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Seite 137 - It was at Rome, on the 15th of October, 1764, as I sat musing amidst the ruins of the Capitol, while the bare-footed friars were singing vespers in the Temple of Jupiter, that the idea of writing the decline and fall of the city first started to my mind.
Seite 27 - Thou hast most traitorously corrupted the youth of the realm in erecting a grammar school; and whereas, before, our forefathers had no other books but the score and the tally, thou hast caused printing to be used, and, contrary to the king, his crown and dignity, thou hast built a paper-mill.
Seite 27 - Who builds a church to God, and not to Fame, Will never mark the marble with his name : Go, search it there, where to be born and die, Of rich and poor makes all the history ; Enough, that Virtue fill'd the space between ; Prov'd by the ends of being, to have been.
Seite 109 - The discipline and evolutions of a modern battalion gave me a clearer notion of the phalanx and the legion ; and the captain of the Hampshire grenadiers (the reader may smile) has not been useless to the historian of the Roman empire.
Seite 89 - I sighed as a lover, I obeyed as a son; my wound was insensibly healed by time, absence, and the habits of a new life. My cure was accelerated by a faithful report of the tranquillity and cheerfulness of the lady herself; and my love subsided in friendship and esteem.
Seite 87 - I hesitate, from the apprehension of ridicule, when I approach the delicate subject of my early love. By this word I do not mean the polite attention, the gallantry, without hope or design, which has originated in the spirit of chivalry, and is interwoven with the texture of French manners. I understand by this passion the union of desire, friendship, and tenderness, which is inflamed by a single female, which prefers her to the rest of her sex, and which seeks her possession as the supreme or the...
Seite 152 - The style of an author should be the image of his mind, but the choice and command of language is the fruit of exercise. Many experiments were made before I could hit the middle tone between a dull chronicle and a rhetorical declamation : three times did I compose the first chapter, and twice the second and third, before I was 330 GIBBON AND HIS HISTORY. tolerably satisfied with their effect.
Seite 55 - The fellows or monks of my time were decent easy men, who supinely enjoyed the gifts of the founder : their days were filled by a series of uniform employments — the chapel and the hall, the coffee-house and the common room, till they retired, weary and well satisfied, to a long slumber. From the toil of reading, or thinking, or writing, they had absolved their consciences...