Michel de Montaigne

(28 February 1533 – 13 September 1592)

Michel de Montaigne Quotes

  • ''It is a monstrous thing that I will say, but I will say it all the same: I find in many things more restraint and order in my morals than in my opinions, and my lust less depraved than my reason.''
    Michel de Montaigne (1533-1592), French essayist. "Of Cruelty," The Essays (Les Essais), bk. II, ch. 11, Abel Langelier, Paris (1588).
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  • ''We must reserve a back shop all our own, entirely free, in which to establish our real liberty and our principal retreat and solitude.''
    Michel de Montaigne (1533-1592), French essayist. "Of Solitude," The Essays (Les Essais), bk. I, ch. 39, Simon Millanges, Bordeaux, first edition (1580).
  • ''For truly it is to be noted, that children's plays are not sports, and should be deemed as their most serious actions.''
    Michel de Montaigne (1533-1592), French essayist. "Of Custom," bk. 1, ch. 22, Essays, trans. by John Florio (1580).
  • ''The greatest thing in the world is to know how to belong to oneself.''
    Michel de Montaigne (1533-1592), French essayist. "Of Solitude," The Essays (Les Essais), bk. I, ch. 39, Simon Millanges, Bordeaux, first edition (1580).
  • ''The common notions that we find in credit around us and infused into our souls by our fathers' seed, these seem to be the universal and natural ones. Whence it comes to pass that what is off the hinges of custom, people believe to be off the hinges of reason.''
    Michel de Montaigne (1533-1592), French essayist. "Of Custom, and Not Easily Changing an Accepted Law," The Essays (Les Essais), bk. I, ch. 23, Abel Langelier, Paris (1595).
  • ''Poetry reproduces an indefinable mood that is more amorous than love itself. Venus is not so beautiful all naked, alive, and panting, as she is here in Virgil.''
    Michel de Montaigne (1533-1592), French essayist. "Of Some Verses of Virgil," The Essays (Les Essais), bk. III, ch. 5, Abel Langelier, Paris (1588).
  • ''I am disgusted with innovation, in whatever guise, and with reason, for I have seen very harmful effects of it.''
    Michel de Montaigne (1533-1592), French essayist. "Of Custom, and Not Easily Changing an Accepted Law," The Essays (Les Essais), bk. I, ch. 23, Abel Langelier, Paris (1588).
  • ''It is an injustice that an old, broken, half-dead father should enjoy alone, in a corner of his hearth, possessions that would suffice for the advancement and maintenance of many children.''
    Michel de Montaigne (1533-1592), French essayist. "Of the Affection of Fathers For Their Children," The Essays (Les Essais), bk. II, ch. 8, Simon Millanges, Bordeaux, first edition (1580).
  • ''These examples, though foreign to us, are not strange, if we consider, as our experience often tells us, how custom dulls the senses.''
    Michel de Montaigne (1533-1592), French essayist. "Of Custom, and Not Easily Changing an Accepted Law," The Essays (Les Essais), bk. I, ch. 23, Abel Langelier, Paris (1595).
  • ''I do not know whether I would not like much better to have produced one perfectly formed child by intercourse with the muses than by intercourse with my wife.''
    Michel de Montaigne (1533-1592), French essayist. "Of the Affections of Fathers For Their Children," The Essays (Les Essais), bk. II, ch. 8, Abel Langelier, Paris (1588).

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