A wise man thinks it more advantageous not to join the battle than to win.
Never give anyone the advice to buy or sell shares, because the most benevolent price of advice can turn out badly.
There are bad people who would be less dangerous if they were quite devoid of goodness.
Old people love to give good advice; it compensates them for their inability to set a bad example.
Good advice is something a man gives when he is too old to set a bad example.
Flattery is a kind of bad money, to which our vanity gives us currency.
Old men are fond of giving good advice to console themselves for their inability to give bad examples.
Our aversion to lying is commonly a secret ambition to make what we say considerable, and have every word received with a religious respect.
What makes the pain we feel from shame and jealousy so cutting is that vanity can give us no assistance in bearing them.
There are very few people who are not ashamed of having been in love when they no longer love each other.
We should often feel ashamed of our best actions if the world could see all the motives which produced them.
We would frequently be ashamed of our good deeds if people saw all of the motives that produced them.
What men have called friendship is only a social arrangement, a mutual adjustment of interests, an interchange of services given and received; it is, in sum, simply a business from which those involved propose to derive a steady profit for their own self-love.
Though men are apt to flatter and exalt themselves with their great achievements, yet these are, in truth, very often owing not so much to design as chance.
They that apply themselves to trifling matters commonly become incapable of great ones.
Few things are impracticable in themselves; and it is for want of application, rather than of means, that men fail to succeed.
There are very few things impossible in themselves; and we do not want means to conquer difficulties so much as application and resolution in the use of means.
Nothing prevents one from appearing natural as the desire to appear natural.
In all professions each affects a look and an exterior to appear what he wishes the world to believe that he is. Thus we may say that the whole world is made up of appearances.
It is easier to appear worthy of a position one does not hold, than of the office which one fills.
We only acknowledge small faults in order to make it appear that we are free from great ones.
We get so much in the habit of wearing disguises before others that we finally appear disguised before ourselves.
However greatly we distrust the sincerity of those we converse with, yet still we think they tell more truth to us than to anyone else.
We often pardon those that annoy us, but we cannot pardon those we annoy.
I have always been an admirer. I regard the gift of admiration as indispensable if one is to amount to something; I don't know where I would be without it.
Weakness of character is the only defect which cannot be amended.
Men often pass from love to ambition, but they seldom come back again from ambition to love.
Moderation is the feebleness and sloth of the soul, whereas ambition is the warmth and activity of it.
Love often leads on to ambition, but seldom does one return from ambition to love.
What seems to be generosity is often no more than disguised ambition, which overlooks a small interest in order to secure a great one.
Nothing is impossible; there are ways that lead to everything, and if we had sufficient will we should always have sufficient means. It is often merely for an excuse that we say things are impossible.
We come altogether fresh and raw into the several stages of life, and often find ourselves without experience, despite our years.
In the misfortunes of our best friends we always find something not altogether displeasing to us.
Though nature be ever so generous, yet can she not make a hero alone. Fortune must contribute her part too; and till both concur, the work cannot be perfected.
It is great folly to wish to be wise all alone.
It is almost always a fault of one who loves not to realize when he ceases to be loved.
In the human heart new passions are forever being born; the overthrow of one almost always means the rise of another.
There is a kind of elevation which does not depend on fortune; it is a certain air which distinguishes us, and seems to destine us for great things; it is a price which we imperceptibly set upon ourselves.
Hope, deceiving as it is, serves at least to lead us to the end of our lives by an agreeable route.
The reason why so few people are agreeable in conversation is that each is thinking more about what he intends to say than others are saying.
Old age is a tyrant, who forbids, under pain of death, the pleasures of youth.
Being a blockhead is sometimes the best security against being cheated by a man of wit.
The defects and faults of the mind are like wounds in the body; after all imaginable care has been taken to heal them up, still there will be a scar left behind, and they are in continual danger of breaking the skin and bursting out again.
There is nothing men are so generous of as advice.
The one thing people are the most liberal with, is their advice.
Men give away nothing so liberally as their advice.
We give advice, but we cannot give the wisdom to profit by it.
It takes nearly as much ability to know how to profit by good advice as to know how to act for one's self.
If we judge love by most of its effects, it resembles rather hatred than affection.
We are easily comforted for the misfortunes of our friends, when those misfortunes give us an occasion of expressing our affection and solicitude.
Fortune converts everything to the advantage of her favorites.
We easily forgive our friends those faults that do no affect us ourselves.
You can find women who have never had an affair, but it is hard to find a woman who has had just one.
One can find women who have never had one love affair, but it is rare indeed to find any who have had only one.
Silence is the safest course for any man to adopt who distrust himself.
The greatest part of intimate confidences proceed from a desire either to be pitied or admired.
We seldom praise anyone in good earnest, except such as admire us.
We always love those who admire us, but we do not always love those whom we admire.
The accent of a man's native country remains in his mind and his heart, as it does in his speech.
The accent of one's birthplace remains in the mind and in the heart as in one's speech.
Jealousy is bred in doubts. When those doubts change into certainties, then the passion either ceases or turns absolute madness.
Absence diminishes mediocre passions and increases great ones, as the wind extinguishes candles and fans fires.
True love is like ghosts, which everyone talks about and few have seen.
It is a great act of cleverness to be able to conceal one's being clever.
To know how to hide one's ability is great skill.
What keeps us from abandoning ourselves entirely to one vice, often, is the fact that we have several.