Reference > Quotations > Hoyt & Roberts, comps. > Hoyt’s New Cyclopedia of Practical Quotations
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Hoyt & Roberts, comps.  Hoyt’s New Cyclopedia of Practical Quotations.  1922.
 
Argument
 
Much might be said on both sides.
        Addison—Spectator. No. 122.
  1
  Where we desire to be informed ’tis good to contest with men above ourselves; but to confirm and establish our opinions, ’tis best to argue with judgments below our own, that the frequent spoils and victories over their reasons may settle in ourselves an esteem and confirmed opinion of our own.
        Sir Thos. Browne—Religio Medici. Pt. I. VI.
  2
And there began a lang digression
About the lords o’ the creation.
        BurnsThe Twa Dogs.
  3
He’d undertake to prove, by force
Of argument, a man’s no horse.
He’d prove a buzzard is no fowl,
And that a Lord may be an owl,
A calf an Alderman, a goose a Justice,
And rooks, Committee-men or Trustees.
        Butler—Hudibras. Pt. I. Canto I. L. 71.
  4
Whatever Sceptic could inquire for,
For every why he had a wherefore.
        Butler—Hudibras. Pt. I. Canto I. L. 131.
  5
I’ve heard old cunning stagers
Say, fools for arguments use wagers.
        Butler—Hudibras. Pt. II. Canto I. L. 297.
  6
’Twas blow for blow, disputing inch by inch,
For one would not retreat, nor t’other flinch.
        Byron—Don Juan. Canto VIII. St. 77.
  7
When Bishop Berkeley said, “there was no matter,”
And proved it—’twas no matter what he said.
        Byron—Don Juan. Canto XI. St. 1.
  8
  I am bound to furnish my antagonists with arguments, but not with comprehension.
        Benj. Disraeli.
  9
  The noble Lord (Stanley) was the Prince Rupert to the Parliamentary army—his valour did not always serve his own cause.
        Benj. Disraeli—Speech, in the House of Commons, April, 1844.
  10
  A knock-down argument; ’tis but a word and a blow.
        Dryden—Amphitryon. Act I. Sc. 1.
  11
  How agree the kettle and the earthen pot together?
        Ecclesiasticus. XIII. 2.
  12
The daughter of debate
  That still discord doth sow.
        Queen Elizabeth, of Mary Queen of Scots. Sonnet in Percy’s Reliques, Vol. I. Bk. V. No. XV. From Puttenham’s Arte of English Poesie. London, 1589.
  13
Reproachful speech from either side
The want of argument supplied;
They rail, reviled; as often ends
The contests of disputing friends.
        Gay—Fables. Ravens. Sextan and Earth Worm. Pt. II. L. 117.
  14
  I always admired Mrs. Grote’s saying that politics and theology were the only two really great subjects.
        Gladstone—Letter to Lord Rosebery. Sept. 16, 1880. See Morley’s Life of Gladstone. Bk. VIII. Ch. I.
  15
His conduct still right with his argument wrong.
        Goldsmith—Retaliation. L. 46.
  16
In arguing, too, the parson own’d his skill,
For even though vanquished he could argue still.
        Goldsmith—The Deserted Village. L. 211.
  17
  I find you want me to furnish you with argument and intellects too. No, sir, these, I protest you, are too hard for me.
        Goldsmith—Vicar of Wakefield. Ch. VII.
  18
Be calm in arguing; for fierceness makes
Error a fault, and truth discourtesy.
        Herbert—Temple. Church Porch. St. 52.
  19
  I have found you an argument; but I am not obliged to find you an understanding.
        Samuel Johnson—Boswell’s Life of Johnson. (1784).
  20
 
 
Nay, if he take you in hand, sir, with an argument,
He’ll bray you in a mortar.
        Ben Jonson—The Alchemist. Act II. Sc. 1.
  21
Seria risu risum, seriis discutere.
  In arguing one should meet serious pleading with humor, and humor with serious pleading.
        Gorgias Leontinus. Endorsed by Aristotle in his Rhetoric. Bk. III. Ch. XVIII.
  22
  There is no good in arguing with the inevitable. The only argument available with an east wind is to put on your overcoat.
        Lowell—Democracy and Other Addresses. Democracy.
  23
The brilliant chief, irregularly great,
Frank, haughty, rash—the Rupert of debate.
        Bulwer-Lytton—The New Timon. Pt. I. (1846).
  24
In argument with men a woman ever
Goes by the worse, whatever be her cause.
        MiltonSamson Agonistes. L. 903.
  25
Myself when young did eagerly frequent
  Doctor and Saint, and heard great argument
  About it and about: but evermore
Came out by the same door wherein I went.
        Omar Khayyam—Rubaiyat. FitzGerald’s Trans. St. 27.
  26
Discors concordia.
  Agreeing to differ.
        Ovid—Metamorphoses. I. 433.
  27
  Demosthenes, when taunted by Pytheas that all his arguments “smelled of the lamp,” replied, “Yes, but your lamp and mine, my friend, do not witness the same labours.”
        Plutarch—Life of Demosthenes. See also his Life of Timoleon.
  28
Like doctors thus, when much dispute has past,
We find our tenets just the same at last.
        Pope—Moral Essays. Epis. III. L. 15.
  29
  In some places he draws the thread of his verbosity finer than the staple of his argument.
        Dr. Porson, of Gibbon’s Decline and Fall, quoted in the Letters to Travis.
  30
          In argument
Similes are like songs in love:
They must describe; they nothing prove.
        Prior—Alma. Canto III.
  31
One single positive weighs more,
You know, than negatives a score.
        Prior—Epistle to Fleetwood Shepherd.
  32
Soon their crude notions with each other fought;
The adverse sect denied what this had taught;
And he at length the amplest triumph gain’d,
Who contradicted what the last maintain’d.
        Prior—Solomon. Bk. I. L. 717.
  33
  The first the Retort Courteous; the second the Quip Modest; the third the Reply Churlish; the fourth the Reproof Valiant; the fifth the Countercheck Quarrelsome; the sixth the Lie with Circumstance; the seventh the Lie Direct.
        As You Like It. Act V. Sc. 4. L. 96.
  34
  And sheath’d their swords for lack of argument.
        Henry V. Act III. Sc. 1. L. 21.
  35
  There is occasions and causes why and wherefore in all things.
        Henry V. Act V. Sc. 1. L. 3.
  36
For they are yet but ear-kissing arguments.
        King Lear. Act II. Sc. 1. L. 9.
  37
          She hath prosperous art
When she will play with reason and discourse,
And well she can persuade.
        Measure for Measure. Act I. Sc. 2. L. 189.
  38
Agreed to differ.
        Southey—Life of Wesley.
  39
  Ah, don’t say that you agree with me. When people agree with me I always feel that I must be wrong.
        Oscar Wilde—The Critic as an Artist. Pt. II. Also in Lady Windermere’s Fan. Act II. Founded on a saying of Phocion.
  40
 
 
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