Alexander Pope (1688-1744)

“No woman ever hates a man for being in love with her, but many a woman hate a man for being a friend to her.”

“See my lips tremble, and my eye-balls roll,
Suck my last breath, and catch my flying soul!”

“Hope springs eternal in the human breast: Man never is, but always to be Blest.”

“Never elated when someone’s oppressed, never dejected when another one’s blessed.”

“To err is human, to forgive divine.”

“Trust not yourself, but your defects to know. Make use of every friend and every foe.”

“Wit is the lowest form of humor.”

“’Tis education forms the common mind; just as the twig is bent the tree’s inclined.”

“Many men have been capable of doing a wise thing, more a cunning thing, but very few a generous thing.”

“Where’er you walk, cool glades shall fan the glade
Trees, where you sit, shall crowd into a shade:
Where’er you tread, the blusing flow’rs shall rise,
And all things flourish where you turn your eyes.”

“For fools rush in where angels fear to tread.”

“Man never thinks himself happy, but when he enjoys those things which others want or desire.”

“True ease in writing comes from art, not chance, as those who move easiest have learned to dance.”

“Some old men, continually praise the time of their youth. In fact, you would almost think that there were no fools in their days, but unluckily they themselves are left as an example.”

“The ruling passion, be it what it will, the ruling passion conquers reason still.”

“Men must be taught as if you taught them not, and things unknown proposed as things forgot.”

“Not to go back is somewhat to advance, and men must walk, at least, before they dance.”

“Good God! How often are we to die before we go quite off this stage? In every friend we lose a part of ourselves, and the best part.”

“Charms strike the sight, but merit wins the soul.”

“Beauties in vain their pretty eyes may roll; charms strike the sight, but merit wins the soul.”

“There is a certain majesty in simplicity which is far above all the quaintness of wit.”

“Authors, like coins, grow dear as they grow old:
It is the rust we value, not the gold.”

“On life’s vast ocean diversely we sail, reason the card, but passion is the gale.”

“A man should never be ashamed to own that he is wrong, which is but saying in other words that he is wiser today than he was yesterday.”

“The greatest magnifying glasses in the world are a man’s own eyes when they look upon his own person.”

“The learned is happy, nature to explore;
The fool is happy, that he knows no more.”

“To be angry is to revenge the faults of others upon ourselves.”

“How shall I lose the sin, yet keep the sense, and love the offender, yet detest the offence?”

“All are but parts of one stupendous whole, whose body Nature is, and God the soul.”

“The same ambition can destroy or save, and make a patriot as it makes a knave.”

“The difference is too nice – Where ends the virtue or begins the vice.”

“Not always actions show the man; we find who does a kindness is not therefore kind.”

“Blessed is the man who expects nothing, for he shall never be disappointed” was the ninth beatitude.”

“Know then thyself, presume not God to scan; the proper study of mankind is man.”

“But Satan now is wiser than of yore, and tempts by making rich, not making poor.”

“So vast is art, so narrow human wit.”

“True politeness consists in being easy one’s self, and in making every one about one as easy as one can.”

“Who reasons wisely is not therefore wise; His pride in reasoning, not in acting, lies.”

“This long disease, my life.”

“All nature is but art unknown to thee.”

“Of manners gentle, of affections mild;
In wit a man, simplicity a child.”

“False happiness is like false money; it passes for a long time as well as the true, and serves some ordinary occasions; but when it is brought to the touch, we find the lightness and alloy, and feel the loss.”

“While pensive poets painful vigils keep – Sleepless themselves to give their readers sleep.”

“Teach me to feel another’s woe,
To hide the fault I see,
That mercy I to others show,
That mercy show to me.”

“Not grace, or zeal, love only was my call, and if I lose thy love, I lose my all.”

“Honor and shame from no condition rise; act well your part, there all the honor lies.”

“Heaven from all creatures hides the book of Fate,
All but the page prescribed, their present state.”

“All nature is but art, unknown to thee;
All chance, direction, which thou canst not see;
All discord, harmony not understood;
All partial evil, universal good;
And spite of pride, in erring reason’s spite,
One truth is clear, Whatever is, is right”

“Love, free as air at sight of human ties, spreads his light wings, and in a moment flies.”

“A person who is too nice an observer of the business of the crowd, like one who is too curious in observing the labor of bees, will often be stung for his curiosity.”

“Pride is still aiming at the best houses: Men would be angels, angels would be gods. Aspiring to be gods, if angels fell; aspiring to be angels men rebel.”

“Not chaos-like together crushed and bruised,
But as the world, harmoniously confused,
Where order in variety we see,
And where, though all things differ, all agree”

“A little learning is a dangerous thing; Drink deep, or taste not the Pierian spring.”

“The most positive men are the most credulous.”

“Histories are more full of examples of the fidelity of dogs than of friends.”

“Hope travels through, nor quits us when we die.”

“All is calm in this eternal sleep; here grief forgets to groan and love to weep.”

“How prone to doubt, how cautious are the wise!”

“Some people will never learn anything, for this reason, because they understand everything too soon.”

“Passions are the gales of life.”

“Eternal smiles his emptiness betray,
As shallow streams run dimpling all the way.”

“What reason weaves, by passion is undone.”

“Order is Heaven’s first law.”

“The spider’s touch, how exquisitely fine! Feels at each thread, and lives along the line.”

“I was not born for courts and great affairs, but I pay my debts, believe and say my prayers.”

“For modes of faith let graceless zealots fight, His can’t be wrong whose life is in the right.”

“You purchase pain with all that joy can give, and die of nothing but a rage to live.”

“Who builds a church to God, and not to fame, will never mark the marble with his name.”

“Reason’s whole pleasure, all the joys of sense, lie in three words, – health, peace, and competence.”

“We think our Fathers Fools, so wise we grow;
Our Wiser Sons, no doubt, will think us so”

“A family is but too often a commonwealth of malignants.”

“Remembrance and reflection how allied. What thin partitions divides sense from thought.”

“Men dream of courtship, but in wedlock wake.”

“All seems infected that the infected spy,
As all looks yellow to the jaundiced eye.”

“Some praise at morning what they blame at night, but always think the last opinion right.”

“Spreads his light wings, and in a moment flies.”

“On wrongs swift vengeance waits.”

“Nature and Nature’s laws lay hid in night. God said, ‘Let Newton be!’ and all was light.”

“Pride, the never failing vice of fools.”

“The bookful blockhead, ignorantly read,
With loads of learned lumber in his head.”

“Such were the notes thy once loved poet sung,
Till death untimely stopped his tuneful tongue.”

“A man of business may talk of philosophy; a man who has none may practice it.”

“A wit’s a feather, and a chief a rod;
An honest man’s the noblest work of God.”

“The People’s voice is odd;
It is, and it is not, the voice of God”

“Conceit is to nature what paint is to beauty; it not only is useless, but it impairs what it would improve.”

“Ask you what provocation I have had?
The strong antipathy of good to bad.”

“True friendship’s laws are by this rule expressed,
Welcome the coming, speed the parting guest.”

“Were there one whose fires
True genius kindles, and fair fame inspires;
Blest with each talent and each art to please,
And born to write, converse, and live with ease.”

“If a man’s character is to be abused there’s nobody like a relative to do the business.”

“Genius creates, and taste preserves. Taste is the good sense of genius; without taste, genius is only sublime folly.”

“Damn with faint praise, assent with civil leer,
And without sneering, teach the rest to sneer;
Willing to wound, and yet afraid to strike,
Just hint a fault, and hesitate dislike.”

“Fools admire, but men of sense approve.”

“The modest fan was lifted up no more, and virgins smiled at what they blushed before.”

“Do good by stealth, and blush to find it fame”

“That character in conversation which commonly passes for agreeable is made up of civility and falsehood.”

“Drink is the feast of reason and the flow of soul.”

“At every trifle take offence, that always shows great pride or little sense.”

“The vanity of human life is like a river, constantly passing away, and yet constantly coming on.”

“An honest man is the noblest work of God.”

“Learn to live well, or fairly make your will; you played, and loved, and ate, and drunk your fill: walk sober off; before a sprightlier age comes tittering on, and shoves you from the stage: leave such to trifle with more grace and ease, whom Folly pleases, and whose Follies please.”

“Tis with our judgment as our watches, none go just alike, yet each believes his own.”

“Words are like leaves, and where they most abound,
Much fruit of sense beneath is rarely found”

“Amusement is the happiness of those who cannot think.”

“Fondly we think we honor merit then,
When we but praise ourselves in other men.”

“The public is a fool.”

“Most women have no characters at all.”

“Slave to no sect, who takes no private road,
But looks through Nature up to Nature’s God.”

“A God without dominion, providence, and final causes, is nothing else but fate and nature.”

“And, after all, what is a lie?
‘Tis but the truth in a masquerade.”

“Most authors steal their works, or buy.”

“All looks yellow to a jaundiced eye.”

“Be not the first by whom the new are tried,
Nor yet the last to lay the old aside.”

“Who breaks a butterfly on a wheel?”

“The scripture in times of disputes is like an open town in times of war, which serves in differently the occasions of both parties.”

“Two purposes in human nature rule. Self-love to urge, and reason to restrain.”

“Curse on all laws, but those that love has made.”

“True disputants are like true sportsman: their whole delight is in the pursuit.”

“What’s fame? a fancy’s life in other’s breath. A thing beyond us, even before our death.”

“Why did I write? What sin to me unknown dipped me in ink, my parents , or my own?”

“If, presume not to God to scan;
The proper study of Mankind is Man.
Plac’d on this isthmus of a middle state,
A being darkly wise, and rudely great.”

“The worst of madmen is a saint run mad.”

“Men, some to business, some to pleasure take; but every woman is at heart a rake.”

“Let sinful bachelors their woes deplore, full well they merit all they feel, and more.”

“All nature is but art, unknown to thee; all chance, direction, which thou canst not see; all discord, harmony not understood; all partial evil, universal good.”

“One science only will one genius fit;
So vast is art, so narrow human wit.”

“Sir, I admit your general rule,
That every poet is a fool;
But you yourself may serve to show it,
That every fool is not a poet.”

“Vices and virtues are of a strange nature, for the more we have, the fewer we think we have.”

“’Tis but a part we see, and not a whole.”

“Nor in the critic let the man be lost.”

“Be niggards of advice on no pretense,
For the worst avarice is that of sense.”

“Gentle dullness ever loves a joke.”

“By foreign hands thy humble grave adorned;
By strangers honored, and by strangers mourned.”

“To know ourselves diseased is half our cure.”

“The proper study of mankind is man.”

“No creature smarts so little as a fool.”

“Believe him, he has known the world too long, and seen the death of much immortal song.”

“An obstinate person does not hold opinions; they hold them.”

“Be not the first by which a new thing is tried, or the last to lay the old aside.”

“An excuse is worse than a lie, for an excuse is a lie, guarded.”

“We are not afraid to entrust the American people with unpleasant facts, foreign ideas, alien philosophies, and competitive values. For a nation that is afraid to let its people judge the truth and falsehood in an open market is a nation that is afraid of its people.”

“My garden, like my life, seems to me every year to want correction and require alternation.”

“Like strength is felt from hope and from despair.”

“When men grow virtuous in their old age, they only make a sacrifice to God of the devil’s leavings.”

“Heaven from all creatures hides the book of Fate.”

“Love and life are for to-day.”

“Respect us human, and relieve us poor.”

“True, conscious honour is to feel no sin; he’s armed without that’s innocent within.”

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