Quotations > J. De Finod, comp. > French Wit, Wisdom, and Wickedness
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CONTENTS · BIBLIOGRAPHIC RECORD
J. De Finod, comp.  A Thousand Flashes of French Wit, Wisdom, and Wickedness.  1886.
 
Nos. 1–399
 
Introductory

TO select well among old things is almost equal to inventing new ones.
Trublet.    
  1
 
  The flavor of detached thoughts depends upon the conciseness of their expression: for thoughts are grains of sugar, or of salt, that must be melted in a drop of water.
J. Petit-Senn.    
  2
 
  When we say there is nothing new under the sun, we do not count forgotten things.
E. Thierry.    
  3
 
  A burlesque word is often a mighty sermon.
Boileau.    
  4
 
  He who hears but one bell, hears but one sound.
Proverb.    
  5
 
  What seems only ludicrous is sometimes very serious.
Rabelais.    
  6
 
  Better a man with paradoxes than a man with prejudices.
J. J. Rousseau.    
  7
 
  We must laugh before we are happy, lest we should die without having laughed.
La Bruyère.    
  8
 
  The history of love would be the history of humanity: it would be a beautiful book to write.
Ch. Nodier.    
  9
 
  Strong thoughts are iron nails driven in the mind, that nothing can draw out.
Diderot.    
  10
 
  In this world, one must put cloaks on all truths, even the nicest.
Balzac.    
  11
 
  Fear of hypocrites and fools is the great plague of thinking and writing.
J. Janin.    
  12
 
  Women prefer us to say a little evil of them, rather than say nothing of them at all.
A. Ricard.    
  13
 
  All truths are not to be uttered; still it is always good to hear them.
Mme. du Deffand.    
  14
 
  Wisdom is to the soul what health is to the body.
De Saint-Réal.    
  15
 
  Thought is the first faculty of man: to express it is one of his first desires; to spread it, his dearest privilege.
Raynal.    
  16
 
  One of the principal occupations of men is to divine women.
Lacretelle.    
  17
 
  Love is composed of so many sensations, that something new of it can always be said.
Saint-Prosper.    
  18
 
  A truth that one does not understand becomes an error.
Desbarolles.    
  19
 
  Can one better expiate his sins than by enlisting his experience in the service of morals.
De Bernard.    
  20
 
  A delicate thought is a flower of the mind.
Rollin.    
  21
 
  Men may say of marriage and women what they please: they will renounce neither the one nor the other.  22
 
  The history of the thoughts of men, curious on account of their infinite variety, is also sometimes instructive.
Fontenelle.    
  23
 
  Men say of women what pleases them; women do with men what pleases them.
De Ségur.    
  24
 
  Verity is nudity.
A. de Musset.    
  25
 
  A jest that makes a virtuous woman only smile, often frightens away a prude; but, when real danger forces the former to flee, the latter does not hesitate to advance.
Laténa.    
  26
 
  To laugh is the characteristic of man.
Rabelais.    
  27
 
  Although it is dangerous to have too much knowledge of certain subjects, it is still more dangerous to be totally ignorant of them.
Colombat.    
  28
 
  There will always remain something to be said of woman, as long as there is one on the earth.
Boufflers.    
  29
 
  When one writes of woman, he must reserve the right to laugh at his ideas of the day before.
A. Ricard.    
  30
 
  O Truth! pure and sacred virgin, when wilt thou be worthily revered? O Goddess who instructs us, why didst thou put thy palace in a well? When will our learned writers, alike free from bitterness and from flattery, faithfully teach us life?
Voltaire.    
  31
 
  Should we condemn ourselves to ignorance to preserve hope?
E. Souvestre.    
  32
 
  Ignorance is the mother of all evils.
Montaigne.    
  33
 
  All my misfortunes come of having thought too well of my fellows.
J. J. Rousseau.    
  34
 
  We laugh but little in our days, but are we less frivolous?
Béranger.    
  35
 
  Common sense is not a common thing.
Valaincourt.    
  36
 
  Our century is a brutal thinker.
Béranger.    
  37
 
  The most completely lost of all days is the one on which we have not laughed.
Chamfort.    
  38
 
  Melancholy is the convalescence of sorrow.
Mme. Dufresnoy.    
  39
 
  Of all heavy bodies, the heaviest is the woman we have ceased to love.
Lemontey.    
  40
 
  Pleasures are like liqueurs: they must be drunk but in small glasses.
Romainville.    
  41
 
  Of what is man certain? What lasts? What passes? What is chimerical? What is real?… Every body drags its shadow, and every mind its doubt.
Victor Hugo.    
  42
 
  Discretion is more necessary to women than eloquence, because they have less trouble to speak well than to speak little.
Father Du Bosc.    
  43
 
  Twenty years in the life of a man is sometimes a severe lesson.
Mme. de Staël.    
  44
 
  Envy lurks at the bottom of the human heart like a viper in its hole.
Balzac.    
  45
 
  Marriage is a lottery in which men stake their liberty, and women their happiness.
Mme. de Rieux.    
  46
 
  Young saint, old devil; young devil, old saint.
Proverb.    
  47
 
  The heart has no wrinkles.
Mme. de Sévigné.    
  48
 
  Experience is the name men give to their follies, or their sorrows.
A. de Musset.    
  49
 
  Women are constantly the dupes, or the victims, of their extreme sensitiveness.
Balzac.    
  50
 
  Oblivion is the flower that grows best on graves.
George Sand.    
  51
 
  In life, as in a promenade, woman must lean on a man above her.
A. Karr.    
  52
 
  For one Orpheus who went to Hell to seek his wife, how many widowers who would not even go to Paradise to find theirs!
J. Petit-Senn.    
  53
 
  When a lover gives, he demands—and much more than he has given.
Parny.    
  54
 
  In most men there is a dead poet whom the man survives.
Sainte-Beuve.    
  55
 
  Woman is a perfected devil.
Victor Hugo.    
  56
 
  How many people would be mute if they were forbidden to speak well of themselves, and evil of others!
Mme. de Fontaines.    
  57
 
  Coquettes are the quacks of love.
La Rochefoucauld.    
  58
 
  To remain virtuous, a man has only to combat his own desires: a woman must resist her own inclinations, and the continual attack of man.
Laténa.    
  59
 
  We condemn vice and extol virtue only through interest.
La Rochefoucauld.    
  60
 
  The less one sees and knows men, the higher one esteems them; for experience teaches their real value.
Marguerite de Valois.    
  61
 
  Beauty without grace is a hook without a bait.
Ninon de Lenclos.    
  62
 
  The destiny of nations depends upon the manner in which they feed themselves.
Brillat-Savarin.    
  63
 
  He who is never guilty of follies is not so wise as he imagines.
La Rochefoucauld.    
  64
 
  Contempt is like the hot iron that brands criminals: its imprint is almost always indelible.
Alibert.    
  65
 
  Antiquity is the aristocracy of History.
A. Dumas père.    
  66
 
  A hydra advances which will soon devour all the men of sentiment: this hydra is the cipher.
O. Firmez.    
  67
 
  Folly was condemned to serve as a guide to Love whom she had blinded.
La Fontaine.    
  68
 
  The future of society is in the hands of the mothers. If the world was lost through woman, she alone can save it.
De Beaufort.    
  69
 
  What we gain by experience is not worth what we lose in illusion.
Petit-Senn.    
  70
 
  The breaking of a heart leaves no traces.
George Sand.    
  71
 
  There are few husbands whom the wife can not win in the long run by patience and love, unless they are harder than the rocks which the soft water penetrates in time.
Marguerite de Valois.    
  72
 
  From the moment it is touched, the heart can not dry up.
Bourdaloue.    
  73
 
  Prejudice is the reason of fools.
Voltaire.    
  74
 
  The best government is not that which renders men the happiest, but that which renders the greatest number happy.
Ch. P. Duclos.    
  75
 
  Hypocrisy of manners, a vice peculiar to modern nations, has contributed more than one thinks to destroy that energy of character which distinguished the nations of antiquity.
Condorcet.    
  76
 
  Celebrity sells dearly what we think she gives.
E. Souvestre.    
  77
 
  The world either breaks or hardens the heart.
Chamfort.    
  78
 
  Old age is the night of life, as night is the old age of the day. Still, night is full of magnificence; and, for many, it is more brilliant than the day.
Mme. Swetchine.    
  79
 
  A mother’s tenderness and caresses are the milk of the heart.
Mlle. de Guérin.    
  80
 
  Many have lived on a pedestal, who will never have a statue when dead.
Béranger.    
  81
 
  In eternal cares we spend our years, ever agitated by new desires: we look forward to living, and yet never live.
Fontenelle.    
  82
 
  Frequently the curses of men bring the blessings of Heaven.
Lamennais.    
  83
 
  There are some moral conditions in which Death smiles upon us, as smiles a silent and peaceful night upon the exhausted laborer.
Alfred Mercier.    
  84
 
  At the age when the faculties droop, when stern experience has destroyed all sweet illusions, man may seek solitude; but, at twenty, the affections which he is compelled to repress are a tomb in which he buries himself alive.
E. de Girardin.    
  85
 
  Doubt follows white-winged Hope with a limping gait.
Balzac.    
  86
 
  Progress is lame.
Sainte-Beuve.    
  87
 
  Great vices, and great virtues, are exceptions in mankind.
Napoleon I.    
  88
 
  It is easier to take care of a peck of fleas than of one woman.
Proverb.    
  89
 
  Many men kill themselves for love, but many more women die of it.
Lemontey.    
  90
 
  No one knows himself until he has suffered.
A. de Musset.    
  91
 
  Who would venture upon the journey of life, if compelled to begin it at the end?
Mme. de Maintenon.    
  92
 
  All those observers who have spent their lives in the study of the human heart, know less about the signs of love than the most brainless, yet sensitive woman.
J. J. Rousseau.    
  93
 
  There are no oaths that make so many perjurers as the vows of love.
Rochebrune.    
  94
 
  One can impose silence on sentiment, but one can not give it limits.
Mme. Necker.    
  95
 
  Women deceived by men want to marry them: it is a kind of revenge as good as any other.
Beaumanoir.    
  96
 
  Recollection is the only paradise out of which we can not be driven.  97
 
  One must tell women only what one wants to be known.
Caron.    
  98
 
  One blushes oftener from the wounds of self-love than from modesty.
Mme. Guibert.    
  99
 
  Between the mouth and the kiss, there is always time for repentance.
A. Ricard.    
  100
 
  Prosperity makes few friends.
Vauvenargues.    
  101
 
  The thought of eternity consoles us for the shortness of life.
Malesherbes.    
  102
 
  He is the happiest who renders the greatest number happy.
Desmahis.    
  103
 
  Flow, wine! smile, woman! and the universe is consoled!
Béranger.    
  104
 
  We should not pass from the earth without leaving traces to carry our memory to posterity.
Napoleon I.    
  105
 
  The moral amelioration of man constitutes the chief mission of woman.
A. Comte.    
  106
 
  Everywhere the strong have made the laws and oppressed the weak; and, if they have sometimes consulted the interests of society, they have always forgotten those of humanity.
Turgot.    
  107
 
  We rarely confess that we deserve what we suffer.
Quesnel.    
  108
 
  Under the freest constitution ignorant people are still slaves.
Condorcet.    
  109
 
  Love decreases when it ceases to increase.
Chateaubriand.    
  110
 
  Imagination has more charm in writing than in speaking: great wings must fold before entering a salon.
Prince de Ligne.    
  111
 
  In separations, the one who departs is the soonest consoled.
Mme. de Montolieu.    
  112
 
  Partake of love as a temperate man partakes of wine: do not become intoxicated.
A. de Musset.    
  113
 
  The last census of France embraced nearly twenty millions of women. Happy rascal!  114
 
  In love affairs, from innocence to the fault, there is but a kiss.
A. Second.    
  115
 
  Fortune does not change men: it unmasks them.
Mme. Necker.    
  116
 
  Virtue and Love are two ogres: one must eat the other.
D’Houdetot.    
  117
 
  The table is the only place where we do not get weary during the first hour.
Brillat-Savarin.    
  118
 
  Love never dies of starvation, but often of indigestion.
Ninon de Lenclos.    
  119
 
  Man corrupts all that he touches.
Montaigne.    
  120
 
  Shun idleness: it is the rust that attaches itself to the most brilliant metals.
Voltaire.    
  121
 
  He who is devoted to everybody is devoted to nobody.
C. Delavigne.    
  122
 
  Of all serious things, marriage is the most ludicrous.
Beaumarchais.    
  123
 
  The waves of life toss our destinies like sea-weeds detached from the rock. Houses are ships which receive but passengers.
Souvestre.    
  124
 
  The man who enters his wife’s dressing-room is either a philosopher, or a fool.
Balzac.    
  125
 
  The sowing of wild oats is necessary in the life of a man. Libertinism is a leaven that ferments sooner or later.
J. J. Rousseau.    
  126
 
  The Devil and Love are but one.
Voltaire.    
  127
 
  Hope is a lure. There is no hand that can retain a wave or a shadow.
Victor Hugo.    
  128
 
  Inopportune consolations increase a deep sorrow.
J. J. Rousseau.    
  129
 
  Let youth dance: tempests of the heart arise after the repose of the limbs.
Lemontey.    
  130
 
  How many languish in obscurity, who would become great if emulation and encouragement incited them to exertion!
Fénelon.    
  131
 
  Woman is an idol that man worships, until he throws it down.  132
 
  Many benefit by the caresses they have not inspired; many a vulgar reality serves as a pedestal to an ideal idol.
T. Gautier.    
  133
 
  Necessity is a severe schoolmistress.
Montaigne.    
  134
 
  If all hearts were frank, just, and honest, the major part of the virtues would be useless to us.
Molière.    
  135
 
  O woman! it is thou that causest the tempests that agitate mankind.
J. J. Rousseau.    
  136
 
  War is not as onerous as servitude.
Vauvenargues.    
  137
 
  Glory, ambition, armies, fleets, thrones, crowns: playthings of grown children.
Victor Hugo.    
  138
 
  Great men are like meteors: they glitter and are consumed to enlighten the world.
Napoleon I.    
  139
 
  Oh, poor hearts of poets, eager for the infinite in love, will you never be understood?
Mme. Louise Colet.    
  140
 
  WRITTEN ON A SKULL: Lamp, what hast thou done with the flame? Skeleton, what hast thou done with the soul? Deserted cage, what hast thou done with the bird? Volcano, what hast thou done with the lava? Slave, what hast thou done with thy master?
Mme. A. Ségalas.    
  141
 
  We salute more willingly an acquaintance in a carriage than a friend on foot.
J. Petit-Senn.    
  142
 
  The virtuous woman who falls in love is much to be pitied.
La Rochefoucauld.    
  143
 
  To despise money is to dethrone a king.
Chamfort.    
  144
 
  Instruction is to the proletary what liberty is to the slave: the latter emancipates the body, the former emancipates the intelligence.
E. de Girardin.    
  145
 
  All thinkers have about the same principles, and form but one republic.
Voltaire.    
  146
 
  A poet is a world inclosed in a man.
Victor Hugo.    
  147
 
  The devil must be very powerful, since the sacrifice of a god for men has not rendered them any better.
Piron.    
  148
 
  O world! how many hopes thou dost engulf!
A. de Musset.    
  149
 
  Women swallow at one mouthful the lie that flatters, and drink drop by drop a truth that is bitter.
Diderot.    
  150
 
  It is not easy to be a widow: one must reassume all the modesty of girlhood, without being allowed to even feign its ignorance.
Mme. de Girardin.    
  151
 
  A handsome face is a mute recommendation.  152
 
  Virginity is poetry: it does not exist for fools.
Limayrac.    
  153
 
  What woman desires is written in heaven.
La Chaussée.    
  154
 
  Life often seems but a long shipwreck, of which the débris are friendship, glory, and love: the shores of our existence are strewn with them.
Mme. de Staël.    
  155
 
  Alas! how can we always resist? The devil tempts us, and the flesh is weak.
Voltaire.    
  156
 
  Barbarism recommences by the excess of civilization.
Lamartine.    
  157
 
  There are three things that I have always loved and have never understood: Painting, Music, and Woman.
Fontenelle.    
  158
 
  A philosopher is a fool who torments himself during life, to be spoken of when dead.
D’Alembert.    
  159
 
  How many women would laugh at the funerals of their husbands, if it were not the custom to weep!  160
 
  Beware of him who meets you with a friendly mien, and, in the midst of a cordial salutation, seeks to avoid your glance.
Lavater.    
  161
 
  There is no torture that a woman would not suffer to enhance her beauty.
Montaigne.    
  162
 
  Alas! what does man here below? A little noise in much shadow.
Victor Hugo.    
  163
 
  Modesty in woman is a virtue most deserving, since we do all we can to cure her of it.
Lingrée.    
  164
 
  The more hidden the venom, the more dangerous it is.
Marguerite de Valois.    
  165
 
  It was Love who invented music.
Virey.    
  166
 
  Happiness is a bird that we pursue our life long, without catching it.  167
 
  An idle man is like stagnant water: he corrupts himself.
Laténa.    
  168
 
  Love makes mutes of those who habitually speak most fluently.
Mlle. de Scudéri.    
  169
 
  He who tries to prove too much, proves nothing.
Proverb.    
  170
 
  A woman with whom one discusses love is always in expectation of something.
Poincelot.    
  171
 
  O God! thy pity must have been profound when this miserable world emerged from chaos!
A. de Musset.    
  172
 
  I have seen more than one woman drown her honor in the clear water of diamonds.
D’Houdetot.    
  173
 
  Love is the sin of all men.
Du Bosc.    
  174
 
  One knows the value of pleasure only after he has suffered pain.
Fontenelle.    
  175
 
  Attention, is a tacit and continual compliment.
Mme. Swetchine.    
  176
 
  The power of words is immense. A well-chosen word has often sufficed to stop a flying army, to change defeat into victory, and to save an empire.
E. de Girardin.    
  177
 
  One of the sweetest pleasures of a woman is to cause regret.
Gavarni.    
  178
 
  Solitude causes us to write because it causes us to think
Mlle. de Guérin.    
  179
 
  Love is a bird that sings in the heart of woman.
A. Karr.    
  180
 
  Death is the only trustworthy friend of the miserable.  181
 
  To hate is a torment.
Ségur.    
  182
 
  The desire to please is born in woman before the desire to love.
Ninon de Lenclos.    
  183
 
  Constancy is the chimera of love.
Vauvenargues.    
  184
 
  Polygamy ought to be obligatory on physicians. It would be only just to compel those who depopulate the world to repopulate it a little.  185
 
  The pretension of youth always gives to a woman a few more years than she really has.
Jouy.    
  186
 
  Hope says to us at every moment: Go on! go on! and leads us thus to the grave.
Mme. de Maintenon.    
  187
 
  Cleanliness is the toilet of old age.
Mme. Necker.    
  188
 
  The prejudices of men emanate from the mind, and may be overcome; the prejudices of women emanate from the heart, and are impregnable.
D’Argens.    
  189
 
  A prude ought to be condemned to meet only indiscreet lovers.
Raisson.    
  190
 
  Friendship is a shield that blunts the darts of adversity.
Mme. de Saint-Surin.    
  191
 
  Whoever has loved knows all that life contains of sorrow and of joy.
George Sand.    
  192
 
  Modesty secretly awakes desire: it is the most chaste, the most delicate, and the most attractive of all provocations.
Poincelot.    
  193
 
  The only true and firm friendship is that between man and woman, because it is the only affection exempt from actual or possible rivalry.
A. Comte.    
  194
 
  The yoke of love is sometimes heavier than that of all the virtues.
Montaigne.    
  195
 
  Paradise, as described by the theologians, seems to me too musical: I confess that I should be incapable of listening to a cantata that would last ten thousand years.
T. Gautier.    
  196
 
  We are always more disposed to laugh at nonsense than at genuine wit; because the nonsense is more agreeable to us, being more conformable to our own natures: fools love folly, and wise men wisdom.
Marguerite de Valois.    
  197
 
  Use, do not abuse: neither abstinence nor excess ever renders man happy.
Voltaire.    
  198
 
  Those who seek happiness in ostentation and dissipation, are like those who prefer the light of a candle to the splendor of the sun.
Napoleon I.    
  199
 
  The virtue of women is often the love of reputation and quiet.
La Rochefoucauld.    
  200
 
  The prayers of a lover are more imperious than the menaces of the whole world.
George Sand.    
  201
 
  The moment past is no longer: the future may never be: the present is all of which man is the master.
J. J. Rousseau.    
  202
 
  God speaks to our hearts through the voice of remorse.
De Bernis.    
  203
 
  A revolution is the lava of a civilization.
Victor Hugo.    
  204
 
  To love is to admire with the heart; to admire is to love with the mind.
T. Gautier.    
  205
 
  Practice is to theory what the feet are to the head.
E. de Girardin.    
  206
 
  We like to give in the sunlight, and to receive in the dark.
J. Petit-Senn.    
  207
 
  Glances are the first billets-doux of love.
Ninon de Lenclos.    
  208
 
  Fools never understand people of wit.
Vauvenargues.    
  209
 
  The world is a masked ball.
Méry.    
  210
 
  We attract hearts by the qualities we display; we retain them by the qualities we possess.
Suard.    
  211
 
  Gratitude is a cross-road that leads quickly to love.
T. Gautier.    
  212
 
  Beauty and ugliness disappear equally under the wrinkles of age: one is lost in them, the other hidden.
J. Petit-Senn.    
  213
 
  There are some who are born with a sorrow in the heart.
Lamennais.    
  214
 
  The ruses of women multiply with their years.
Proverb.    
  215
 
  The world boasts that it can render men happy!
Massillon.    
  216
 
  The reading of romances will always be the favorite amusement of women: old, they peruse them to recall what they have experienced; young, to anticipate what they wish to experience.
A. Ricard.    
  217
 
  When we combat that which we love, sooner or later we succumb.
Marivaux.    
  218
 
  Science seldom renders men amiable; women, never.
Beauchéne.    
  219
 
  Let us make no vows, but let us act as if we had.
Rochepèdre.    
  220
 
  Whoever is suspicious incites treason.
Voltaire.    
  221
 
  Presumption is the daughter of ignorance.
Rivarol.    
  222
 
  That a country may be truly free, the people should be all philosophers, and the rulers all gods.
Napoleon I.    
  223
 
  Chance is a nickname for Providence.
Chamfort.    
  224
 
  It is not the weathercock that changes: it is the wind.
C. Desmoulins.    
  225
 
  Women are in the moral world what flowers are in the physical.
S. Maréchal.    
  226
 
  Fanaticism is to religion what hypocrisy is to virtue.
Palissot.    
  227
 
  Our happiness is but an unhappiness more or less consoled.
Ducis.    
  228
 
  Women should be careful of their conduct, for appearances sometimes injure them as much as faults.
Abbé Girard.    
  229
 
  The fool maintains an error with the assurance of a man who can never be mistaken: the sensible man defends a truth with the circumspection of a man who may be mistaken.
De Bruix.    
  230
 
  Tears are the strength of women.
Saint-Evremond.    
  231
 
  Where pride begins, love ends.
Lavater.    
  232
 
  Greece, so much praised for her wisdom, never produced but seven wise men: judge of the number of fools!
Grécourt.    
  233
 
  A man must be a fool, who does not succeed in making a woman believe that which flatters her.
Balzac.    
  234
 
  Vanity is the quicksand of reason.
George Sand.    
  235
 
  Philosophy triumphs easily over evils past and evils to come; but, present evils triumph over philosophy.
La Rochefoucauld.    
  236
 
  To be happy is not to enjoy: it is not to suffer.
Raspail.    
  237
 
  Better to have never loved, than to have loved unhappily, or to have half loved.
Mme. Louise Colet.    
  238
 
  Love makes time pass, and time makes love pass.
Proverb.    
  239
 
  What a chimera is man! What a confused chaos! What a subject of contradictions! A professed judge of all things, and yet a feeble worm of the earth! the great depositary and guardian of truth, and yet a mere bundle of uncertainties! the glory and the shame of the universe!
Pascal.    
  240
 
  Vanity, shame, and, above all, temperament, often make the valor of men, and the virtue of women.
La Rochefoucauld.    
  241
 
  One always wishes to be happy before becoming wise.
Mme. Necker.    
  242
 
  Tenderness is increased by pity.
Mme. Dufresnoy.    
  243
 
  Love is the passion of great souls: it makes them merit glory, when it does not turn their heads.
Mme. de Pompadour.    
  244
 
  There is no bitterer grief than a happy remembrance in a day of sorrow.
A. de Musset.    
  245
 
  Nothing is so embarrassing as the first tête-ô-tête, when there is everything to say, unless it be the last, when everything has been said.
N. Roqueplan.    
  246
 
  The great are great only because we are on our knees. Let us rise!
Prud’homme.    
  247
 
  A lover is never wrong.
Balzac.    
  248
 
  Many smile who bite.
Cotgrave.    
  249
 
  The greatest of all pleasures is to give pleasure to one we love.
Boufflers.    
  250
 
  Of all things that man possesses, women alone take pleasure in being possessed.
Malherbe.    
  251
 
  The gods have attached almost as many misfortunes to liberty as to servitude.
Montesquieu.    
  252
 
  God created woman only to tame man.
Voltaire.    
  253
 
  Man laughs and weeps at the same things.
Montaigne.    
  254
 
  There is no greater fool than he who thinks himself wise; no one wiser than he who suspects he is a fool.
Marguerite de Valois.    
  255
 
  Anything serves as a pretext for the wicked.
Voltaire.    
  256
 
  All skulls seem to laugh. Perhaps it is at the epitaph engraved on their tomb.
Alfred Bougeart.    
  257
 
  Woman is the symbol of moral and physical beauty.
T. Gautier.    
  258
 
  Audacity of thought is seldom forgiven.
Mme. Louise Colet.    
  259
 
  Crime, as well as virtue, has its degrees.
Racine.    
  260
 
  The stomach is a slave that must accept everything that is given to it, but which avenges wrongs as slyly as the slave does.
E. Souvestre.    
  261
 
  We promise much, that we may give little.
Vauvenargues.    
  262
 
  History is the conscience of humanity.
E. de Girardin.    
  263
 
  A child becomes for his parents, according to the education he receives, a blessing or a chastisement.
J. Petit-Senn.    
  264
 
  For one virtue that makes us walk, how many vices make us run!
Pichot.    
  265
 
  There are some faults which, when well managed, make a greater figure than virtue itself.
La Rochefoucauld.    
  266
 
  A widow is like a frigate of which the first captain has been shipwrecked.
A. Karr.    
  267
 
  He who receives his friends, and takes no personal care in preparing the meal that is designed for them, is not deserving of friends.
Brillat-Savarin.    
  268
 
  All joys do not cause laughter; great pleasures are serious: pleasures of love do not make us laugh.
Voltaire.    
  269
 
  Every man carries in his soul a sepulchre—that of his youth.
O. Firmez.    
  270
 
  Woman is a flower that exhales her perfume only in the shade.
Lamennais.    
  271
 
  There are in the human heart two cups, one for joy and one for sorrow, which empty themselves alternately.
Mme. de Maintenon.    
  272
 
  Intelligent people make many blunders, because they never believe the world as stupid as it is.
Chamfort.    
  273
 
  One is always a woman’s first lover.
Laclos.    
  274
 
  All our tastes are but reminiscences.
Lamartine.    
  275
 
  Everything falls and is effaced. A few feet under the ground reigns so profound a silence, and yet, so much tumult on the surface!
Victor Hugo.    
  276
 
  The source of all passions is sensitiveness: it is the errors of imagination that transform them into vices.
J. J. Rousseau.    
  277
 
  O unfortunates who sin without pleasure! in your errors be more reasonable; be, at least, fortunate sinners. Since you must be damned, be damned for amiable faults.
Voltaire.    
  278
 
  There are hours in life when the most trifling annoyances assume the proportions of a catastrophe.
E. Souvestre.    
  279
 
  Death is the origin of another life.
Montaigne.    
  280
 
  What a fool is he who says to a woman, Will you? Dost not know, simpleton, that they always pretend not to be willing?
Alfred Bougeart.    
  281
 
  There is in us more of the appearance of sense and of virtue than of the reality.
Marguerite de Valois.    
  282
 
  The world does not understand that we can prefer anything else to it.
George Sand.    
  283
 
  All our wisdom consists of but servile prejudices.
J. J. Rousseau.    
  284
 
  Repentance is an avowed remorse.
Mme. Swetchine.    
  285
 
  Laws should be clear, uniform, precise: to interpret them is nearly always to corrupt them.
Voltaire.    
  286
 
  He who flatters you is your enemy.
Cardan.    
  287
 
  Whenever the good done to us does not touch and penetrate the heart, it wounds and irritates our vanity.
E. de Girardin.    
  288
 
  In delicate souls, love never presents itself but under the veil of esteem.
Mme. Roland.    
  289
 
  A corrupted and weakened community breaks down in immense catastrophes; the iron harrow of revolutions crushes men like the clods of the field; but, in the blood-stained furrows germinates a new generation, and the soul aggrieved, believes again.
Guizot.    
  290
 
  A skeptic is not one who doubts, but one who examines.
Sainte-Beuve.    
  291
 
  As a man’s yes and no, so his character. A prompt yes or no marks the firm, the quick, the decided character; and a slow, the cautious or timid.
Lavater.    
  292
 
  Everything is two-faced—even virtue.
Balzac.    
  293
 
  The envious will die, but envy—never.
Molière.    
  294
 
  In all companies there are more fools than wise men; and the greater number always get the better of the wiser.
Rabelais.    
  295
 
  Woman is the Sunday of man.
Michelet.    
  296
 
  A great career is a dream of youth realized in mature age.
De Vigny.    
  297
 
  Sorrow makes us very good or very bad.
George Sand.    
  298
 
  Childhood is the sleep of reason.
J. J. Rousseau.    
  299
 
  Love is the offspring of chance: its nurse is habit.
La Rochefoucauld.    
  300
 
  The highest mark of esteem a woman can give a man is to ask his friendship; and the most signal proof of her indifference is to offer him hers.  301
 
  At the banquet of life, an unfortunate guest, I one day appeared; now, I am dying. Dying! and none there are to shed a tear over the tomb that awaits me!
Gilbert.    
  302
 
  Love! Love! Eternal enigma! Will not the Sphinx that guards thee find an Œdipus to explain thee?
F. Pyat.    
  303
 
  One may be better than his reputation or his conduct, but never better than his principles.
Laténa.    
  304
 
  At twenty, man is less a lover of woman than of women: he is more in love with the sex than with the individual, however charming she may be.
Rétif de la Bretonne.    
  305
 
  The change of fashions is the tax that the industry of the poor levies on the vanity of the rich.
Chamfort.    
  306
 
  There is no more agreeable companion than the woman who loves us.
Bernardin de St. Pierre.    
  307
 
  The knowledge of the charms one possesses prompts one to utilize them.
Sénancourt.    
  308
 
  So long as people are subject to disease and death, they will run after physicians, however much they may deride them.
La Bruyère.    
  309
 
  Everything is good as it comes from the hands of the Creator; everything deteriorates in the hands of man.
J. J. Rousseau.    
  310
 
  Diversity of opinion proves that things are only what we think them.
Montaigne.    
  311
 
  Men commonly injure one another without cause, and simply to do something: as an idle promenader in a garden, breaks the young branches, and strips off the leaves of the most beautiful flowers.
E. Souvestre.    
  312
 
  A fool always finds some one more foolish than he to admire him.
Boileau.    
  313
 
  I can not see why women are so desirous of imitating men. I could understand the wish to be a boa constrictor, a lion, or an elephant; but a man! that surpasses my comprehension.
T. Gautier.    
  314
 
  Pleasure has its time; so, too, has wisdom. Make love in thy youth, and in old age, attend to thy salvation.
Voltaire.    
  315
 
  If much reason is necessary to remain in celibacy, still more is required to marry. One must then have reason for two; and often all the reason of the two does not make one reasonable being.
Balzac.    
  316
 
  Love has compensations that friendship has not.
Montaigne.    
  317
 
  What would we not give to still have in store the first blissful moment we ever enjoyed!
Rochepèdre.    
  318
 
  Whatever good is said of us, we learn nothing new.
La Rochefoucauld.    
  319
 
  Men declare their love before they feel it; women confess theirs only after they have proved it.
Laténa.    
  320
 
  The human heart will always be the abyss of reason.  321
 
  There are profound sorrows which remain stored in our souls, and which we always find there when we are melancholy.
Mme. de Salm.    
  322
 
  Two powerful destroyers: Time and Adversity.
A. de Musset.    
  323
 
  Men always say more evil of women than there really is; and there is always more than is known.
Mézerai.    
  324
 
  The best shelter for a girl is her mother’s wing.  325
 
  Every age has its different inclinations, but man is always the same. At ten, he is led by sweetmeats, at twenty by a mistress, at thirty by pleasure, at forty by ambition, at fifty by avarice.
J. J. Rousseau.    
  326
 
  From Paris to Peru, from Japan to Rome, the most foolish animal, in my estimation, is man.
Boileau.    
  327
 
  Death is a panacea for all evils.
Montaigne.    
  328
 
  I do not know in the whole history of the world a hero, a worthy man, a prophet, a true Christian, who has not been the victim of the jealous, of a scamp, or of a sinister spirit.
Voltaire.    
  329
 
  The thought of death is more cruel than death itself.
De la Boëtie.    
  330
 
  Everybody exclaims against ingratitude. Are there so many benefactors?
Alfred Bougeart.    
  331
 
  The virtuous action, done for virtue’s sake alone, is truly laudable.
Marguerite de Valois.    
  332
 
  Jealousy is the sister of Love—as the devil is the brother of the angels.
Boufflers.    
  333
 
  Woman among savages is a beast of burden; in Asia, she is a piece of furniture; in Europe, she is a spoiled child.
Sénac de Meilhan.    
  334
 
  Love makes us thin. If a codfish were a widow, she would become fat.
Provençal Proverb.    
  335
 
  Men are women’s playthings; women are the devil’s.
Victor Hugo.    
  336
 
  The heart is like the tree that gives balm for the wounds of man, only when the iron has wounded it.
Chateaubriand.    
  337
 
  Always driven toward new shores, or carried hence without hope of return, shall we never, on the ocean of age, cast anchor for even a day!
Lamartine.    
  338
 
  Two smiles that approach each other end in a kiss.
Victor Hugo.    
  339
 
  Even if women were immortal, they could never foresee their last lover.
Lamennais.    
  340
 
  How many people assume boldly the mask of virtue!
Mlle. de Scudéri.    
  341
 
  If you believe in evil, you have done evil.
A. de Musset.    
  342
 
  The more one judges, the less one loves.
Balzac.    
  343
 
  The heart of a statesman should be in his head.
Napoleon I.    
  344
 
  The passions are the orators of great assemblies.
Rivarol.    
  345
 
  To forgive a fault in another is more sublime than to be faultless one’s self.
George Sand.    
  346
 
  The surest way to please is to forget one’s self, and to think only of others.
Moncrif.    
  347
 
  The dream of happiness is real happiness.
Fontanes.    
  348
 
  The beautiful is always severe.
Ségur.    
  349
 
  An indiscreet man is an unsealed letter: every one can read it.
Chamfort.    
  350
 
  Youth is presumptuous, old age is timid: the former aspires to live, the latter has lived.
Mme. Roland.    
  351
 
  We never live: we are always in expectation of living.
Voltaire.    
  352
 
  Great thoughts spring from the heart.
Vauvenargues.    
  353
 
  Prosperity unmasks the vices; adversity reveals the virtues.
Diderot.    
  354
 
  A man should never blush in confessing his errors, for he proves by his avowal that he is wiser to-day than yesterday.
J. J. Rousseau.    
  355
 
  Patience is the courage of virtue.
Bernardin de St. Pierre.    
  356
 
  A woman without beauty knows but half of life.
Mme. de Montaran.    
  357
 
  No man has yet discovered the means of giving successfully friendly advice to women—not even to his own.
Balzac.    
  358
 
  If Cleopatra’s nose had been shorter, the face of the whole world would have been changed.
Pascal.    
  359
 
  Men would be saints if they loved God as they love women.
Saint Thomas.    
  360
 
  We like to know the weaknesses of eminent persons: it consoles us for our inferiority.
Mme. de Lambert.    
  361
 
  In love, the importance lies in the beginning. The world knows well that whoever takes one step will take more: it is important, then, to take the first step well.
Fontenelle.    
  362
 
  Women live only in the emotion that love gives. An old lady confessed that she had loved much, when young: “Ah!” she exclaimed, “the exquisite pain of those days!”
A. Houssaye.    
  363
 
  He who has neither friend, nor enemy, is without talents, powers, or energy.
Lavater.    
  364
 
  Casuists who made absolute chastity a virtue, have produced but false appearances in a hypocritical society.
Mme. Louise Colet.    
  365
 
  Superstition: a foolish fear of the Deity.
La Bruyère.    
  366
 
  A republic is not founded on virtue, but on the ambition of its citizens.
Voltaire.    
  367
 
  Inconstancy is sometimes due to levity of mind, but oftener to satiety.
La Rochefoucauld.    
  368
 
  There are very few things in the world upon which an honest man can repose his soul, or his thoughts.
Chamfort.    
  369
 
  O sweet past! sometimes remembrance raises thy long veil, then we weep in recognizing thee!
Mme. Louise Labé.    
  370
 
  To discuss an opinion with a fool is like carrying a lantern before a blind man.
De Gaston.    
  371
 
  No faith has triumphed without its martyrs.
E. de Girardin.    
  372
 
  Promises retain men better than services. For them, hope is a chain, and gratitude a thread.
J. Petit-Senn.    
  373
 
  There are few things that we know well.
Vauvenargues.    
  374
 
  Men bestow compliments only on women who deserve none.
Mme. Bachi.    
  375
 
  Marble, pearl, rose, dove, all may disappear: the pearl melts, the marble breaks, the rose fades, the bird escapes.
T. Gautier.    
  376
 
  When the intoxication of love has passed, we laugh at the perfections it had discovered.
Ninon de Lenclos.    
  377
 
  To live is not merely to breathe; it is to act; it is to make use of all our organs, functions, and faculties. This alone gives us the consciousness of existence.
J. J. Rousseau.    
  378
 
  The only confidence that one can repose in the most discreet woman is the confidence of her beauty.
Lemesles.    
  379
 
  Nature, when she amused herself by giving stiff manners to old maids, put virtue in a very bad light. A woman must have been a mother to preserve under the chilling influences of time that grace of manner and sweetness of temper, which prompt us to say, “One sees that love has dwelt there.”
Lemontey.    
  380
 
  Woman is the sweetest present that God has given to man.
Guyard.    
  381
 
  God created the coquette as soon as he had made the fool.
Victor Hugo.    
  382
 
  Scripture says, “The beginning of wisdom is the fear of the Lord.” I say, “The beginning of wisdom is the fear of man.”
Chamfort.    
  383
 
  It is easy to find a lover and to retain a friend: what is difficult is to find the friend and to retain the lover.
Lévis.    
  384
 
  Women like brave men exceedingly, but audacious men still more.
Lemesles.    
  385
 
  Marriage should combat without respite or mercy that monster which devours everything—habit.
Balzac.    
  386
 
  Poets are like birds: the least thing makes them sing.
Chateaubriand.    
  387
 
  We censure the inconstancy of women when we are the victims: we find it charming when we are the objects.
L. Desnoyers.    
  388
 
  There are moments of intense joy and grief, which every one has, at least, once in his life, that illuminate his character at once.
Lavater.    
  389
 
  At the age of sixty, to marry a beautiful girl of sixteen, is to imitate those ignorant people who buy books to be read by their friends.
A. Ricard.    
  390
 
  The world is a picnic to which every one takes his basket, to carry back whatever he can grasp.  391
 
  Life resembles a cup of clear water which becomes muddy as we drink it.
Mme. Dufresnoy.    
  392
 
  Heaven made virtue; man, the appearance.
Voltaire.    
  393
 
  Rascal! That word on the lips of a woman, addressed to a too daring man, often means—angel!  394
 
  Two thirds of life are spent in hesitating, and the other third in repenting.
E. Souvestre.    
  395
 
  Every one speaks well of his heart, but no one dares to speak well of his mind.
La Rochefoucauld.    
  396
 
  When one has a good day in the year, one is not wholly unfortunate.
Marguerite de Valois.    
  397
 
  A litigant at law should have three bags: one of papers, one of money, and one of patience.
Proverb.    
  398
 
  Most pleasures embrace but to strangle.
Montaigne.    
  399
 
 
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