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Michel de Montaigne

(28 February 1533 – 13 September 1592)

Quotations

  • ''My art and profession is to live.''
    Michel de Montaigne (1533-1592), French essayist. Essays, bk. 2, ch. 6 (1580-1588), trans. by John Florio (1603).
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  • ''To say less of yourself than is true is stupidity, not modesty. To pay yourself less than you are worth is cowardice and pusillanimity.''
    Michel de Montaigne (1533-1592), French essayist. "Of Practice," The Essays (Les Essais), bk. II, ch. 6, Abel Langelier, Paris (1595).
  • ''All opinions in the world agree in this, that pleasure is our end, although they differ as to the means of attaining it.''
    Michel de Montaigne (1533-1592), French essayist. "That to Philosophize Is to Learn to Die," The Essays (Les Essais), bk. I, ch. 20, Simon Millanges, Bordeaux, first edition (1580).
  • ''Vainglory and curiosity are the two scourges of our soul. The latter leads us to thrust our noses into everything, and the former forbids us to leave anything unresolved and undecided.''
    Michel de Montaigne (1533-1592), French essayist. "It is Folly to Measure the True and False By Our Own Capacity," The Essays (Les Essais), bk. I, ch. 27, Simon Millanges, Bordeaux, first edition (1580).
  • ''If I were a maker of books I should compile a register, with comments, of different deaths. He who should teach people to die, would teach them to live.''
    Michel de Montaigne (1533-1592), French essayist. "That to Philosophize Is to Learn to Die," The Essays (Les Essais), bk. I, ch. 20, Abel Langelier, Paris (1595).
  • ''How many things served us but yesterday as articles of faith, which today we deem but fables?''
    Michel de Montaigne (1533-1592), French essayist. "It Is Folly to Refer Truth or Falsehood to Our Sufficiency," Essays, bk. 1, ch. 26, trans. by John Florio (1580-1588).
  • ''I put forward formless and unresolved notions, as do those who publish doubtful questions to debate in the schools, not to establish the truth but to seek it.''
    Michel de Montaigne (1533-1592), French essayist. "Of Prayers," The Essays (Les Essais), bk. I, ch. 56, Simon Millanges, Bordeaux, first edition (1580).
  • ''At the stumbling of a horse, the fall of a tile, the slightest pin prick, let us promptly chew on this: Well, what if it were death itself? And thereupon let us stiffen and fortify ourselves.''
    Michel de Montaigne (1533-1592), French essayist. "That to Philosophize Is to Learn to Die," The Essays (Les Essais), bk. I, ch. 20, Simon Millanges, Bordeaux, first edition (1580).
  • ''I set forth notions that are human and my own, simply as human notions considered in themselves, not as determined and decreed by heavenly ordinance.''
    Michel de Montaigne (1533-1592), French essayist. "Of Prayers," The Essays (Les Essais), bk. I, ch. 56, Abel Langelier, Paris (1595).
  • ''How often our involuntary facial motions testify to the thoughts we were keeping secret, and betray us to those around!''
    Michel de Montaigne (1533-1592), French essayist. NU:"Power of the Imagination," The Essays (Les Essais), bk. I, ch. 20, Abel Langelier, Paris (1595).

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