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Sir Francis Bacon Quotes


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Studies serve for delight, for ornament, and for ability. Their chief use for delight is in privateness and retiring; for ornament is in discourse; and ability is in the judgment and disposition of business. For expert men can execute, and, perhaps, judge of particulars, one by one; but the general counsels and the plots and marshalling of affairs come best from those that are learned.
[Study]
 

Studies teach not their own use; that is a wisdom without them and above them, won by observation.
[Study]
 

Suspicions amongst thoughts are like the bats amongst birds, they ever fly by twilight: certainly they are to be repressed, or at least well guarded, for they cloud the mind, lose friends, check business, dispose kings to tyranny, husbands to jealousy, and wise men to irresolution and melancholy; they are defects, not in the heart, but in the brain.
[Suspicion]
 

Suspicions that the mind, of itself, gathers, are but buzzes; but suspicions that are artificially nourished and put into men's heads by the tales and whisperings of others, have stings.
 

Talkers and futile persons are commonly vain and credulous withal, for he that talketh what he knoweth will also talk what he knoweth not; therefore set it down that a habit of secrecy is both politic and moral.
[Secrecy]
 

The best armor is to keep out of gun­shot.
 

The best part of beauty is that which no picture can express.
[Beauty]
 

The best preservative to keep the mind in health is the faithful admonition of a friend.
[Friendship]
 

The best work, and of greatest merit for the public, has proceeded from the unmarried or childless men.
[Bachelor]
 

The correlative to loving our neighbors as ourselves is hating ourselves as we hate our neighbors.
 

The desire of power in excess caused angels to fall; the desire of knowledge in excess caused man to fall; but in charity is no excess, neither can man or angels come into danger by it.
[Excess]
 

The eye of the understanding is like the eye of the sense; for as you may see great objects through small crannies or holes, so you may see great axioms of nature through small and contemptible instances.
[Understanding]
 

The first creation of God, in the works of the days, was the light of sense; the last was the light of reason; and his Sabbath work, ever since, is the illumination of the spirit.
 

The folly of one man is the fortune of another.
[Folly]
 

The fortune which nobody sees makes a person happy and unenvied.
 

The general root of superstition is that men observe when things hit, and not when they miss; and commit to memory the one, and forget and pass over the other.
[Superstition]
 

The genius, wit, and spirit of a nation are discovered in its proverbs.
 

The great end of life is not knowledge but action.
[Action]
 

The illiberality of parents, in allowance toward their children, is a harmful error, and makes them base; acquaints them with shirts; makes them sort with mean company; and makes them surfeit more when they come to plenty; and therefore the proof is best when men keep their authority toward their children, but not their purse.
[Parents]
 

The job of the artist is to deepen the mystery.
 


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