A work of art is an abstract or epitome of the world. It is the result or expression of nature, in miniature. For, although the works of nature are innumerable and all different, the result or the expression of them all is similar and single.
Personal beauty is then first charming and itself, when it dissatisfies us with any end; when it becomes a story without an end; when it suggests gleams and visions, and not earthly satisfactions; when it makes the beholder feel his unworthiness; when he cannot feel his right to it, though he were Caesar; he cannot feel more right to it than to the firmament and the splendors of a sunset.
An institution is the lengthened shadow of one man; as, monachism of the Hermit Anthony, the Reformation of Luther, Quakerism of Fox, Methodism of Wesley, abolition of Clarkson. Scipio, Milton called "the height of Rome;" and all history resolves itself easily into the biography of a few stout and earnest persons. Let a man, then, know his worth, and keep things under his feet.
All the fairy tales of Aladdin, or the invisible Gyges, or the talisman that opens kings' palaces, or the enchanted halls underground or in the sea, are only fictions to indicated the one miracle of intellectual enlargement.