To know your ruling passion, examine your castles in the air.
Curiosity is as much the parent of attention, as attention is of memory.
Falsehood is difficult to be maintained. When the materials of a building are solid blocks of stone, very rude architecture will suffice; but a structure of rotten materials needs the most careful adjustment to make it stand at all.
It is quite possible, and not uncommon, to read most laboriously, even so as to get by heart the words of a book, without really studying it at all,--that is, without employing the thoughts on the subject.
Manners are one of the greatest engines of influence ever given to man.
Sophistry, like poison, is at once detected and nauseated, when presented to us in a concentrated form; but a fallacy which, when stated barely in a few sentences, would not deceive a child, may deceive half the world, if diluted in a quarto volume.
He only is exempt from failures who makes no efforts.
Some persons resemble certain trees, such as the nut, which flowers in February and ripens its fruit in September; or the juniper and the arbutus; which take a whole year or more to perfect their fruit; and others, the cherry, which takes between two an three months.
A man is called selfish not for pursuing his own good, but for neglecting his neighbor's.
Lose an hour in the morning, and you will spend all day looking for it.
It is generally true that all that is required to make men unmindful of what they owe to God for any blessing, is, that they should receive that blessing often and regularly.
To be always thinking about your manners is not the way to make them good; the very perfection of manners is not to think about yourself.
It is the neglect of timely repair that makes rebuilding necessary.
Vices and frailties correct each other, like acids and alkalies. If each vicious man had but one vice, I do not know how the world could go on.
The first requisite of style, not only in rhetoric, but in all compositions, is perspicuity.
Trust, therefore, for the overcoming of a difficulty, not to long-continued study after you have once become bewildered, but to repeated trials at intervals.
Women never reason, or, if they do, they either draw correct inferences from wrong premises, or wrong inferences from correct premises; and they always poke the fire from the top.
Reason can no more influence the will, and operate as a motive, than the eyes which show a man his road can enable him to move from place to place, or that a ship provided with a compass can sail without a wind.
It is worth noticing that those who assume an imposing demeanor and seek to pass themselves off for something beyond what they are, are not unfrequently as much underrated by some as overrated by others.
As an exercise of the reasoning faculties, pure mathematics is an admirable exercise, because it consists of reasoning alone and does not encumber the student with any exercise of judgment.
Concerning the utility of Rhetoric, it is to be observed that it divides itself into two; first, whether Oratorical skill be, on the whole, a public benefit, or evil; and secondly, whether any artificial system of Rules is conducive to the attainment of that skill.
No one complains of the rules of Grammar as fettering Language; because it is understood that correct use is not founded on Grammar, but Grammar on correct use. A just system of Logic or of Rhetoric is analogous, in this respect, to Grammar..
It is one thing to wish to have truth on our side, and another to wish sincerely to be on the side of truth.
Neither human applause nor human censure is to be taken as the best of truth; but either should set us upon testing ourselves.
The Eastern monarch who proclaimed a reward to him who should discover a new pleasure, would have deserved well of mankind had he stipulated that it should be blameless.
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