If we are more affected by the ruin of a palace than by the conflagration of a cottage, our humanity must have formed a very erroneous estimate of the miseries of human life.
I sighed as a lover, I obeyed as a son.
I was never less alone than when by myself.
The urgent consideration of the public safety may undoubtedly authorize the violation of every positive law. How far that or any other consideration may operate to dissolve the natural obligations of humanity and justice, is a doctrine of which I still desire to remain ignorant.
It has always been my practice to cast a long paragraph in a single mould, to try it by my ear, to deposit it in my memory, but to suspend the action of the pen till I had given the last polish to my work.
Topics: Writing, Authors & Writing, Writers
Every man who rises above the common level has received two educations: the first from his teachers; the second, more personal and important, from himself.
Fanaticism obliterates the feelings of humanity.
Vicissitude of fortune which spares neither man nor the proudest of his works, but buries empires and cities in a common grave.
Beauty is an outward gift which is seldom despised, except by those to whom it has been refused.
I understand by this passion the union of desire, friendship, and tenderness, which is inflamed by a single female, which prefers her to the rest of her sex, and which seeks her possession as the supreme or the sole happiness of our being.
The principles of a free constitution are irrecoverably lost, when the legislative power is nominated by the executive.
A false modesty is the meanest species of pride.
The pathetic almost always consists in the detail of little events.
Conversation enriches the understanding, but solitude is the school of genius.
The various modes of worship which prevailed in the Roman world were all considered by the people as equally true, by the philosophers as equally false, and by the magistrate as equally useful.
In old age the consolation of hope is reserved for the tenderness of parents, who commence a new life in their children, the faith of enthusiasts, who sing hallelujahs above the clouds; and the vanity of authors, who presume the immortality of their name and writings.
The voice of history is often little more than the organ of hatred or flattery.
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