Most people of action are inclined to fatalism and most of thought believe in providence.
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If those who are the enemies of innocent amusements had the direction of the world, they would take away the spring, and youth, the former from the year, the latter from human life.
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All humanity is passion; without passion, religion, history, novels, art would be ineffectual.
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Equality may perhaps be a right, but no power on earth can ever turn it into a fact.
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We exaggerate misfortune and happiness alike. We are never as bad off or as happy as we say we are.
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Nature makes only dumb animals. We owe the fools to society.
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The heart of a mother is a deep abyss at the bottom of which you will always find forgiveness.
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Behind every great fortune there is a crime.
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Nothing so fortifies a friendship as a belief on the part of one friend that he is superior to the other.
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Bureaucracy is a giant mechanism operated by pygmies.
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Hatred is the vice of narrow souls; they feed it with all their littleness, and make it the pretext of base tyrannies.
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You may imitate, but never counterfeit.
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To kill a relative of whom you are tired is something. But to inherit his property afterwards, that is genuine pleasure.
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I do not regard a broker as a member of the human race.
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To promote laughter without joining in it greatly heightens the effect.
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The motto of chivalry is also the motto of wisdom; to serve all, but love only one.
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Manners are the hypocrisy of a nation.
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A woman must be a genius to create a good husband.
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It is easier to be a lover than a husband for the simple reason that it is more difficult to be witty every day than to say pretty things from time to time.
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Modesty is the conscience of the body.
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Finance, like time, devours its own children.
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A mother who is really a mother is never free.
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If we could but paint with the hand what we see with the eye.
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Passion is universal humanity. Without it religion, history, romance and art would be useless.
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In diving to the bottom of pleasure we bring up more gravel than pearls.
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Power is not revealed by striking hard or often, but by striking true.
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Nothing is a greater impediment to being on good terms with others than being ill at ease with yourself.
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Vocations which we wanted to pursue, but didn't, bleed, like colors, on the whole of our existence.
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When women love us, they forgive us everything, even our crimes; when they do not love us, they give us credit for nothing, not even out virtues.
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Balzac, Honore De

No biography at present.

29 quotations