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Samuel Butler quotes

English novelist, essayist and critic, 1835-1902

They say the test of literary power is whether a man can write an inscription. I say, 'Can he name a kitten?'


Our latest moment is always our supreme moment. Five minutes delay in dinner now is more important than a great sorrow ten years gone.


People are always good company when they are doing what they really enjoy.


People are lucky and unlucky...according to the ratio between what they get and what they have been led to expect.


Such as take lodgings in a head that's to be let unfurnished.


The advantage of doing one's praising for oneself is that one can lay it on so thick and exactly in the right places.


The function of vice is to keep virtue within reasonable bounds.


To live is like to love--all reason is against it, and all healthy instinct is for it.


The only things we hate, are the unfamiliar things


To himself everyone is immortal; he may know that he is going to die, but he can never know that he is dead.


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