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 :: 1628-1699, British Diplomat, Essayist

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Books, like proverbs, receive their chief value from the stamp and esteem of the ages through which they have passed
~ Sir William Temple - [Books and Reading]

 

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Man alone is born crying, lives complaining, and dies disappointed.
~ Sir William Temple - [Life and Living]

 

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No one ever was a great poet, that applied himself much to anything else.
~ Sir William Temple - [Poetry and Poets]

 

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Our present time is indeed a criticizing and critical time, hovering between the wish, and the inability to believe. Our complaints are like arrows shot up into the air at no target: and with no purpose they only fall back upon our own heads and destroy ourselves.
~ Sir William Temple - [Complaints and Complaining]

 

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The abilities of man must fall short on one side or the other, like too scanty a blanket when you are abed. If you pull it upon your shoulders, your feet are left bare; if you thrust it down to your feet, your shoulders are uncovered.
~ Sir William Temple - [Ability]

 

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The best rules to form a young man, are, to talk little, to hear much, to reflect alone upon what has passed in company, to distrust one's own opinions, and value others that deserve it.
~ Sir William Temple - [Self-improvement]

 

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The first glass is for myself, the second for my friends, the third for good humor, and the forth for my enemies.
~ Sir William Temple - [Alcohol and Alcoholism]

 

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The first ingredient in conversation is truth, the next good sense, the third good humor, and the fourth wit.
~ Sir William Temple - [Conversation]

 

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The only way for a rich man to be healthy is by exercise and abstinence, to live as if he were poor.
~ Sir William Temple - [Abstinence]

 

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There cannot live a more unhappy creature than an ill-natured old man, who is neither capable of receiving pleasures, nor sensible of conferring them on others.
~ Sir William Temple - [Age and Aging]

 

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When all is done, human life is, at the greatest and the best, but like a froward child, that must be played with and humored a little to keep it quiet till it falls asleep, and then the care is over.
~ Sir William Temple - [Humankind]

 

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When I pray, coincidences happen, and when I don't, they don't.
~ Sir William Temple - [Prayer]

 

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Who ever converses among old books will be hard to please among the new.
~ Sir William Temple - [Books and Reading]

 

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