Nonfiction > Harvard Classics > William Penn > Fruits of Solitude
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William Penn. (1644–1718).  Fruits of Solitude.
The Harvard Classics.  1909–14.
 
Part I
 
Rules of Conversation
 
 
128. Avoid Company where it is not profitable or necessary; and in those Occasions speak little, and last.  1
  129. Silence is Wisdom, where Speaking is Folly; and always safe.  2
  130. Some are so Foolish as to interrupt and anticipate those that speak, instead of hearing and thinking before they answer; which is uncivil as well as silly.  3
  131. If thou thinkest twice, before thou speakest once, thou wilt speak twice the better for it.  4
  132. Better say nothing than not to the Purpose. And to speak pertinently, consider both what is fit, and when it is fit to speak.  5
  133. In all Debates, let Truth be thy Aim, not Victory, or an unjust Interest: And endeavor to gain, rather than to expose thy Antagonist.  6
  134. Give no Advantage in Argument, nor lose any that is offered. This is a Benefit which arises from Temper.  7
  135. Don’t use thy self to dispute against thine own Judgment, to shew Wit, lest it prepare thee to be too indifferent about what is Right: Nor against another Man, to vex him, or for mere Trial of Skill; since to inform, or to be informed, ought to be the End of all Conferences.  8
  136. Men are too apt to be concerned for their Credit, more than for the Cause.  9
 

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