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CUCKOOS
[ Also see Birds ]

We ought never to sport with pain and distress in any of our amusements, or treat even the meanest insect with wanton cruelty.
      - Hugh Blair

When the cruel fall into the hands of the cruel, we read their fate with horror, not with pity. Sylla commanded the bones of Marius to be broken, his eyes to be pulled out, his hands to be cut off, and his body to be torn in pieces with pinchers; and Catiline was the executioner. "A piece of cruelty," says Seneca, "only fit for Marius to suffer, Catiline to execute, and Sylla to command."
      - Charles Caleb Colton

The Attic warbler pours her throat
  Responsive to the cuckoo's note.
      - Thomas Gray, Ode on the Spring

Cruelty in all countries is the companion of anger; but there is only one, and never was another on the globe, where she coquets both with anger and mirth.
      - Walter Savage Landor

Cruelty is no more the cure of crimes than it is the cure of sufferings. Compassion in the first instance is good for both; I have known it to bring compunction when nothing else would.
      - Walter Savage Landor

Nothing is so pregnant as cruelty; so multifarious, so rapid, so ever teeming a mother is unknown to the animal kingdom; each of her experiments provokes another and refines upon the last; though always progressive, yet always remote from the end.
      - Johann Kaspar Lavater (John Caspar Lavater)

And now I hear its voice again,
  And still its message is of peace,
    It sings of love that will not cease,
      For me it never sings in vain.
      - Frederick Locker-Lampson, The Cuckoo

Oh, could I fly, I'd fly with thee!
  We'd make, with joyful wing,
    Our annual visit o'er the globe,
      Companions of the spring.
      - John Logan, To the Cuckoo,
        also attributed to Michael Bruce

Sweet bird! thy bower is ever green,
  Thy sky is ever clear;
    Thou hast no sorrow in thy song,
      No winter in thy year.
      - John Logan, To the Cuckoo,
        also attributed to Michael Bruce

O Saxon cruelty! how it cheers my heart to think that you dare not attempt such a thing again!
      - Daniel O'Connell

That cruelty which children are permitted to show to birds and other animals will most probably exert itself on their fellow creatures when at years of maturity.
      - Samuel Richardson

At land indeed
  Thou dost o'ercount me of my father's house:
    But since the cuckoo builds not for himself,
      Remain in't as thou mayst.
      - William Shakespeare, Antony and Cleopatra
         (Pompey at II, v)

And, being fed by us, you used us so
  As that ungentle gull, the cuckoo's bird,
    Useth the sparrow--did oppress our nest; . . .
      - William Shakespeare,
        King Henry the Fourth, Part I
         (Worcester at V, i)

When daisies pied and violets blue
  And lady-smocks all silver-white
    And cuckoo-buds of yellow hue
      Do paint the meadows with delight,
        The cuckoo then, on every tree,
          Mocks married men: for thus sings he, Cuckoo;
            Cuckoo, cuckoo: O, word of fear,
              Unpleasing to a married ear!
      - William Shakespeare, Love's Labor's Lost
         (Spring at V, ii)

The merry cuckow, messenger of Spring,
  His trumpet shrill hath thrice already sounded.
      - Edmund Spenser, Sonnet (19)

While I deduce,
  From the first note the hollow cuckoo sings,
    The symphony of spring.
      - James Thomson (1), Seasons--Spring
         (l. 576)

List--'twas the cuckoo--O, with what delight
  Heard I that voice! and catch it now, though faint,
    Far off and faint, and melting into air,
      Yet not to be mistaken. Hark again!
        Those louder cries give notice that the bird,
          Although invisible as Echo's self,
            Is wheeling hitherward.
      - William Wordsworth, The Cuckoo at Laverna

O blithe New-comer! I have heard,
  I hear thee and rejoice;
    O Cuckoo! shall I call thee Bird,
      Or but a wandering Voice?
      - William Wordsworth, To the Cuckoo


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