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[ Also see Admiration Affectation Apparel Applause Boasting Compliments Conceit Fashion Flattery Foppery Luxury Ostentation Pretension Pride Self-love Snobs ]

Those who live on vanity must not unreasonably expect to die of mortification.
      - Alice Thomas Ellis

Vanity costs money, labor, horses, men, women, health and peace, and is still nothing at last,--a long way leading nowhere.
      - Ralph Waldo Emerson

The youth who, like a woman, loves to adorn his person, has renounced all claim to wisdom and to glory; glory is due to those only who dare to associate with pain, and have trampled pleasure under their feet.
      - Francois de Salignac Fenelon

O vanity, how little is thy force acknowledged or thy operations discerned! How wantonly dost thou deceive mankind under different disguises! Sometimes thou dost wear the face of pity; sometimes of generosity; nay, thou hast the assurance to put on those glorious ornaments which belong only to heroic virtue.
      - Henry Fielding

I give vanity fair quarter, wherever I meet with it, being persuaded that it is often productive of good to the possessor, and to others who are within his sphere of action; and therefore, in many cases, it would not be altogether absurd if a man were to thank God for his vanity, among the other comforts of life.
      - Benjamin Franklin

Scarcely have I ever heard or read the introductory phrase, "I may say without vanity," but some striking and characteristic instance of vanity has immediately followed.
      - Benjamin Franklin

There is much money given to be laughed at, though the purchasers don't know it; witness A.'s fine horse, and B.'s fine house.
      - Benjamin Franklin

How many saucy airs we meet,
  From Temple Bar to Aldgate street!
      - John Gay, The Barley-Mow and Dunghill
         (l. 1)

O, how true it is there can be no tete-a-tete where vanity reigns!
      - Madame Delphine Gay de Girardin

A vain man can never be altogether rude. Desirous as he is of pleasing, he fashions his manners after those of others.
      - Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Here Vanity assumes her pert grimace.
      - Oliver Goldsmith

Vanity is the poison of agreeableness; yet as poison, when artfully and properly applied, has a salutary effect in medicine, so has vanity in the commerce and society of the world.
      - Sir Fulke Greville, 1st Baron Brooke, Lord Brooke

Vanity is not half a bad principle, if it will but stick to legitimate business.
      - Thomas Chandler Haliburton (used pseudonym Sam Slick)

After all, what is vanity? If it means only a certain wish to look one's best, is it not another name for self-respect? If it means inordinate self-admiration (very rare among persons with some occupation), it is less wicked than absurd.
      - Mrs. Hugh R. Haweis

The vain man makes a merit of misfortune, and triumphs in his disgrace.
      - William Hazlitt (1)

Vain? Let it be so! Nature was her teacher,
  What if a lovely and unsistered creature
    Loved her own harmless gift of pleasing feature.
      - Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr.,
        Iris, Her Book--The Professor at the Breakfast-Table

How vain, without the merit, is the name.
      - Homer ("Smyrns of Chios")

In a vain man, the smallest spark may kindle into the greatest flame, because the materials are always prepared for it.
      - David Hume

Vanity is so closely allied to virtue, and to love the fame of laudable actions approaches so near the love of laudable actions for their own sake, that these passions are more capable of mixture than any other kinds of affection; and it is almost impossible to have the latter without some degree of the former.
      - David Hume

Extreme vanity sometimes hides under the garb of ultra modesty.
      - Mrs. Anna Brownell Jameson

I doubt if there ever was a man who was not gratified by being told that he was liked by the women.
      - Samuel Johnson (a/k/a Dr. Johnson) ("The Great Cham of Literature")

No man sympathizes with the sorrows of vanity.
      - Samuel Johnson (a/k/a Dr. Johnson) ("The Great Cham of Literature")

The greatest human virtue bears no proportion to human vanity. We always think ourselves better than we are, and are generally desirous that others should think us still better than we think ourselves. To praise us for actions or dispositions which deserve praise is not to confer a benefit, but to pay a tribute. We have always pretensions to fame which, in our own hearts, we know to be disputable, and which we are desirous to strengthen by a new suffrage; we have always hopes which we suspect to be fallacious, and of which we eagerly snatch at every confirmation.
      - Samuel Johnson (a/k/a Dr. Johnson) ("The Great Cham of Literature")

We have always pretensions to fame which, in our own hearts, we know to be disputable.
      - Samuel Johnson (a/k/a Dr. Johnson) ("The Great Cham of Literature")

It would be next to impossible to discover a handsome woman who was not also a vain woman.
      - Joseph Joubert

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