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Edward Gibbon quotes (37)

A heart to resolve, a head to contrive, and a hand to execute.
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All that is human must retrograde if it does not advance.
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Beauty is an outward gift which is seldom despised, except by those to whom it has been refused.
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Books are those faithful mirrors that reflect to our mind the minds of sages and heroes.
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But the power of instruction is seldom of much efficacy, except in those happy dispositions where it is almost superfluous.
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Conversation enriches the understanding, but solitude is the school of genius.
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Corruption, the most infallible symptom of constitutional liberty.
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Every man who rises above the common level has received two educations: the first from his teachers; the second, more personal and important, from himself.
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Fanaticism obliterates the feelings of humanity.
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History is indeed little more than the register of the crimes, follies, and misfortunes of mankind.
Edward Gibbon   Category: History

History is little more than the register of the crimes, follies, and misfortunes of mankind.
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Hope, the best comfort of our imperfect condition.
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I am indeed rich, since my income is superior to my expenses, and my expense is equal to my wishes.
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I never make the mistake of arguing with people for whose opinions I have no respect.
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I understand by this passion the union of desire, friendship, and tenderness, which is inflamed by a single female, which prefers her to the rest of her sex, and which seeks her possession as the supreme or the sole happiness of our being.
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I was never less alone than when by myself.
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It has always been my practice to cast a long paragraph in a single mould, to try it by my ear, to deposit it in my memory, but to suspend the action of the pen till I had given the last polish to my work.
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Let us read with method, and propose to ourselves an end to which our studies may point. The use of reading is to aid us in thinking.
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My early and invincible love of reading I would not exchange for all the riches of India.
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My English text is chaste, and all licentious passages are left in the decent obscurity of a learned language.
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Of the various forms of government which have prevailed in the world, an hereditary monarchy seems to present the fairest scope for ridicule.
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Our sympathy is cold to the relation of distant misery.
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Our work is the presentation of our capabilities.
Edward Gibbon   Category: Business

Revenge is profitable, gratitude is expensive.
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Style is the image of character.
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The author himself is the best judge of his own performance; none has so deeply meditated on the subject; none is so sincerely interested in the event.
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The courage of a soldier is found to be the cheapest and most common quality of human nature.
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The end comes when we no longer talk with ourselves. It is the end of genuine thinking and the beginning of the final loneliness.
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The laws of probability, so true in general, so fallacious in particular.
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The pathetic almost always consists in the detail of little events.
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The principles of a free constitution are irrecoverably lost, when the legislative power is nominated by the executive.
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The style of an author should be the image of his mind, but the choice and command of language is the fruit of exercise.
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The various modes of worship which prevailed in the Roman world were all considered by the people as equally true; by the philosopher as equally false; and by the magistrate as equally useful.
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The winds and the waves are always on the side of the ablest navigators.
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Their poverty secured their freedom, since our desires and our possessions are the strongest fetters of despotism.
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Unprovided with original learning, unformed in the habits of thinking, unskilled in the arts of composition, I resolved to write a book.
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We improve ourselves by victories over ourselves. There must be contest, and we must win.
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