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French moralist and man of letters
(1754 - 1824)
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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.
      - [Deceit]

A few words worthy to be remembered suffice to give an idea of a great mind. There are single thoughts that contain the essence of a whole volume, single sentences that have the beauties of a large work, a simplicity so finished and so perfect that it equals in merit and in excellence a large and glorious composition.
      - [Apothegms]

A man who shows no defect is a fool or a hypocrite, whom we should mistrust. There are defects so bound to fine qualities that they announce them,--defects which it is well not to correct.
      - [Character]

A maxim is the exact and noble expression of an important and indisputable truth. Sound maxims are the germs of good; strongly imprinted in the memory, they nourish the will.
      - [Apothegms]

A part of kindness consists in loving people more than they deserve.
      - [Kindness]

A temperate style is alone classical.
      - [Style]

Agriculture engenders good sense, and good sense of an excellent kind.
      - [Agriculture]

All are born to observe order, but few are born to establish it.
      - [Order]

All disputation makes the mind deaf; and when people are deaf, I am dumb.
      - [Controversy]

All luxury corrupts either the morals or the taste.
      - [Luxury]

Antiquity! I like its ruins better than its reconstructions.
      - [Antiquity]

Avoid singularity. There may often be less vanity in following the new modes than in adhering to the old ones. It is true that the foolish invent them, but the wise may conform to, instead of contradicting, them.
      - [Fashion]

Be charitable and indulgent to every one but yourself.
      - [Charity]

Be saving, but not at the cost of all liberality. Have the soul of a king and the hand of a wise economist.
      - [Economy]

Beautiful works do not intoxicate, but they enchant.
      - [Beauty]

Before employing a find word, find a place for it.
      - [Words]

Chance generally favors the prudent.
      - [Chance]

Children have more need of models than of critics.
      - [Childhood : Children]

Children must be rendered reasonable, but not reasoners. The first thing to teach them is that it is reasonable for them to obey, and unreasonable for them to dispute.
      - [Children]

Contempt for private wrongs was one of the features of ancient morals.
      - [Wrong]

Criticism even should not be without its charms. When quite devoid of all amenities, it is no longer literary.
      - [Criticism]

Drawing is speaking to the eye, talking is painting to the ear.
      - [Talking]

Every legitimate authority should respect its extent and its limits.
      - [Authority]

Every modulated sound is not a song, and every voice that executes a beautiful air does not sing. Singing should enchant. But to produce this effect there must be a quality of soul and voice which is by no means common even with great singers.
      - [Songs]

Eyes raised toward heaven are always beautiful, whatever they be.
      - [Beauty]

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