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John Bartlett (1820–1905). Familiar Quotations, 10th ed. 1919.

2438 Edmund Waller 1606-1687 John Bartlett

AUTHOR:Edmund Waller (1606–1687)
QUOTATION:That eagle’s fate and mine are one,
  Which on the shaft that made him die
Espied a feather of his own,
  Wherewith he wont to soar so high. 1
ATTRIBUTION:To a Lady singing a Song of his Composing.
Note 1.
So in the Libyan fable it is told
That once an eagle, stricken with a dart,
Said, when he saw the fashion of the shaft,
“With our own feathers, not by others’ hands,
Are we now smitten.”
Æschylus: Fragm. 123 (Plumptre’s Translation).

So the struck eagle, stretch’d upon the plain,
No more through rolling clouds to soar again,
View’d his own feather on the fatal dart,
And wing’d the shaft that quiver’d in his heart.
Lord Byron: English Bards and Scotch Reviewers, line 826.

Like a young eagle, who has lent his plume
To fledge the shaft by which he meets his doom,
See their own feathers pluck’d to wing the dart
Which rank corruption destines for their heart.
Thomas Moore: Corruption. [back]