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[ Also see Chivalry Civility Complacency Friendship Gentlemen Gentleness Grace Incivility Insult Manners ]

Civility is a desire to receive civility, and to be accounted well-bred.
      - Francois Duc de la Rochefoucauld

Courtesy is a duty public servants owe to the humblest member of the public.
      - Lord Edward Robert Bulwer Lytton, 1st Earl of Lytton ("Owen Meredith")

When the king was horsed thore,
  Launcelot lookys he upon,
    How courtesy was in him more
      Than ever was in any mon.
      - Sir Thomas Malory (used pseudonym Morte d'Arthur),
        Harleian Library (Manuscript 2,252),
        British Museum

What restricts the use of the word 'lady' among the courteous is that it is intended to set a woman apart from ordinary humanity, and in the working world that is not a help, as women have discovered in many bitter ways.
      - Judith Martin

Shepherd, I take thy word,
  And trust thy honest offer'd courtesy,
    Which oft is sooner found in lowly sheds
      With smoky rafters, than in tap'stry halls,
        And courts of princes.
      - John Milton, Comus (l. 322)

Courtesy is a science of the highest importance. It is, like grace and beauty in the body, which charm at first sight, and lead on to further intimacy and friendship, opening a door that we way derive instruction from the example of others, and at the same time enabling us to benefit them by our example, if there be anything in our character worthy of imitation.
      - Michel Eyquem de Montaigne

Courtesy, like grace and beauty, that which begets liking and inclination to love one another at the first sight, and in the very beginning of our acquaintance and familiarity; and, consequently, that which first opens the door for us to better ourselves by the example of others, if there be anything in the society worth notice.
      - Michel Eyquem de Montaigne

I am the very pink of courtesy.
      - William Shakespeare

O dissembling courtesy! how fine this tyrant can tickle where she wounds!
      - William Shakespeare

Whilst thou livest, keep a good tongue in thy head.
      - William Shakespeare

The thorny point
  Of bare distress hath ta'en from me the show
    Of smooth civility; yet am I inland bred
      And know some nurture.
      - William Shakespeare, As You Like It
         (Orlando at II, vii)

O sir, we quarrel in print, by the book, as you have books for good manners. I will name you the degrees. The first, the Retort Courteous; the second, the Quip Modest; the third, the Reply Churlish; the fourth, the Reproof Valiant; the fifth, the Countercheck Quarrelsome; the sixth, the Lie with Circumstance; the seventh, the Lie Direct. All these you may avoid but the Lie Direct, and you may avoid that too, with an If. I knew when seven justices could not take up a quarrel, but when the parties were met themselves, one of tem thought but of an If: as, 'If you said so, then I said so'; and they shook hands and swore brothers. Your If is the only peacemaker. Much virtue in If.
      - William Shakespeare, As You Like It
         (Touchstone at V, iv)

Dissembling courtesy! How fine this tyrant
  Can tickle where she wounds!
      - William Shakespeare, Cymbeline
         (Imogen at I, i)

Nay, I am the very pink of courtesy.
      - William Shakespeare, Romeo and Juliet
         (Mercutio at II, iv)

This duke as much
  They love and dote on, call him bounteous Buckingham
    The mirror of all courtesy--
      - William Shakespeare,
        The Life of King Henry the Eighth
         (Second Gentlemen at II, i)

That's too civil by half.
      - Richard Brinsley Sheridan, The Rivals
         (act III, sc. 4)

A churlish courtesy rarely comes but either for gain or falsehood.
      - Sir Philip Sidney (Sydney)

Approved valor is made precious by natural courtesy.
      - Sir Philip Sidney (Sydney)

High erected thoughts seated in a heart of courtesy.
      - Sir Philip Sidney (Sydney), The Arcadia
         (bk. I, par. II)

Ill seemes (sayd he) if he so valiant be,
  That he should be so sterne to stranger wight;
    For seldom yet did living creature see
      That courtesie and manhood ever disagree.
      - Edmund Spenser

Hail! ye small sweet courtesies of life, for smooth do ye make the road of it, like grace and beauty, which beget inclinations to love at first sight; it is ye who open the door and let the stranger in.
      - Laurence Sterne

A good word is an easy obligation, but not to speak ill, requires only our silence, which costs us nothing.
      - John Tillotson

Courtesies cannot be borrowed like snow shovels; you must have some of your own.
      - John Wanamaker

Courtesy is the one coin you can never have too much of or be stingy with.
      - John Wanamaker

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