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(1606-1684 / France)

Quotations

  • ''Oh! how many actions, how many fabulous exploits remain without glory in the midst of the night.''
    Pierre Corneille (1606-1684), French playwright. Don Diègue, in The Cid, act 4, sc. 3 (1637). Don Diègue in despair at being too old to fight a duel.
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  • ''It is only blood that can wash away such an outrage; die or kill.''
    Pierre Corneille (1606-1684), French playwright. Don Diègue, in The Cid, act 1, sc. 5 (1637). Don Diègue tells his son to avenge him.
  • ''Don Diègue: Rodrigue, have you any courage?
    Don Rodrigue: If you weren't my father, you would have a taste of it on the spot.
    ("Rodrigue, as-tu du coeur?" "Tout autre que mon père/L'éprouverait sur l'heure.")''
    Pierre Corneille (1606-1684), French playwright. Don Diègue, in The Cid, act 1, sc. 5 (1637). Don Diègue urges his son to avenge him.
  • ''Go, run, fly and avenge us.
    (Va, cours, vole et nous venge.)''
    Pierre Corneille (1606-1684), French playwright. Don Diègue, in The Cid, act 1, sc. 5 (1637). Don Diègue urges his son to avenge him. One of the most famous phrases in Corneille.
  • ''Treachery is noble when aimed at tyranny.''
    Pierre Corneille (1606-1684), French playwright. Emilia, in Cinna, act 3, sc. 4 (1641).
  • ''Such is the caprice of Romans ... who reject kings in name but not in practice, and accept an Emperor mightier than a hundred kings.''
    Pierre Corneille (1606-1684), French playwright. Emperor Titus, in Titus and Berenice (Tite et Bérénice), act 3, sc. 5 (1670).
  • ''A monarch must sometimes rule even himself: he who wants everything must risk very little.''
    Pierre Corneille (1606-1684), French playwright. Emperor Titus, in Titus and Berenice (Tite et Bérénice), act 4, sc. 5 (1670).
  • ''To die for one's country is such a worthy fate that all compete for so beautiful a death.''
    Pierre Corneille (1606-1684), French playwright. Horace, in Horace, act 2, sc. 3 (1641).
  • ''The subject of a good tragedy must not be realistic.''
    Pierre Corneille (1606-1684), French playwright. Héraclius, preface (1647).
  • ''... Her blood in one army and her love in the other.''
    Pierre Corneille (1606-1684), French playwright. Julia, in Horace, act 1, sc. 1 (1641). Julia speaks of Camilla, whose brother and husband are in contending armies.

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Excuse À Ariste

... Je sais ce que je vaux, et crois ce qu'on m'en dit.
Pour me faire admirer je ne fais point de ligue :
J'ai peu de voix pour moi, mais je les ai sans brigue ;
Et mon ambition, pour faire plus de bruit,
Ne les va point quêter de réduit en réduit ;
Mon travail sans appui monte sur le théâtre ;
Chacun en liberté l'y blâme ou l'idolâtre.
Là, sans que mes amis prêchent leurs sentiments,
J'arrache quelquefois trop d'applaudissements ;

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