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One single positive weighs more,
  You know, than negatives a score.
      - Matthew Prior,
        Epistle to Fleetwood Shepherd

Soon their crude notions with each other fought;
  The adverse sect denied what this had taught;
    And he at length the amplest triumph gain'd,
      Who contradicted what the last maintain'd.
      - Matthew Prior, Solomon (bk. I, l. 717)

He opens the door with an ax.
      - Proverb, (English)

Prepare your proof before you argue.
      - Proverb, (Jewish)

More words ain't good for anything in the world only to bring on more argument.
      - Will Rogers

Whenever you argue with another wiser than yourself, in order that others may admire your wisdom, they will discover your ignorance. When one imagines a discourse better than yourself, although you may be fully informed, yet do not start objections.
      - Moslih Eddin (Muslih-un-Din) Saadi (Sadi)

She hath prosperous art
  When she will play with reason and discourse,
    And well she can persuade.
      - William Shakespeare

The devil can quote Scripture for his purpose.
      - William Shakespeare

The first the Retort Courteous; the second the Quip Modest; the third the Reply Churlish; the fourth the Reproof Valiant; the fifth the Countercheck Quarrelsome; the sixth the Lie with Circumstance; the seventh the Lie Direct.
      - William Shakespeare

You have heard of the news abroad--I mean the whispered ones, for they are yet but ear-kissing arguments?
      - William Shakespeare, King Lear
         (Curan at II, i)

Acquaint her with the danger of my state;
  Implore her, in my voice, that she makes friends
    To the strict deputy; bid herself assay him.
      I have great hope in that; for in her youth
        There is a prone and speechless dialect,
          Such as move men; beside, she hath prosperous art
            When she will play with reason and discourse,
              And well she can persuade.
      - William Shakespeare, Measure for Measure
         (Claudio at I, ii)

On, on, you noble English,
  Whose blood is fet from fathers of war-proof,
    Fathers that like so many Alexanders
      Have in these parts from morn till even fought
        And sheathed their swords for lack of argument
          Dishonor not your mothers; now attest
            That those whom you called fathers did beget you!
      - William Shakespeare,
        The Life of King Henry the Fifth
         (King Henry at III, i)

There is occasions and causes why and wherefore in all things.
      - William Shakespeare,
        The Life of King Henry the Fifth
         (Fluellen at V, i)

I won't argue with you, but you're simply misinformed or wrong!
      - John C. Shepard

If thou continuest to take delight in idle argumentation, thou mayest be qualified to combat with the sophists, but never know how to love with men.
      - Socrates

No honest man will argue on every side.
      - Sophocles

Similes prove nothing, but yet greatly lighten and relieve the tedium of argument.
      - Bishop Robert South

Agreed to differ.
      - Robert Southey, Life of Wesley

Argument, as usually managed, is the worst sort of conversation, as in books it is generally the worst sort of reading.
      - Jonathan Swift

It is in disputes as in armies; where the weaker side sets up false lights, and makes a great noise, to make the enemy believe them more numerous and strong than they really are.
      - Jonathan Swift

Do not attempt to confute a lion after he's dead.
      - The Talmud

Arguments only confirm people in their own opinions.
      - Booth Tarkington (Newton Booth Tarkington)

With temper calm and mild,
  And words of soften'd tone,
    He overthrows his neighbor's cause,
      And justifies his own.
      - Unknown, Vicksburg Wick

The skilful disputant well knows that he never has his enemy at more advantage than when, by allowing the premises, he shows him arguing wrong from his own principles.
      - Bishop William Warburton

Academical disputation gives vigor and briskness to the mind thus exercised, and relieves the languor of private study and meditation.
      - Isaac Watts

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