Reference > Quotations > C.N. Douglas, comp. > Forty Thousand Quotations > Primary Author Index
C.N. Douglas, comp.  Forty Thousand Quotations: Prose and Poetical.  1917.
  A generous nation is grateful even for the preservation of its rights, and willingly extends the respect due to the office of a good prince into an affection for his person.  1
  A writer who builds his arguments upon facts is not easily to be confuted. He is not to be answered by general assertions or general reproaches. He may want eloquence to amuse and persuade; but, speaking truth, he must always convince.  2
  After a long experience in the world, I affirm, before God, I never knew a rogue who was not unhappy.  3
  An academical education, sir, bids me tell you, that it is necessary to establish the truth of your first proposition before you presume to draw inferences from it.  4
  An obstinate, ungovernable self-sufficiency plainly points out to us that state of imperfect maturity at which the graceful levity of youth is lost and the solidity of experience not yet acquired.  5
  Anger has some claim to indulgence, and railing is usually a relief to the mind.  6
  As to lawyers,—their profession is supported by the indiscriminate defence of right and wrong.  7
  Assertion, unsupported by fact, is nugatory; surmise and general abuse, in however elegant language, ought not to pass for proofs.  8
  Be not affronted at a joke. If one throw salt at thee, thou wilt receive no harm, unless thou art raw.  9
  Compassion to an offender who has grossly violated the laws is, in effect, a cruelty to the peaceable subject who has observed them.  10
  Deliberate treachery entails punishment upon the traitor. There is no possibility of escaping it, even in the highest rank to which the consent of society can exalt the meanest and worst of men.  11
  Even legal punishments lose all appearance of justice, when too strictly inflicted on men compelled by the last extremity of distress to incur them.  12
  Every common dauber writes rascal and villain under his pictures, because the pictures themselves have neither character nor resemblance. But the works of a master require no index. His features and coloring are taken from nature. The impression they make is immediate and uniform; nor is it possible to mistake his characters.  13
  Friendship is too pure a pleasure for a mind cankered with ambition, or the lust of power and grandeur.  14
  Gratuitous violence in argument betrays a conscious weakness of the cause, and is usually a signal of despair.  15
  Guilt alone, like brain-sick frenzy in its feverish mood, fills the light air with visionary terrors, and shapeless forms of fear.  16
  Guilt is a poor, helpless, dependent being. Without the alliance of able, diligent, and let me add, fortunate fraud, it is inevitably undone. If the guilty culprit be obstinately silent, it forms a deadly presumption against him; if he speaks, talking tends only to his discovery, and his very defence often furnishes the materials for his conviction.  17
  How much easier it is to be generous than just! Men are sometimes bountiful who are not honest.  18
  I do not give you to posterity as a pattern to imitate, but as an example to deter.  19
  I give you full credit for your elegant diction, well-turned periods, and Attic wit; but wit is oftentimes false, though it may appear brilliant; which is exactly the case of your whole performance.  20
  In a great business there is nothing so fatal as cunning management.  21
  In a state where discretion begins, law, liberty, and safety end.  22
  Injuries may be atoned for, and forgiven; but insults admit of no compensation. They degrade the mind in its own esteem, and force it to recover its level by revenge.  23
  Insults admit of no compensation.  24
  Intemperance is a great decayer of beauty.  25
  It behooves the minor critic who hunts for blemishes to be a little distrustful of his own sagacity.  26
  It is an eternal truth in the political as well as the mystical body, that “where one member suffers, all the members suffer with it.”  27
  It is an impudent kind of sorcery to attempt to blind us with the smoke without convincing us that the fire has existed.  28
  It is hard to say which of the two we ought most to lament,—the unhappy man who sinks under the sense of his dishonor, or him who survives it.  29
  It is more than possible, that those who have neither character nor honor may be wounded in a very tender part,—their interest.  30
  It is the coward who fawns upon those above him. It is the coward that is insolent whenever he dares be so.  31
  Let it be impressed upon your minds, let it be instilled into your children, that the liberty of the press is the palladium of all the civil, political and religious rights.  32
  No outward tyranny can reach the mind. If conscience plays the tyrant, it would be greatly for the benefit of the world that she were more arbitrary, and far less placable than some men find her.  33
  No reasonable man would be eager to possess himself of the invidious power of inflicting punishment, if he were not predetermined to make use of it.  34
  One precedent creates another. They soon accumulate, and constitute law. What yesterday was fact, to-day is doctrine. Examples are supposed to justify the most dangerous measures; and where they do not suit exactly, the defect is supplied by analogy.  35
  Oppression is more easily borne than insult.  36
  Private credit is wealth; public honor is security. The feather that adorns the royal bird supports its flight; strip him of his plumage, and you pin him to the earth.  37
  Superstition is certainly not the characteristic of this age. Yet some men are bigoted in politics who are infidels in religion. Ridiculous credulity!  38
  The character of the reputed ancestors of some men has made it possible for their descendants to be vicious in the extreme, without being degenerate; and there are some hereditary strokes of character by which a family may be as clearly distinguished as by the blackest features of the human face.  39
  The coldest bodies warm with opposition, the hardest sparkle in collision.  40
  The divine right of beauty is the only divine right a man can acknowledge, and a pretty woman the only tyrant he is not authorized to resist.  41
  The gentle breath of peace would leave him on the surface neglected and unmoved. It is only the tempest that lifts him from his place.  42
  The integrity of men is to be measured by their conduct, not by their professions.  43
  The most accomplished persons have usually some defect, some weakness in their characters, which diminishes the lustre of their brighter qualifications.  44
  The sequence of requests is obligation.  45
  The vices operate like age,—bring on disease before its time, and in the prime of youth, leave the character broken and exhausted.  46
  The violation of party faith is of itself too common to excite surprise or indignation. Political friendships are so well understood that we can hardly pity the simplicity they deceive.  47
  There are persons who flatter themselves that the size of their works will make them immortal. They pile up reluctant quarto upon solid folio, as if their labors, because they are gigantic, could contend with truth and heaven!  48
  There are proselytes from atheism, but none from superstition.  49
  There is a moment of difficulty and danger at which flattery and falsehood can no longer deceive, and simplicity itself can no longer be misled.  50
  They (Americans) equally detest the pageantry of a king and the supercilious hypocrisy of a bishop.  51
  Those who are conversant with books well know how often they mislead us when we have not a living monitor at hand to assist us in comparing practice with theory.  52
  To attack vices in the abstract, without touching persons, may be safe fighting indeed, but it is fighting with shadows.  53
  Vanity indeed is a venial error; for it usually carries its own punishment with it.  54
  We always make our friend appear awkward and ridiculous by giving him a laced suit of tawdry qualifications, which nature never intended him to wear.  55
  When a beautiful woman yields to temptation, let her consult her pride, though she forgets her virtue.  56
  When once a man is determined to believe, the very absurdity of the doctrine confirms him in his faith.  57

Shakespeare · Bible · Strunk · Anatomy · Nonfiction · Quotations · Reference · Fiction · Poetry
© 1993–2015 · [Top 150] · Subjects · Titles · Authors · World Lit.