Your friends praise your abilities to the skies, submit to you in argument, and seem to have the greatest deference for you; but, though they may ask it, you never find them following your advice upon their own affairs; nor allowing you to manage your own, without thinking that you should follow theirs. Thus, in fact, they all think themselves wiser than you, whatever they may say.
Once is orthodox, twice is puritanical.
It is not much matter which we say, but mind, we must all say the same.
You should never assume contempt for that which it is not very manifest that you have it in your power to possess, nor does a wit ever make a more contemptible figure than when, in attempting satire, he shows that he does not understand that which he would make the subject of his ridicule.
Category: Critics And Criticism
A doctrinaire is a fool but an honest man.
It wounds a man less to confess that he has failed in any pursuit through idleness, neglect, the love of pleasure, etc., etc., which are his own faults, than through incapacity and unfitness, which are the faults of his nature.
The whole duty of government is to prevent crime and to preserve contracts.
That is no use at all. What I want is men who will support me when I am in the wrong.
Category: Leaders And Leadership
My esoteric doctrine, is that if you entertain any doubt, it is safest to take the unpopular side in the first instance. Transit from the unpopular, is easy... but from the popular to the unpopular is so steep and rugged that it is impossible to maintain it.
Nobody ever did anything very foolish except from some strong principle.
If it was not absolutely necessary, it was the foolishest thing ever done.
I wish I was as cocksure of anything as Tom Macaulay is of everything.
Neither man nor woman can be worth anything until they have discovered that they are fools. This is the first step towards becoming either estimable or agreeable; and until it be taken there is no hope. The sooner the discovery is made the better, as there is more time and power for taking advantage of it. Sometimes the great truth is found out too late to apply to it any effectual remedy. Sometimes it is never found at all; and these form the desperate and inveterate causes of folly, self-conceit, and impertinence.
Wealth is so much the greatest good that Fortune has to bestow that in the Latin and English languages it has usurped her name.