Careful Words

leisure (n.)

leisure (adv.)

  Dionysius the Elder, being asked whether he was at leisure, he replied, "God forbid that it should ever befall me!"

Plutarch (46(?)-120(?) a d): Apophthegms of Kings and Great Commanders. Dionysius.

  Duke.  And what's her history?

  Vio.  A blank, my lord. She never told her love,

But let concealment, like a worm i' the bud,

Feed on her damask cheek: she pined in thought,

And with a green and yellow melancholy

She sat like patience on a monument,

Smiling at grief.

William Shakespeare (1564-1616): Twelfth Night. Act ii. Sc. 4.

Thus grief still treads upon the heels of pleasure;

Married in haste, we may repent at leisure.

William Congreve (1670-1729): The Old Bachelor. Act v. Sc. 1.

And add to these retired Leisure,

That in trim gardens takes his pleasure.

John Milton (1608-1674): Il Penseroso. Line 49.

  "War," says Machiavel, "ought to be the only study of a prince;" and by a prince he means every sort of state, however constituted. "He ought," says this great political doctor, "to consider peace only as a breathing-time, which gives him leisure to contrive, and furnishes ability to execute military plans." A meditation on the conduct of political societies made old Hobbes imagine that war was the state of nature.

Edmund Burke (1729-1797): A Vindication of Natural Society. Vol. i. p. 15.

  Epaminondas is reported wittily to have said of a good man that died about the time of the battle of Leuctra, "How came he to have so much leisure as to die, when there was so much stirring?"

Plutarch (46(?)-120(?) a d): Rules for the Preservation of Health. 25.

Who wooed in haste, and means to wed at leisure.

William Shakespeare (1564-1616): The Taming of the Shrew. Act iii. Sc. 2.