...a snapping turtle lumbered down the center of the asphalt like an ambulatory helmet. His long tail dragged, blunt head jutting out of the lapidary prehistoric sleep of shell.From Democracy in America by Alexis de Tocqueville:
Henceforward every new discovery, every new want which it engendered, and every new desire which craved satisfaction, was a step towards the universal level. The taste for luxury, the love of war, the sway of fashion, and the most superficial as well as the deepest passions of the human heart, co-operated to enrich the poor and to impoverish the rich.From Goddard's "The Meaning of Shakespeare":
From the time when the exercise of the intellect became the source of strength and of wealth, it is impossible not to consider every addition to science, every fresh truth, and every new idea as a germ of power placed within the reach of the people. Poetry, eloquence, and memory, the grace of wit, the glow of imagination, the depth of thought, and all the gifts which are bestowed by Providence with an equal hand, turned to the advantage of the democracy...
This was Shakespeare’s enunciation of a belief he never abandoned: that ideal young manhood is a union of masculine and feminine qualities. “Men who have the woman in them without being womanized,” says George Meredith, “they are the pick of men.”
There are two ways of fitting into one’s environment that are as opposite as night and day. To fit into one’s age as mud does into a crack, or to be molded by it as putty is under a thumb is one thing; to fit into it and to use it creatively as a seed fits into and uses soil is quite another.
In proportion as they master them, men grow skeptical of their own professions. When they come to know them, they see through them.
It would be folly to try to subsume Shakespeare’s works under one head, but, if we were forced to do so, one of the least unsatisfactory ways would be to say that they are an attempt to answer the question: What is the cure for chaos?