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Date: 1790, 1794

"How many fine-spun threads of reasoning would my wandering thoughts have broken; and how difficult should I have found it to arrange arguments and inferences in the cells of my brain!"

— Williams, Helen Maria (1759–1827)

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Date: 1790, 1794

"Their turn of expression is a dress that hangs so gracesully on gay ideas, that you are apt to suppose that wit, a quality parsimoniously distributed in other countries, is in France as common as the gift of speech."

— Williams, Helen Maria (1759–1827)

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Date: 1790

"The gay powers of wit and fancy are like those brilliant phaenomena which sometimes glow in the sky, and dazzle the eye of the beholder by their luminous and uncommon appearances; while sweetness of temper has a resemblance to that gentle star, whose benign influence gilds alike the morning and...

— Williams, Helen Maria (1759–1827)

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Date: 1790

"The ruling passion of Mrs. Melbourne's soul was her love of her daughter; but it was carried to an excess that rendered it illiberal and selfish: her mind resembled a convex glass, and every ray of affection in her bosom was concentered in one small point."

— Williams, Helen Maria (1759–1827)

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Date: 1790

"The idle crowd in fashion's train, / Their trifling comment, pert reply, / Who talk so much, yet talk in vain, / How pleas'd for thee, Oh nymph, I fly! / For thine is all the wealth of mind, / Thine the unborrow'd gems of thought, / The flash of light, by souls refin'd, / From heav'n's empyreal ...

— Williams, Helen Maria (1759–1827)

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Date: 1790

"He was undeceived too late. The world will blame his imprudence, and think he deserved to suffer from it: but, while foresight and policy are so common, let us forgive those few minds of trusting simplicity, who are taught in vain the lesson of suspicion, on whom impressions are easily made, and...

— Williams, Helen Maria (1759–1827)

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Date: 1790

"Love comes to the bosom under the gentle forms of esteem, of sympathy, of confidence: we listen with dangerous pleasure to the seducing accents of his voice, till he lifts the fatal veil which concealed him from our view, and reigns a tyrant in the soul. Reason is then an oracle no longer consul...

— Williams, Helen Maria (1759–1827)

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Date: 1790

"She was indeed persuaded, that she felt no other uneasiness than what arose from the agitation with which she perceived that Seymour's mind was struggling; but perhaps there was something of self-deception in this young lady's reflections; as to a passenger, in a boat that glides rapidly down a ...

— Williams, Helen Maria (1759–1827)

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Date: 1790

"If her heart was not quite at peace, its exquisite sensibility was corrected by the influence of reason; as the quivering needle, though subject to some variations, still tends to one fixed point."

— Williams, Helen Maria (1759–1827)

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Date: 1790

"The lover, like the poor Indian, who prefers glass, beads and red feathers to more useful commodities, sets his affections upon a trifle, which some illusion of fancy has endeared, and which is to him more valuable than the gems of the eastern world, or the mines of the west; while reason, like ...

— Williams, Helen Maria (1759–1827)

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The Mind is a Metaphor is authored by Brad Pasanek, Assistant Professor of English, University of Virginia.