"When the mind is unchained from necessity, it will range after convenience; when it is left at large in the fields of speculation, it will shift opinions; as any custom is disused, the words that expressed it must perish with it; as any opinion grows popular, it will innovate speech in the same proportion as it alters practice."
— Johnson, Samuel (1709-1784)
(p. 295 in Brady and Wimsatt)
See A Dictionary of the English Language: in Which the Words Are Deduced from Their Originals, and Illustrated in Their Different Significations by Examples from the Best Writers. To Which Are Prefixed, a History of the Language, and an English Grammar. By Samuel Johnson, A.M. 2 vols. (London: Printed by W. Strahan, for J. and P. Knaptor; T. and T. Longman; C. Hitch and L. Hawes; A. Millar; and R. and J. Dodsley, 1755). <Link to ESTC><2nd edition>
Text from Jack Lynch's online edition <Link>. Reading facsimile edition of A Dictionary of the English Language: In Which the Words Are Deduced from Their Originals, and Illustrated in Their Different Significations by Examples from the Best Writers. (New York: AMS Press, 1967). Reading also Samuel Johnson: Selected Poetry and Prose, eds. Frank Brady and W. K. Wimsatt (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1977), 277-298.