John Gay

(30 June 1685 – 4 December 1732 / Barnstaple, England)

Quotations

  • ''Lions, wolves, and vultures don't live together in herds, droves or flocks. Of all animals of prey, man is the only sociable one. Every one of us preys upon his neighbour, and yet we herd together.''
    John Gay (1685-1732), British dramatist. Lockit, in The Beggar's Opera, act 3, sc. 2.
    3 person liked.
    7 person did not like.
  • ''Sure men were born to lie, and women to believe them!''
    John Gay (1685-1732), British dramatist. Lucy, in The Beggar's Opera, act 2, sc. 13.
  • ''I must have women—there is nothing unbends the mind like them.''
    John Gay (1685-1732), British dramatist, poet. Macheath, in The Beggar's Opera, act 2, sc. 3 (1728), ed. F.W. Bateson (1934).
  • ''I must have women—there is nothing unbends the mind like them.''
    John Gay (1685-1732), British dramatist. Macheath, in The Beggar's Opera, act 2, sc. 3.
  • ''Of all mechanics, of all servile handycrafts-men, a gamester is the vilest. But yet, as many of the quality are of the profession, he is admitted amongst the politest company.''
    John Gay (1685-1732), British dramatist. Matt of the Mint, in The Beggar's Opera, act 3, sc. 4.
  • ''How the mother is to be pitied who hath handsome daughters! Locks, bolts, bars, and lectures of morality are nothing to them: they break through them all. They have as much pleasure in cheating a father and mother, as in cheating at cards.''
    John Gay (1685-1732), British dramatist. Mrs. Peachum, in The Beggar's Opera, act 1, sc. 8.
  • ''But money, wife, is the true Fuller's Earth for reputations, there is not a spot or a stain but what it can take out.''
    John Gay (1685-1732), British dramatist, poet. Peachum, in The Beggar's Opera, act 1, sc. 9 (1728), ed. F.W. Bateson (1934).
  • ''A rich rogue now-a-days is fit company for any gentleman; and the world, my dear, hath not such a contempt for roguery as you imagine.''
    John Gay (1685-1732), British dramatist. Peachum, in The Beggar's Opera, act 1, sc. 9.
  • ''Gamesters and highwaymen are generally very good to their whores, but they are very devils to their wives.''
    John Gay (1685-1732), British dramatist. Peachum, in The Beggar's Opera, act 1, sc. 4.
  • ''Do you think your mother and I should have lived comfortably so long together, if ever we had been married? Baggage!''
    John Gay (1685-1732), British dramatist, poet. Peachum, in The Beggar's Opera, act 1, sc. 8 (1728), ed. F.W. Bateson (1934).

Read more quotations »

A Ballad

I.
'Twas when the seas were roaring
With hollow blasts of wind;
A damsel lay deploring,
All on a rock reclin'd.
Wide o'er the roaring billows
She cast a wistful look;
Her head was crown'd with willows,
That tremble o'er the brook.

[Hata Bildir]