Great Throughts Treasury

A database of quotes

Vengeance

"Deep vengeance is the daughter of deep silence." -

"Nothing is more costly, nothing is more sterile, than vengeance." -

"Delay in vengeance gives a heavier blow." - John Ford

"The place where forgiveness begins is a troubled, anxious heart. You will never be able to forgive anybody until you yourself are deeply disturbed. To be able to forgive we must come down from the citadel of pride, from the stronghold of hate and anger, from the high place where all emotions that issue from one's sense of being wronged shout only for vengeance and retaliation." - John Heuss

"Revenge is an act of passion; vengeance, of justice; injuries are revenged; crimes are avenged." -

"It is a common sense and self-interest to refrain from lashing out immediately to avenge an injury. A higher level of humanity is entirely overcoming feelings of vengeance in one’s heart. This is the glory of the morally wise man." - Leibush Malbim, aka Malbim, Rabbi Meir Leibush ben Yehiel Michal "the Malbim", Meïr Leibush ben Jehiel Michel Weiser

"The hardest sentiment to tolerate is pity, especially when it's deserved. Hatred is a tonic, it vitalizes us, it inspires vengeance, but pity deadens, it makes our weakness weaker." - Honoré de Balzac

"There is no happiness for him who oppresses and persecutes; there can be no repose for him. For the sighs of the unfortunate cry for vengeance to heaven." - Johann Pestalozzi, fully Johann Heinrich Pestalozzi

"He who slays a sleeping man takes vengeance on the absent." - Publius Syrus

"The criminal law is not founded on the principle of vengeance; it uses evil only as a means of preventing greater evil." - Daniel Webster

"Vengeance always springs from weakness of spirit, which is incapable of enduring insults and injuries." - François de La Rochefoucauld, François VI, Duc de La Rochefoucauld, Prince de Marcillac, Francois A. F. Rochefoucauld-Liancourt

"It is a work of prudence to prevent injury, and of a great mind, when done, not to revenge it. He that hath revenge in his power, and does not use it, is the great man; it is for low and vulgar spirits to transport themselves with vengeance. To endure injuries with a brave mind is one half the conquest." - Francis Bacon

"The only law which is really lived up to wholeheartedly and with a vengeance is the law of conformity." - Henry Miller, aka Henry Valentine Miller

"We should take our example not from our political and military leaders shouting “Retaliate!” and “War!” but from the doctors and nurses and medical students and firefighters and police officers who have been saving lives in the midst of mayhem – whose first thoughts are not violence, but healing; not vengeance, but compassion." - Howard Zinn

"Vengeance has no foresight." -

"Virtue carries a Reward with it; and so does Vice, with a Vengeance." - Thomas Fuller

"Before we can diminish our sufferings from the ill-controlled aggressive assaults of fellow citizens, we must renounce the philosophy of punishment, the obsolete, vengeful penal attitude. In its place we would seek a comprehensive, constructive social attitude - therapeutic in some instances, restraining in some instances, but preventive in its total social impact. In the last analysis this becomes a question of personal morals and values. No matter how glorified or how piously disguised, vengeance as a human motive must be personally repudiated by each and every one of us. This is the message of old religions and new psychiatries. Unless this message is heard, unless we ... can give up our delicious satisfactions in opportunities for vengeful retaliation on scapegoats, we cannot expect to preserve our peace, our public safety, or our mental health... the punitive attitude persists. And just so long as the spirit of vengeance has the slightest vestige of respectability, so long as it pervades the public mind and infuses its evil upon the statute books of the law, we will make no headway toward the control of crime. We cannot assess the most appropriate and effective penalties so long as we seek to inflict retaliatory pain. " - Karl Menninger, fully Karl Augustus Menninger

"All religions are cruel, all founded on blood; for all rest principally on the idea of sacrifice-that is, on the perpetual immolation of humanity to the insatiable vengeance of divinity." - Mikhail Bakunin, fully Mikhail Alexandrovich Bakunin

"There is no point in keeping vengeance or stubbornness. These things -he sighed- these things I so regret in my life. Pride. Vanity. Why do we do the things we do? " - Mitch Albom, fully Mitchell David "Mitch" Albom

"There is no point in keeping vengeance or stubbornness. These things I so regret in my life. Pride. Vanity. Why do we do the things we do?" - Morrie Schwartz, fully Morris "Morrie" S. Schwartz

"To wage war within oneself is Islam; the real fight is an inner one. To dispel evil qualities, evil thoughts, and the differences that lead to separations is Islam. To wage war upon jealousy, envy, and vengeance is Islam. To cut out and discard the qualities of Satan and to fill ourselves with the qualities of Allah is Islam. To show a heart full of love to our brothers and sisters is the wealth of Islam." - Bawa Mahaiyadden, fully Muhammad Raheem Bawa Muhaiyaddeen

"If an injury has to be done to a man it should be so severe that his vengeance need not be feared. " - Niccolò Machiavelli, formally Niccolò di Bernardo dei Machiavelli

"The good fight is the one we run on behalf of our dreams. If they flare up with a vengeance in our youth, we do have a lot of courage, but we have not yet learned to fight. If we have learned to deal with many troubles, has left us the courage to fight. Therefore, we turn against ourselves and our worst enemies. We say that our childish dreams, were too difficult to realize or just so touched that we had from the realities of life do not know. We kill our dreams because we are afraid to take the good fight… The first symptom that we are killing our dreams is that we never have time. The most busy people I've met in my life were at the same time those who had always time for everything. Those who did nothing were always tired, did not realize how little they made, and complained constantly about the fact that the day was too short. In truth, they were afraid to fight the good fight. The second symptom that our dreams are dead, our certainties. Because we see life not as a big adventure, which it is to live, we believe in the end, that we are the few things we have asked of life, wise, just and behave properly…. The third symptom of the death of our dreams is finally peace. Life becomes one Sunday afternoon, nothing great demands of us want no more of us than we are willing to give. We then keep for ready to believe that we have overcome our childish fantasies and gain the fulfillment of personal and professional level. We are surprised when someone says, in our age, that he still expected life of this or that. But in truth, deep inside our hearts, we know that we have given it up in reality only to fight for our dreams to live the good fight. " - Paulo Coelho

"Drop, drop, slow tears, and bathe those beauteous feet Which brought from heaven the news and prince of peace. Cease not, wet eyes, his mercies to entreat; To cry for vengeance sin doth never cease; In your deep floods drown all my faults and fears, Nor let his eye see sin but through my tears." - Phineas Fletcher

"Just vengeance does not call for punishment." - Pierre Cornielle

"Just my vengeance complete The man sprang to his feet Stood erect caught at Gods skirts and prayed! So I was afraid!" - Robert Browning

"THE MESSIAH - Lord, tell me when Shall come to men Messiah blest, When shall Thy care His couch prepare To be my guest, To sleep on my golden bed, in my palace rest. Wake, dear gazelle, Shake off thy spell, Nor slumber still. Dawn like a flag Surmounts the crag Of Tabor’s hill, And its flame it unfurls o’er my Hermon, the hoar and chill. From the wild-ass brood To the grace renewed Of Thy dainty roe, O Lord, return, For behold we yearn Our love to show, And our soul with Thy soul at one as of yore to know. Thrice welcome he Who comes to me Of David’s line, My palace treasure Is at his pleasure With all that’s mine, My pomegranate, cinnamon, spice, and the jars of my old sweet wine." - Salomon ibn Gabirol, aka Solomon ben Judah or Avicebron

"Strayed in mid-youth, rouse up, nor sleep, for lo! The days of youth like clouds of smoke will pass. Ere evening falls, thou shalt be withered grass, Though morning saw thee like a lily blow. Why waste on ancestors a heated breath, Or note which progeny was Abraham’s? Whether his food be herbs or Bashan rams, Man, wretched wight, is on his way to death." - Salomon ibn Gabirol, aka Solomon ben Judah or Avicebron

"The man who endures accusations against himself with humility has arrived at perfection. He is marveled at by the holy angels, for there is no other virtue so great and so hard to achieve." - Saint Isaac of Nineveh, also Isaac the Syrian, Isaac of Qatar and Isaac Syrus NULL

"Riches exclude only one inconvenience, and that is poverty." - Samuel Johnson, aka Doctor Johnson

"That which acts for an end unknown to itself, depends upon some overruling wisdom that knows that end. Who should direct them in all those ends, but He that bestowed a being upon them for those ends; who knows what is convenient for their life, security, and propagation of their natures? An exact knowledge is necessary both of what is agreeable to them, and the means whereby they must attain it, which, since it is not inherent in them, is in that wise God who puts those instincts into them, and governs them in the exercise of them to such ends." - Stephen Charnock

"When the highest promises are made, God expects they should be put in suit; our Savior joins the promise and the petition together; the promise to encourage the petition, and the petition to enjoy the promise: he doth not say perhaps it shall be given, but it shall, that is, it certainly shall; your heavenly Father is unchangeably willing to give you those things. We must depend upon his immutability for the thing, and submit to his wisdom for the time. Prayer is an acknowledgment of our dependence upon God; which dependence could have no firm foundation without unchangeableness. Prayer doth not desire any change in God, but is offered to God that he would confer those things which he hath immutably willed to communicate; but he willed them not without prayer as the means of bestowing them. The light of the sun is ordered for our comfort, for the discovery of visible things, for the ripening of the fruits of the earth; but withal it is required that we use our faculty of seeing, that we employ our industry in sowing and planting, and expose our fruits to the view of the sun; that they may receive the influence of it. If a man shuts his eyes, and complains that the sun is changed into darkness, it would be ridiculous; the sun is not changed, but we alter ourselves; nor is God changed in not giving us the blessings he hath promised, because he hath promised in the way of a due address to him, and opening our souls to receive his influence, and to this, his immutability is the greatest encouragement." - Stephen Charnock

"To God - If you have form’d a circle to go into, Go into it yourself, and see how you would do. " - William Blake

"The Holiness of Minute Particulars - And many conversèd on these things as they labour’d at the furrow, Saying: ‘It is better to prevent misery than to release from misery; It is better to prevent error than to forgive the criminal. Labour well the Minute Particulars: attend to the Little Ones; And those who are in misery cannot remain so long, If we do but our duty: labour well the teeming Earth.… He who would do good to another must do it in Minute Particulars. General Good is the plea of the scoundrel, hypocrite, and flatterer; For Art and Science cannot exist but in minutely organized Particulars, And not in generalizing Demonstrations of the Rational Power: The Infinite alone resides in Definite and Determinate Identity. Establishment of Truth depends on destruction of Falsehood continually, On Circumcision, not on Virginity, O Reasoners of Albion!" - William Blake

"Hearses coffins, long funeral processions, and all the dark emblems of mortality, were reflected, as it were, on the sky, from the terrible works of pestilence and famine which were going on the earth beneath it." - William Carleton

"In conclusion, I have endeavored, with what success has been already determined by the voice of my own country, to give a panorama of Irish life among the people … and in doing this, I can say with solemn truth that I painted them honestly and without reference to the existence of any particular creed or party." - William Carleton

"If the public only knew that every writer worthy of the name is the severest critic of his own book before it ever gets into the hands of the reviewers, how surprised they would be!" - Wilkie Collins, fully William Wilkie Collins

"God gives nothing to those who keep their arms crossed. - West African Proverb" -

"Marxists are absolutely convinced of the bourgeois character of the Russian revolution. What does this mean? It means that the democratic reforms in the political system and the social and economic reforms, which have become a necessity for Russia, do not in themselves imply the undermining of capitalism, the undermining of bourgeois rule; on the contrary, they will, for the first time, really clear the ground for a wide and rapid, European, and not Asiatic, development of capitalism; they will, for the first time, make it possible for the bourgeoisie to rule as a class." - Vladimir Lenin, fully Vladimir Ilyich Lenin

"If you give way, you will instantly have to meet some greater demand, as having been frightened into obedience in the first instance; while a firm refusal will make them clearly understand that they must treat you more as equals." - Thucydides NULL

"Mankind are tolerant of the praises of others as long as each hearer thinks that he can do as well or nearly as well himself, but, when the speaker rises above him, jealousy is aroused and he begins to be incredulous." - Thucydides NULL

"Speculation is carried on in safety, but, when it comes to action, fear causes failure." - Thucydides NULL

"You may indeed do many works of love and delight in them -- especially at such times as they are not inconvenient to your state or temper or occurrences in life. But the Spirit of Love is not in you till it is the spirit of your life, till you live freely, willingly, and universally according to it." - William Law

"Shine comforts from the east, That I may back to Athens by daylight From these that my poor company detest; And sleep, that sometimes shuts up sorrow's eye, Steal me awhile from mine own company." -

"To have committed every crime but that of being a father." - Emil M. Cioran

"Alas!-but why Alas? It is the lot of mortality we experience." - Euripedes NULL