Sunday, August 18, 2013


A Great Torture

James Howell (1594?–1666), Epistolae Ho-elianae: The Familiar Letters of James Howell, Historiographer Royal to Charles II, ed. Joseph Jacobs, Books II.-IV. (London: David Nutt, 1892), letter II.19 (April 27, 1632), "To Captain C. Price", pp. 410-411 (at 411):
I find it true now, that one of the greatest tortures that can be in the negotiation of the World is, to have to do with perverse irrational half-witted men, and to be worded to death by nonsense; besides, as much Brain as they have, is as full of scruples as a Burr is of prickles; which is a quality incident to all those that have their heads lightly ballasted, for they are like Buoys in a barr'd Port, weaving perpetually up and down.

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