Martial and the Modern Epigram

Martial and the Modern Epigram

Martial and the Modern Epigram

Martial and the Modern Epigram

Excerpt

OFTEN it is the most common thing that is most difficult to define. One is not obliged to marry and rear a family in order to make this inglorious discovery, but that is one way to make it. Our domestic definition of a dodo may be less successful than our definition of shoes or ships or sealing wax, yet it is apt to be distinctly more successful than our definition of life, or of love, or of a hundred other familiar mysteries.

Macaulay describes Atterbury's defense of the letters of Phalaris as "the best book ever written by any man on the wrong side of a question of which the writer was profoundly ignorant." Madame de Staël observes: "The more I see of men, the better I like dogs." La Rochefoucauld remarks: "All of us have . . .

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