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Thread: My favourite quotation from the Classics:

  1. #1
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    Default My favourite quotation from the Classics:

    "I think that the best and most perfect arrangement of things that I ever saw was when I went to look at the great Phoenician sailing-vessel; for I saw the largest amount of naval tackling separately disposed in the smallest stowage possible.


    “For a ship, as you well know, is brought to anchor, and again got under way, by a vast number of wooden implements and of ropes and sails the sea by means of a quantity of rigging, and is armed with a number of contrivances against hostile vessels, and carries about with it a large supply of weapons for the crew, and, besides, has all the utensils that a man keeps in his dwelling-house, for each of the messes. In addition, it is laden with a quantity of merchandise which the owner carries with him for his own profit.


    “Now all the things which I have mentioned lay in a space not much bigger than a room which would conveniently hold ten beds. And I remarked that they severally lay in a way that they did not obstruct one another, and did not require anyone to search for them; and yet they were neither placed at random, nor entangled one with another, so as to consume time when they were suddenly wanted for use.


    “Also, I found the captain's assistant, who is called 'the look-out man,' so well acquainted with the position of all the articles, and with the number of them, that even when at a distance he could tell where everything lay, and how many there were of each sort, just as anyone who has learnt to read can tell the number of letters in the name of Socrates and the proper place for each of them.


    “Moreover, I saw this man, in his leisure moments, examining and testing everything that a vessel needs when at sea; so, as I was surprised, I asked him what he was about, whereupon he replied--'Stranger, I am looking to see, in case anything should happen, how everything is arranged in the ship, and whether anything is wanting, or is inconveniently situated; for when a storm arises at sea, it is not possible either to look for what is wanting, or to put to right what is arranged awkwardly.'"


    Quoted, as you might expect, in some older editions of "Thomas on Stowage" and also in Dr T Harrison Butler's "Cruising Yachts, Design and Performance". But Dr Harrison Butler translates "the captain's right hand man, called the look out man" as "the boatswain".


    It's one of my favourite quotes, and shows that the essentials of seamanship have never changed.


    A quote from Xenophon; he of the March to the Sea...
    IMAGINES VEL NON FUERINT

  2. #2
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    Default Re: My favourite quotation from the Classics:

    Ignoranti, quem portum petat, nullus suus ventus est.

    No winds are fair if you don't know your heading.
    or

    Don't fart as you open the door, stupid…..This was an alleged answer in a translation question of an English student of Latin at A level.

    Don't remember the author, Ovid maybe , or Seneca
    'C'est la vie' say the old folks it goes to show you never can tell

  3. #3
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    Default Re: My favourite quotation from the Classics:

    Seneca. But you knew that!
    IMAGINES VEL NON FUERINT

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    Default Re: My favourite quotation from the Classics:

    I didn't as it happens, but a couple of hours ago I got home to a better reference source and the OUP dictionary of quotations gives it to Seneca but differently
    "If one does not know to which port one is sailing, no wind is favourable."


    Another take from my friend that I ran this past just now, 'No wind is favourable' she thought meant 'No wind' as in nothing, nada, calm, is favourable and I was thinking and my interpretation, was, as I said to her 'no wind' as in any wind from whatever quarter isn't favourable.
    Feck knows what Seneca was thinking.
    The original English quote was the pet phrase of my first sailing teacher.
    Last edited by jonboy; 07-19-2018 at 10:19 AM.
    'C'est la vie' say the old folks it goes to show you never can tell

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    Default Re: My favourite quotation from the Classics:

    I have always thought this a negative quote. Mine is -“ If one does not know to which port one is sailing, ANY wind is favourable.”Chiquita 2018. Feel free to quote me. It is also me on any Saturday. At sea, slowly going no where, in style.

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    Default Re: My favourite quotation from the Classics:

    That student must have been a Juvenal delinquent.
    Creationists aren't mad - they're possessed of demons.

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    Default Re: My favourite quotation from the Classics:

    Quote Originally Posted by Andrew Craig-Bennett View Post
    "I think that the best and most perfect arrangement of things that I ever saw was when I went to look at the great Phoenician sailing-vessel; for I saw the largest amount of naval tackling separately disposed in the smallest stowage possible.


    “For a ship, as you well know, is brought to anchor, and again got under way, by a vast number of wooden implements and of ropes and sails the sea by means of a quantity of rigging, and is armed with a number of contrivances against hostile vessels, and carries about with it a large supply of weapons for the crew, and, besides, has all the utensils that a man keeps in his dwelling-house, for each of the messes. In addition, it is laden with a quantity of merchandise which the owner carries with him for his own profit.


    “Now all the things which I have mentioned lay in a space not much bigger than a room which would conveniently hold ten beds. And I remarked that they severally lay in a way that they did not obstruct one another, and did not require anyone to search for them; and yet they were neither placed at random, nor entangled one with another, so as to consume time when they were suddenly wanted for use.


    “Also, I found the captain's assistant, who is called 'the look-out man,' so well acquainted with the position of all the articles, and with the number of them, that even when at a distance he could tell where everything lay, and how many there were of each sort, just as anyone who has learnt to read can tell the number of letters in the name of Socrates and the proper place for each of them.


    “Moreover, I saw this man, in his leisure moments, examining and testing everything that a vessel needs when at sea; so, as I was surprised, I asked him what he was about, whereupon he replied--'Stranger, I am looking to see, in case anything should happen, how everything is arranged in the ship, and whether anything is wanting, or is inconveniently situated; for when a storm arises at sea, it is not possible either to look for what is wanting, or to put to right what is arranged awkwardly.'"


    Quoted, as you might expect, in some older editions of "Thomas on Stowage" and also in Dr T Harrison Butler's "Cruising Yachts, Design and Performance". But Dr Harrison Butler translates "the captain's right hand man, called the look out man" as "the boatswain".


    It's one of my favourite quotes, and shows that the essentials of seamanship have never changed.


    A quote from Xenophon; he of the March to the Sea...
    Thanks for the reminder; poor old Xenophon has a bad rep because many of his writings are on practical things, not just head-in-the-clouds philosophy.

    Your quote may be found in
    The Economist, Xenophon (Free Gutenberg LINK)
    Then the pilot's mate --"the look-out man at the prow," to give him his proper title
    ~~~Dakyns' translation


    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
    A Phoenician Website I Found:


    Image: Merchant Ship



    The superiority of the Phoenician ships to others is generally allowed, and was clearly shown when Xerxes collected his fleet of twelve hundred and seven triremes against Greece. The fleet included contingents from Phoenicia, Cyprus, Egypt, Cilicia, Pamphylia, Lycia, Caria, Ionia, Æolis, and the Greek settlements about the Propontis. When it reached the Hellespont, the great king, anxious to test the quality of his ships and sailors, made proclamation for a grand sailing match, in which all who liked might contend. Each contingent probably--at any rate, all that prided themselves on their nautical skill--selected its best vessel, and entered it for the coming race; the king himself, and his grandees and officers, and all the army, stood or sat along the shore to see: the race took place, and was won by the Phoenicians of Sidon. Having thus tested the nautical skill of the various nations under his sway, the great king, when he ventured his person upon the dangerous element, was careful to embark in a Sidonian galley.

    Phoenician Ships, Navigation and Commerce (LINK)
    #include [ std-disclaimer ]

    Hope the voyage is a long one.
    May there be many a summer morning when,
    with what pleasure, what joy,
    you come into harbors seen for the first time...

    Ithaka, by Cavafy
    (Keeley - Sherrard translation)

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    Default Re: My favourite quotation from the Classics:

    Grim but memorable lines-

    King Lear: "Blow, winds, and crack your cheeks! Rage! Blow!"

    Moby Dick: "Then all collapsed, and the great shroud of the sea rolled on as it rolled five thousand years ago."

    The Great Gatsby: "So we beat on, boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past."
    If I had a dollar for every girl who found me unattractive, eventually they would find me attractive.

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    Default Re: My favourite quotation from the Classics:

    Quote Originally Posted by P.I. Stazzer-Newt View Post
    That student must have been a Juvenal delinquent.
    Nice ...Had to look it up, but nice all the same
    'C'est la vie' say the old folks it goes to show you never can tell

  10. #10
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    Default Re: My favourite quotation from the Classics:

    Budging the sluggard ripples of the Somme,
    A barge round old Cérisy slowly slewed.
    Softly her engines down the current screwed,
    And chuckled softly with contented hum
    'C'est la vie' say the old folks it goes to show you never can tell

  11. #11
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    Default Re: My favourite quotation from the Classics:

    Yeah, well a classic quote from Masefield got me into big trouble while on night watch at the helm of a three masted barque off the Pacific Coast. I picked out a star, lined it up with the tip of the main royal starboard yard and for a couple of hours steered accordingly. Until the capt’n came up on deck, glanced at the compass and said, “Where the hell are you going?!”

  12. #12
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    Default Re: My favourite quotation from the Classics:

    Quote Originally Posted by ron ll View Post
    Yeah, well a classic quote from Masefield got me into big trouble while on night watch at the helm of a three masted barque off the Pacific Coast. I picked out a star, lined it up with the tip of the main royal starboard yard and for a couple of hours steered accordingly. Until the capt’n came up on deck, glanced at the compass and said, “Where the hell are you going?!”
    I like it. Poetry meets astronomy and astronomy wins. So I'll add a relevant quote here: "Eppur si muove".

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    Default Re: My favourite quotation from the Classics:

    Push off, and sitting well in order smite

    The sounding furrows; for my purpose holds

    To sail beyond the sunset, and the baths

    Of all the western stars, until I die.

    It may be that the gulfs will wash us down:

    It may be we shall touch the Happy Isles,

    And see the great Achilles, whom we knew.

    Tho' much is taken, much abides; and tho'

    We are not now that strength which in old days

    Moved earth and heaven, that which we are, we are;

    One equal temper of heroic hearts,

    Made weak by time and fate, but strong in will

    To strive, to seek, to find, and not to yield.
    Re-naming straits as necessary.

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    Default Re: My favourite quotation from the Classics:

    “Believe me, my young friend, there is nothing - absolutely nothing - half so much worth doing as simply messing about in boats.”
    Kenneth Grahame, The Wind in the Willows

    24

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    Default Re: My favourite quotation from the Classics:

    Quote Originally Posted by JimConlin View Post
    “Believe me, my young friend, there is nothing - absolutely nothing - half so much worth doing as simply messing about in boats.”
    Kenneth Grahame, The Wind in the Willows

    24

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