Quotes About Knowledge



Knowledge is proud that he has learned so much;
Wisdom is humble that he knows no more.
_The Task, Bk. VI_. W. COWPER.

All things I thought I knew; but now confess
The more I know I know, I know the less.
_Works, Bk. VI_. J. OWEN.

In vain sedate reflections we would make
When half our knowledge we must snatch, not take.
_Moral Essays, Epistle I_. A. POPE.


No man is born into the world whose work
Is not born with him.
_A Glance Behind the Curtain_. J.R. LOWELL.

If little labor, little are our gaines:
Man's fortunes are according to his paines.
_Hesperides: No Paines, No Gaines_. R. HERRICK.

Who first invented work, and bound the free
And holiday-rejoicing spirit down

* * * * *

To that dry drudgery at the desk's dead wood?

* * * * *

Sabbathless Satan!
_Work_. C. LAMB.

It was not by vile loitering in ease
That Greece obtained the brighter palm of art,
That soft yet ardent Athens learnt to please,
To keen the wit, and to sublime the heart,
In all supreme! complete in every part!
It was not thence majestic Rome arose,
And o'er the nations shook her conquering dart:
For sluggard's brow the laurel never grows;
Renown is not the child of indolent repose.
* * * * *
Toil, and be glad! let Industry inspire
Into your quickened limbs her buoyant breath!
Who does not act is dead; absorpt entire
In miry sloth, no pride, no joy he hath:
O leaden-hearted men to be in love with death!
_The Castle of Indolence, Canto II_. J. THOMSON.

My nature is subdued
To what it works in, like the dyer's hand.

Mechanic slaves
With greasy aprons, rules, and hammers.
_Antony and Cleopatra, Act v. Sc. 2_. SHAKESPEARE.

How many a rustic Milton has passed by,
Stifling the speechless longings of his heart,
In unremitting drudgery and care!
How many a vulgar Cato has compelled
His energies, no longer tameless then,
To mould a pin, or fabricate a nail!
_Queen Mab, Pt. V_. P.B. SHELLEY.

If all the year were playing holidays,
To sport would be as tedious as to work.
_King Henry, Pt. I. Act i. Sc. 2_. SHAKESPEARE.

MACDUFF. I know this is a joyful trouble to you,
But yet, 'tis one.

MACBETH. The labor we delight in physics pain.
_Macbeth. Act ii. Sc. 3_. SHAKESPEARE.

Cheered with the view, man went to till the ground
From, whence he rose; sentenced indeed to toil,
As to a punishment, yet (even in wrath,
So merciful is heaven) this toil became
The solace of his woes, the sweet employ
Of many a livelong hour, and surest guard
Against disease and death.
_Death_. B. PORTEUS.

Like a lackey, from the rise to set,
Sweats in the eye of Phoebus, and all night
Sleeps in Elysium; next day after dawn
Doth rise and help Hyperion to his horse,
And follows so the ever-running year
With profitable labor to his grave.
And, but for ceremony, such a wretch,
Winding up days with toil and nights with sleep,
Hath the forehand and vantage of a king.
_King Henry V., Act iv. Sc_. 1. SHAKESPEARE.

When Adam dolve, and Eve span,
Who was then the gentleman? [A]

[Footnote A: Lines used by John Ball, to encourage the rebels in Wat
Tyler's rebellion. Hume's _History of England_, Vol. i.]

Joy to the Toiler!--him that tills
The fields with Plenty crowned;
Him with the woodman's axe that thrills
The wilderness profound.
_Songs of the Toiler_. B. HATHAWAY.


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