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Quotes and Images from Chesterfield's Letters to His Son   By: (1694-1773)

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by The Earl of Chesterfield


A little learning is a dangerous thing A joker is near akin to a buffoon A favor may make an enemy, and an injury may make a friend Ablest man will sometimes do weak things Above all things, avoid speaking of yourself Above the frivolous as below the important and the secret Above trifles, he is never vehement and eager about them Absolute command of your temper Abstain from learned ostentation Absurd term of genteel and fashionable vices Absurd romances of the two last centuries According as their interest prompts them to wish Acquainted with books, and an absolute stranger to men Advice is seldom welcome Advise those who do not speak elegantly, not to speak Advocate, the friend, but not the bully of virtue Affectation of singularity or superiority Affectation in dress Affectation of business All have senses to be gratified Always made the best of the best, and never made bad worse Always does more than he says Always some favorite word for the time being Always look people in the face when you speak to them Am still unwell; I cannot help it! American Colonies Ancients and Moderns Anxiety for my health and life Applauded often, without approving Apt to make them think themselves more necessary than they are Argumentative, polemical conversations Arrogant pedant Art of pleasing is the most necessary As willing and as apt to be pleased as anybody Ascribing the greatest actions to the most trifling causes Assenting, but without being servile and abject Assertion instead of argument Assign the deepest motives for the most trifling actions Assurance and intrepidity At the first impulse of passion, be silent till you can be soft Attacked by ridicule, and, punished with contempt Attend to the objects of your expenses, but not to the sums Attention to the inside of books Attention and civility please all Attention Author is obscure and difficult in his own language Authority Avoid cacophony, and, what is very near as bad, monotony Avoid singularity Awkward address, ungraceful attitudes and actions Be neither transported nor depressed by the accidents of life Be silent till you can be soft Being in the power of every man to hurt him Being intelligible is now no longer the fashion Better not to seem to understand, than to reply Better refuse a favor gracefully, than to grant it clumsily Blindness of the understanding is as much to be pitied Bold, but with great seeming modesty Borough jobber Business must be well, not affectedly dressed Business now is to shine, not to weigh Business by no means forbids pleasures BUT OF THIS EVERY MAN WILL BELIEVE AS HE THINKS PROPER Can hardly be said to see what they see Cannot understand them, or will not desire to understand them Cardinal Mazarin Cardinal Richelieu Cardinal de Retz Cardinal Virtues, by first degrading them into weaknesses Cautious how we draw inferences Cease to love when you cease to be agreeable Chameleon, be able to take every different hue Characters, that never existed, are insipidly displayed Cheerful in the countenance, but without laughing Chit chat, useful to keep off improper and too serious subjects Choose your pleasures for yourself Civility, which is a disposition to accommodate and oblige others Clamorers triumph Close, without being costive Command of our temper, and of our countenance Commanding with dignity, you must serve up to it with diligence Committing acts of hostility upon the Graces Common sense (which, in truth, very uncommon) Commonplace observations Company is, in truth, a constant state of negotiation Complaisance Complaisance to every or anybody's opinion Complaisance due to the custom of the place Complaisant indulgence for people's weaknesses Conceal all your learning carefully Concealed what learning I had Conjectures pass upon us for truths Conjectures supply the defect of unattainable knowledge Connections Connive at knaves, and tolerate... Continue reading book >>

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