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The liberty of the press is a blessing when we are inclined to write against others, and a calamity when we find ourselves overborne by the multitude of our assailants.


Samuel Johnson

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More Samuel Johnson

Grief is a species of idleness.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
You must have taken great pains, sir; you could not naturally been so very stupid.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
The feeling of friendship is like that of being comfortably filled with roast beef; love, like being...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
The use of travelling is to regulate imagination by reality, and, instead of thinking how things ma...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
I had rather see the portrait of a dog that I know, than all the allegorical paintings they can show...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
No place affords a more striking conviction of the vanity of human hopes than a public library.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
If a man does not make new acquaintances as he advances through life, he will soon find himself left...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
The mind is never satisfied with the objects immediately before it, but is always breaking away from...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
I would rather be attacked than unnoticed. For the worst thing you can do to an author is to be sile...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Poverty is often concealed in splendor, and often in extravagance. It is the task of many people to ...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
He who praises everybody, praises nobody.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Depend upon it that if a man talks of his misfortunes there is something in them that is not disagre...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
There are few minds to which tyranny is not delightful.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Nobody can write the life of a man but those who have eat and drunk and lived in social intercourse ...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Turn on the prudent ant thy heedful eyes. Observe her labors, sluggard, and be wise.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
What provokes your risibility, Sir? Have I said anything that you understand? Then I ask pardon of t...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
To cultivate kindness is a valuable part of the business of life.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
I hate mankind, for I think of myself as one of the best of them, and I know how bad I am.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
No money is better spent than what is laid out for domestic satisfaction.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
The superiority of some men is merely local. They are great because their associates are little.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
The love of life is necessary to the vigorous prosecution of any undertaking.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Truth, Sir, is a cow which will yield such people no more milk, and so they are gone to milk the bul...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
He that is already corrupt is naturally suspicious, and he that becomes suspicious will quickly beco...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Small debts are like small gun shot; they are rattling around us on all sides and one can scarcely e...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Criticism is a study by which men grow important and formidable at very small expense. He whom natur...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
I would rather be attacked than unnoticed. For the worst thing you can do to an author is to be sile...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
We are inclined to believe those whom we don not know because they have never deceived us.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
The happiest conversation is that of which nothing is distinctly remembered but a general effect of ...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
I never desire to converse with a man who has written more than he has read.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
There can be no friendship without confidence, and no confidence without integrity.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Bravery has no place where it can avail nothing.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
It seems not more reasonable to leave the right of printing unrestrained, because writers may be aft...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Sir, you have but two topics, yourself and me. I am sick of both.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Disappointment, when it involves neither shame nor loss, is as good as success; for it supplies as m...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
There is nothing which has yet been contrived by man, by which so much happiness is produced as by a...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
The trade of advertising is now so near perfection that it is not easy to propose any improvement. B...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Were it not for imagination a man would be as happy in arms of a chambermaid as of a duchess.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Patron: One who countenances, supports or protects. Commonly a wretch who supports with insolence, a...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
No man is much regarded by the rest of the world. He that considers how little he dwells upon the co...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
If I had no duties, and no reference to futurity, I would spend my life in driving briskly in a post...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
The mind is refrigerated by interruption; the thoughts are diverted from the principal subject; the ...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
We love to overlook the boundaries which we do not wish to pass.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
There mark what ills the scholar's life assail, toil, envy, want, and patron.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Some people wave their dogmatic thinking until their own reason is entangled.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Whoever thinks of going to bed before twelve o clock is a scoundrel.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Cruel with guilt, and daring with despair, the midnight murderer bursts the faithless bar; invades t...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Almost all absurdity of conduct arises from the imitation of those who we cannot resemble.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Avarice is generally the last passion of those lives of which the first part has been squandered in ...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Nothing flatters a man as much as the happiness of his wife; he is always proud of himself as the so...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
As to the rout that is made about people who are ruined by extravagance, it is no matter to the nati...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
They teach the morals of a whore, and the manners of a dancing master.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
A am a great friend of public amusements, they keep people from vice.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
In lapidary inscriptions a man is not upon oath.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Life cannot subsist in society but by reciprocal concessions.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
There are charms made only for distance admiration.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
It is easy to talk of sitting at home contented, when others are seeing or making shows. But not to ...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Every quotation contributes something to the stability or enlargement of the language.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
The highest panegyric, therefore, that private virtue can receive, is the praise of servants.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Few things are impossible to diligence and skill ... Great works are performed, not by strength, but...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
I have thought of a pulley to raise me gradually; but that would give me pain, as it would counterac...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Controversies merely speculative are of small importance in themselves, however they may have someti...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
When a man is tired of London, he is tired of life; for there is in London all that life can afford
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Feast of Lucy, Martyr at Syracuse, 304 Commemoration of Samuel Johnson, Writer, Moralist, 1784 ...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Feast of Lucy, Martyr at Syracuse, 304 Commemoration of Samuel Johnson, Writer, Moralist, 1784 It...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Easter Almighty and everlasting God, Who hast preserved me by Thy fatherly care through all the ...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Nature has given women so much power that the law has very wisely given them little.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Friendship is not always the sequel of obligation
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Fraud and falsehood only dread examination. Truth invites it.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Without economy none can be rich, and with it few will be poor.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
A man would rather have a hundred lies told of him than one truth which he does not wish should be k...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
If a madman were to come into this room with a stick in his hand, no doubt we should pity the state ...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Fanatical religion driven to a certain point is almost as bad as none at all, but not quite.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
I wish there were some cure, like the lover's leap, for all heads of which some single idea has obt...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Getting money is not all a man's business: to cultivate kindness is a valuable part of the business ...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
A peasant and a philosopher may be equally satisfied, but not equally happy. Happiness consists in t...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Mankind have a great aversion to intellectual labor; but even supposing knowledge to be easily attai...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Silence propagates itself, and the longer talk has been suspended, the more difficult it is to find ...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
The drama's laws, the drama's patrons give, for we that live to please, must please to live.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Worth seeing? Yes; but not worth going to see.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
He is no wise man who will quit a certainty for an uncertainty.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Every other enjoyment malice may destroy; every other panegyric envy may withhold; but no human powe...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
No government power can be abused long. Mankind will not bear it. There is a remedy in human nature ...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Every other author may aspire to praise; the lexicographer can only hope to escape reproach, and eve...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Our brightest blazes of gladness are commonly kindled by unexpected sparks.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
When I was as you are now, towering in the confidence of twenty-one, little did I suspect that I sho...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
It is the doom of laziness and gluttony to be inactive without ease, and drowsy without tranquility.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Patriotism having become one of our topicks, Johnson suddenly uttered, in a strong determined tone, ...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
No man will be a sailor who has contrivance enough to get himself into jail; for being in a ship is ...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
It matters not how a man dies, but how he lives. The act of dying is not of importance, it lasts so ...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
All intellectual improvement arises from leisure
SAMUEL JOHNSON
There is nothing which has yet been contrived by man, by which so much happiness is produced as by ...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
There will always be a part, and always a very large part of every community, that have no care but ...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
If your determination is fixed, I do not counsel you to despair. Few things are impossible to dilige...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
He who has so little knowledge of human nature as to seek happiness by changing anything but his own...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
No man will be a sailor who has contrivance enough to get himself into a jail; for being in a ship i...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
I like a good hater.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Ignorance, madam, pure ignorance.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
I will be conquered; I will not capitulate.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
I know not, Madam, that you have a right, upon moral principles, to make your readers suffer so much...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
The greatest part of a writer's time is spent in reading, in order to write; a man will turn over ha...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Language is the only instrument of science, and words are but the signs of ideas.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Excellence in any department can be attained only by the labor of a lifetime; it is not to be purc...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
It is not from reason and prudence that people marry, but from inclination.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Do not discourage your children from hoarding, if they have a taste to it; whoever lays up his penny...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Whatever you have spend less.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Politics are now nothing more than means of rising in the world. With this sole view do men engage i...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
To be idle and to be poor have always been reproaches, and therefore every man endeavors with his ut...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
It is more from carelessness about truth than from intentionally lying that there is so much falseho...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
When any calamity has been suffered the first thing to be remembered is, how much has been escaped.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Small debts are like small shot; they are rattling on every side, and can scarcely be escaped withou...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Leisure and curiosity might soon make great advances in useful knowledge, were they not diverted by ...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Being in a ship is being in a jail, with the chance of being drowned.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
It is difficult to conjecture, from the conduct of him whom we see in a low condition, how he would ...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
If in an actor there appears an utter vacancy of meaning, a frigid equality, a stupid languor, a tor...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
I'll come no more behind your scenes, David; for the silk stockings and white bosoms of your actress...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Do it now. You become successful the moment you start moving toward a worthwhile goal.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
He that applauds him who does not deserve praise, is endeavoring to deceive the public; he that hiss...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
I have heard him assert, that a tavern chair was the throne of human felicity
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Beauty has often overpowered the resolutions of the firm, and the reasonings of the wise, roused the...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Tea's proper use is to amuse the idle, and relax the studious, and dilute the full meals of those wh...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
That man is little to be envied whose patriotism would not gain force upon the plain of Marathon, or...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
We are long before we are convinced that happiness is never to be found, and each believes it posses...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
No weakness of the human mind has more frequently incurred animadversion, than the negligence with w...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
You can never be wise unless you love reading.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
A man who uses a great many words to express his meaning is like a bad marksman who, instead of aimi...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Sir, I did not count your glasses of wine, why should you number up my cups of tea?
SAMUEL JOHNSON
We are easily shocked by crimes which appear at once in their full magnitude, but the gradual growth...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Money and time are the heaviest burdens in life: and among mortals, those who are most unhappy are t...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
He that suffers the slightest breach in his morality can seldom tell what shall enter it, or how wid...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
They teach the morals of a whore, and the manners of a dancing-master
SAMUEL JOHNSON
In sovereignty there are no gradations
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Admiration begins where acquaintance ceases
SAMUEL JOHNSON
The love of life is necessary to the vigorous prosecution of any undertaking
SAMUEL JOHNSON
The pleasure of expecting enjoyment is often greater than that of obtaining it, and the completion o...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
It is generally known, that he who expects much will be often disappointed; yet disappointment seldo...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Such is the state of life, that none are happy but by the anticipation of change: the change itself ...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
He that is pushing his predecessors into the gulf of obscurity, cannot but sometimes suspect, that h...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Power is not sufficient evidence of truth.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Words are but the signs of ideas.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
The joy of life is variety; the tenderest love requires to be rekindled by intervals of absence
SAMUEL JOHNSON
My dear friend, clear your mind of can't.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Friendship, like love, is destroyed by long absence, though it may be increased by short intermissio...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Friendship is a union of spirits, a marriage of hearts, and the bond there of virtue
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Oats. A grain, which in England is generally given to horses, but in Scotland supports the people.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Like an image in a dream the world is troubled by love, hatred, and other poisons. So long as the dr...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
A tavern chair is the throne of human felicity.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
AS THEY SAY, here today, Enron tomorrow.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Frugality may be termed the daughter of Prudence, the sister of Temperance, and the parent of Libert...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
It is thus that mutual cowardice keeps us in peace. Were one half of mankind brave and one cowards, ...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
I live in the crowds of jollity, not so much to enjoy company as to shun myself.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
All theory is against the freedom of the will, all experience for it.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
What is easy is seldom excellent.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
The triumph of hope over experience
SAMUEL JOHNSON
In all evils which admit a remedy, impatience should be avoided, because it wastes that time and att...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Disease is a physical process that generally begins that equality which death completes.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Commemoration of Samuel Seabury, First Anglican Bishop in North America, 1796 [Dr. Johnson to a Q...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
One of the amusements of idleness is reading without the fatigue of close attention; and the world t...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
A short letter to a distant friend is, in my opinion, an insult like that of a slight bow or cursory...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Small debts are like small shot; they are rattling on every side, and can scarcely be escaped withou...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
The appearance and retirement of actors are the great events of the theatrical world; and their firs...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
The commercial world is very frequently put into confusion by the bankruptcy of merchants, that assu...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
It was not for me to bandy civilities with my Sovereign
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Long-expected one and twenty, / Lingering year at length is flown.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
A man will turn over half a library to make one book
SAMUEL JOHNSON
There is no private house in which people can enjoy themselves so well as at a capital tavern... No,...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Money and time are the heaviest burdens of life, and... the unhappiest of all mortals are those who ...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Few things are impossible to diligence and skill. Great works are performed not by strength, but by ...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Just praise is only a debt, but flattery is a present
SAMUEL JOHNSON
She no more thought of the play out of which her part was taken, than a shoemaker thinks of the skin...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
There is scarcely any writer who has not celebrated the happiness of rural privacy, and delighted hi...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
This is one of the disadvantages of wine, it makes a man mistake words for thoughts.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
[C]ourage is reckoned the greatest of all virtues; because, unless a man has that virtue, he has no ...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
The drama's laws, the drama's patrons give. For we that live to please, must please to live.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
There is, indeed, nothing that so much seduces reason from vigilance, as the thought of passing life...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Agriculture not only gives riches to a nation, but the only riches she can call her own.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
I look upon every day to be lost, in which I do not make a new acquaintance.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Adversity has ever been considered the state in which a man most easily becomes acquainted with hims...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Praise, like gold and diamonds, owes its value only to its scarcity.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
What we hope ever to do with ease, we must learn first to do with diligence.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
By seeing London, I have seen as much of life as the world can show.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
The chains of habit are too weak to be felt until they are too strong to be broken.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
My dear friend, clear your mind of cant.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
The world is like a grand staircase, some are going up and some are going down.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Pride is seldom delicate; it will please itself with very mean advantages.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
The applause of a single human being is of great consequence.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
The usual fortune of complaint is to excite contempt more than pity.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
If I have said something to hurt a man once, I shall not get the better of this by saying many thing...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
The noblest prospect which a Scotchman ever sees is the high road that leads him to England.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Much may be made of a Scotchman, if he be caught young.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
It is the only sensual pleasure without vice.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
The true art of memory is the art of attention.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Man is not weak; knowledge is more than equivalent to force.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Knowledge always demands increase; it is like fire, which must first be kindled by some external age...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Knowledge is more than equivalent to force.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Knowledge is of two kinds. We know a subject ourselves, or we know where we can find information upo...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Language is only the instrument of science, and words are but the signs of ideas: I wish, however, t...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
To act from pure benevolence is not possible for finite human beings, Human benevolence is mingled w...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
I have found men to be more kind than I expected, and less just.
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Sir, he was dull in company, dull in his closet, dull everywhere. He was dull in a new way, and that...
SAMUEL JOHNSON
Sir, a man may be so much of everything, that he is nothing of anything.
SAMUEL JOHNSON