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SINCERITY
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[ Also see Affectation Candor Earnestness Enthusiasm Fidelity Honesty Insincerity Simplicity Truth ]

Sincerity's my chief delight,
  The darling pleasure of the mind;
    O that I could to her invite,
      All the whole race of human kind;
        Take her, mortals, she's worth more
          Than all your glory, all your fame,
            Than all your glittering boasted store,
              Than all the things that you can name,
                She'll with her bring a joy divine,
                  All that's good, and all that's fine.
      - Mary Lee, Lady Chudleigh

I can only say that I have acted upon my best convictions, without selfishness or malice, and that by the help of God I shall continue to do so.
      - Abraham Lincoln

Let us then be what we are, and speak what we think, and in all things keep ourselves loyal to truth, and the sacred professions of friendship.
      - Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

No man can produce great things who is not thoroughly sincere in dealing with himself, who would not exchange the finest show for the poorest reality, who does not so love his work that he is not only glad to give himself for it, but finds rather a gain than a sacrifice in the surrender.
      - James Russell Lowell

The only conclusive evidence of a man's sincerity is that he gives himself for a principle. Words, money, all things else, are comparatively easy to give away; but when a man makes a gift of his daily life and practice, it is plain that the truth, whatever it may be, has taken possession of him.
      - James Russell Lowell

Sincerity is impossible, unless it pervade the whole being, and the pretence of it saps the very foundation of character.
      - James Russell Lowell, Essay on Pope

The true measure of life is not length, but honesty.
      - John Lyly (Lylie or Lyllie)

Sincerity is the way of heaven; to think how to be sincere is the way of man.
      - Mencius

There is no greater delight than to be conscious of sincerity on self-examination.
      - Mencius, Works (bk. VII, ch. IV)

I remember a passage of one of Queen Elizabeth's great men, as advice to his friend. "The advantage," says he, "I had upon others at court was that I always spoke as I thought; which being not believed by them, I both preserved a good conscience, and suffered no damage from that freedom"; which, as it shows the vice to be older than our times, so does it that gallant man's integrity to be the best way of avoiding it.
      - William Penn

Sincerity is the face of the soul, as dissimulation is the mask.
      - Joseph Sanial-Dubay

Bashful sincerity and comely love.
      - William Shakespeare

There is no time so miserable but a man may be true.
      - William Shakespeare

No. Leonato,
  I never tempted her with word too large,
    But, as brother to his sister, showed
      Bashful sincerity and comely love.
      - William Shakespeare,
        Much Ado About Nothing
         (Claudio at IV, i)

Men should be what they seem;
  Or those that be not, would they might seem none!
      - William Shakespeare,
        Othello the Moor of Venice
         (Iago at III, iii)

It is dangerous to be sincere unless you are also stupid.
      - George Bernard Shaw

The happy talent of pleasing either those above or below you seems to be wholly owing to the opinion they have of your sincerity * * * There need be no more said in honor of it than that it is what forces the approbation of your opponents.
      - Sir Richard Steele

An inward sincerity will of course influence the outward deportment; but where the one is wanting, there is great reason to suspect the absence of the other.
      - Laurence Sterne

Sincerity and honesty carry one through many difficulties which all the arts he can invent would never help him through.
      - Benjamin Stillingfleet

He that does as well in private between God and his own soul as in public, hath given himself a testimony that his purposes are full of honesty, nobleness, and integrity.
      - Jeremy Taylor

He who is sincere hath the easiest task in the world, for, truth being always consistent with itself, he is put to no trouble about his words and actions; it is like traveling in a plain road, which is sure to bring you to your journey's end better than byways in which many lose themselves.
      - John Tillotson

If the show of any thing be good for any thing, I am sure sincerity is better; for why does any man dissemble, or seem to be that which he is not, but because he thinks it good to have such a quality as he pretends to?
      - John Tillotson

Now the best way in the world to seem to be anything is really to be what we would seem to be. Besides that it is many times as troublesome to make good the pretence of a good quality as to have it, and if a man have it not it is ten to one but he is discovered to want it, and then all his pains and labor to seem to have it is lost.
      - John Tillotson

Sincerity is to speak as we think, to do as we pretend and profess, to perform and make good what we promise, and really to be what we would seem and appear to be.
      - John Tillotson

Better is the wrong with sincerity, rather than the right with falsehood.
      - Martin Farquhar Tupper


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