The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, Volum 4

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Side 111 - The blue-eyed myriads from the Baltic coast The prostrate South to the destroyer yields Her boasted titles and her golden fields • With grim delight the brood of winter view A brighter day, and heavens of azure hue, Scent the new fragrance of the breathing rose, And quaff the pendent vintage as it grows.
Side 405 - Europe is secure from any future irruption of Barbarians; since, before they can conquer, they must cease to be barbarous. Their gradual advances in the science of war would always be accompanied, as we may learn from the example of Russia, with a proportionable improvement in the arts of peace and civil policy; and they themselves must deserve a place among the polished nations whom they subdue.
Side 400 - As the happiness of a, future life is the great object of religion, we may hear without surprise or scandal that the introduction, or at least the abuse of Christianity, had some influence on the decline and fall of the Roman empire. The clergy successfully preached the doctrines of patience and pusillanimity ; the active virtues of society were discouraged ; and the last remains of military spirit were buried in the cloister : a large portion of public and private wealth was consecrated to the specious...
Side 52 - Spires, Rheims, Tournay, Arras, Amiens, experienced the cruel oppression of the German yoke ; and the consuming flames of war spread from the banks of the Rhine over the greatest part of the seventeen provinces of Gaul. That rich and extensive country, as far as the ocean, the Alps, and the Pyrenees, was delivered to the barbarians, who drove before them in a promiscuous crowd the bishop, the senator, and the virgin, laden with the spoils of their houses and...
Side 404 - If a savage conqueror should issue from the deserts of Tartary, he must repeatedly vanquish the robust peasants of Russia, the numerous armies of Germany, the gallant nobles of France, and the intrepid freemen of Britain; who, perhaps, might confederate for their common defence. Should the victorious Barbarians carry slavery and desolation as far as the Atlantic Ocean, ten thousand vessels would transport beyond their pursuit the remains of civilized society; and Europe would revive and flourish...
Side 399 - The rise of a city, which swelled into an empire, may deserve, as a singular prodigy, the reflection of a philosophic mind. But the decline of Rome was the natural and inevitable effect of immoderate greatness. Prosperity ripened the principle of decay ; the causes of destruction multiplied with the extent of conquest ; and as soon as time or accident had removed the artificial supports, the stupendous fabric yielded to the pressure of its own weight.
Side 83 - ... greatness and prosperity; and there are many who do not presume either to bathe or to dine, or to appear in public, till they have diligently consulted, according to the rules of astrology, the situation of Mercury and the aspect of the moon. It is singular enough that this vain credulity may often be discovered among the profane sceptics who impiously doubt or deny the existence of a celestial power.
Side 390 - ... enchanted palaces, were blended with the more simple fictions of the West ; and the fate of Britain depended on the art, or the predictions, of Merlin. Every nation embraced and adorned the popular romance of Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table ; their names were celebrated in Greece and Italy ; and the voluminous tales of Sir Lancelot and Sir Tristram were devoutly studied by the princes and nobles, who disregarded the genuine heroes and historians of antiquity.
Side 405 - Yet the experience of four thousand years should enlarge our hopes, and diminish our apprehensions: we cannot determine to what height the human species may aspire in their advances towards perfection; but it may safely be presumed, that no people, unless the face of nature is changed, will relapse into their original barbarism.
Side 336 - Nicene creed, by declaring the procession of the Holy Ghost from the Son, as well as from the Father ; a weighty point of doctrine, which produced, long...

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