American Author, Editor
Christian Nestell Bovee
American Author, Editor
The grandest of all laws is the law of progressive development. Under it, in the wide sweep of things, men grow wiser as they grow older, and societies better.
Tranquil pleasures last the longest.
The language of the heart which comes from the heart and goes to the heart - is always simple, graceful, and full of power, but no art of rhetoric can teach it. It is at once the easiest and most difficult language, difficult, since it needs a heart to speak it; easy, because its periods though rounded and full of harmony, are still unstudied.
Truth, like the sun, submits to be obscured; but, like the sun, only for a time.
The lively and mercurial are as open books, with the leaves turned down at the notable passages. Their souls sit at the windows of their eyes, seen and to be seen.
We give our best affections to the beautiful, only our second best to the useful.
The method of the enterprising is to plan with audacity and execute with vigor; to sketch out a map of possibilities; and then to treat them as probabilities.
We may learn from children how large a part of our grievances is imaginary. But the pain is just as real.
The most brilliant flashes of wit come from a clouded mind, as lightning leaps only from an obscure firmament.
We should not so much esteem our poverty as a misfortune, were it not that the world treats it so much as a crime.
Motives are better than actions. Men drift into crime. Of evil they do more than they contemplate, and of good they contemplate more than they do.
The nearest approximation to an understanding of life is to feel it - to realize it to the full - to be a profound and inscrutable mystery.
We should round every day of stirring action with an evening of thought. We learn nothing of our experience except we must upon it.
Music is the fourth great material want of our natures - first food, then raiment, then shelter, then music.
The passions are like fire, useful in a thousand ways and dangerous only in one, through their excess.
No man is happy without a delusion of some kind. Delusions are as necessary to our happiness as realities.
Wit must be without effort. Wit is play, not work; a nimbleness of the fancy, not a laborious effort of the will; a license, a holiday, a carnival of thought and feeling, not a trifling with speech, a constraint upon language, a duress upon words.
One who is contented with what he has done will never become famous for what he will do. He has lain down to die. The grass is already growing over him.