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[ Also see Accident Chance Change Circumstance Destiny Fortune God Gods Life Luck Necessity Opportunity Oracle Providence Success Vicissitudes ]

"Whosoever quarrels with his fate, does not understated it," says Bettine; and among all her inspired sayings, she spoke none wiser.
      - Mrs. Lydia Maria Child

They are raised on high that they may be dashed to pieces with a greater fall.
  [Lat., Tolluntur in altum
    Ut lapsu gaviore ruant.]
      - Claudian (Claudianus), In Rufinum
         (bk. I, 22)

It is to be remarked that a good many people are born curiously unfitted for the fate waiting them on this earth.
      - Joseph Conrad (Teodor Josef Konrad Korzeniowski)

The slippery tops of human state, the gilded pinnacles of fate.
      - Abraham Cowley

Fate steals along with silent tread,
  Found oftenest in what least we dread;
    Frowns in the storm with angry brow,
      But in the sunshine strikes the blow.
      - William Cowper, A Fable--Moral

He has gone to the demnition bow-wows.
      - Charles Dickens,
        The Life and Adventures of Nicholas Nickleby
         (ch. LXIV)

Rowe's Rule: the odds are five to six that the light at the end of the tunnel is the headlight of an oncoming train.
      - Paul Dickson,
        in the "Washingtonian", Nov., 1978

A man's fate is his own temper; and according to that will be his opinion as to the particular manner in which the course of events is regulated. A consistent man believes in destiny, a capricious man in chance.
      - Benjamin Disraeli, 1st Earl of Beaconsfield

We make our own fortunes and we call them fate.
      - Benjamin Disraeli, 1st Earl of Beaconsfield

Fate and the dooming gods are deaf to tears.
      - John Dryden

Those whom God to ruin has design'd,
  He fits for fate, and first destroys their mind.
      - John Dryden

When fate summons, monarchs must obey.
      - John Dryden

All human things are subject to decay,
  And when fate summons, monarchs must obey.
      - John Dryden, Mac Flecknoe (l. 1)

'Tis Fate that flings the dice,
  And as she flings
    Of kings makes peasants,
      And of peasants kings.
      - John Dryden, Works (vol. XV, p. 103)

Kabira wept when he beheld the millstone roll,
  Of that which passes 'twixt the stones, nought goes forth whole.
      - Edward B. Eastwick,
        his translation of the "Bag-o-Behar" (Garden and the Spring)

Our life is determined for us; and it makes the mind very free when we give up wishing and only think of bearing what is laid upon us and doing what is given us to do.
      - George Eliot (pseudonym of Mary Ann Evans Cross)

We are led on, like little children, by a way we know not.
      - George Eliot (pseudonym of Mary Ann Evans Cross)

Fate has carried me
  'Mid the thick arrows: I will keep my stand--
    Not shrink and let the shaft pass by my breast
      To pierce another.
      - George Eliot (pseudonym of Mary Ann Evans Cross),
        The Spanish Gypsy (bk. III)

Stern fate and time
  Will have their victims; and the best die first,
    Leaving the bad still strong, though past their prime,
      To curse the hopeless world they ever curs'd
        Vaunting vile deeds, and vainest of the worst.
      - Ebenezer Elliott ("The Corn Law Rhymer"),
        The Village Patriarch (bk. IV, pt. IV)

A man's power is hooped in by a necessity, which, by many experiments, he touches on every side until he learns its arc.
      - Ralph Waldo Emerson

Fate is unpenetrated causes.
      - Ralph Waldo Emerson

If you believe in fate to your harm; believe it, at least, for your good.
      - Ralph Waldo Emerson

'Tis the best use of fate to teach a fatal courage. Go face the fire at sea, or the cholera in your friend's house, or the burglar in your own, or what danger lies in the way of duty, knowing you are guarded by the cherubim of destiny.
      - Ralph Waldo Emerson

We can only obey our own polarity.
      - Ralph Waldo Emerson

A strict belief in fate is the worst of slavery, imposing upon our necks an everlasting lord and tyrant, whom we are to stand in awe of night and day.
      - Epicurus

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