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

Page 317

Alexander Pope. (1688–1744) (continued)
    Know then thyself, presume not God to scan;
The proper study of mankind is man. 1
          Essay on Man. Epistle ii. Line 1.
    Chaos of thought and passion, all confused;
Still by himself abused or disabused;
Created half to rise, and half to fall;
Great lord of all things, yet a prey to all;
Sole judge of truth, in endless error hurled,—
The glory, jest, and riddle of the world. 2
          Essay on Man. Epistle ii. Line 13.
    Fix’d like a plant on his peculiar spot,
To draw nutrition, propagate, and rot.
          Essay on Man. Epistle ii. Line 63.
    In lazy apathy let stoics boast
Their virtue fix’d: ’t is fix’d as in a frost;
Contracted all, retiring to the breast;
But strength of mind is exercise, not rest.
          Essay on Man. Epistle ii. Line 101.
    On life’s vast ocean diversely we sail,
Reason the card, but passion is the gale.
          Essay on Man. Epistle ii. Line 107.
    And hence one master-passion in the breast,
Like Aaron’s serpent, swallows up the rest.
          Essay on Man. Epistle ii. Line 131.
    The young disease, that must subdue at length,
Grows with his growth, and strengthens with his strength.
          Essay on Man. Epistle ii. Line 135.
    Extremes in nature equal ends produce;
In man they join to some mysterious use.
          Essay on Man. Epistle ii. Line 205.
    Vice is a monster of so frightful mien,
As to be hated needs but to be seen; 3
Yet seen too oft, familiar with her face,
We first endure, then pity, then embrace.
          Essay on Man. Epistle ii. Line 217.
Note 1.
La vray science et le vray étude de l’homme c’est l’homme (The true science and the true study of man is man).—Charron: De la Sagesse, lib. i. chap. 1.

Trees and fields tell me nothing: men are my teachers.—Plato: Phædrus. [back]
Note 2.
What a chimera, then, is man! what a novelty, what a monster, what a chaos, what a subject of contradiction, what a prodigy! A judge of all things, feeble worm of the earth, depositary of the truth, cloaca of uncertainty and error, the glory and the shame of the universe.—Blaise Pascal: Thoughts, chap. x. [back]
Note 3.
See Dryden, Quotation 23. [back]