down for . the service of both...

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