Marriage has in it less of beauty, but more of safety, than the single life; it hath not more ease, but less danger; it is more merry and more sad; it is fuller of sorrows and fuller of joys; it lies under more burdens, but is supported by all the strengths of love and charity; and those burdens are delightful.
A married man falling into misfortune is more apt to retrieve his situation in the world than a single one, chiefly because his spirits are soothed and retrieved by domestic endearments, and his self-respect kept alive by finding that although all abroad be darkness and humiliation, yet there is a little world of love at home over which he is a monarch.
A good wife is heaven's last, best gift to man, - his gem of many virtues, his casket of jewels; her voice is sweet music, her smiles his brightest day, her kiss the guardian of his innocence, her arms the pale of his safety, her industry his surest wealth, her economy his safest steward, her lips his faithful counsellors, her bosom the softest pillow of his cares.
When Eve was brought unto Adam, he became filled with the Holy Spirit, and gave her the most sanctified, the most glorious of appellations. He called her Eva, that is to say, the Mother of All. He did not style her wife, but simply mother, mother of all living creatures. In this consists the glory and the most precious ornament of woman.
The married man is like the bee that fixes his hive, augments the world, benefits the republic, and by a daily diligence, without wronging any, profits all; but he who contemns wedlock, like a wasp, wanders an offence to the world, lives upon spoil and rapine, disturbs peace, steals sweets that are none of his own, and, by robbing the hives of others, meets misery as his due reward.
Deceive not thyself by over-expecting happiness in the married state. Look not therein for contentment greater than God will give, or a creature in this world can receive, namely, to be free from all inconveniences. Marriage is not like the hill of Olympus, wholly clear, without clouds.