Reference > Quotations > Hoyt & Roberts, comps. > Hoyt’s New Cyclopedia of Practical Quotations
Hoyt & Roberts, comps.  Hoyt’s New Cyclopedia of Practical Quotations.  1922.
  Method is not less requisite in ordinary conversation than in writing, provided a man would talk to make himself understood.
        Addison—The Spectator. No. 476.
With good and gentle-humored hearts
I choose to chat where’er I come
Whate’er the subject be that starts.
But if I get among the glum
I hold my tongue to tell the truth
And keep my Breath to cool my broth.
        John Byrom—Careless Content.
  In conversation avoid the extremes of forwardness and reserve.
But conversation, choose what theme we may,
And chiefly when religion leads the way,
Should flow, like waters after summer show’rs,
Not as if raised by mere mechanic powers.
        Cowper—Conversation. L. 703.
Conversation is a game of circles.
        Emerson—Essays. Circles.
  Conversation is the laboratory and workshop of the student.
        Emerson—Society and Solitude. Clubs.
I never, with important air,
In conversation overbear.
    *    *    *    *
My tongue within my lips I rein;
For who talks much must talk in vain.
        Gay—Fables. Pt. I. Introduction. L. 53.
With thee conversing I forget the way.
        Gay—Trivia. Bk. II. L. 480.
  They would talk of nothing but high life and high-lived company, with other fashionable topics, such as pictures, taste, Shakespeare, and the musical glasses.
        Goldsmith—Vicar of Wakefield. Ch. IX.
And when you stick on conversation’s burs,
Don’t strew your pathway with those dreadful urs.
        Holmes—A Rhymed Lesson. Urania.
Discourse, the sweeter banquet of the mind.
        Homer—The Odyssey. Bk. 15. L. 433. Pope’s trans.
  His conversation does not show the minute hand; but he strikes the hour very correctly.
        Samuel Johnson—Johnsoniana. Kearsley. L. 604.
  Tom Birch is as brisk as a bee in conversation; but no sooner does he take a pen in his hand, than it becomes a torpedo to him, and benumbs all his faculties.
        Samuel Johnson—Boswell’s Life. (1743).
  Questioning is not the mode of conversation among gentlemen.
        Samuel Johnson—Boswell’s Life. (1776).
  A single conversation across the table with a wise man is better than ten years’ study of books.
        Longfellow—Hyperion. Ch. VII. Quoted from the Chinese.
  Men of great conversational powers almost universally practise a sort of lively sophistry and exaggeration which deceives for the moment both themselves and their auditors.
        Macaulay—Essay. On the Athenian Orators.
With thee conversing I forget all time:
All seasons and their change, all please alike.
        MiltonParadise Lost. Bk. IV. L. 639.
  Inject a few raisins of conversation into the tasteless dough of existence.
        O. Henry—The Complete Life of John Hopkins.
Form’d by thy converse, happily to steer
From grave to gay, from lively to severe.
        Pope—Essay on Man. Ep. IV. L. 379.
We took sweet counsel together.
        Psalms. LV. 14.
Ita fabulantur ut qui sciant Dominum audire.
  They converse as those who know that God hears.
        Tertullian—Apologeticus. P. 36. (Ed. Rigalt).
A dearth of words a woman need not fear;
But ’tis a task indeed to learn to hear:
In that the skill of conversation lies;
That shows or makes you both polite and wise.
        Young—Love of Fame. Satire V. L. 57.

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