from John Lyly's Euphues, The Anatomy of Wit (1578)

	There dwelt in Athens a young gentleman of great patrimonie,
and of so comely a personage, that it was doubted whether 
he was more bound to nature for the liniaments of his person, or
to fortune for the encrease of his possessions. But Nature impatient
of comparisons, and as it were disdaining a companion, or copartner   5
in hir working, added to this comlinesse of his body suche a sharpe 
capacitie of minde, that not onely shee proued Fortune counterfaite,
but was halfe of that opinion that she hir selfe was onely currant.

	This younge gallant, of more wit then wealth, and yet of more wealth 
then wisdome, seeing himselfe inferiour to none in pleasant          10
conceipts, thought himselfe superiour to al in honest conditions,
insomuch that he deemed himselfe so apt to all things, that he gave
himselfe almost to nothing, but practising of those things comonly
which are incident to these sharp wits, fine phrases, smoth quipping, 
merry taunting, using jesting without meane, & abusing mirth         15
without measure. 
	As therefore the sweetest Rose hath his prickel, the finest 
velvet his brack, the fairest flowre his bran, so the sharpest 
witte hath his wanton will, and the holiest heade his wicked way.
And true it is that some men write and most men beleeve, that in   20
all perfecte shapes, a blemish bringeth rather a liking every way   
to the eyes, then a loathing any waye to the minde.  Venus had hir 
Mole in her cheeke which made hir more amiable: Helen hir scarre
on hir chinne which Paris called Cos amoris, the Whetstone of love.
Aristippus his wart, Lycurgus his wenne: So likewise in the dis-
position of the minde, either vertue is overshadowed with some vice, 26
or vice overcast with some vertue.  Alexander valiaunt in warre,
yet gyven to wine.  Tully eloquent in his gloses, yet vayneglorious: 
Salomon wyse, yet to too wanton: David holye but yet an homicide:
none more wittie then Euphues, yet at the first none more wicked.   30

	The freshest colours soonest fade, the teenest Rasor soonest tourneth 
his edge, the finest cloathe is soonest eaten wyth Moathes, and the
Cambricke sooner stained then the coarse Canvas: whiche appeared 
well in this Euphues, whose witte beeinge lyke waxe apte to receive
any impression, havinge the bridle in his owne handes, either     35
to use the rein or the spurre, disdayning counsayle, leauinge his  
countrey, loathinge his olde acquaintance, thought either by wytte
to obteyne some conquest, or by shame to abyde some conflicte, 
and leaving the rule of reason, rashly ranne vnto destruction....
	  When parent have more care how to leave their children wealthy 40
then wise, & are more desirous to have them mainteine the name, then the 
nature of a gentleman; when they put gold into the hands of youth, where
they should put a rod vnder their gyrde, when in steed of awe they 
make them past grace, & leave them rich executors of goods,
& poore executors of godlynes, then is it no meruaile, that the son  45
being left rich by his fathers Will, become retchles by his owne
will. ...

	There frequented to his lodging and mansion house as well the
Spider to sucke poyson, of his fine wit, as the Bee to gather honny,
as well the Drone, as the Dove, the Foxe as the Lambe, as well  50
Damocles to betraye him, as Damon to be true to hym.  ...

	They might also have taken example of the wise husbandmen, who
in their fattest and most fertile grounde sowe Hempe before Wheate,
a graine that dryeth up the superfluous moisture, and maketh the
soile more apte for corne: Or of good Gardeiners who in their   55
curious knottes mixe Hisoppe with Time as ayders the one to the
growth of the other, the one beeinge drye, the other moyste: or
of cunning Painters who for the whitest worke caste the blakest
grounde, to make the Picture more amiable. ...

	But thinges past, are paste callinge againe, it is to late   60 
to shutte the stable doore when the steede is stolen: ....

Shakespeare's Parody of Euphuistic Prose in 1 Henry IV:

	Falstaff: Peace, good pint pot; peach, good tickle-brain.-- 
Harry, I do not only marvel where thou spendest thy time,
but also how thou art accompanied; for though
the camomile, the more it is trodden on the faster it 
grows, yet youth, the more it is wasted the sooner it   5
wears.  That thou art my son I have partly thy mother's 
word, partly my own opinion, but chiefly a villainous
trick of thine eye and a foolish hanging of thy nether lip 
that doth warrant me.  If then thou be son to me,
here lies the point: why, being son to me, art thou so   10
pointed at? Shall the blessed sun of heaven prove a 
micher and eat blackberries? A question not to be asked.
Shall the son of England prove a thief and take purses?
A question to be asked. there is a thing, Harry,
Which though hast often heard of, and it is known   15
to many in our land by the name of pitch.  This pitch,
As ancient writers do report, doth defile; so doth the 
company though keepest.  For, Harry, now I do not speak
to thee in drink but in tears, not in pleasure but in
passion, not in words only but in woes also.  And yet   20
there is a virtuous man whom I have often noted in thy 
company, but I know not his name. ...If that man should be
lwedly given, he deceiveth me; for Harry, I see virtue in
his looks. If then the tree may be known by the fruit, as 
the fruit by the tree, then peremptorily I speak it,
there is virtue in that Falstaff. 

from Ernest Hemingway's A Farewell to Arms

Chapter 1
	In the late summer of that year we lived in a house
 in a village that looked across the river and the plain to
the mountains.  In the bed of the river there were pebbles
and boulders, dry and white in the sun, and the water was clear 
and swiftly moving and blue in the channels.  Troops went by
the house and down the road and the dust they raised powdered
the leaves of the trees.  The trunks of the trees too were dusty
and the leaves fell early that year and we saw the troops
marching along the road and the dust rising and leaves, stirred 
by the breeze, falling and the soldiers marching and afterward 
the road bare and white except for the leaves.

	The plain was rich with crops; there were many orchards of
fruit trees and beyond the plain the mountains were brown
and bare.  There was fighting in the mountains and at night
we could see the flashes from the artillery.  In the dark
it was like summer lightning, but the nights were cool and
there was not the feeling of a storm coming.

	Sometimes in the dark we heard the troops marching under
the window and guns going past pulled by motor-tractors.
There was much traffic at night and many mules on the roads
with boxes of ammunition on each side of their pack-saddles
and gray motor-trucks that carried men, and other trucks
with loads covered with canvas that moved slower in the 
traffic.  There were big guns too that passed in the day drawn
by tractors, the long barrels of the guns covered with green 
branches and green leafy branches and vines laid over the
tractors.  To the north we could look across a valley and see
a forest of chestnut trees and behind it another mountain on
this side of the river.  There was fighting for that mountain
too, but it was not successful, and in the fall when the rains
came the leaves all fell from the chestnut trees and the 
branches were bare and the trunks black with rain.  the vine-
yards were thin and bare-branched too and all the country
wet and brown and dead with the autumn.  There were mists
over the river and clouds on the mountain and the trucks
splashed mud on the road and the troops were muddy and 
wet in their capes; their rifles were wet and under their capes
the two leather cartridge-boxes on the front of the belts,
gray leather boxes heavy with the packs of clips of thin,
long 6.5 mm. cartridges, bulged forward under the capes so 
that the men, passing on the road, marched as though they
were six months gone with child.

	There were small gray motor-cars that passed going very
fast; usually there was an officer on the seat with the driver
and more officers in the back seat.  They splashed more mud 
than the camions even and if one of the officers in the back
was very small and sitting between two generals, he himself
so small that you could not see his face but only the top of
his cap and his narrow back and if the car went especially
fast it was probably the King.  He lived in Udine and came
out in this way nearly every day to see how things wee going,
and things went very badly.

	At the start of the winter came the permanent rain and
with the rain came the cholera.  But it was checked and in 
the end only seven thousand died of it in the army.   


Return to Syllabus

Return to 17cInfo