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English author and lexicographer
(1709 - 1784)
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The hopes of zeal are not wholly groundless.
      - [Zeal]

The inevitable consequence of poverty is dependence.
      - [Poverty]

The insolence of wealth will creep out.
      - [Wealth]

The jest which is expected is already destroyed.
      - [Jesting]

The king who makes war on his enemies tenderly distresses his subjects most cruelly.
      - [War]

The liberty of the press is a blessing when we are inclined to write against others, and a calamity when we find ourselves overborne by the multitude of our assailants.
      - [Press]

The life of a conscientious clergyman is not easy. I have always considered a clergyman as the father of a larger family than he is able to maintain. I would rather have chancery suits upon my hands than the cure of souls.
      - [Clergymen]

The life of a solitary man will be certainly miserable, but not certainly devout.
      - [Solitude]

The limbs will quiver and move after the soul is gone.
      - see Northcote's "Johnsoniana", 487 [Soul]

The love of fame is a passion natural and universal, which no man, however high or mean, however wise or ignorant, was yet able to despise.
      - [Fame]

The love of life is necessary to the vigorous prosecution of any undertaking.
      - [Life]

The love of retirement has in all ages adhered closely to those minds which have been most enlarged by knowledge, or elevated by genius. Those who enjoyed everything generally supposed to confer happiness have been forced to seek it in the shades of privacy.
      - [Solitude]

The luster of diamonds is invigorated by the interposition of darker bodies; the lights of a picture are created by the shades; the highest pleasure which nature has indulged to sensitive perception is that of rest after fatigue.
      - [Contrast]

The majority of a society is the true definition of the public.
      - [Public]

The man who feels himself ignorant should, at least, be modest.
      - [Ignorance]

The maxim of Cleobulus, "Mediocrity is best," has been long considered a universal principle, extending through the whole compass of life and nature. The experience of every age seems to have given it new confirmation, and to show that nothing, however specious or alluring, is pursued with propriety or enjoyed with safety beyond certain limits.
      - [Mediocrity]

The mere power of saving what is already in our hands must be of easy acquisition to every mind; and as the example of Lord Bacon may show that the highest intellect cannot safely neglect it, a thousand instances every day prove that the humblest may practise it with success.
      - [Economy]

The mind is seldom quickened to very vigorous operations but by pain, or the dread of pain.
      - [Thinking]

The mischief of flattery is, not that it persuades any man that he is what he is not, but that it suppresses the influence of honest ambition by raising an opinion that honor may be gained without the toil of merit.
      - [Flattery]

The morality of an action depends upon the motive from which we act. If I fling half a crown to a beggar with intention to break his head, and he picks it up and buys victuals with it, the physical effect is good; but with respect to me, the action is very wrong.
      - [Morality]

The natural flights of the human mind are not from pleasure to pleasure, but from hope to hope.
      - [Hope]

The natural progress of the works of men is from rudeness to convenience to elegance, and from elegance to nicety.
      - [Art]

The necessary connexion of representatives with taxes, seems to have sunk deep into many of those minds, that admit sounds, without their meaning.
      - [Taxation]

The necessities of our condition require a thousand offices of tenderness, which mere regard for the species will never dictate.
      - [Tenderness]

The parallel circumstances and kindred images to which we readily conform our minds are, above all other writings, to be found in the lives of particular persons, and therefore no species of writing seems more worthy of cultivation than biography.
      - [Biography]

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