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Date: 1791

"The dissipation of thought, of which you complain, is nothing more than the vacillation of a mind suspended between different motives, and changing its direction as any motive gains or loses strength."

— Boswell, James (1740-1795)

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Date: 1791

"If you can but kindle in your mind any strong desire, if you can but keep predominant any wish for some particular excellence or attainment, the gusts of imagination will break away, without any effect upon your conduct, and commonly without any traces left upon the memory."

— Boswell, James (1740-1795)

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Date: 1791

"Every desire is a viper in the bosom, who, while he was chill, was harmless; but when warmth gave him strength, exerted it in poison."

— Boswell, James (1740-1795)

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Date: 1791

"Dr. Goldsmith once said to Dr. Johnson, that he wished for some additional members to the LITERARY CLUB, to give it an agreeable variety; for (said he) there can now be nothing new among us: we have travelled over one another's minds."

— Boswell, James (1740-1795)

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Date: 1791

"His mind resembled a fertile, but thin soil. There was a quick, but not a strong vegetation, of whatever chanced to be thrown upon it. No deep root could be struck. The oak of the forest did not grow there: but the elegant shrubbery and the fragrant parterre appeared in gay succession."

— Boswell, James (1740-1795)

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Date: 1791

"In progress of time, when my mind was, as it were, strongly impregnated with the Johnsonian aether, I could with much more facility and exactness, carry in my memory and commit to paper the exuberant variety of his wisdom and wit."

— Boswell, James (1740-1795)

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Date: 1791

"Your resolution to obey your father I sincerely approve; but do not accustom yourself to enchain your volatility by vows; they will sometime leave a thorn in your mind, which you will, perhaps, never be able to extract or eject."

— Boswell, James (1740-1795)

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Date: 1791

"But a convert from Popery to Protestantism, gives up so much of what he has held as sacred as any thing that he retains; there is so much laceration of mind in such a conversion, that it can hardly be sincere and lasting"

— Boswell, James (1740-1795)

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Date: 1791

"His mind resembled the vast ampitheatre, the Colisaeum at Rome. In the centre stood his judgment, which like a mighty gladiator, combated those apprehensions that, like the wild beasts of the Arena, were all around in cells, ready to be let out upon him. After a conflict, he drives then b...

— Boswell, James (1740-1795)

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Date: 1791

"Yes; Burke is an extraordinary man. His stream of mind is perpetual."

— Boswell, James (1740-1795)

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The Mind is a Metaphor is authored by Brad Pasanek, Assistant Professor of English, University of Virginia.