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...from the right and natural ways of speaking? sometimes for necessity, when we are driven, or think it fitter, to speak that in obscure words, or by circumstance, which uttered plainly would offend the hearers. Or to avoid obsceneness, or sometimes for pleasure, and variety, as travellers turn out of the highway, drawn either by the commodity of a footpath, or the delicacy or freshness of the fields. And all this is called [Greek text] or figured language.
Oratio imago animi.-Language most shows a man, speak that I may see thee.It springs out of the most retired and inmost parts of us, and is the image of the parent of it, the mind. No glass renders a man's form or likeness so true as his speech. Nay, it is likened to a man; and as we consider feature and composition in a man, so words in language; in the greatness, aptness, sound structure, and harmony of it.
Structura et statura, sublimis, humilis, pumila.--Some men are tall and big, so some language is high and great. Then the words are chosen, their... Johnson, Ben
Excerpt from Discoveries Made Upon Men and Matter and Some Poems · This quote is about language · Search on Google Books to find all references and sources for this quotation.
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