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Samuel Butler Quotes


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He has spent his life best who has enjoyed it most. God will take care that we do not enjoy it any more than is good for us.
 

He is greatest who is most often in men's good thoughts.
 

he supposition that the world is ever in league to put a man down is childish. Hardly less childish is it for an author to lay the blame on reviewers. A good sturdy author is a match for a hundred reviewers.
 

He that complies against his will is of his own opinion still.
 

He who would propagate an opinion must begin by making sure of his ground and holding it firmly. There is as little use in trying to breed from weak opinion as from other weak stock.
 

Heaven is the work of the best and kindest men and women. Hell is the work of prigs, pedants and professional truth-tellers. The world is an attempt to make the best of both.
 

Honesty consists not in never stealing but in knowing where to stop in stealing, and how to make good use of what one does steal.
 

How is it, I wonder, that all religious officials, from God the Father to the parish beadle, should be so arbitrary and exacting.
 

Human life is as evanescent as the morning dew or a flash of lightning.
 

I am not sure that I do not begin to like the correction of a mistake, even when it involves my having shown much ignorance and stupidity, as well as I like hitting on a new idea.
 

I am the enfant terrible of literature and science.
 

I can generally bear the separation, but I don't like the leave-taking.
 

I do not like books. I believe I have the smallest library of any literary man in London, and I have no wish to increase it. I keep my books at the British Museum and at Mudie's, and it makes me very angry if anyone gives me one for my private library.
 

I do not mind lying, but I hate inaccuracy.
 

I doubt whether any angel would find me very entertaining. As for myself, if ever I do entertain one it will have to be unawares. When people entertain others without an introduction they generally turn out more like devils than angels.
 

I keep my books at the British Museum and at Mudies.
 

I never knew a writer yet who took the smallest pains with his style and was at the same time readable.
 

I really do not see much use in exalting the humble and meek; they do not remain humble and meek long when they are exalted.
 

I reckon being ill is one of the greatest pleasures of life, provided one is not too ill and is not obliged to work till one is better.
 

I should like to like Schumann's music better than I do; I dare say I could make myself like it better if I tried; but I do not like having to try to make myself like things; I like things that make me like them at once and no trying at all.
 


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