Thomas Hood

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Thomas Hood, British humorist and poet

Thomas Hood (May 23, 1799May 3, 1845) was an English humorist and poet.

Sourced[edit]

1820s[edit]

  • His death which happened in his berth,
    At forty-odd befell:
    They went and told the sexton, and
    The sexton tolled the bell.
  • I remember, I remember
    The house where I was born,
    The little window where the sun
    Came peeping in at morn;
    He never came a wink too soon
    Nor brought too long a day;
    But now, I often wish the night
    Had borne my breath away.
  • I remember, I remember
    The fir-trees dark and high;
    I used to think their slender tops
    Were close against the sky:
    It was a childish ignorance,
    But now 'tis little joy
    To know I'm farther off from Heaven
    Than when I was a boy.
    • I Remember, I Remember, st. 4.
  • And there is ev'n a happiness
    That makes the heart afraid!
  • There's not a string attuned to mirth
    But has its chord in melancholy.
    • Ode to Melancholy, st. 8.
  • But evil is wrought by want of thought,
    As well as want of heart.
  • I saw old Autumn in the misty morn
    Stand shadowless like Silence, listening
    To silence.
  • Straight down the Crooked Lane,
    And all round the Square.

1830s[edit]

  • Never go to France
    Unless you know the lingo,
    If you do, like me,
    You will repent, by jingo.
    • French and English, st. 1 (1839).
  • For my part, getting up seems not so easy
    By half as lying.
    • Morning Meditations (1839).
  • A man that's fond precociously of stirring,
       Must be a spoon.
    • Morning Meditations (1839), St. 10.
  • No sun—no moon—no morn—no noon,
    No dawn—no dusk—no proper time of day,
    No warmth—no cheerfulness—no healthful ease,
    No road, no street, no t' other side the way,
    No comfortable feel in any member—
    No shade, no shine, no butterflies, no bees,
    No fruits, no flowers, no leaves, no birds,
    November!

1840s[edit]

  • One more Unfortunate,
    Weary of breath,
    Rashly importunate,
    Gone to her death!

    Take her up tenderly,
    Lift her with care;
    Fashion'd so slenderly
    Young, and so fair!
  • Alas! for the rarity
    Of Christian charity
    Under the sun!
    • The Bridge of Sighs (1844), st. 9.
  • Even God's providence
    Seeming estranged.
    • The Bridge of Sighs (1844).
  • What joy have I in June's return?
    My feet are parched—my eyeballs burn,
         I scent no flowery gust;
    But faint the flagging Zephyr springs,
    With dry Macadam on its wings,
         And turns me "dust to dust."
    • Ode Imitated from Horace (1844), st. 2.

The Song of the Shirt (1843)[edit]

  • With fingers weary and worn,
    With eyelids heavy and red,
    A woman sat, in unwomanly rags,
    Plying her needle and thread—
    Stitch! stitch! stitch!
    In poverty, hunger, and dirt,
    And still with a voice of dolorous pitch
    She sang the “Song of the Shirt.”
    • St. 1.
  • Sewing at once a double thread,
    A shroud as well as a shirt.
  • No blessed leisure for love or hope,
    But only time for grief.
  • My tears must stop, for every drop
    Hinders needle and thread.
  • Work! work! work!
    While the cock is crowing aloof!
    And work—work—work,
    Till the stars shine through the roof!
    • St. 2.
  • Oh, Men, with Sisters dear!
    Oh, Men, with Mothers and Wives!
    It is not linen you're wearing out,
    But human creatures' lives!
    • St. 4.
  • Oh, God! that bread should be so dear,
    And flesh and blood so cheap!
    • St. 5.

The Dream of Eugene Aram[edit]

  • 'Twas in the prime of summer-time
    An evening calm and cool,
    And four-and-twenty happy boys
    Came bounding out of school:
    There were some that ran and some that leapt,
    Like troutlets in a pool.
  • And lo! the universal air
    Seemed lit with ghastly flame;
    Ten thousand thousand dreadful eyes
    Were looking down in blame
  • My head was like an ardent coal,
    My heart as solid ice;
    My wretched, wretched soul, I knew,
    Was at the Devil's price:
    A dozen times I groaned: the dead
    Had never groaned but twice!
  • That very night while gentle sleep
    The urchin's eyelids kissed,
    Two stern-faced men set out from Lynn,
    Through the cold and heavy mist;
    And Eugene Aram walked between,
    With gyves upon his wrist.

20th century[edit]

  • There is a silence where hath been no sound,
    There is a silence where no sound may be,—
    In the cold grave, under the deep, deep sea,
    Or in the wide desert where no life is found.
    • Sonnet, Silence; reported in Bartlett's Familiar Quotations, 10th ed. (1919).
  • We watched her breathing through the night,
    Her breathing soft and low,
    As in her breast the wave of life
    Kept heaving to and fro.
    • The Death-Bed; reported in Bartlett's Familiar Quotations, 10th ed. (1919).
  • Our very hopes belied our fears,
    Our fears our hopes belied;
    We thought her dying when she slept,
    And sleeping when she died.
    • The Death-Bed; reported in Bartlett's Familiar Quotations, 10th ed. (1919).
  • She stood breast-high amid the corn
    Clasped by the golden light of morn,
    Like the sweetheart of the sun,
    Who many a glowing kiss had won.
    • Ruth; reported in Bartlett's Familiar Quotations, 10th ed. (1919).
  • Thus she stood amid the stooks,
    Praising God with sweetest looks.
    • Ruth; reported in Bartlett's Familiar Quotations, 10th ed. (1919).
  • When he is forsaken,
    Withered and shaken,
    What can an old man do but die?
    • Spring it is cheery; reported in Bartlett's Familiar Quotations, 10th ed. (1919).
  • Oh would I were dead now,
    Or up in my bed now,
    To cover my head now,
    And have a good cry!
    • A Table of Errata; reported in Bartlett's Familiar Quotations, 10th ed. (1919).
  • There's a double beauty whenever a swan
    Swims on a lake with her double thereon.
    • Her Honeymoon; reported in Bartlett's Familiar Quotations, 10th ed. (1919).
  • Home-made dishes that drive one from home.
    • Her Honeymoon; reported in Bartlett's Familiar Quotations, 10th ed. (1919).
  • Gold! Gold! Gold! Gold!
    Bright and yellow, hard and cold.
    • Her Moral; reported in Bartlett's Familiar Quotations, 10th ed. (1919).
  • Spurned by the young, but hugged by the old
    To the very verge of the churchyard mould.
    • Her Moral; reported in Bartlett's Familiar Quotations, 10th ed. (1919).
  • How widely its agencies vary,—
    To save, to ruin, to curse, to bless,—
    As even its minted coins express,
    Now stamped with the image of Good Queen Bess,
    And now of a Bloody Mary.
    • Her Moral; reported in Bartlett's Familiar Quotations, 10th ed. (1919).
  • Another tumble! That's his precious nose!
    • Parental Ode to my infant Son; reported in Bartlett's Familiar Quotations, 10th ed. (1919).
  • Boughs are daily rifled
    By the gusty thieves,
    And the book of Nature
    Getteth short of leaves.
    • The Season; reported in Bartlett's Familiar Quotations, 10th ed. (1919).
  • A wife who preaches in her gown,
    And lectures in her night-dress.
    • The Surplice Question; reported in Bartlett's Familiar Quotations, 10th ed. (1919).
  • Peace and rest at length have come
    All the day's long toil is past,
    And each heart is whispering, "Home,
    Home at last."
    • Home at last; reported in Bartlett's Familiar Quotations, 10th ed. (1919).
  • Ben Battle was a soldier bold,
    And used to war's alarms;
    But a cannon-ball took off his legs,
    So he laid down his arms.
    • Faithless Nellie Gray; reported in Bartlett's Familiar Quotations, 10th ed. (1919).
  • Pity it is to slay the meanest thing.
    • Plea of the Midsummer Fairies; reported in Bartlett's Familiar Quotations, 10th ed. (1919).
  • No solemn sanctimonious face I pull,
    Nor think I'm pious when I'm only bilious;
    Nor study in my sanctum supercilious,
    To frame a Sabbath Bill or forge a Bull.
    • Ode to Rae Wilson; reported in Bartlett's Familiar Quotations, 10th ed. (1919).
  • Each cloud-capt mountain is a holy altar;
    An organ breathes in every grove;
    And the full heart 's a Psalter,
    Rich in deep hymn of gratitude and love.
    • Ode to Rae Wilson; reported in Bartlett's Familiar Quotations, 10th ed. (1919).
    • That fierce thing
      They call a conscience.
    • Lamia, Scene vii; reported in Bartlett's Familiar Quotations, 10th ed. (1919).
  • 'Tis strange how like a very dunce,
    Man, with his bumps upon his sconce,
    Has lived so long, and yet no knowledge he
    Has had, till lately, of Phrenology
    A science that by simple dint of
    Head-combing he should find a hint of,
    When scratching o'er those little pole-hills
    The faculties throw up like mole hills.
    • Thomas Hood, Craniology, reported in Hoyt's New Cyclopedia Of Practical Quotations (1922), p. 597.

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