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MISERS
[ Also see Avarice Covetousness Economy Frugality Gold Greed Mammon Meanness Money Possession Riches Selfishness Thrift Wealth ]

Money never can be well managed if sought solely through the greed of money for its own sake. In all meanness there is a defect of intellect as well as of heart. And even the cleverness of avarice is but the cunning of imbecility.
      - Edward George Earle Lytton Bulwer-Lytton, 1st Baron Lytton

The cleverness of avarice is but the cunning of imbecility.
      - Edward George Earle Lytton Bulwer-Lytton, 1st Baron Lytton

And were it not that they are loath to lay out money on a rope, they would be hanged forthwith, and sometimes die to save charges.
      - Robert Burton, Anatomy of Melancholy
         (pt. I, sec. II, memb. 3, subsec. 12)

A mere madness, to live like a wretch, and die rich.
      - Robert Burton, Anatomy of Melancholy
         (pt. I, sec. II, memb. 3, subsec. 13)

A thorough: miser must possess considerable strength of character to bear the self-denial imposed by his penuriousness. Equal sacrifices, endured voluntarily in a better cause, would make a saint or a martyr.
      - William Benton Clulow

O cursed hunger of pernicious gold?
      - John Dryden

History tells us of illustrious villains, but there never was an illustrious miser.
      - Charles de Marguetel de Saint-Denis de Saint-Evremond

If I knew a miser, who gave up every kind of comfortable living, all the pleasure of doing good to others, all the esteem of his fellow-citizens, and the joys of benevolent friendship, for the sake of accumulating wealth. Poor man, said I, you pay too much for your whistle.
      - Benjamin Franklin, The Whistle

Hoards after hoards his rising raptures fill;
  Yet still he sighs, for hoards are wanting still.
      - Oliver Goldsmith, The Traveller

Of all the vices, avarice is the most generally detested; it is the effect of an avidity common to all men; it is because men hate those from whom they can expect nothing. The greedy misers rail at sordid misers.
      - Claude Arien Helvetius

The miser acquires, yet fears to use his gains.
      - Horace (Quintus Horatius Flaccus),
        Ars Poetica (170)

A miser is sometimes a grand personification of fear. He has a fine horror of poverty; and he is not content to keep want from the door, or at arm's length, but he places it, by heaping wealth upon wealth, at a sublime distance!
      - Charles Lamb (used pseudonym Elia)

Misers mistake gold for their good; whereas it is only the means of obtaining it.
      - Francois Duc de la Rochefoucauld

The miser robs himself.
      - Johann Kaspar Lavater (John Caspar Lavater)

The unsunn'd heaps
  Of miser's treasures.
      - John Milton, Comus (l. 398)

The miser, poor fool, not only starves his body, but also his own soul.
      - Theodore Parker

Since you go where all have gone before, why do you torment your your disgraceful life with such mean ambitions, O miser?
  [Lat., Abiturus illuc priores abierunt,
    Quid mente caeca torques spiritum?
      Tibi dico, avare.]
      - Phaedrus (Thrace of Macedonia), Fables
         (IV, 19, 16)

He sat among his bags, and, with a look
  Which hell might be ashamed of, drove the poor
    Away unalmed; and midst abundance died--
      Sorest of evils!--died of utter want.
      - Robert Pollok, Course of Time
         (bk. III, l. 276)

'Tis strange the miser should his cares employ
  To gain those riches he can ne'er enjoy;
    Is it less strange the prodigal should waste
      His wealth to purchase what he ne'er can taste?
      - Alexander Pope, Moral Essays
         (ep. IV, l. 1)

The life of a miser is a play of which we applaud only the closing scene.
      - Joseph Sanial-Dubay

Decrepit miser! base ignoble wretch!
  I am descended of a gentler blood.
    Thou art no father nor friend of mine.
      - William Shakespeare,
        King Henry the Sixth, Part I
         (Pucelle at V, iv)

A miser grows rich by seeming poor; an extravagant man grows poor by seeming rich.
      - William Shenstone

Misers, as death approaches, are heaping up a chest of reasons to stand in more awe of him.
      - William Shenstone

The miser is as much in want of what he has, as of what he has not.
  [Lat., Tam deest avaro quod habet, quam quod non habet.]
      - Syrus (Publilius Syrus), Maxims

Groan under gold, yet weep for want of bread.
      - Edward Young


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