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[ Also see Appearance Artifice Candor Cant Conspiracy Coquetry Cunning Deception Disguise Dishonesty Duplicity Equivocation Falsehood Fraud Hypocrisy Ingratitude Insincerity Knavery Lying Mischief Quackery Strategy Swearing Treachery Treason Unkindness ]

You tread on smoldering fires covered by deceitful ashes.
      - Horace (Quintus Horatius Flaccus)

It is a pity that we so often succeed in our endeavors to deceive each other.
      - Empress Irene of Athens (St. Irene)

Deceit and falsehood, whatever conveniences they may for a time promise or produce, are, in the sum of life, obstacles to happiness. Those who profit by the cheat distrust the deceiver; and the act by which kindness was sought puts an end to confidence.
      - Samuel Johnson (a/k/a Dr. Johnson) ("The Great Cham of Literature")

Don't tell me of deception; a lie is a lie, whether it be a lie to the eye or a lie to the ear.
      - Samuel Johnson (a/k/a Dr. Johnson) ("The Great Cham of Literature")

A false mind is false in everything, just as a cross eye always looks askant. But one may err once, nay, a hundred times, without being double-minded. There can never be mental duplicity where there is sincerity.
      - Joseph Joubert

Perhaps it was right to dissemble your love,
  But why did you kick me down stairs?
      - John P. Kemble

Cheats easily believe others as bad as themselves; there is no deceiving them, nor do they long deceive.
      - Jean de la Bruyere

You think him to be your dupe; if he feigns to be so who is the greater dupe, he or you?
  [Fr., Vous le croyez votre dupe: s'il feint de l'etre, qui est plus dupe, de lui ou de vous?]
      - Jean de la Bruyere, Les Caracteres (V)

We never deceive for a good purpose: knavery adds malice to falsehood.
  [Fr., On ne trompe point en bien; la fourberie ajoute la malice au mensonge.]
      - Jean de la Bruyere, Les Caracteres (XI)

It is a double pleasure to deceive the deceiver.
      - Jean de la Fontaine

It is double pleasure to deceive the deceiver.
  [Fr., Car c'est double plaisir de tromper le trompeur.]
      - Jean de la Fontaine, Fables (II, 15)

The silly when deceived exclaim loudly; the fool complains; the honest man walks away and is silent.
  [Fr., Le bruit est pour le fat, la plainte pour le sot;
    L'honnete homme trompe s'eloigne et ne dit mot.]
      - Jean-Baptiste Sauve de la Noue,
        La Coquette Corrigee (I, 3)

It is as easy to deceive one's self without perceiving it as it is difficult to deceive others without their finding it out.
      - Francois Duc de la Rochefoucauld

Our distrust of another justifies his deceit.
      - Francois Duc de la Rochefoucauld

People would not long remain in social life if they were not the dupes of each other.
      - Francois Duc de la Rochefoucauld

There are falsehoods which represent truth so well that it would be judging ill not to be deceived by them.
      - Francois Duc de la Rochefoucauld

We are so accustomed to masquerade ourselves before others that we end by deceiving ourselves.
      - Francois Duc de la Rochefoucauld

We have few faults that are not more excusable in themselves than are the means which we use to conceal them.
      - Francois Duc de la Rochefoucauld

One may outwit another, but not all the others.
  [Fr., On peut etre plus fin qu'un autre, mais non pas plus fin que tous les autres.]
      - Francois Duc de la Rochefoucauld, Maxim

He was justly accounted a skilful poisoner who destroyed his victims by bouquets of lovely and fragrant flowers. The art has not been lost; nay, is practised every day,--by the world.
      - Hugh Latimer

In olden times an enemy was sometimes poisoned by a bouquet,--deceit sugar-coated.
      - Hugh Latimer

He who attempts to make others believe in means which he himself despises is a puffer; he who makes use of more means than he knows to be necessary is a quack; and he who ascribes to those means a greater efficacy than his own experience warrants is an impostor.
      - Johann Kaspar Lavater (John Caspar Lavater)

A cunning woman is her own mistress because she confides in no one. She who deceives others anticipates deceit, and guards herself.
      - Ninon de L'Enclos (real name Anne L'Enclos)

It is vain to find fault with those arts of deceiving, wherein men find pleasure to be deceived.
      - John Locke (1), Human Understanding
         (bk. III, ch. X, 34)

Where the lion's skin falls short it must be eked out with the fox's.
      - Lysander,
        his remark on being told he resorted too much to craft, in Plutarch's "Life of Lyander"

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