Let us cherish sympathy. By attention and exercise it may be improved in every man. It prepares the mind for receiving the impressions of virtue; and without it there can be no true politeness. Nothing is more odious than that insensibility which wraps a man up in himself and his own concerns, and prevents his being moved with either the joys or the sorrows of another.
Recommend to your children virtue; that alone can make them happy, not gold.
Candor is the seal of a noble mind, the ornament and pride of man, the sweetest charm of woman, the scorn of a rascal and the rarest virtue of sociability.
Gentleness, which belongs to virtue, is to be carefully distinguished from the mean spirit of cowards and the fawning assent of sycophants.
Sentiment and principle are often mistaken for each other, though, in fact, they widely differ. Sentiment is the virtue of ideas; principle the virtue of action. Sentiment has its seat in the had; principle, in the heart. Sentiment suggest fine harangues and subtle distinctions; principle conceives just notions, and performs good actions in consequence of them. Sentiment refines away the simplicity of truth, and the plainness of piety; and "gives us virtue in words, and vice in deeds."
Virtues are not honored by dignities, but dignities by virtue.
Virtue alone is the unerring sign of a noble soul.
When we envy another, we make their virtue our vice.
Cunning pays no regard to virtue, and is but the low mimic of reason.
It is a very easy thing to devise good laws; the difficulty is to make them effective. The great mistake is that of looking upon men as virtuous, or thinking that they can be made so by laws; and consequently the greatest art of a politician is to render vices serviceable to the cause of virtue.
The best perfection of a religious man is to do common things in a perfect manner. A constant fidelity in small things is a great and heroic virtue.
Courage is a quality so necessay for maintaining virtue, that it is always respected, even when it is associated with vice.
Strict punctuality is, perhaps, the cheapest virtue which can give force to an otherwise utterly insignificant character.
What makes woman lovely? Virtue, Faith, and gentleness in suffering, an endurance through scorn or trial; then has it the stamp celestial, and is admitted to sisterhood with angels.
False modesty is the masterpiece of vanity: showing the vain man in such an illusory light that he appears in the reputation of the virtue quite opposite to the vice which constitutes his real character; it is a deceit.
If it is usual to be deeply moved by rare things, why are we so little moved by virtue?
There is a false modesty, which is vanity; a false glory which is levity; a false grandeur, which is meanness; a false virtue, which is hypocrisy, and a false wisdom, which is prudery.
Remorse is virtue's root; its fair increase are fruits of innocence and blessedness.
He who seeks repentance for the past, should woo the angel virtue for the future.
If there is a virtue in the world at which we should always aim, it is cheerfulness.