Of human life the time is a point, and the substance is in a flux, and the perception dull, and the composition of the whole body subject to putrefaction, and the soul a whirl, and fortune hard to divine, and fame a thing devoid of judgment. And, to say all in a word, everything which belongs to the body is a stream, and what belongs to the soul is a dream and a vapor, and life is a warfare and a stranger’s sojourn, and after-fame is oblivion.
Those who despise fame seldom deserve it. We are apt to undervalue the purchase we cannot reach, to conceal our poverty the better. It is a spark which kindles upon the best fuel, and burns brightest in the bravest breast.
Good sense, good health, good conscience, and good fame - all these belong to virtue, and all prove that virtue has a title to your love.
Though a hundred crooked paths may conduct to a temporary success, the one plain and straight path of public and private virtue can alone lead to a pure and lasting fame and the blessings of posterity.
Vanity is so closely allied to virtue and to love the fame of laudable actions approaches so near the love of laudable actions for their own sake, that these passions are more capable of mixture than any other kinds of affection; and it is almost impossible to have the latter without some degree of the former.
The greatest human virtue bears no proportion to human vanity. We always think ourselves better than we are, and are generally desirous that others should think us still better than we think ourselves. To praise us for actions or dispositions which deserve praise is not to confer a benefit, but to pay a tribute. We have always pretensions to fame which, in our own hearts, we know to be disputable, and which we are desirous to strengthen by a new suffrage; we have always hopes which we suspect to be fallacious, and of which we eagerly snatch at every confirmation.
The thirst for fame is much greater than that for virtue; for who would embrace virtue itself if you take away its rewards.
Who despises fame will soon renounce the virtues that deserve it.
No true and permanent fame can be founded, except in labors which promote the happiness of mankind.
All man’s efforts, all his impulses to life, are only efforts to increase freedom. Wealth and poverty, fame and obscurity, power and subordination, strength and weakness, health and disease, culture and ignorance, work and leisure, repletion and hunger, virtue and vice, are only greater or lesser degrees of freedom.
Better than fame is still the wish for fame, the constant training for glorious strife.
The drying up a single tear has more of honest fame than shedding seas of gore.
Though fame is smoke, its fumes are frankincense to human thoughts.
A man must love a thing very much if he not only practices it without any hope of fame and money, but even practices it without any hope of doing it well.
That person lives in hell who gets what he desires too soon. Whether he finds his happiness in wealth, power, fame or women, or in a combination of all, that happiness will be meaningless if it robs him of his desire. Heaven is a country through which we are permitted to search eagerly and with hope for what we want.
Time magnifies everything after death; a man’s fame is increased as it passes from mouth to mouth after his burial.
Lust for fame and fortune is like an intoxication. While a man is intoxicated, he doesn’t realize it. It’s only after it is all over that he realizes that everything is like an illusion. If men could realize this all the time, there would be much less trouble on earth, and there would be much happier people too.
Wealth and fame are of dubious value when we think that life is like a fleeting dream.
To see through fame and wealth is to gain a little rest; to see through life and death is to gain a big rest.
Who give me goods hurts my spirit; who gives me fame injures my life.