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 :: 1874-1965, British Novelist, Playwright

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Only a mediocre person is always at his best.
~ W. Somerset Maugham - [Excellence]

 

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People who ask for your criticism want only praise.
~ W. Somerset Maugham - [Critics and Criticism]

 

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Perfection has one grave defect. It is apt to be dull.
~ W. Somerset Maugham - [Perfection]

 

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Perfection is a trifle dull. It is not the least of life's ironies that this, which we all aim at, is better not quite achieved.
~ W. Somerset Maugham - [Perfection]

 

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Perfection is what American women expect to find in their husbands... but English women only hope to find in their butlers.
~ W. Somerset Maugham - [Perfection]

 

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Sentimentality is the only sentiment that rubs you the wrong way.
~ W. Somerset Maugham - [Sentiment]

 

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Sometimes a man hits upon a place to which he mysteriously feels that he belongs.
~ W. Somerset Maugham - [Association]

 

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The ability to quote is a serviceable substitute for wit.
~ W. Somerset Maugham - [Quotations]

 

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The common idea that success spoils people by making them vain, egotistic, and self-complacent is erroneous, on the contrary, it makes them for the most part, humble, tolerant, and kind. Failure makes people bitter and cruel.
~ W. Somerset Maugham - [Success]

 

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The complete life, the perfect pattern, includes old age as well as youth and maturity. The beauty of the morning and the radiance of noon are good, but it would be a very silly person who drew the curtains and turned on the light in order to shut out the tranquillity of the evening. Old age has its pleasures, which, though different, are not less than the pleasures of youth.
~ W. Somerset Maugham - [Age and Aging]

 

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The future will one day be the present and will seem as unimportant as the present does now.
~ W. Somerset Maugham - [Future]

 

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The great critic must be a philosopher, for from philosophy he will learn serenity, impartiality, and the transitoriness of human things.
~ W. Somerset Maugham - [Literary Criticism]

 

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The ideal has many names, and beauty is but one of them.
~ W. Somerset Maugham - [Beauty]

 

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The trouble with young writers is that they are all in their sixties.
~ W. Somerset Maugham - [Writers and Writing]

 

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The unfortunate thing about this world is that the good habits are much easier to give up than the bad ones.
~ W. Somerset Maugham - [Habit]

 

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The world is quickly bored by the recital of misfortune, and willing avoids the sight of distress.
~ W. Somerset Maugham - [Misfortunes]

 

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The writer is more concerned to know than to judge.
~ W. Somerset Maugham - [Writers and Writing]

 

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There are three rules for writing the novel. Unfortunately no one knows what they are.
~ W. Somerset Maugham - [Writers and Writing]

 

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There are two good things in life -- freedom of thought and freedom of action.
~ W. Somerset Maugham - [Freedom]

 

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There is no explanation for evil. It must be looked upon as a necessary part of the order of the universe. To ignore it is childish, to bewail it senseless.
~ W. Somerset Maugham - [Evil]

 

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