Thursday, June 26, 2008

Intimations of oblivion ...

... The vanity of human hopes. (Hat tip, Dave Lull.)

Hopes are not vain if you take care to remind yourself that, as hopes, no surety attaches to them. Cast thy bread upon the waters.

Dr. Johnson, as if so frequently the case, is right:
No Place affords a more striking Conviction of the Vanity of human Hopes, than a publick Library … Of the innumerable Authors whose Performances are thus treasured up in magnificent Obscurity, most are undoubtedly forgotten, because they have never deserved to be remembered, and owed the Honours which they once obtained, not to Judgement or to Genius, to Labour or to Art, but to the Prejudice of Faction, the Stratagems of Intrigue, or the Servility of Adulation.

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