Gleanings From The Past #49



To-morrow, and to-morrow, and to-morrow,
Creeps in this petty pace, from day to day,
To the last syllable of recorded time!
And all our yesterdays have lighted fools
The way to dusty death.

— William Shakespeare, Macbeth, Act 5, Scene 5

—————— That we would do,
We should do when we would; for this would changes,
And hath abatements and delays as many
As there are tongues, are hands, are accidents;
And then this should is like a spendthrift sigh
That hurts by easing.

— William Shakespeare, Hamlet, Act 4, Scene 7


Against the garden wall of Exeter College grew a fig tree, and Kennicott was very partial to figs. Now in a certain year there was but a single fig on the tree. The Doctor watched it, eagerly expecting when it would be ripe, for a fig is like a pear, it ripens and reaches perfection all at once, before which moment it is no good at all. To secure this fruit for himself he wrote out a label, “Dr. Kennicott’s Fig,” and hung it above the fruit on the tree. But just as the fig was fit to be gathered and eaten, some audacious undergraduate managed to get it, plucked, ate, and then reversing the label wrote in large letters thereon “A Fig for Dr. Kennicott.”

— Sabine Baring-Gould, Devonshire Characters and Strange Events, 1908

Books, like men their authors, have no more than one way of coming into the world, but there are ten thousand to go out of it and return no more.

— Jonathan Swift, A Tale of a Tub (1889 Edition), 1697

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My name Edmark M. Law. I work as a freelance writer, mainly writing about science and mathematics. I am an ardent hobbyist. I like to read, solve puzzles, play chess, make origami and play basketball. In addition, I dabble in magic, particularly card magic and other sleight-of-hand type magic. I live in Hong Kong. You can find me on Twitter` and Facebook. My email is

12 thoughts on “Gleanings From The Past #49

    1. It’s one of his greatest flaws. Instead of taking actions, he just philosophizes.

      Heh, grads and post-grads like to criticize undergrads as if they hadn’t been one before. :) Anyway, good luck with your studies.


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