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Criticism Quotes


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Criticism, that fine flower of personal expression in the garden of letters.

Critics are the men who have failed in literature and art.

Doubtless criticism was originally benignant, pointing out the beauties of a work rather that its defects. The passions of men have made it malignant, as a bad heart of Procrustes turned the bed, the symbol of repose, into an instrument of torture.

Even the lion has to defend himself against flies.

I had rather be hissed for a good verse than applauded for a bad one.

Is it in destroying and pulling down that skill is displayed?-The shallowest understanding, the rudest hand, is more than equal to that task.

It is a maxim with me, that no man was ever written out of a reputation but by himself.

It is easy to criticise an author, but difficult to appreciate him.

It is quite cruel that a poet cannot wander through his regions of enchantment without having a critic, forever, like the old man of the sea, upon his back.

It is ridiculous for any man to criticize the works of another if he has not distinguished himself by his own performances

Neither praise nor blame is the object of true criticism. - Justly to discriminate, firmly to establish, wisely to prescribe, and honestly to award - these are the true aims and duties of criticism.

Of all the cants which are canted in this canting world, tho' the cant of hypocrites may be the worst, the cant of criticism is the most tormenting.

Reviewers are forever telling authors they can't understand them. The author might often reply: Is that my fault? See quote detail

Said the pot to die kettle, "Get away, blackface."

Silence is sometimes the severest criticism.

The legitimate aim of criticism is to direct attention to the excellent. - The bad will dig its own grave, and the imperfect may safely be left to that final neglect from which no amount of present undeserved popularity can rescue it.

The most noble criticism is that in which the critic is not the antagonist so much as the rival of the author.

The opinion of the great body of the reading public, is very materially influenced even by the unsupported assertions of those who assume a right to criticise.

The pleasure of criticism takes from us that of being deeply moved by very beautiful things.

The strength of criticism lies only in the weakness of the thing criticized


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