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COMPARISON
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[ Also see Analogy Compensation Contrast Difference Equality Quality Similarity ]

Comparisons do ofttime great grievance.
      - John Lydgate, Bochas (bk. III, ch. VIII)

Who wer as lyke as one pease is to another.
      - John Lyly (Lylie or Lyllie), Euphues
         (p. 215)

Some are good, some are middling, the most are bad.
  [Lat., Sunt bona, sunt quaedam mediocria, sunt mala plura.]
      - Martial (Marcus Valerius Martialis),
        Epigrams (I, 17, 1)

Such are thou and I: but what I am thou canst not be; what thou art any one of the multitude may be.
  [Lat., Hoc ego, tuque sumus: set quod sum, non potes esse:
    Tu quod es, e populo quilibet esse potest.]
      - Martial (Marcus Valerius Martialis),
        Epigrams (V, 13, 9)

The bee and the serpent often sip from the selfsame flower.
  [It., L'ape e la serpe spesso
    Suggon l'istesso umore.]
      - Metastasio (pseudonym of Antonio Domenico Bonaventura Trapassi Pietro),
        Morte d' Abele (I)

There are fagots and fagots.
  [Fr., Il y a fagots et fagots.]
      - Moliere (pseudonym of Jean Baptiste Poquelin),
        Le Medecin Malgre lui (I, 6)

The souls of emperors and cobblers are cast is the same mould. . . . The same reason that makes us wrangle with a neighbo neighbour causes a war betwixt princes.
      - Michel Eyquem de Montaigne,
        Apology for Raimond de Sebond
         (bk. II, ch. XII)

We are nearer neighbours to ourselves than whiteness to snow, or weight to stone.
      - Michel Eyquem de Montaigne, Essays
         (bk. II, ch. XII)

A man must either imitate the vicious or hate them.
      - Michel Eyquem de Montaigne,
        Essays--Of Solitude

No more like together than is chalke to coles.
      - Sir Thomas More, Works (p. 674)

Everye white will have its blacke,
  And everye sweete its soure.
      - Thomas Percy, Reliques--Sir Curline

Another yet the same.
      - Alexander Pope, The Dunciad
         (bk. III, l. 90)

About a donkey's taste why need we fret us?
  To lips like his a thistle is a lettuce.
      - Proverb,
        witticism that made Crassus ("the unlaughing one") laugh, on seeing an ass eat thistles

Among the strong, there are the strongest, and behind the able, there are even abler.
      - Proverb

Behind one high mountain lies yet a higher one.
      - Proverb, (Chinese)

Beyond the sky there is more sky; beyond one person there are others as well.
      - Proverb, (Chinese)

The rose and thorn, the treasure and dragon, joy and sorrow, all mingle into one.
      - Moslih Eddin (Muslih-un-Din) Saadi (Sadi),
        The Gulistan (ch. VII, apologue 21),
        (Ross' translation)

To one it is a mighty heavenly goddess, to the other an excellent cow that furnishes him with butter.
  [Ger., Einem ist sie die hohe, die himmlische Gottin, dem andern
    Eine tuchtige Kuh, die ihn mit Butter versorgt.]
      - Johann Christoph Friedrich von Schiller,
        Wissenschaft

Compare her face with some that I shall show,
  And it will make thee think thy swan a crow.
      - William Shakespeare

Those that are good manners at the court are as ridiculous in the country as the behavior of the country is most mockable at the court. You told me you salute not at the court but you kiss your hands. That courtesy would be uncleanly if courtiers were shepherds.
      - William Shakespeare, As You Like It
         (Corin at III, ii)

Cowards father cowards and base things sire base;
  Nature hath meal and bran, contempt and grace.
      - William Shakespeare, Cymbeline
         (Belarius at IV, ii)

O, the more angel she,
  And you the blacker devil!
      - William Shakespeare,
        Othello the Moor of Venice
         (Emilia at V, ii)

Crabbed age and youth cannot live together;
  Youth is full of pleasance, age is full of care;
    Youth like summer morn, age like winter weather;
      Youth like summer brave, age like winter bare.
        Youth is full of sport, age's breadth is short;
          Youth is nimble, age is lame;
            Youth is hot and bold, age is weak and cold;
              Youth is wild, and age is tame.
                Age, I do abhor thee; youth, I do adore thee.
      - William Shakespeare,
        The Passionate Pilgrim (XII, l. 1)

What, is the jay more precious than the lark
  Because his feathers are more beautiful?
    Or is the adder better than the eel
      Because his painted skin contents the eye?
      - William Shakespeare,
        The Taming of the Shrew
         (Petruchio at IV, iii)

Yet why repine? I have seen mansions on the verge of Wales that convert my farm-house into a Hampton Court, and where they speak of a glazed window as a great piece of magnificence. All things figure by comparison.
      - William Shenstone


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