"The business of a poet," said Imlac, "is hard to examine, not the individual, but the species; to remark general properties and large appearances.  He does not number the streaks of the tulip, or describe the different shades in the verdure of the forest:  he is to exhibit in his portraits of nature such prominent and striking features, as recall the original to every mind; and must neglect the minuter discriminations, which one may have remarked, and another have neglected, for those characteristics which are alike obvious to vigilance and carelessness."

--Samuel Johnson, The History of Rasselas, Chapter X (1759)


O could I flow like thee, and make thy stream
My great example, as it is my theme! [190]
Though deep, yet clear, though gentle, yet not dull,
Strong without rage, without ore-flowing full.

--Sir John Denham, "Cooper's Hill" (1642)


Therefore am I still
A lover of the meadows and the woods,
And mountains; and of all that we behold
From this green earth; of all the mighty world
Of eye, and ear, -- both what they half create,
And what perceive; well pleased to recognise
In nature and the language of the sense,
The anchor of my purest thoughts, the nurse,
The guide, the guardian of my heart, and soul
Of all my moral being.

--William Wordsworth, "Tintern Abbey" (1798)