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Joseph Addison

Geburtstag: 1. Mai 1672
Todesdatum: 17. Juni 1719

Joseph Addison war ein englischer Dichter, Politiker und Journalist in der Frühzeit der Aufklärung.

Zitate Joseph Addison

„Sieh, wie friedlich ein Christ sterben kann.“

—  Joseph Addison

Letzte Worte zu seinem Stiefsohn Thomas Tickell, dem späteren Lord Warwick
Original engl.: "See in what peace a Christian can die." - as quoted in Conjectures on Original Composition (1759) by Edward Young

„Niemand ist so unglücklich wie ein Idol, das sich selbst überlebt hat.“

—  Joseph Addison

The Spectator
"There is not a more unhappy being than a superannuated idol." - The Spectator No. 73 (24 May 1711)

„Eine Frau fragt in Liebessachen selten um Rat, bevor sie ihre Hochzeitskleider gekauft hat.“

—  Joseph Addison

On askin advice in affairs of love
("A woman seldom asks advice before she has bought her wedding clothes." - The Spectator No. 475 (4 September 1712)).

„Noch jetzt, scheint mir, tret ich auf klassischen Boden.“

—  Joseph Addison

Briefe über Italien
"And still I seem to tread on classic ground." - A Letter from Italy, to the Right Honourable Charles, Lord Halifax. 1701.

„Wir tun immer etwas für die Nachwelt; gern würde ich sehen, dass die Nachwelt einmal für uns etwas tut.“

—  Joseph Addison

The Spectator
"We are always doing something for Posterity, but I would fain see Posterity do something for us." - The Spectator No. 587 (20 August 1714)

„When I read the epitaphs of the beautiful, every inordinate desire goes out“

—  Joseph Addison

Thoughts in Westminster Abbey (1711).
Kontext: When I read the epitaphs of the beautiful, every inordinate desire goes out; when I meet with the grief of parents upon a tombstone, my heart melts with compassion; when I see the tomb of the parents themselves, I consider the vanity of grieving for those whom we must quickly follow: when I see kings lying by those who deposed them, when I consider rival wits placed side by side, or the holy men that divided the world with their contests and disputes, I reflect with sorrow and astonishment on the little competitions, factions, and debates of mankind.

„Reading is to the mind, what exercise is to the body.“

—  Joseph Addison

No. 147.
The Tatler (1711–1714)
Variante: A good conscience is to the soul what health is to the body
Kontext: Reading is to the mind, what exercise is to the body. As by the one, health is preserved, strengthened, and invigorated: by the other, virtue (which is the health of the mind) is kept alive, cherished, and confirmed.

„In a word, his hopes are full of immortality, his schemes are large and glorious, and his conduct suitable to one who knows his true interest, and how to pursue it by proper methods.“

—  Joseph Addison

No. 225.
The Tatler (1711–1714)
Kontext: The cast of mind which is natural to a discreet man, make him look forward into futurity, and consider what will be his condition millions of ages hence, as well as what it is at present. He knows that the misery or happiness which are reserved for him in another world, lose nothing of their reality by being placed at so great a distance from him. The objects do not appear little to him because they are remote. He considers that those pleasures and pains which lie hid in eternity, approach nearer to him every moment, and will be present with him in their full weight and measure, as much as those pains and pleasures which he feels at this very instant. For this reason he is careful to secure to himself that which is the proper happiness of his nature, and the ultimate design of his being. He carries his thoughts to the end of every action, and considers the most distant as well as the most immediate effects of it. He supersedes every little prospect of gain and advantage which offers itself here, if he does not find it consistent with his views of an hereafter. In a word, his hopes are full of immortality, his schemes are large and glorious, and his conduct suitable to one who knows his true interest, and how to pursue it by proper methods.

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„Discretion has large and extended views, and, like a well-formed eye, commands a whole horizon: cunning is a kind of short-sightedness, that discovers the minutest objects which are near at hand, but is not able to discern things at a distance. Discretion the more it is discovered, gives a greater authority to the person who possesses it: cunning, when it is once detected, loses its force, and makes a man incapable of bringing about even those events which he might have done had he passed only for a plain man.“

—  Joseph Addison

No. 225.
The Tatler (1711–1714)
Kontext: At the same time that I think discretion the most useful talent a man can be master of, I look upon cunning to be the accomplishment of little, mean, ungenerous minds. Discretion points out the noblest ends to us, and pursues the most proper and laudable methods of attaining them: cunning has only private selfish aims, and sticks at nothing which may make them succeed. Discretion has large and extended views, and, like a well-formed eye, commands a whole horizon: cunning is a kind of short-sightedness, that discovers the minutest objects which are near at hand, but is not able to discern things at a distance. Discretion the more it is discovered, gives a greater authority to the person who possesses it: cunning, when it is once detected, loses its force, and makes a man incapable of bringing about even those events which he might have done had he passed only for a plain man. Discretion is the perfection of reason, and a guide to us in all the duties of life: cunning is a kind of instinct, that only looks out after our immediate interest and welfare. Discretion is only found in men of strong sense and good understandings, cunning is often to be met with in brutes themselves, and in persons who are but the fewest removes from them.

„The Fear of Death often proves Mortal“

—  Joseph Addison

No. 25 (29 March 1711).
The Spectator (1711–1714)
Kontext: The Fear of Death often proves Mortal, and sets People on Methods to save their Lives, which infallibly destroy them.

„What pity is it
That we can die but once to serve our country!“

—  Joseph Addison, buch Cato

Act IV, scene iv.
Cato, A Tragedy (1713)
Kontext: How beautiful is death, when earn'd by virtue!
Who would not be that youth? What pity is it
That we can die but once to serve our country!

„What I spent I lost; what I possessed is left to others; what I gave away remains with me.“

—  Joseph Addison

No. 177 (22 September 1711).
The Spectator (1711–1714)
Kontext: I have somewhere met with the epitaph of a charitable man, which has very much pleased me. I cannot recollect the words, but the sense of it is to this purpose; What I spent I lost; what I possessed is left to others; what I gave away remains with me.

„The man resolved, and steady to his trust,
Inflexible to ill, and obstinately just,
May the rude rabble's insolence despise“

—  Joseph Addison

Translation of Horace, Odes, Book III, ode iii.
Kontext: The man resolved, and steady to his trust,
Inflexible to ill, and obstinately just,
May the rude rabble's insolence despise,
Their senseless clamours and tumultuous cries;
The tyrant's fierceness he beguiles,
And the stern brow, and the harsh voice defies,
And with superior greatness smiles.

„A new creation rises to my sight“

—  Joseph Addison

A Letter from Italy (1703).
Kontext: Fain would I Raphael's godlike art rehearse,
And show th' immortal labours in my verse,
Where from themingled strength of shade and light
A new creation rises to my sight,
Such heavenly figures from his pencil flow,
So warm with life his blended colours glow.
From theme to theme with secret pleasure tost,
Amidst the soft variety I 'm lost:
Here pleasing airs my ravish'd soul confound
With circling notes and labyrinths of sound;
Here domes and temples rise in distant views,
And opening palaces invite my Muse.

„Great souls by instinct to each other turn,
Demand alliance, and in friendship burn“

—  Joseph Addison, The Campaign

Quelle: The Campaign (1704), Line 101.
Kontext: Great souls by instinct to each other turn,
Demand alliance, and in friendship burn;
A sudden friendship, while with stretched-out rays
They meet each other, mingling blaze with blaze.
Polished in courts, and hardened in the field,
Renowned for conquest, and in council skilled,
Their courage dwells not in a troubled flood
Of mounting spirits, and fermenting blood:
Lodged in the soul, with virtue overruled,
Inflamed by reason, and by reason cooled,
In hours of peace content to be unknown.
And only in the field of battle shown:
To souls like these, in mutual friendship joined,
Heaven dares intrust the cause of humankind.

„Their courage dwells not in a troubled flood
Of mounting spirits, and fermenting blood:
Lodged in the soul, with virtue overruled,
Inflamed by reason, and by reason cooled,
In hours of peace content to be unknown.
And only in the field of battle shown:
To souls like these, in mutual friendship joined,
Heaven dares intrust the cause of humankind.“

—  Joseph Addison, The Campaign

Quelle: The Campaign (1704), Line 101.
Kontext: Great souls by instinct to each other turn,
Demand alliance, and in friendship burn;
A sudden friendship, while with stretched-out rays
They meet each other, mingling blaze with blaze.
Polished in courts, and hardened in the field,
Renowned for conquest, and in council skilled,
Their courage dwells not in a troubled flood
Of mounting spirits, and fermenting blood:
Lodged in the soul, with virtue overruled,
Inflamed by reason, and by reason cooled,
In hours of peace content to be unknown.
And only in the field of battle shown:
To souls like these, in mutual friendship joined,
Heaven dares intrust the cause of humankind.

„If men of eminence are exposed to censure on one hand, they are as much liable to flattery on the other. If they receive reproaches which are not due to them, they likewise receive praises which they do not deserve.“

—  Joseph Addison

No. 101 (26 June 1711), this has sometimes been quoted as "It is the privilege of posterity to set matters right between those antagonists who, by their rivalry for greatness, divided a whole age".
The Spectator (1711–1714)
Kontext: If men of eminence are exposed to censure on one hand, they are as much liable to flattery on the other. If they receive reproaches which are not due to them, they likewise receive praises which they do not deserve. In a word, the man in a high post is never regarded with an indifferent eye, but always considered as a friend or an enemy. For this reason persons in great stations have seldom their true characters drawn till several years after their deaths. Their personal friendships and enmities must cease, and the parties they were engaged in be at an end, before their faults or their virtues can have justice done them. When writers have the least opportunity of knowing the truth, they are in the best disposition to tell it.
It is therefore the privilege of posterity to adjust the characters of illustrious persons, and to set matters right between those antagonists who by their rivalry for greatness divided a whole age into factions.

„All Heaven shall echo with their hymns divine,
And God himself with pleasure see
The whole creation in a chorus join.“

—  Joseph Addison

Kontext: When time itself shall be no more,
And all things in confusion hurl'd,
Music shall then exert it's power,
And sound survive the ruins of the world:
Then saints and angels shall agree
In one eternal jubilee:
All Heaven shall echo with their hymns divine,
And God himself with pleasure see
The whole creation in a chorus join.

Song for St. Cecilia's Day (1692).

„Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetuer adipiscing elit. Etiam egestas wisi a erat. Morbi imperdiet, mauris ac auctor dictum.“

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