The mediation by the serpent was necessary: Evil can seduce man, but cannot become man.
(Franz Kafka (1883-1924), Prague German Jewish author, novelist. The Third Notebook, December 7, 1917. The Blue Octavo Notebooks, ed. Max Brod, trans. by Ernst Kaiser and Eithne Wilkins. Exact Change, Cambridge, MA (1991). Dearest Father: Stories and Other Writings, trans. by Ernst Kaiser and Eithne Wilkins, New York, Schocken Books (1954).)
The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.
(Edmund Burke (1729-1797), Irish philosopher, statesman. Attributed.
Ascribed in various forms to Burke, though never found in his writings. Possibly it is a distillation of the words found in Thoughts on the Cause of the Present Discontents (1770): see Burke on alliances.)
Of all evil I deem you capable: therefore I want the good from you.
(Friedrich Nietzsche (1844-1900), German philosopher, classical scholar, critic of culture. Friedrich Nietzsche, Sämtliche Werke: Kritische Studienausgabe, vol. 4, p. 152, eds. Giorgio Colli and Mazzino Montinari, Berlin, de Gruyter (1980); Thus Spoke Zarathustra, p. 118, trans. by Walter Kaufmann, New York, Penguin Books (1978). Zarathustra, in Thus Spoke Zarathustra, Second Part, "On Those Who are Sublime," (1883).)
Jacques said that his master said that everything good or evil we encounter here below was written on high.
(Denis Diderot (1713-1784), French philosopher, encyclopedist, dramatist, novelist, art critic. Jacques the Fatalist (Jacques le Fataliste) (1796), introductory paragraph, Paris, Garnier Flammarion (1970).
Picaresque novel; Jacques is ironically quoting his master in the preamble to the novel.)