Sir Walter Ralegh
Quotations


But it is hard to know them from friends, they are so obsequious and full of protestations; for a wolf resembles a dog, so doth a flatterer a friend.

War begets quiet, quiet idleness, idleness disorder, disorder ruin; likewise ruin order, order virtue, virtue glory, and good fortune.

Every fool knoweth that hatreds are the cinders of affection.

No man is wise or safe, but he that is honest.

Whosoever, in writing a modern history, shall follow truth too near the heels, it may happily strike out his teeth.

O eloquent, just, and mighty Death! whom none could advise, thou hast persuaded; what none hath dared, thou hast done; and whom all the world hath flattered, thou only hast cast out of the world and despised; thou hast drawn together all the far-stretched greatness, all the pride, cruelty, and ambition of man, and covered it all over with these two narrow words, Hic jacet [Here lies]!

Better were it to be unborn than ill-bred.

Bestow therefore thy youth so, that thou mayest have comfort to remember it when it hath forsaken thee, and not sigh and grieve at the account thereof.

No man is esteemed for gay garments but by fools and women.

There is nothing exempt from the peril of mutation.

It is the nature of men, having escaped one extreme, which by force they were constrained long to endure, to run headlong into the other extreme, forgetting that virtue doth always consist in the mean.

All, or the greatest part of men that have aspired to riches or power, have attained thereunto either by force or fraud, and what they have by craft or cruelty gained, to cover the foulness of their fact, they call purchase, as a name more honest. Howsoever, he that for want of will or wit useth not those means, must rest in servitude and poverty.

He that doth not as other men do, but endeavoureth that which ought to be done, shall thereby rather incur peril than preservation; for whoso laboureth to be sincerely perfect and good shall necessarily perish, living among men that are generally evil.

Historians desiring to write the actions of men, ought to set down the simple truth, and not say anything for love or hatred; also to choose such an opportunity for writing as it may be lawful to think what they will, and write what they think, which is a rare happiness of the time.

Whoso taketh in hand to govern a multitude, either by way of liberty or principality, and cannot assure himself of those persons that are enemies to that enterprise, doth frame a state of short perseverance.

Whoso desireth to govern well and securely, it behoveth him to have a vigilant eye to the proceedings of great princes, and to consider seriously of their designs.

Fain would I climb, yet fear I to fall. .

The world itself is but a larger prison, out of which some are daily selected for execution.

So the heart be right, it is no matter which way the head lies.



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