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[ Also see Adversity Beggary Dependence Depression Desolation Economy Frugality Hardship Hunger Loss Luxury Money Necessity Obscurity Possession Property Prosperity Riches Superfluity Want Wealth ]

I am as poor as Job, my lord, but not so patient.
      - William Shakespeare,
        King Henry the Fourth, Part II
         (Falstaff at I, ii)

Poor and content is rich, and rich enough;
  But riches fineless is as poor as winter
    To him that ever fears he shall be poor.
      - William Shakespeare,
        Othello the Moor of Venice
         (Iago at III, iii)

Had it pleased heaven
  To try me with affliction, had they rained
    All kinds of sores and shames on my bare head,
      Steeped me in poverty to the very lips,
        Given to captivity me and my utmost hopes,
          I should have found in some place of my soul
            A drop of patience.
      - William Shakespeare,
        Othello the Moor of Venice
         (Othello at IV, ii)

Famine is in thy cheeks,
  Need and oppression starveth in thy eyes,
    Contempt and beggary hangs upon thy back:
      The world is not thy friend, not the world's law;
        The world affords no law to make thee rich;
          Then be not poor, but break it and take this.
      - William Shakespeare, Romeo and Juliet
         (Romeo at V, i)

Grieve not that am fall'n to this for you,
  For herein Fortune shows herself more kind
    Than is her custom: it is still her use
      To let the wretched man outlive his wealth
        To view with hollow eye and wrinkled brow
          An age of poverty; from which ling'ring penance
            Of such misery doth cut me off.
      - William Shakespeare,
        The Merchant of Venice
         (Antonio at IV, i)

Lack of money is the root of all evil.
      - George Bernard Shaw

The greatest of evils and the worst of crimes is poverty . . . our first duty--a duty to which every other consideration should be sacrificed--is not to be poor.
      - George Bernard Shaw, Major Barbara

Poverty is the stepmother of genius.
      - Henry Wheeler Shaw (used pseudonyms Josh Billings and Uncle Esek)

There is not such a mighty difference as some men imagine between the poor and the rich; in pomp, show, and opinion there is a great deal, but little as to the pleasures and satisfactions of life: they enjoy the same earth and air and heavens; hunger and thirst make the poor man's meat and drink as pleasant and relishing as all the varieties which cover the rich man's table; and the labor of a poor man is more healthful, and many times more pleasant, too, than the ease and softness of the rich.
      - Thomas Sherlock

He travels safe and not unpleasantly who is guarded by poverty and guided by love.
      - Sir Philip Sidney (Sydney)

No society can surely be flourishing and happy, of which the far greater part of the members are poor and miserable.
      - Adam Smith (1)

Men praise poverty, as the African worships Mumbo Jumbo--from terror of the malign power, and a desire to propitiate at.
      - Alexander Smith

Poverty is no disgrace to a man, but it is confoundedly inconvenient.
      - Sydney Smith

The poor man's wisdom is despised.
      - Bishop Robert South

Ay! idleness! the rich folks never fail
  To find some reason why the poor deserve
    Their miseries.
      - Robert Southey

Whose plenty made him pore.
      - Edmund Spenser, The Faerie Queene
         (bk. I, canto IV, st. 29)

His rawbone cheekes, through penurie and pine,
  Were shronke into his jawes, as he did never dyne.
      - Edmund Spenser, The Faerie Queene
         (bk. I, canto IX, st. 35)

No man is poor who does not think himself so. But if in a full fortune with impatience he desires more, he proclaims his wants and his beggarly condition.
      - Jeremy Taylor

We think poverty to be infinitely desirable before the torments of covetousness.
      - Jeremy Taylor

Being unwanted, unloved, uncared for, forgotten by everybvody, I think that is a much greater hunger, a much greater poverty than the person who has nothing to eat. . . . We must find each other.
      - Mother Teresa

An avowal of poverty is a disgrace to no man; to make no effort to escape from it is indeed disgraceful.
      - Thucydides

He is now fast rising from affluence to poverty.
      - Mark Twain (pseudonym of Samuel Langhorne Clemens),
        Henry Ward Beecher's Farm

It would be nice if the poor were to get even half of the money that is spent in studying them.
      - Bill Vaughan

Whene'er I take my walks abroad.
  How many poor I see!
      - Isaac Watts, Praise for Mercies

Poverty must make a match, or make an assignation, or make some bargain scandalous to the man who drives it. More shillings conceded to the making of a shirt would double the religion of mankind.
      - John Weiss

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