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C.N. Douglas, comp.  Forty Thousand Quotations: Prose and Poetical.  1917.
 
Rousseau
 
        Days of absence, sad and dreary;
  Clothed in sorrow’s dark array,—
Days of absence, I am weary;
  She I love is far away.
  1
  A bluestocking is the scourge of her husband, children, friends, servants, and every one.  2
  Abstaining so as really to enjoy, is the epicurism, the very perfection, of reason.  3
  Abstract truth is the eye of reason.  4
  Accent is the soul of language: it gives to it feeling and truth.  5
  Anticipation and Hope are born twins.  6
  As a general thing we obtain very surely and very speedily what we are not too anxious to obtain.  7
  Childhood is the sleep of reason.  8
  Conscience is the voice of the soul, the passions are the voice of the body. Is it astonishing that often these two languages contradict each other, and then to which must we listen? Too often reason deceives us; we have only too much acquired the right of refusing to listen to it; but conscience never deceives us; it is the true guide of man; it is to man what instinct is to the body, which follows it, obeys nature, and never is afraid of going astray.  9
  Consolation indiscreetly pressed upon us, when we are suffering undue affliction, only serves to increase our pain, and to render our grief more poignant.  10
  Education is either from nature, from man, or from things; the developing of our faculties and organs is the education of nature; that of man is the application we learn to make of this very developing; and that of things is the experience we acquire in regard to the different objects by which we are affected. All that we have not at our birth, and that we stand in need of at the years of maturity, is the gift of education.  11
  Equality is deemed by many a mere speculative chimera, which can never be reduced to practice. But if the abuse is inevitable, does it follow that we ought not to try at least to mitigate it? It is precisely because the force of things tends always to destroy equality that the force of the legislature must always tend to maintain it.  12
  Even knaves may be made good for something.  13
  Every blue-stocking will remain a spinster as long as there are sensible men on the earth.  14
  Everything made by man may be destroyed by man; there are no ineffaceable characters except those engraved by nature; and nature makes neither princes nor rich men nor great lords.  15
  Falsehood is susceptible of an infinity of combinations, but truth has only one mode of being.  16
  Fame is but the breath of the people, and that often unwholesome.  17
  General abstract truth is the most precious of all blessings; without it, man is blind; it is the eye of reason.  18
  Generally we obtain very surely and very speedily what we are not too anxious to obtain.  19
  Gracefulness cannot subsist without ease; delicacy is not debility; nor must a woman be sick in order to please. Infirmity and sickness may excite our pity, but desire and pleasure require the bloom and vigor of health,  20
 
 
  Gratitude is a duty which ought to be paid, but which none have a right to expect.  21
  Happiness—a good bank account, a good cook, and a good digestion.  22
  He who is the most slow in making a promise is the most faithful in the performance of it.  23
  Her pleasures are in the happiness of her family.  24
  Heroes are not known by the loftiness of their carriage, as the greatest braggarts are generally the merest cowards.  25
  I think we cannot too strongly attack superstition, which is the disturber of society; nor too highly respect genuine religion, which is the support of it.  26
  If all were perfect Christians, individuals would do their duty; the people would be obedient to the laws, the magistrates incorrupt, and there would be neither vanity nor luxury in such a state.  27
  If Socrates died like a sage, Jesus died like a God.  28
  If the life and death of Socrates were those of a sage, the life and death of Jesus were those of a God.  29
  If there were a people consisting of gods, they would be governed democratically. So perfect a government is not suitable to men.  30
  In the North the first words are, Help me; in the South, Love me.  31
  Infirmity and sickness may excite our pity; but desire and pleasure require the bloom and vigor of health.  32
  Interest is the spur of the people, but glory that of great souls.  33
  It is always a poor way of reading the hearts of others to try to conceal our own.  34
  It is believed that physiognomy is only a simple development of the features already marked out by nature. It is my opinion, however, that in addition to this development, the features come insensibly to be formed and assume their shape from the frequent and habitual expression of certain affections of the soul. These affections are marked on the countenance; nothing is more certain than this; and when they turn into habits, they must leave on it durable impressions.  35
  It is not our criminal actions that require courage to confess, but those which are ridiculous and foolish.  36
  It is well known that a loose and easy dress contributes much to give to both sexes those fine proportions of body that are observable in the Grecians statues, and which serve as models to our present artists.  37
  Many men, seemingly impelled by fortune, hasten forward to meet misfortune half way.  38
  Men and nations can only be reformed in their youth; they become incorrigible as they grow old.  39
  Men speak from knowledge, women from imagination.  40
  Not all the subtilties of metaphysics can make me doubt a moment of the immortality of the soul, and of a beneficent Providence. I feel it, I believe it, I desire it, I hope it, and will defend it to my last breath.  41
  Nothing is less in our power than the heart, and, far from commanding it, we are forced to obey it.  42
  One loses all the time which he can employ better.  43
  One may live tranquilly in a dungeon; but does life consist in living quietly?  44
  Our greatest misfortunes come to us from ourselves.  45
  Patience is bitter, but its fruit is sweet.  46
  Physical evils destroy themselves, or they destroy us.  47
  Presence of mind, penetration, fine observation, are the sciences of women; ability to avail themselves of these is their talent.  48
  Reason deceives us often; conscience never.  49
  Remorse goes to sleep during a prosperous period and wakes up in adversity.  50
  Sacrifice life to truth.  51
  Self-love is an instrument useful but dangerous; it often wounds the hand which makes use of it, and seldom does good without doing harm.  52
  Singing and dancing alone will not advance one in the world.  53
  Taste is, so to speak, the microscope of judgment.  54
  That which renders life burdensome to us generally arises from the abuse of it.  55
  The empire of woman is an empire of softness, of address, of complacency. Her commands are caresses, her menaces are tears.  56
  The greater number of nations, as of men, are only impressible in their youth; they become incorrigible as they grow old.  57
  The infant, on first opening his eyes, ought to see his country, and to the hour of his death never to lose sight of it.  58
  The majesty of the Scriptures strikes me with admiration, as the purity of the gospel has its influence on my heart.  59
  The man is best served who has no occasion to put the hands of others at the end of his own arms.  60
  The mind grows narrow in proportion as the soul grows corrupt.  61
  The opportunity of making happy is more scarce than we imagine; the punishment of missing it is, never to meet with it again; and the use we make of it leaves us an eternal sentiment of satisfaction or repentance.  62
  The passions are the voice of the body.  63
  The science of government is only a science of combinations, of applications, and of exceptions, according to times, places and circumstances.  64
  The tone of good conversation is brilliant and natural; it is neither tedious nor frivolous; it is instructive without pedantry, gay without tumultuousness, polished without affectation, gallant without insipidity, waggish without equivocation.  65
  The training of children is a profession where we must know to lose time in order to gain it.  66
  The truths of the Scriptures are so marked and inimitable, that the inventor would be more of a miraculous character than the hero.  67
  The want of occupation is no less the plague of society than of solitude.  68
  The warder of the mind.  69
  The world is the book of women. What knowledge they may possess is acquired by watchful observation rather than by reading.  70
  The world of reality has its limits; the world of imagination is boundless. Not being able to enlarge the one, let us contract the other; for it is from their difference alone that all the evils arise which render us really unhappy.  71
  The writings of women are always cold and pretty like themselves. There is as much wit as you may desire, but never any soul.  72
  There is a period of life when we go back as we advance.  73
  There is no folly of which a man who is not a fool cannot get rid except vanity; of this nothing cures a man except experience of its bad consequences, if indeed anything can cure it.  74
  To abstain that we may enjoy is the epicureanism of reason.  75
  To endure is the first thing a child ought to learn, and that which he will have most need to know.  76
  To live is not merely to breathe, it is to act; it is to make use of our organs, senses, faculties, of all those part of ourselves which give us the feeling of existence. The man who has lived longest is not the man who has counted most years, but he who has enjoyed life most. Such a one was buried a hundred years old, but he was dead from his birth. He would have gained by dying young; at least he would have lived till that time.  77
  To try to conceal our own heart is a bad means to read that of others.  78
  Trust to me, judicious mother: do not make of your daughter an honest man, as if to give the lie to Nature; make her an honest woman, and be assured that she will be of more worth both to herself and to us.  79
  Virtue is a state of war, and to live in it we have always to combat with ourselves.  80
  We do not know either unalloyed happiness or unmitigated misfortune. Everything in this world is a tangled yarn; we taste nothing in its purity; we do not remain two moments in the same state. Our affections as well as bodies, are in a perpetual flux.  81
  We do not know what is really good or bad fortune.  82
  We pity in others only those evils which we have ourselves experienced.  83
  Whatever may be our natural talents, the art of writing is not acquired all at once.  84
  When my reason is afloat, my faith cannot long remain in suspense, and I believe in God as firmly as in any other truth whatever; in short, a thousand motives draw me to the consolatary side, and add the weight of hope to the equilibrium of reason.  85
  Women speak at an earlier age, more easily, and more agreeably than men; they are accused also of speaking more: this is as it should be, and I willingly change the reproach into a eulogy.  86
 
 
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