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François de la Rochefoucauld quotes

French classical author, leading exponent of the Maxime, 1613-1680

Absence diminishes small loves and increases great ones, as the wind blows out the candle and blows up the bonfire.


If we had no faults of our own, we would not take so much pleasure in noticing those of others.


It takes nearly as much ability to know how to profit by good advice as to know how to act for one's self.


If we are incapable of finding peace in ourselves, it is pointless to search elsewhere.


Hope and fear are inseparable. There is no hope without fear, nor any fear without hope.


Behind many acts that are thought ridiculous there lie wise and weighty motives.


Ah, Hope! What would life be, stripped of thy encouraging smiles, that teach us to look behind the dark clouds of today, for the golden beams that are to gild the morrow.


Absence weakens mediocre passions and increases great ones, as the wind blows out candles and kindles fires.


A man convinced of his own merit will accept misfortune as an honor, for thus can he persuade others, as well as himself, that he is a worthy target for the arrows of fate.


Quarrels would not last long if the fault were only on one side.


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