In civilized life, where the happiness and indeed almost the existence of man, depends on the opinion of his fellow men. He is constantly acting a studied part.
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Little minds are tamed and subdued by misfortune; but great minds rise above them.
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There is in every woman's heart a spark of heavenly fire which lies dormant in the broad daylight of prosperity, but which kindles up and beams and blazes in the dark hour of adversity.
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A woman's life is a history of the affections.
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Whenever a man's friends begin to compliment him about looking young, he may be sure that they think he is growing old.
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They who drink beer will think beer.
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Temper never mellows with age, and a sharp tongue is the only edged tool that grows keener with constant use.
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The sorrow for the dead is the only sorrow from which we refuse to be divorced. Every other wound we seek to heal -- every other affliction to forget: but this wound we consider it a duty to keep open -- this affliction we cherish and brood over in solitude.
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There is a certain relief in change, even though it be from bad to worse! As I have often found in traveling in a stagecoach, that ;it is often a comfort to shift one's position, and be bruised in a new place.
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The tongue is the only instrument that gets sharper with use.
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There is a healthful hardiness about real dignity that never dreads contact and communion with others however humble.
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Rising genius always shoots out its rays from among the clouds, but these will gradually roll away and disappear as it ascends to its steady luster.
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The idol of today pushes the hero of yesterday out of our recollection; and will, in turn, be supplanted by his successor of tomorrow.
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An inexhaustible good nature is one of the most precious gifts of heaven, spreading itself like oil over the troubled sea of thought, and keeping the mind smooth and equable in the roughest weather.
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Those men are most apt to be obsequious and conciliating abroad, who are under the discipline of shrews at home.
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There is never jealousy where there is not strong regard.
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A kind heart is a fountain of gladness, making everything in its vicinity freshen into smiles.
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Young lawyers attend the courts, not because they have business there, but because they have no business.
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The great British Library --an immense collection of volumes of all ages and languages, many of which are now forgotten, and most of which are seldom read: one of these sequestered pools of obsolete literature to which modern authors repair, and draw buckets full of classic lore, or pure English, undefiled wherewith to swell their own scanty rills of thought.
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Love is never lost. If not reciprocated, it will flow back and soften and purify the heart.
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Marriage is the torment of one, the felicity of two, the strife and enmity of three.
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Some minds seem almost to create themselves, springing up under every disadvantage and working their solitary but irresistible way through a thousand obstacles.
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Who ever hears of fat men heading a riot, or herding together in turbulent mobs? No -- no, your lean, hungry men who are continually worrying society, and setting the whole community by the ears.
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Great minds have purposes; others have wishes.
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The natural effect of sorrow over the dead is to refine and elevate the mind.
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There is a serene and settled majesty to woodland scenery that enters into the soul and delights and elevates it, and fills it with noble inclinations.
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There is a sacredness in tears. They are not the mark of weakness, but of power. They speak more eloquently than ten thousand tongues. They are the messengers of overwhelming grief, of deep contrition, and of unspeakable love.
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A tart temper never mellows with age, and a sharp tongue is the only edged tool that grows keener with constant use.
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The natural principle of war is to do the most harm to our enemy with the least harm to ourselves; and this of course is to be effected by stratagem.
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A woman's whole life is a history of the affections. The heart is her world: it is there her ambition strives for empire; it is there her avarice seeks for hidden treasures. She sends forth her sympathies on adventure; she embarks her whole soul on the traffic of affection; and if shipwrecked, her case is hopeless -- for it is a bankruptcy of the heart.
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I am always at a loss at how much to believe of my own stories.
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Irving, Washington

No biography at present.

31 quotations