It is not pleasant for the world to be continually reminded of its meannesses. We do not want to see Cervantes's days of poverty and struggle eternized in statues. We know that he always looked back with fondness on his campaigning days, and even in his decrepit age he called himself a soldier.
King of the daylit-world, it became queen of the dimmer realms of night, and like a woman-queen it did not disdain to stoop and study its loveliness in the polished lake, and stooping thus it overhung the earth, a shadowy creature of gleam and gloom, an eternized cloud. I sat staring and straying in sweet reverie, until the scene before me was dim as metaphysics.
As ACHILLES had the advantage of HECTOR, because it was his fortune to be extolled and renowned by the heavenly verse of HOMER: so SPENSER's ELIZA, the Fairy Queen, hath the advantage of all the Queens in the world, to be eternized by so divine a poet.
But the difference of age made no difference to the friendship which grew up between them in Oxford, a friendship only less enduring and close than that between Clough and Matthew Arnold, which has been "eternized," to use a word of Fulke Greville's, by the noble dirge of "Thyrsis."
By dint of repeating to men, that the earth is not their true country; that the present life is only a passage; that they are not made to be happy in this world; that their sovereigns hold their authority from God alone, and are accountable only to him for the abuse of it; that it is not lawful to resist them, etc., priests have eternized the misgovernment of kings and the misery of the people; the interests of nations have been basely sacrificed to their chiefs.
Hastings enjoyed that happy repose which branded peculation, fixed and eternized upon the records of the Company, must leave upon a mind conscious of its own integrity. My Lords, I will venture to say, there is no man but owes something to his character.
I had shrunk into insignificance in my own eyes, as I considered the multitudinous beings these stone demigods had outlived, but this after-thought restored me to dignity in my own conception. The sight of the poetry eternized in these statues, took the sting from the thought, arraying it only in poetic ideality. I repeated to myself, I am in Rome!
On the other hand, those that shall procure the people these pleasures, and authorize their enjoyment, let them be eternized for the true gods."... However, Augustin acknowledges a number of praiseworthy minds among pagans those philosophers, with Plato in the first rank, who have done their best to put morality into the religion. The Christian teacher renders a magnificent tribute to Platonism.