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[ Also see Babblers Calumny Conversation Malice Names News Reputation Rumor Scandal Slander Sneer Society Speech Talk Talking Tittle-tattle Tongue Words ]

Truth is not exciting enough to those who depend on the characters and lives of their neighbors for all their amusement.
      - George Bancroft

Old gossips are usually young flirts gone to seed.
      - James Lendall Basford

I will not say it is not Christian to make beads of others faults, and tell them over every day; I say it is infernal. If you want to know how the Devil feels, you do know, if you are such an one.
      - Henry Ward Beecher

And withal they learn to be idle, wandering about from house to house; and not only idle, but tattlers also and busybodies, speaking things which they ought not.
      - Bible, I Timothy (ch. V, v. 13)

He that covereth a transgression seeketh love: but he that repeateth a matter separateth very friends.
      - Bible, Proverbs (ch. XVII, v. 9)

In fact, there's nothing makes me so much grieve,
  As what abominable tittle-tattle,
    Which is the cud eschew'd by human cattle.
      - Lord Byron (George Gordon Noel Byron)

Skill'd by a touch to deepen scandal's tints,
  With all the high mendacity of hints,
    While mingling truth with falsehood, sneers with smiles,
      A thread of candor with a web of wiles.
      - Lord Byron (George Gordon Noel Byron)

It is among uneducated women that we may look for the most confirmed gossips. Goethe tells us there is nothing more frightful than bustling ignorance.
      - Sebastien-Roch-Nicolas de Chamfort

There are male as well as female gossips.
      - Charles Caleb Colton

Everybody says it, and what everybody says must be true.
      - James Fenimore Cooper

Whoever keeps an open ear
  For tattlers will be sure to hear
    The trumpet of contention.
      - William Cowper, Friendship (st. 17)

Half the gossip of society would perish if the books that are truly worth reading were but read.
      - Rev. George Dawson

For my part, I can compare her (a gossip) to nothing but the sun; for, like him, she knows no rest, nor ever sets in one place but to rise in another.
      - John Dryden

As to people saying a few idle words about us, we must not mind that, any more than the old church-steeple minds the rooks cawing about it.
      - George Eliot (pseudonym of Mary Ann Evans Cross)

Gossip is a sort of smoke that comes from the dirty tobacco-pipes of those who diffuse it; it proves nothing but the bad taste of the smoker.
      - George Eliot (pseudonym of Mary Ann Evans Cross),
        Daniel Deronda (bk. II, ch. XIII)

Our globe discovers its bidden virtues, not only in heroes and arch-angels, but in gossips and nurses.
      - Ralph Waldo Emerson

We are disgusted by gossip; yet it is of importance to keep the angels in their proprieties.
      - Ralph Waldo Emerson

Most women indulge in idle gossip, which is the henchman of rumor and scandal.
      - Octave Feuillet

Love and scandal are the best sweeteners of tea.
      - Henry Fielding

Tell tales out of school.
      - John Heywood, Proverbs (pt. I, ch. X)

Gossip is always a personal confession either of malice or imbecility, and the young should not only shun it, but by the most thorough culture relieve themselves from all temptation to indulge in it. It is a low, frivolous, and too often a dirty business. There are country neighborhoods in which it rages like a pest. Churches are split in pieces by it. Neighbors are made enemies by it for life. In many persons it degenerates into a chronic disease, which is practically incurable. Let the young cure it while they may.
      - Josiah Gilbert Holland (used pseudonym Timothy Titcomb)

What people say behind your back is your standing in the community in which you live.
      - Edgar Watson Howe

Gossip is the opiate of the oppressed.
      - Erica Jong

It is not virtuous women who are so ready to report suspicion of their sisters.
      - Baroness Barbara Juliane de Krudener

Female gossips are generally actuated by active ignorance.
      - Francois Duc de la Rochefoucauld

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