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English theologian and author
(1634 - 1716)
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A good inclination is but the first rude draught of virtue, but the finishing strokes are from the will; which, if well disposed, will by degrees perfect,--if ill disposed, will by the superinduction of ill habits quickly deface it.
      - [Resolution]

A good name is properly that reputation of virtue that every man may challenge as his right and due in the opinions of others, till he has made forfeit of it by the viciousness of his actions.
      - [Reputation]

A great sin is a course of wickedness abridged into one act.
      - [Sin]

A lie is like a vizard, that may cover the face indeed, but can never become it.
      - [Lying]

A man never outlives his conscience, and that, for this cause only, he cannot outlive himself.
      - [Conscience]

A palsy may as well shake an oak, or a fever dry up a fountain, as either of them shake, dry up, or impair the delight of conscience. For it lies within, it centres in the heart, it grows into the very substance of the soul, so that it accompanies a man to his grave; he never outlives it.
      - [Conscience]

Abstinence is the great strengthener and clearer of reason.
      - [Abstinence]

Action is the highest perfection and drawing forth of the utmost power, vigor, and activity of man's nature.
      - [Action]

Adam knew no disease so long as temperance from the forbidden fruit secured him. Nature was his physician; and innocence and abstinence would have kept him healthful to immortality.
      - [Health]

After some account of good, evil will be known by consequence, as being only a privation, or absence of good.
      - [Evil]

All deception in the course of life is indeed nothing else but a lie reduced to practice, and falsehood passing from words into things.
      - [Deception]

All love has something of blindness in it,--especially the love of money.
      - [Money]

All nations that grew great out of little or nothing did so merely by the public-mindedness of particular persons.
      - [Public]

Anger is a transient hatred; or at least very like it.
      - [Anger]

As by flattery a man opens his bosom to his mortal enemy; so by detraction and slander he shuts the same to his best friends.
      - [Slander]

As the repute of wisdom, so of wit also, is very casual, sometimes a lucky saying or a pertinent reply has procured an esteem of wit to persons otherwise very shallow; so that, if such a one should have the ill-hap to strike a man dead with a smart saying, it ought in all reason and conscience to be judged but a chance medley.
      - [Wit]

As there are certain mountebanks and quacks in physic, so there are much the same also in divinity.
      - [Clergymen]

Certainly the highest and dearest concerns of a temporal life are infinitely less valuable than those of an eternal; and consequently ought, without any demur at all, to be sacrificed to them, whenever they come in competition.
      - [Eternity]

Charity commands us, where we know no ill, to think well of all; but friendship that always goes a step higher, gives a man a peculiar right and claim to the good opinion of his friend.
      - [Friendship]

Compare a Solomon, an Aristotle, or an Archimedes, to a child that newly begins to speak, and they do not more transcend such a one than the angelical understanding exceeds theirs, even in its most sublime improvements and acquisitions.
      - [Angels]

Conscience is its own counsellor.
      - [Conscience]

Conscience never commands nor forbids anything authentically, but there is some law of God which commands and forbids it first.
      - [Conscience]

Consult the acutest poets and speakers, and they will confess that their quickest and most admired conceptions were such as darted into their minds like sudden flashes of lightning, they know not how nor whence.
      - [Authorship]

Contempt naturally implies a man's esteeming of himself greater than the person whom he contemns; he therefore that slights, that contemns an affront is properly superior to it; and he conquers an injury who conquers his resentments of it. Socrates, being kicked by an ass, did not think it a revenge proper for Socrates to kick the ass again.
      - [Contempt]

Deeds always overbalance; and downright practice speaks more plainly than the fairest profession.
      - [Action]

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