Page images

Don't you know, as the French

say, there are three sexes,men, women, and clergymen?

Rev. SYDNEY SMITH (1771-1845) -Lady Mary Wortley Montagu (1689-1762) had said "The world is made up of men, women and Herveys.'

Dost thou think, man, I can make thy son a painter? No only God Almighty makes painters!

SIR GODFREY KNELLER (16481723) when declining to take the son of his tailor as a pupil. Do you call that nothing? But so much the worse for them. JAMES II. (1633-1701)-after inquiring the cause of a great uproar in the camp, June 30, 1688, and being told by Lord Faversham : "it was nothing but the rejoicing of the soldiers for the acquittal of the bishops." (Hume, Hist. of Engl.)

Do you not know that I am

above the law?

JAMES II. (1633-1701)-to the Duke of Somerset, who said that he could not obey him without breaking the law. See Ego sum rex Romanus et supra grammaticam.

. . driving a coach and six through an Act of Parliament.

SIR STEPHEN RICE (1637-1715), appointed Chief Baron of the Irish Exchequer 1686 and removed in 1690, before he was made judge, said that he would drive a coach and six horses through the Act of Settlement (of Ireland)" (Memoirs of Ireland, pub. anon. in 1716, but attributed to Oldmixon; see also Dict. Nat. Biog., vol. xlviii, p. 103). See also I can drive a coach and six &c.

Duty determines destiny.

PRESIDENT WILLIAM MCKINLEY (1843-1901)-in his Jubilee speech at Chicago, Oct. 19, 1898. Dying, dying.

THOMAS HOOD (1792-1845)Last words.

Early and provident fear is the mother of safety.

EDMUND BURKE (1729-97)—in a speech on the Petition of the Unitarians. Cf.

La méfiance

Est mère de la sûreté
(Prudence is the mother of safety)

La Fontaine, Le Chat et le vieux Rat

England began this war with all Europe on her side; she will end it with all Europe against her.

LORD NELSON (1758-1805)-alluding to the war with Russia. England can never be ruined except by a parliament.


England does not love coalitions.

BENJAMIN DISRAELI [Earl of Beacon-field] (1804-81)-in the last sentence but one of a speech on the Budget, Dec. 16, 1852: "Yes! I know what I have to face. I have to face a coalition. The combination may be successful. But coalitions, although successful, have always found this, that their triumph has been short. This too I know, that England," &c. Attributed also to John Scott (1751-1838), 1st Earl of Eldon. Cf. The noble Lord [Palmerston] cannot bear coalitions" (Speech by Disraeli in the House of Commons, Feb. 29, 1857)

England expects every man to do his duty.

LORD NELSON (1758-1805)— Words caused to be signalled to the

[merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small]

the world in the shape of infantry.


Eternal vigilance is the price of liberty.

JOHN PHILPOT CURRAN (17501817)-in a speech at Dublin in 1790. Ever speak the truth; for, if you

will do so, you shall never be believed, and 'twill put your adversaries (who will still hunt counter) to a loss in all their dispositions and undertakings.

SIR HENRY WOTTON (1568-1639) -Advice given to a person setting out on a foreign mission. See An Ambassador is &c.

Every Englishman has a Turk on his shoulders.

JOHN BRIGHT (1811-89)-in a speech in the House of Commons, March 31, 1854, said, "Gentlemen, I congratulate you, that every man of you has a Turk upon his shoulders."

Every man has his price.

This saying is said to have originated from the following remark by SIR ROBERT WALPOLE (1676-1745) to Mr. Leveson: "You see with what zeal and vehemence those gentlemen oppose, and yet I know the price of every man in this house except three, and your brother [Lord Gower] is one of them." "Flowery oratory he despised. He ascribed to the interested views of themselves or their relatives the declarations of pretended patriots, of whom he said, All those men have their price." (Coxe, Memoirs of Walpole (1800) vol. iv, p. 369.) All those men, he said of the patriots,' have their price" (Coxe, vol. i, p. 757; Walpoliana vol. i, p. 88; see Dict. Nat. Biog, vol. lix, p. 203). "But

in case it be a septennial parliament, will he not then probably accept the £500 pension, if he be one of those men that has a price?" (Speech of Sir Robert Walpole, 1734, Feb. 26; see vol. ii, p. 261 of Coxe.) See Gentlemen, I am poor, very poor &c.

Every man meets his Waterloo at last.

WENDELL PHILLIPS (1811-84)in a speech at Brooklyn, on John Brown, Nov. 1, 1859.

Every step of progress the world

has made has been from scaffold to scaffold, and from stake to stake.

WENDELL PHILLIPS (1811-84)— in a speech in favour of Woman's Rights, at Worcester (Mass.), Oct. 15, 1851.

Excellence is never granted to

man but as the reward of labour.

SIR JOSHUA REYNOLDS (172392) See Nothing is denied &c. Facing the music.

Saying said to be of military origin, one of the difficulties in training horses for the army being to get them to 'face' the regimental band. According to Barrère (Dict. of Slang, Jargon, and Cant) it was originally army slang (American) applied to men when drummed out to the tune of the 'Rogue's March.' The expression Wake up, hoss, and face the music' is said to be generally used in the United States as an exhortation to men as well

[blocks in formation]

militia-muster, where every man is expected to appear fully equipped and armed, when in rank and file, facing the music." The phrase is employed by R. L. Stevenson and Lloyd Osbourne in The Ebb Tide, ch. xv (1894, p. 211): "If I'd ast you to walk up and face the music I could understand." It was in constant use by English journalists in 1900-1 in connection with Cecil Rhodes and the Jameson Raid.

Fain would I climb, yet fear I to fall.

SIR WALTER RALEIGH (15521618) said to have been scratched on a pane of glass in Queen Elizabeth's presence. Her answer written underneath was: "If thy heart fails thee, why then climb at all?" (see Fuller, Worthies).


Another version

"Fain would I climb, but that I fear to fall," and "If thy mind fail thee, do not climb at all."

(Scott, Kenilworth, ch. xvii) Cf. "Fain would I, but I dare not; I dare and yet I may not." (First line of a lyric by Sir Walter Raleigh); and Aut non tentaris, aut perfice (Either attempt not, or perform) (Ovid, De Arte Amandi, I, 389).

Fame is a revenue payable only to our ghosts.

SIR G. MACKENZIE (1626-1714).

Farewell, a long farewell to all

my greatness!

CARDINAL WOLSEY (1471-1530) -put in his mouth by Shakspere (King Henry VIII, act 3, sc. 2, 1. 351; but see Had I served my God &c.

Farewell, France, farewell! I shall never see thee more. See Adieu, chère France! je ne vous verrai jamais plus!

Farewell, Oxford without a head!

DUKE OF ORMOND (1665-1745) -when taking leave of Robert Harley, Earl of Oxford (1661-1724) in the Tower. The latter replied: "Farewell, Duke without a duchy!" (P. H. Stanhope (Lord Mahon) Hist. of Eng. 1836, vol. i, p. 189). See Adieu, prince sans terre.

Father abbot, I am come to lay

my weary bones among you. CARDINAL WOLSEY (1471-1530) -to the abbot and monks of Leicester Abbey, Nov. 26, 1529. Few die, and none resign.

THOMAS JEFFERSON (1743-1826) -in a letter to a committee of the merchants of New Haven in 1801: "If a due participation of office is a matter of right, how are vacancies to be obtained? Those by death are few by resignation, none."


Finality is not the language of politics.

BENJAMIN DISRAELI [Earl of Beaconsfield] (1804-81)-in a speech in the House of Commons, Feb. 28, 1859.

Fish is almost the only rare
thing by the sea side.
JOHN WILKES (1727-97).
Fold up the map of Europe!

WILLIAM PITT (1759-1806)after his return from Bath to his house at Putney (Jan. 1806)—just after the battle of Austerlitz (Dec. 2, 1805) -- observing a map of Europe unrolled, turned to his niece and said: "Roll up that map: it will not be wanted these ten years. (Dict. Nat. Biog., vol. xlv, p. 383).

[ocr errors]

Force is no remedy.

JOHN BRIGHT (1811-89) -referring to the land troubles in Ireland in 1880. Qualified in 1882 by him

as applying not to outrages but to grievances."

Forget not what I have said; and when I am gone call it often to mind.

CARDINAL WOLSEY (1471-1530) -Last words, to Sir William King


For me it will be enough that a marble stone should declare that a queen having reigned such a time lived and died a virgin.

QUEEN ELIZABETH (1533-1603) -in reply to a petition from the House of Commons in 1559 on the subject of her marrying (Hume, Hist. of Engi., ch. xxxviii).

For shame! are you afraid to die

in my company?

WILLIAM III. (1650-1702)-to some sailors in 1691, during a rough passage to Holland.

For the name of Jesus and the defence of the Church I am willing to die.

THOMAS À BECKET (1117-70) Archbishop of Canterbury, assassinated in Canterbury Cathedral-Last words. (Hume, Hist. of Engl.) Froude (Short Studies on Great Subjects, 1886, vol. iv, p. 175) gives them as follows: "I am prepared to die for Christ and for His Church."

For the queen! for the queen! a plot is laid for my life!

EARL of ESSEX (1567-1601)—on his way to the city, having previously detained several officers of state sent by Elizabeth to learn the cause of the unusual commotion. Friendship may and often does

grow into love, but love never subsides into friendship. LORD BYRON (1788-1824).

Friend, you do not well to trample

on a dying man.

HUGH PETERS (1599-1660)— Last words, in reply to a remark by the hangman. Peters was executed Oct. 16, 1660.-(Percy Anecdotes, vol. iii, p. 417).

Gentlemen, I am poor, very poor; but your king is not rich enough to buy me.

GENERAL JOSEPH REED, President of Congress (1741-85)-when offered a bribe of 10,000 guineas to desert his country's cause during the American revolution. Another

version is: "I am not worth purchasing, but such as I am, the King of England is not rich enough to buy me." (Encycl. Americana, vol. iv, p. 329). See Every man has his price.

Gentlemen of the jury, you will

now consider of your verdict.

CHARLES ABBOTT, Lord Tenterden (1762-1832)-Last words. The Dict. Nat. Biog. (vol. i, p. 29), however, gives them as "Gentlemen, you are all dismissed.”

Gentle shepherd, tell me where.

DR. SAMUEL HOWARD (d. 1782)-line of a song of his, repeated by WILLIAM PITT, first Earl of Chatham, when asked by George Grenville in a debate on the financial statement of 1762 where a tax should be levied: "Let them tell me where. I say, sir, let them tell me where. I repeat it, sir: I am entitled to say to them, tell me where." It was long before Grenville lost the nickname of 'Gentle shepherd,' which Pitt fixed upon him. (Macaulay. Essay on Chatham).

"Give Cæsar his due."

CHARLES I (1600-49)-Motto inscribed on his standard at Nottingham, 1642.

Give Dayrolles a chair.

LORD CHESTERFIELD (1694-1773) -Last words.

Give me back my youth.

JOHN WOLCOT, M.D. ["Peter Pindar"] (1738-1819)-Last words, in reply to Taylor, who asked if there was anything he could do for him. See Quinctili Vare, legiones redde.

[ocr errors]

give me liberty, or give me death.

PATRICK HENRY (1736-99)-in a speech in the Virginia Convention (March, 1775). "Is life so dear, or peace so sweet, as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it, almighty God! I know not what course others may take; but, as for me, give," etc. Cf.

We must be free or die, who speak the tongue

That Shakespeare spake the faith and morals hold

Which Milton held.

(Wordsworth, Poems dedicated to National Independence, pt. 1, Sonnet xvi.)

Give me time, and I will yet produce works that the Academy will be proud to recognise. JOHN FLAXMAN (1755-1826)-to his father, on failing to win the gold medal at the Royal Academy. Give them a corrupt House of Lords.

RICHARD BRINSLEY SHERIDAN (1751-1816)-in 1810, alluding to the liberty of the press: 66 Give them a corrupt House of Lords, give them a venal House of Commons, give them a tyrannical prince, give them a truckling court, and let me

« PreviousContinue »