Reference > Quotations > Hoyt & Roberts, comps. > Hoyt’s New Cyclopedia of Practical Quotations
Hoyt & Roberts, comps.  Hoyt’s New Cyclopedia of Practical Quotations.  1922.
  Spiritalis enim virtus sacramenti ita est ut lux: etsi per immundos transeat, non inquinatur.
  The spiritual virtue of a sacrament is like light: although it passes among the impure, it is not polluted.
        St. Augustine—Works. Vol. III. In Johannis Evang. Cap. I. Tr. V. Sect. XV.
Corruption is a tree, whose branches are
Of an immeasurable length: they spread
Ev’rywhere; and the dew that drops from thence
Hath infected some chairs and stools of authority.
        Beaumont and Fletcher—Honest Man’s Fortune. Act III. Sc. 3.
*  *  *  thieves at home must hang; but he that puts
Into his overgorged and bloated purse
The wealth of Indian provinces, escapes.
        Cowper—Task. Bk. I. L. 736.
’Tis the most certain sign, the world’s accurst
That the best things corrupted, are the worst;
’Twas the corrupted Light of knowledge, hurl’d
Sin, Death, and Ignorance o’er all the world;
That Sun like this (from which our sight we have)
Gaz’d on too long, resumes the light he gave.
        Sir John Denham—Progress of Learning.
  I know, when they prove bad, they are a sort of the vilest creatures: yet still the same reason gives it: for, Optima corrupta pessima: the best things corrupted become the worst.
        Feltham—Resolves. XXX. Of Woman. P. 70. Pickering’s Reprint of Fourth Ed. (1631).
When rogues like these (a sparrow cries)
To honours and employments rise,
I court no favor, ask no place,
For such preferment is disgrace.
        Gay—Fables. Pt. II. Fable 2.
At length corruption, like a general flood
(So long by watchful ministers withstood),
Shall deluge all; and avarice, creeping on,
Spread like a low-born mist, and blot the sun.
        Pope—Moral Essays. Ep. III. L. 135.
  So true is that old saying, Corruptio optimi pessima.
        Purchas—Pilgrimage. To the Reader. Of religion. Saying may be traced to Thomas Aquinas. Prim. Soc. Art. I. 5. Aristotle. Eth. Nic. VIII. 10. 12. Eusebius—Demon. Evang. I. IV. Ch. XII. St. Gregory—Moralia on Job.
  The men with the muck-rake are often indispensable to the well-being of society, but only if they know when to stop raking the muck.
        Roosevelt—Address at the Corner-stone laying of the Office Building of House of Representatives, April 14, 1906.

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