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Quotations From SAMUEL BUTLER

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  • People are lucky and unlucky not according to what they get absolutely, but according to the ratio between what they get and what they have been led to expect.
    Samuel Butler (1835-1902), British author. First published in 1912. Samuel Butler's Notebooks, p. 197, E.P. Dutton & Company (1951).

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  • A sense of humour keen enough to show a man his own absurdities as well as those of other people will keep a man from the commission of all sins, or nearly all, save those that are worth committing.
    Samuel Butler (1835-1902), British author. First published in 1912. Samuel Butler's Notebooks, p. 131, E.P. Dutton & Company (1951).

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  • Conscience is thoroughly well-bred and soon leaves off talking to those who do not wish to hear it.
    Samuel Butler (1835-1902), British author. Samuel Butler's Notebooks, p. 250 (1951).
  • Arguments are like fire-arms which a man may keep at home but should not carry about with him.
    Samuel Butler (1835-1902), British author. Samuel Butler's Notebooks, p. 65 (1951).

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  • Be virtuous—and you will be vicious.
    Samuel Butler (1835-1902), British author. First published in 1912. Samuel Butler's Notebooks, p. 160, E.P. Dutton & Company (1951).
  • The one serious conviction that a man should have is that nothing is to be taken too seriously.
    Samuel Butler (1835-1902), British author. First published in 1912. Samuel Butler's Notebooks, p. 61, E.P. Dutton & Company (1951).
  • Logic is like the sword—those who appeal to it, shall perish by it.
    Samuel Butler (1835-1902), British author. Samuel Butler's Notebooks (1951).
  • I said in my novel that the clergyman is a kind of human Sunday. Jones and I settled that my sister May was a kind of human Good Friday and Mrs. Bovill an Easter Monday or some other Bank Holiday.
    Samuel Butler (1835-1902), British author. First published in 1912. Samuel Butler's Notebooks, p. 34, E.P. Dutton & Company (1951). The novel to which Butler refers is Ernest Pontifex, or The Way of All Flesh.

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  • The only living works are those which have drained much of the author's own life into them.
    Samuel Butler (1835-1902), British author. Samuel Butler's Notebooks, p. 194 (1951).

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  • Academic and aristocratic people live in such an uncommon atmosphere that common sense can rarely reach them.
    Samuel Butler (1835-1902), British author. First published in 1912. Samuel Butler's Notebooks, p. 249, E.P. Dutton & Company (1951).

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