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[ Also see Conspiracy Corruption Crime Dishonesty Evil Gold Guilt Honesty Jewels Knavery Mammon Money Politics Public Trust Reward Statesmanship Thieving Treachery Vice Villainy ]

And ye sall walk in silk attire,
  And siller hae to spare,
    Gin ye'll consent to be his bride,
      Nor think o'Donald mair.
      - Miss Susanna Blamire ("Muse of Cumberland"),
        The Siller Clown

'Tis pleasant purchasing our fellow-creatures;
  And all are to be sold, if you consider
    Their passions, and are dext'rous; some by features
      Are brought up, others by a warlike leader;
        Some by a place--as tend their years or natures;
          The most by ready cash--but all have prices,
            From crowns to kicks, according to their vices.
      - Lord Byron (George Gordon Noel Byron),
        Don Juan (canto V, st. 27)

Though the bribe be small, yet the fault is great.
      - Lord Edward Coke

Flowery oratory he [Walpole] despised. He ascribed to the interested views of themselves or their relatives the declarations of pretended patriots, of whom he said, "All those men have their price."
      - William Coxe, Memoirs of Walpole
         (vol. IV, p. 369)

A hoarseness caused by swallowing gold and silver.
      - Demosthenes,
        bribed not to speak against Harpalus, he pretended to have lost voice

It is a great mistake to suppose that bribery and corruption, although they may be very convenient for gratifying the ambition or the vanity of individuals, have any great effect upon the fortunes or the power of parties. And it is a great mistake to suppose that bribery and corruption are means by which power can either be ob-tained or retained.
      - Benjamin Disraeli, 1st Earl of Beaconsfield

Too poor for a bribe, and too proud to importune,
  He had not the method of making a fortune.
      - Thomas Gray, On His Own Character

The universe would not be rich enough to buy the vote of an honest man.
      - Gregory I, the Great (Saint Gregory)

But here more slow, where all are slaves to gold,
  Where looks are merchandise, and smiles are sold.
      - Samuel Johnson (a/k/a Dr. Johnson) ("The Great Cham of Literature"),
        London (l. 177)

Our supple tribes repress their patriot throats,
  And ask no questions but the price of votes.
      - Samuel Johnson (a/k/a Dr. Johnson) ("The Great Cham of Literature"),
        Vanity of Human Wishes (l. 95)

Petitions, not sweetened with gold, are but unsavory and oft refused; or, if received, are pocketed, not read.
      - Philip Massinger

Silver, though white,
  Yet it draws black lines; it shall not rule my palm
    There to mark forth its base corruption.
      - Thomas Middleton and William Rowley

Alas! the small discredit of a bribe
  Scarce hurts the lawyer, but undoes the scribe.
      - Alexander Pope, Epilogue to Satire
         (dialogue II, l. 46)

Judges and senates have been bought for gold;
  Esteem and love were never to be sold.
      - Alexander Pope, Essay on Man
         (ep. IV, l. 187)

By gold all good faith has been banished; by gold our rights are abused; the law itself is influenced by gold, and soon there will be an end of every modest restraint.
  [Lat., Auro pulsa fides. auro venalia jura,
    Aurum lex sequitur, mox sine lege pudor.]
      - Sextus Aurelius Propertius, Elegioe
         (III, 13, 48)

No mortal thing can bear so high a price,
  But that with mortal thing it may be bought.
      - Sir Walter Raleigh (1),
        Love the Only Price of Love

Who thinketh to buy villainy with gold,
  Shall ever find such faith so bought--so sold.
      - William Shakespeare

There is gold for you. Sell me your good report.
      - William Shakespeare, Cymbeline
         (Cloten at II, iii)

'Tis gold
  Which buys admittance--oft it doth--yea, and makes
    Diana's rangers false themselves, yield up
      This deer to th' stand o' th' stealer: and 'tis gold
        Which makes the true man kill'd and saves the thief,
          Nay, sometimes hangs both thief and true man.
      - William Shakespeare, Cymbeline
         (Cloten at II, iii)

What, shall one of us,
  That struck for the foremost man of all this world
    But for supporting robbers--shall we now
      Contaminate our fingers with base bribes,
        And sell the mighty space of our large honors
          For so much trash as may be grasped thus?
      - William Shakespeare, Julius Caesar
         (Brutus at IV, iii)

There is thy gold--worse poison to men's souls,
  Doing more murder in this loathsome world,
    Than these poor compounds that thou mayst not sell.
      I sell thee poison; thou hast sold me none
        Farewell. Buy food and get thyself in flesh.
      - William Shakespeare, Romeo and Juliet
         (Romeo at V, i)

All men have their price.
      - ascribed to Sir Robert Walpole, 1st Earl of Orford

Every man has his price.
      - Sir Robert Walpole, 1st Earl of Orford,
        in a speech

Few men have virtue to withstand the highest bidder.
      - George Washington,
        Moral Maxims--Virtue and Vice--The Trial of Virtue

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