Great Throughts Treasury

This site is dedicated to the memory of Dr. Alan William Smolowe who gave birth to the creation of this database.

Related Quotes

Edwin Hubbell Chapin

The essence of justice is mercy. Making a child suffer for wrong-doing is merciful to the child. There is no mercy in letting a child have its own will, plunging headlong to destruction wit the bits in its mouth. There is no mercy to society nor to the criminal if the wrong is not repressed and the right vindicated. We injure the culprit who comes up to take his proper doom at the bar of justice, if we do not make him feel that he has done a wrong thing. We may deliver his body from the prison, but not at the expense of justice nor to his own injury.

Body | Character | Justice | Mercy | Prison | Right | Society | Will | Wit | Wrong | Society | Child |

David Hume

It is a certain rule that wit and passion are entirely incompatible. When the affections are moved, there is no place for the imagination.

Character | Imagination | Passion | Rule | Wit |

Francis Osborn

Let your wit rather serve you for a buckler to defend yourself, by a handsome reply, than the sword to wound others, though with ever so facetious reproach; remembering that a word cuts deeper than a sharper weapon and the wound it makes is longer curing.

Character | Wisdom | Wit |

Jonathan Swift, pen names, M.B. Drapier, Lemuel Gulliver, Isaac Bickerstaff

Perpetual aiming at wit is a very bad part of conversation. It is done to support a character: it generally fails; it is a sort of insult on the company, and a restraint upon the speaker.

Character | Conversation | Insult | Restraint | Wit | Insult |

Jean de La Bruyère

It is a great misfortune neither to have enough wit to talk well nor enough judgment to be silent.

Enough | Judgment | Misfortune | Wisdom | Wit | Misfortune |

Christian Nestell Bovee

The most brilliant flashes of wit come from a clouded mind, as lightning leaps only from an obscure firmament.

Mind | Wisdom | Wit |

Christian Nestell Bovee

Wit must be without effort. Wit is play, not work; a nimbleness of the fancy, not a laborious effort of the will; a license, a holiday, a carnival of thought and feeling, not a trifling with speech, a constraint upon language, a duress upon words.

Constraint | Effort | Language | Play | Speech | Thought | Will | Wisdom | Wit | Words | Work | Thought |

Tyron Edwards

Ridicule may be the evidence of wit or bitterness and may gratify a little mind, or an ungenerous temper, but it is no test of reason and truth.

Bitterness | Evidence | Little | Mind | Reason | Ridicule | Temper | Truth | Wisdom | Wit |

M. de Montlosier, fully François Dominique de Reynaud, Comte de Montlosier

To place wit before good sense is to place the superfluous before the necessary.

Good | Sense | Wisdom | Wit |

Mayer Rothschild, fully Mayer Amschel Bauer Rothschild

It requires a great deal of boldness and a great deal of caution to make a great fortune; and when you have got it, it requires ten times as much wit to keep it.

Boldness | Caution | Fortune | Wisdom | Wit |

Propertius, fully Sextus Propertius NULL

Let each man have the wit to go his own way.

Man | Wisdom | Wit |

Francis Quarles

Be not too slow in the breaking of a sinful custom; a quick, courageous resolution is better than a gradual deliberation; in such a combat he is the bravest soldier that lays about him without fear or wit. Wit pleads, fear disheartens; he that would kill Hydra had better strike off one neck than five heads: fell the tree, and the branches are soon cut off.

Better | Custom | Deliberation | Fear | Kill | Resolution | Wisdom | Wit |

John Russell, 1st Earl Russell, Lord John Russell

A proverb is one man's wit and all men's wisdom.

Man | Men | Wisdom | Wit |

Christian Scrivner, pseudonym Gotthold

If he who has little wit needs a master to inform his stupidity, he who has much frequently needs ten to keeping check his worldly wisdom, which might otherwise, like a high-mettled charger, toss him to the ground.

Little | Stupidity | Wisdom | Wit |