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[ Also see Babblers Busybodies Calumny Dirt Disgrace Gossip Honor Injury Insult Lying Malice Names Reputation Ridicule Rumor Satire Shame Slander Society Talk Tattling Words ]

A cruel story runs on wheels, and every hand oils the wheels as they run.
      - Ouida (pseudonym of Marie Louise de la Ramee)

A little scandal is an excellent thing; nobody is ever brighter or happier of tongue than when he is making mischief of his neighbors.
      - Ouida (pseudonym of Marie Louise de la Ramee)

Scandals are like dandelion seeds--they are arrow-headed, and stick where they fall, and bring forth and multiply fourfold.
      - Ouida (pseudonym of Marie Louise de la Ramee)

The mind conscious of innocence despises false reports: but we are a set always ready to believe a scandal.
  [Lat., Conscia mens recti famae mendacia risit:
    Sed nos in vitium credula turba sumus.]
      - Ovid (Publius Ovidius Naso), Fasti
         (IV, 311)

The world with calumny abounds,
  The whitest virtue slander wounds;
    There are whose joy is, night and day,
      To talk a character away:
        Eager from rout to rout they haste,
          To blast the generous and the chaste,
            And hunting reputations down,
              Proclaim their triumphs through the town
                What mind's in such a base employment
                  To feel the slightest self-enjoyment!
      - Alexander Pope

Willing to wound, and yet afraid to strike,
  Just hint a fault, and hesitate dislike;
    Alike reserv'd to blame, or to commend,
      A tim'rous foe, and a suspicious friend.
      - Alexander Pope

Scandal breeds hatred; hatred begets division; division makes faction, and faction brings ruin.
      - Francis Quarles

Her tea she sweetens, as she sips, with scandal.
      - Samuel Rogers

Scandal dies sooner of itself, than we could kill it.
      - Benjamin Rush

Malice may empty her quiver, but cannot wound; the dirt will not stick, the jests will not take. Without the consent of the world, a scandal doth not go deep; it is only a slight stroke upon the injured party, and returneth with the greater force upon those that gave it.
      - John Faucit Saville

No particular scandal one can touch but it confounds the breather.
      - William Shakespeare

No scandal about Queen Elizabeth, I hope.
      - William Shakespeare

You know
  That I do fawn on men, and hug them hard,
    And after scandal them.
      - William Shakespeare

The mightier man, the mightier is the thing
  That makes him honored or begets him hate;
    For greatest scandal waits on greatest state.
      - William Shakespeare, The Rape of Lucrece
         (l. 1,004)

A tale of scandal is as fatal to the credit of a prudent lady as a fever is generally to those of the strongest constitutions. But there is a sort of puny, sickly reputation, that is always ailing, yet will wither the robuster characters of a hundred prudes.
      - Richard Brinsley Sheridan

Believe that story false that ought not to be true.
      - Richard Brinsley Sheridan

There are a set of malicious, prating, prudent gossips, both male and female, who murder characters to kill time; and will rob a young fellow of his good name before he has years to know the value of it.
      - Richard Brinsley Sheridan

Ye prime adepts in scandal's school, who rail by precept and detract by rule!
      - Richard Brinsley Sheridan

It is a certain sign of an ill heart to be inclined to defamation. They who are harmless and innocent can have no gratification that way; but it ever arises from a neglect of what is laudable in a man's self.
      - Sir Richard Steele

The improbability of a malicious story serves but to help forward the currency of it, because it increases the scandal. So that, in such instances, the world is like the pious St. Austin, who said he believed some things because they were absurd and impossible.
      - Laurence Sterne

Tears are copiously showered over frailties the discoverer takes a malicious delight in circulating; and thus, all granite on one side of the heart, and all milk on the other, the unsexed scandal-monger hies from house to house, pouring balm from its weeping eyes on the wounds it inflicts with its stabbing tongue.
      - Edwin Percy Whipple

Scandal is gossip made tedious by morality.
      - Oscar Wilde (Oscar Fingal O'Flahertie Wills Wilde)

He rams his quill with scandal and with scoff,
  But 'tis so very foul, it won't go off.
      - Edward Young, Epistles to Pope
         (ep. I, l. 199)

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