I have always considered it as treason against the great republic of human nature, to make any man’s virtues the means of deceiving him.
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- It is, indeed, at home that every man must be known by those who would make a just estimate either of his virtue or felicity; for smiles and embroidery are alike occasional, and the mind is often dressed for show in painted honor, and fictitious benevolence.
- No government power can be abused long. Mankind will not bear it. There is a remedy in human nature against tyranny, that will keep us safe under every form of government.
- The natural flights of the human mind are not from pleasure to pleasure, but from hope to hope.
- The applause of a single human being is of great consequence.
- In a man’s letters you know, Madam, his soul lies naked, his letters are only the mirror of his breast, whatever passes within him is shown undisguised in its natural process. Nothing is inverted, nothing distorted, you see systems in their elements, you discover actions in their motives.
- Great abilities are not requisite for an Historian; for in historical composition, all the greatest powers of the human mind are quiescent. He has facts ready to his hand; so there is no exercise of invention. Imagination is not required in any degree; only about as much as is used in the lowest kinds of poetry. Some penetration, accuracy, and coloring, will fit a man for the task, if he can give the application which is necessary.