Life of James Watt

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A. & C. Black, 1839 - 142 pages
 

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Page 127 - ... occupations, and probably is not generally known, that he was curiously learned in many branches of antiquity, metaphysics, medicine, and etymology, and perfectly at home in all the details of architecture, music, and law. He was well acquainted too with most of the modern languages, and familiar with their most recent literature. Nor was it at all extraordinary to hear the great mechanician and engineer detailing and expounding, for hours together, the metaphysical theories of the German logicians,...
Page 90 - THOSE WHO BEST DESERVE THEIR GRATITUDE, THE KING HIS MINISTERS, AND MANY OF THE NOBLES AND COMMONERS OF THE REALM RAISED THIS MONUMENT TO JAMES WATT, WHO DIRECTING THE FORCE OF AN ORIGINAL GENIUS, EARLY EXERCISED IN...
Page 130 - ... friends around him the many sources of consolation which were afforded by the circumstances under which it was about to take place. He expressed his sincere gratitude to Providence for the length of days with which he had been blessed, and his exemption from most of the infirmities of age, as well as for the calm and cheerful evening of life that he had been permitted to enjoy, after the honourable labours of the day had been concluded. And thus, full of years and honours, in all calmness and...
Page 85 - Amidst this company stood Mr Watt, the man whose genius discovered the means of multiplying our national resources to a degree perhaps even beyond his own stupendous powers of calculation and combination; bringing the treasures of the abyss to the summit of the earth — giving the feeble arm of man the momentum of an Afrite — commanding manufactures to arise, as the rod of the prophet produced water, in the desert, affording the means of dispensing with that time and tide which wait for no man....
Page 133 - During the last summer also, a friend of mine gave some account of them to M. Lavoisier, as well as of the conclusion drawn from them, that dephlogisticated air is only water deprived of phlogiston ; but at that time so far was M. Lavoisier from thinking any such opinion warranted, that, till he was prevailed upon to repeat the experiment himself, he found some difficulty in believing that nearly the whole of the two airs could be converted into water.
Page 129 - In his temper and dispositions he was not only kind and affectionate, but generous, and considerate of the feelings of all around him ; and gave the most liberal assistance and encouragement to all young persons who showed any indications of talent, or applied to him for patronage or advice.
Page 90 - ENLARGED THE RESOURCES OF HIS COUNTRY, INCREASED THE POWER OF MAN, AND ROSE TO AN EMINENT PLACE AMONG THE MOST ILLUSTRIOUS FOLLOWERS OF SCIENCE AND THE REAL BENEFACTORS OF THE WORLD.
Page 128 - There was a little air of affected tcstiness, and a tone of pretended rebuke and contradiction, with which he used to address his younger friends, that was always felt by them as an endearing mark of his kindness and familiarity, — and prized accordingly, far beyond all the solemn compliments that ever proceeded from the lips of authority. His voice was deep and powerful, — though he commonly spoke in a low and somewhat monotonous tone, which harmonised admirably with the weight and brevity of...
Page 129 - ... was a finer expression of reposing strength, and mild selfpossession in his manner, than we ever recollect to have met with in any other person. He had in his character the utmost abhorrence for all sorts of forwardness, parade, and pretension ; and, indeed, never failed to put all such impostors out of countenance, by the manly plainness and honest intrepidity of his language and deportment.
Page 85 - His talents and fancy overflowed on every subject. One gentleman was a deep philologist, — he talked with him on the origin of the alphabet as if he had been coeval with Cadmus ; another a celebrated critic — you would have said the old man had studied political economy and belles-lettres all his life, — of science it is unnecessary to speak, it was his own distinguished walk.

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