Thomas Gordon Hake

English poet and physician

Thomas Gordon Hake (10 March 1809 – 11 January 1895) was an English physician and poet. He was a first cousin of Major-General Charles George Gordon and a friend of William Michael Rossetti, George Borrow, and John William Donaldson.

Quotes edit

  • Doth Nature know our dream, or is the mind
    A passing breath her beauty leaves behind?

Memories of Eighty Years (1892) edit

  • There is something very dry in family history, because no one cares for other people's relations.
  • Nothing that has been and has died out, will be revived. The skeleton, an osseous Apollo, will remain, and that is all.
  • In those days, and long after, an English clergyman dressed like a gentleman; he now wears a black livery, and he looks like a bishop's footman, in mourning, with his master, for some dead archbishop.
  • ... Mr. Nussey, the king's apothecary, ... whom I knew very intimately later in life, told me that the king confided to him all his secrets, and the knowledge, if written down, would set all England in a blaze. He was with the royal patient to the last, the king never letting go of his hand for twenty-four hours, which gave him an agony of cramp all but insupportable.
  • Dr. Thomas Young, the illustrious inventor of the Undulatory Theory of Light, was then a physician at St. George's. I used to go round the wards with him. He was thought to be very undecided in his opinions of a case; the fact is, medicine is so uncertain a science, it was not good enough for such an intellect as his to work on.
  • It may be boasted that free-trade in physic came before free-trade in corn, and from that time medical science began to flourish in this country.
  • If one looks back, one perceives that the majority of our poetic authors owed their success to patrons who made their works a fashion. Chaucer, Spenser, Shakespeare, had noble or royal patrons; Milton there was no one to patronize, whence the market value of "Paradise Lost" rose only to ten pounds. Dryden belonged to the upper class, so he had a patron in himself; Pope was made a fashion through patronization: Bolingbroke alone would have sufficed to lift him up into fame.
  • I remember well the time when no gentleman was supposed to smoke; the habit was fit only for the vulgarian.
  • It is my purpose in writing these Memoirs to adhere rigidly to truth, at least in its essence. Should I succeed in this, my work would be a very remarkable one, almost unique.
  • The more a writer deviates from simplicity, the less sincere he appears.
  • I thought no one ever could paint a woman's eyes like Rossetti. There was a softness, a delicacy, a life, a soul in them, never seen elsewhere, but in living beings, and that how rarely!
  • A poem, of whatever length, should start vividly, so as to wind up the ear and set the mind ticking.

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