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[ Also see Absolution Charity Clemency Grace Kindness Magnanimity Mercy Pardon Reconciliation Redemption Resentment Revenge Understanding ]

Great souls forgive not injuries till time has put their enemies within their power, that they may show forgiveness is their own.
      - John Dryden

Forgiveness to the injured does belong,
  But they ne'er pardon who have done the wrong.
      - John Dryden, Conquest of Granada
         (pt. II, act I, sc. 2)

She hugged the offender, and forgave the offense,
  Sex to the last.
      - John Dryden, Cymon and Iphigenia (l. 367)

Only a woman will believe in a man who has once been detected in fraud and falsehood.
      - Alexandre Dumas pere

We should always forgive,--the penitent for their sake, the impenitent for our own.
      - Marie von Ebner-Eschenbach

The world never forgives our talents, our successes, our friends, nor our pleasures. It only forgives our death. Nay, it does not always pardon that.
      - Elizabeth, nee Pauline Elisabeth Ottilie Luise (used ps Carmen Sylva)

His heart was as great as the world, but there was no room in it to hold the memory of a wrong.
      - Ralph Waldo Emerson,
        Letters and Social Aims--Greatness

It is easy enough to forgive your enemies if you have not the means to harm them.
      - Heinrich Heine

Yes, we ought to forgive our enemies, but not until they are hanged.
      - Heinrich Heine

He that cannot forgive others breaks the bridge over which he must pass himself; for every man has need to be forgiven.
      - Edward Herbert, 1st Baron Herbert of Cherbury

The offender never pardons.
      - George Herbert, Jacula Prudentum

If you forgive people enough you belong to them, and they to you, whether either person likes it or not squatter's rights of the heart.
      - James Hilton

It is vain for you to expect, it is impudent for you to ask of God forgiveness on your own behalf, if you refuse to exercise this forgiving temper with respect to others.
      - Benjamin Hoadley

As nice as we are in love, we forgive more faults in that than in friendship.
      - Henry Home, Lord Kames

It is right for him who asks forgiveness for his offenses to grant it to others.
  [Lat., Aequum est
    Peccatis veniam poscentem reddere rursus.]
      - Horace (Quintus Horatius Flaccus), Satires
         (I, 3, 74)

A woman who can't forgive should never have more than a nodding acquaintance with a man.
      - Edgar Watson Howe

If we can still love those who have made us suffer, we love them all the more.
      - Mrs. Anna Brownell Jameson

Of him that hopes to be forgiven it is indispensably required that he forgive. It is, therefore, superfluous to urge any other motive. On this great duty eternity is suspended, and to him that refuses to practise it, the throne of mercy is inaccessible, and the Saviour of the world has been born in vain.
      - Samuel Johnson (a/k/a Dr. Johnson) ("The Great Cham of Literature")

Whenever fortune wishes to joke, she lifts people from what is humble to the highest extremity of affairs.
  [Lat., Ex humili magna ad fastigia rerum
    Extollit, quoties voluit fortuna jocari.]
      - Juvenal (Decimus Junius Juvenal), Satires
         (III, 39)

Know all and you will pardon all.
      - Thomas a Kempis, Imitation of Christ

Forgive your enemies, but never forget their names.
      - John Fitzgerald Kennedy

Oh Thou, who Man of baser Earth didst make,
  And ev'n with Paradise devise the snake;
    For all the Sin wherewith the Face of Man
      Is blackened--Man's forgiveness give and take!
      - Omar Khayyam ("The Tent-Maker"),
        The Rubaiyat (st. 81 (later ed.))

We may forgive those who bore us, we cannot forgive those whom we bore.
      - Francois Duc de la Rochefoucauld

We pardon as long as we love.
      - Francois Duc de la Rochefoucauld

When a man but half forgives his enemy, it is like leaving a bag of rusty nails to interpose between them.
      - Hugh Latimer

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