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John Bartlett (1820–1905). Familiar Quotations, 10th ed. 1919.

Sir Walter Sott 1771-1832 John Bartlett

    Such is the custom of Branksome Hall.
          Lay of the Last Minstrel. Canto i. Stanza 7.
    If thou would’st view fair Melrose aright,
Go visit it by the pale moonlight.
          Lay of the Last Minstrel. Canto ii. Stanza 1.
    O fading honours of the dead!
O high ambition, lowly laid!
          Lay of the Last Minstrel. Canto ii. Stanza 10.
    I was not always a man of woe.
          Lay of the Last Minstrel. Canto ii. Stanza 12.
    I cannot tell how the truth may be;
I say the tale as ’t was said to me.
          Lay of the Last Minstrel. Canto ii. Stanza 22.
    In peace, Love tunes the shepherd’s reed;
In war, he mounts the warrior’s steed;
In halls, in gay attire is seen;
In hamlets, dances on the green.
Love rules the court, the camp, the grove,
And men below and saints above;
For love is heaven, and heaven is love.
          Lay of the Last Minstrel. Canto iii. Stanza 1.
    Her blue eyes sought the west afar,
For lovers love the western star.
          Lay of the Last Minstrel. Canto iii. Stanza 24.
    Along thy wild and willow’d shore.
          Lay of the Last Minstrel. Canto iv. Stanza 1.
Was flattery lost on poet’s ear;
A simple race! they waste their toil
For the vain tribute of a smile.
          Lay of the Last Minstrel. Canto iv. Stanza 35.
    Call it not vain: they do not err
Who say that when the poet dies
Mute Nature mourns her worshipper,
And celebrates his obsequies.
          Lay of the Last Minstrel. Canto v. Stanza 1.
    True love ’s the gift which God has given
To man alone beneath the heaven:
  It is not fantasy’s hot fire,
    Whose wishes soon as granted fly;
  It liveth not in fierce desire,
    With dead desire it doth not die;
It is the secret sympathy,
The silver link, the silken tie,
Which heart to heart and mind to mind
In body and in soul can bind.
          Lay of the Last Minstrel. Canto v. Stanza 13.
    Breathes there the man with soul so dead
Who never to himself hath said,
  This is my own, my native land!
Whose heart hath ne’er within him burn’d 1
As home his footsteps he hath turn’d
  From wandering on a foreign strand?
If such there breathe, go, mark him well!
For him no minstrel raptures swell;
High though his titles, proud his name,
Boundless his wealth as wish can claim,—
Despite those titles, power, and pelf,
The wretch, concentred all in self,
Living, shall forfeit fair renown,
And, doubly dying, shall go down
To the vile dust from whence he sprung,
Unwept, unhonour’d, and unsung. 2
          Lay of the Last Minstrel. Canto vi. Stanza 1.
    O Caledonia! stern and wild,
Meet nurse for a poetic child!
Land of brown heath and shaggy wood;
Land of the mountain and the flood!
          Lay of the Last Minstrel. Canto vi. Stanza 2.
    Profan’d the God-given strength, and marr’d the lofty line.
          Marmion. Introduction to Canto i.
    Just at the age ’twixt boy and youth,
When thought is speech, and speech is truth.
          Marmion. Introduction to Canto ii.
    When, musing on companions gone,
We doubly feel ourselves alone.
          Marmion. Introduction to Canto ii.
    ’T is an old tale and often told;
  But did my fate and wish agree,
Ne’er had been read, in story old,
Of maiden true betray’d for gold,
  That loved, or was avenged, like me.
          Marmion. Canto ii. Stanza 27.
    When Prussia hurried to the field,
And snatch’d the spear, but left the shield. 3
          Marmion. Introduction to Canto iii.
    In the lost battle,
  Borne down by the flying,
Where mingles war’s rattle
  With groans of the dying.
          Marmion. Canto iii. Stanza 11.
    Where ’s the coward that would not dare
  To fight for such a land?
          Marmion. Canto iv. Stanza 30.
    Lightly from fair to fair he flew,
And loved to plead, lament, and sue;
Suit lightly won, and short-lived pain,
For monarchs seldom sigh in vain.
          Marmion. Canto v. Stanza 9.
    With a smile on her lips and a tear in her eye. 4
          Marmion. Canto v. Stanza 12.
    But woe awaits a country when
She sees the tears of bearded men.
          Marmion. Canto v. Stanza 16.
    And dar’st thou then
To beard the lion in his den,
  The Douglas in his hall?
          Marmion. Canto vi. Stanza 14.
    Oh what a tangled web we weave,
When first we practise to deceive!
          Marmion. Canto vi. Stanza 17.
    O woman! in our hours of ease
Uncertain, coy, and hard to please,
And variable as the shade
By the light quivering aspen made;
When pain and anguish wring the brow,
A ministering angel thou! 5
          Marmion. Canto vi. Stanza 30.
    “Charge, Chester, charge! on, Stanley, on!”
Were the last words of Marmion.
          Marmion. Canto vi. Stanza 32.
    Oh for a blast of that dread horn 6
On Fontarabian echoes borne!
          Marmion. Canto vi. Stanza 33.
    To all, to each! a fair good-night,
And pleasing dreams, and slumbers light.
          L’Envoy. To the Reader.
    In listening mood she seemed to stand,
The guardian Naiad of the strand.
          Lady of the Lake. Canto i. Stanza 17.
    And ne’er did Grecian chisel trace
A Nymph, a Naiad, or a Grace
Of finer form or lovelier face.
          Lady of the Lake. Canto i. Stanza 18.
    A foot more light, a step more true,
Ne’er from the heath-flower dash’d the dew.
          Lady of the Lake. Canto i. Stanza 18.
    On his bold visage middle age
Had slightly press’d its signet sage,
Yet had not quench’d the open truth
And fiery vehemence of youth:
Forward and frolic glee was there,
The will to do, the soul to dare.
          Lady of the Lake. Canto i. Stanza 21.
    Sleep the sleep that knows not breaking,
Morn of toil nor night of waking.
          Lady of the Lake. Canto i. Stanza 31.
    Hail to the chief who in triumph advances!
          Lady of the Lake. Canto ii. Stanza 19.
    Some feelings are to mortals given
With less of earth in them than heaven.
          Lady of the Lake. Canto ii. Stanza 22.
    Time rolls his ceaseless course.
          Lady of the Lake. Canto iii. Stanza 1.
    Like the dew on the mountain,
  Like the foam on the river,
Like the bubble on the fountain,
  Thou art gone, and forever!
          Lady of the Lake. Canto iii. Stanza 16.
    The rose is fairest when ’t is budding new,
  And hope is brightest when it dawns from fears.
The rose is sweetest wash’d with morning dew,
  And love is loveliest when embalm’d in tears.
          Lady of the Lake. Canto iv. Stanza 1.
    Art thou a friend to Roderick?
          Lady of the Lake. Canto iv. Stanza 30.
    Come one, come all! this rock shall fly
From its firm base as soon as I.
          Lady of the Lake. Canto v. Stanza 10.
    And the stern joy which warriors feel
In foemen worthy of their steel.
          Lady of the Lake. Canto v. Stanza 10.
    Who o’er the herd would wish to reign,
Fantastic, fickle, fierce, and vain!
Vain as the leaf upon the stream,
And fickle as a changeful dream;
Fantastic as a woman’s mood,
And fierce as Frenzy’s fever’d blood.
Thou many-headed monster 7 thing,
Oh who would wish to be thy king!
          Lady of the Lake. Canto v. Stanza 30.
      Where, where was Roderick then?
One blast upon his bugle horn
  Were worth a thousand men.
          Lady of the Lake. Canto vi. Stanza 18.
    In man’s most dark extremity
Oft succour dawns from Heaven.
          Lord of the Isles. Canto i. Stanza 20.
    Spangling the wave with lights as vain
As pleasures in the vale of pain,
  That dazzle as they fade.
          Lord of the Isles. Canto i. Stanza 23.
    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!
          Lord of the Isles. Canto v. Stanza 18.
    Where lives the man that has not tried
How mirth can into folly glide,
  And folly into sin!
          Bridal of Triermain. Canto i. Stanza 21.
    Still are the thoughts to memory dear.
          Rokeby. Canto i. Stanza 32.
    A mother’s pride, a father’s joy.
          Rokeby. Canto iii. Stanza 15.
    Oh, Brignall banks are wild and fair,
  And Greta woods are green,
And you may gather garlands there
  Would grace a summer’s queen.
          Rokeby. Canto iii. Stanza 16.
    Thus aged men, full loth and slow,
The vanities of life forego,
And count their youthful follies o’er,
Till Memory lends her light no more.
          Rokeby. Canto v. Stanza 1.
    No pale gradations quench his ray,
No twilight dews his wrath allay.
          Rokeby. Canto vi. Stana 21.
    Come as the winds come, when
  Forests are rended;
Come as the waves come, when
  Navies are stranded.
          Pibroch of Donald Dhu.
    A lawyer without history or literature is a mechanic, a mere working mason; if he possesses some knowledge of these, he may venture to call himself an architect.
          Guy Mannering. Chap. xxxvii.
    Bluid is thicker than water. 8
          Guy Mannering. Chap. xxxviii.
    It ’s no fish ye ’re buying, it ’s men’s lives. 9
          The Antiquary. Chap. xi.
    When Israel, of the Lord belov’d,
  Out of the land of bondage came,
Her fathers’ God before her mov’d,
  An awful guide in smoke and flame.
          Ivanhoe. Chap. xxxix.
    Sea of upturned faces. 10
          Rob Roy. Chap. xx.
    There ’s a gude time coming.
          Rob Roy. Chap. xxxii.
    My foot is on my native heath, and my name is MacGregor.
          Rob Roy. Chap. xxxiv.
    Scared out of his seven senses. 11
          Rob Roy. Chap. xxxiv.
    Sound, sound the clarion, fill the fife!
  To all the sensual world proclaim,
One crowded hour of glorious life
  Is worth an age without a name.
          Old Mortality. Chap. xxxiv.
    The happy combination of fortuitous circumstances. 12
          Answer to the Author of Waverley to the Letter of Captain Clutterbuck. The Monastery.
    Within that awful volume lies
The mystery of mysteries!
          The Monastery. Chap. xii.
    And better had they ne’er been born,
Who read to doubt, or read to scorn.
          The Monastery. Chap. xii.
    Ah, County Guy, the hour is nigh,
  The sun has left the lea.
The orange flower perfumes the bower,
  The breeze is on the sea.
          Quentin Durward. Chap. iv.
    Widowed wife and wedded maid.
          The Betrothed. Chap. xv.
    Woman’s faith and woman’s trust,
Write the characters in dust.
          The Betrothed. Chap. xx.
    I am she, O most bucolical juvenal, under whose charge are placed the milky mothers of the herd. 13
          The Betrothed. Chap. xxviii.
    But with the morning cool reflection came. 14
          Chronicles of the Canongate. Chap. iv.
    What can they see in the longest kingly line in Europe, save that it runs back to a successful soldier? 15
          Woodstock. Chap. xxxvii.
    The playbill, which is said to have announced the tragedy of Hamlet, the character of the Prince of Denmark being left out.
          The Talisman. Introduction.
    Rouse the lion from his lair.
          The Talisman. Chap. vi.
    Jock, when ye hae naething else to do, ye may be aye sticking in a tree; it will be growing, Jock, when ye ’re sleeping. 16
          The Heart of Midlothian. Chap. viii.
    Fat, fair, and forty. 17
          St. Ronan’s Well. Chap. vii.
    “Lambe them, lads! lambe them!” a cant phrase of the time derived from the fate of Dr. Lambe, an astrologer and quack, who was knocked on the head by the rabble in Charles the First’s time.
          Peveril of the Peak. Chap. xlii.
    Although too much of a soldier among sovereigns, no one could claim with better right to be a sovereign among soldiers. 18
          Life of Napoleon.
    The sun never sets on the immense empire of Charles V. 19
          Life of Napoleon. (February, 1807.)
Note 1.
Did not our heart burn within us while he talked with us by the way?—Luke xxiv. 32.

Hath not thy heart within thee burned
At evening’s calm and holy hour?
S. G. Bulfinch: The Voice of God in the Garden. [back]
Note 2.
See Pope, Quotation 326. [back]
Note 3.
See Freneau, Quotation 2. [back]
Note 4.
Reproof on her lips, but a smile in her eye.—Samuel Lover: Rory O’ More. [back]
Note 5.
See Shakespeare, Hamlet, Quotation 214.

Scott, writing to Southey in 1810, said: “A witty rogue the other day, who sent me a letter signed Detector, proved me guilty of stealing a passage from one of Vida’s Latin poems, which I had never seen or heard of.” The passage alleged to be stolen ends with,—
When pain and anguish wring the brow,
A ministering angel thou!”

which in Vida “ad Eranen,” El. ii. v. 21, ran,—
“Cum dolor atque supercilio gravis imminet angor,
Fungeris angelico sola ministerio.”

“It is almost needless to add,” says Mr. Lockhart, “there are no such lines.”—Life of Scott, vol. iii. p. 294. (American edition.) [back]
Note 6.
Oh for the voice of that wild horn!—Rob Roy, chap. ii. [back]
Note 7.
See Massinger, Quotation 3. [back]
Note 8.
This proverb, so frequently ascribed to Scott, is a common proverb of the seventeenth century. It is found in Ray and other collections of proverbs. [back]
Note 9.
It is not linen you ’re wearing out,
But human creatures’s lives.
Thomas Hood: Song of the Shirt. [back]
Note 10.
Daniel Webster: Speech, Sept. 30, 1842. [back]
Note 11.
Huzzaed out of my seven senses.—Spectator, No. 616, Nov. 5, 1774. [back]
Note 12.
Fearful concatenation of circumstances.—Daniel Webster: Argument on the Murder of Captain White, 1830.

Fortuitous combination of circumstances.—Charles Dickens: Our Mutual Friend, vol. ii. chap. vii. (American edition). [back]
Note 13.
See Spenser, Quotation 8. [back]
Note 14.
See Rowe, Quotation 2. [back]
Note 15.
Le premier qui fut roi, fut un soldat heureux;
Qui sert bien son pays, n’a pas besoin d’aïeux
(The first who was king was a successful soldier. He who serves well his country has no need of ancestors).—Francis M. Voltaire: Merope, act i. sc. 3. [back]
Note 16.
The very words of a Highland laird, while on his death-bed, to his son. [back]
Note 17.
See Dryden, Quotation 80. [back]
Note 18.
See Pope, Quotation 200. [back]
Note 19.
A power which has dotted over the surface of the whole globe with her possessions and military posts, whose morning drum-beat, following the sun, and keeping company with the hours, circles the earth with one continuous and unbroken strain of the martial airs of England.—Daniel Webster: Speech, May 7, 1834.

Why should the brave Spanish soldier brag the sun never sets in the Spanish dominions, but ever shineth on one part or other we have conquered for our king?—Captain John Smith: Advertisements for the Unexperienced, &c. (Mass. Hist. Soc. Coll., Third Series, vol. iii. p. 49).

It may be said of them (the Hollanders) as of the Spaniards, that the sun never sets on their dominions.—Gage: New Survey of the West Indies. Epistle Dedicatory. (London, 1648.)

I am called
The richest monarch in the Christian world;
The sun in my dominion never sets.
Schiller: Don Karlos, act i. sc. 6.

Altera figlia
Di quel monarca, a cui
Nè anco, quando annotta il sol tramonta
(The proud daughter of that monarch to whom when it grows dark [elsewhere] the sun never sets).—Guarini: Pastor Fido (1590). On the marriage of the Duke of Savoy with Catherine of Austria. [back]