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English poet and dramatist
(1683 - 1765)
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Affliction is the good man's shining scene;
  Prosperity conceals his brightest ray;
    As night to stars, woe lustre gives to man.
      - Night Thoughts (night IX, l. 415)

Amid my list of blessings infinite,
  Stands this the foremost, "That my heart has bled."
      - Night Thoughts (night IX, l. 497)

When pain can't bless, heaven quits us in despair.
      - Night Thoughts (night IX, l. 500) [Pain]

Nothing in Nature, much less conscious being,
  Was e'er created solely for itself.
      - Night Thoughts (night IX, l. 711) [Nature]

One sun by day, by night ten thousand shine;
  And light us deep into the Deity;
    How boundless in magnificence and might.
      - Night Thoughts (night IX, l. 728) [Stars]

O how loud
  It calls devotion! genuine growth of night!
    Devotion! daughter of Astronomy!
      As undevout Astronomer is mad.
      - Night Thoughts (night IX, l. 774)

A God alone can comprehend a God.
      - Night Thoughts (night IX, l. 835) [God]

Death loves a shining mark, a signal blow.
      - Night Thoughts (night V, l. 1,011) [Death]

Ne'er to meet, or ne'er to part, in peace.
      - Night Thoughts (night V, l. 1,058) [Peace]

Inhumanity is caught from man,
  From smiling man.
      - Night Thoughts (night V, l. 158) [Cruelty]

This sacred shade and solitude, what is it?
  'Tis the felt presence of the Deity,
    Few are the faults we flatter when alone.
      - Night Thoughts (night V, l. 172)

By night an atheist half believes a God.
      - Night Thoughts (night V, l. 177) [God]

I grant the man is vain who writes for praise.
  Praise no man e'er deserved who sought no more.
      - Night Thoughts (night V, l. 3) [Praise]

Britannia's shame! There took her gloomy flight,
  On wing impetuous, a black sullen soul . . .
    Less base the fear of death than fear of life.
      O Britain! infamous for suicide.
      - Night Thoughts (night V, l. 436) [Suicide]

Less base the fear of death than fear of life.
      - Night Thoughts (night V, l. 441) [Fear]

We bleed, we tremble; we forget, we smile--
  The mind turns fool, before the cheek is dry.
      - Night Thoughts (night V, l. 511) [Folly]

Lorenzo! hast thou ever weigh'd a sigh?
  Or studied the philosophy of tears?--
    . . . .
      Hast thou descended deep into the breast,
        And seen their source? If not, descend with me,
          And trace these briny riv'lets to their springs.
      - Night Thoughts (night V, l. 516) [Tears]

A soul without reflection, like a pile
  Without inhabitant, to ruin runs.
      - Night Thoughts (night V, l. 596)

Early, bright, transient, chaste, as morning dew
  She sparkled, was exhal'd, and went to heaven.
      - Night Thoughts (night V, l. 600)
        [Death : Proverbs]

We see time's furrows on another's brow,
  . . . .
    How few themselves in that just mirror see!
      - Night Thoughts (night V, l. 627) [Time]

There is in Poesy a decent pride,
  Which well becomes her when she speaks to Prose,
    Her younger sister.
      - Night Thoughts (night V, l. 64) [Poetry]

What folly can be ranker. Like our shadows,
  Our wishes lengthen as our sun declines.
      - Night Thoughts (night V, l. 661) [Wishes]

While man is growing, life is in decrease.
  And cradles rock us nearer to the tomb:
    Our birth is nothing but our death begun.
      - Night Thoughts (night V, l. 718) [Life]

That life is long, which answers life's great end.
      - Night Thoughts (night V, l. 773) [Life]

The man of wisdom is the man of years.
      - Night Thoughts (night V, l. 775)
        [Proverbs : Wisdom]

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