Great Throughts Treasury

A database of quotes

Vittorio Alfieri

Italian Dramatist and Poet, considered founder of the Italian Tragedy

"Elegance of language may not be in the power of all of us; but simplicity and straight forwardness are. Write much as you would speak; speak as you think. If with your inferior, speak no coarser than usual; if with your superiors, no finer. Be what you say; and, within the rules of prudence, say what you are."

"There is a silence, the child of love, which expresses everything, and proclaims more loudly that the tongue is able to so."

"Deep vengeance is the daughter of deep silence."

"A usurper always distrusts the whole world."

"Disgrace does not consist in the punishment, but in the crime."

"For 'tis impossible Hate to return with love."

"First thoughts are not always the best."

"Liars are always most disposed to swear."

"Liars are always ready to take oaths."

"Love has nothing to do with what you are expecting to get, it's what you are expected to give--which is everything."

"Often the test of courage becomes rather to live than to die."

"Often the test of courage is not to die but to live."

"Original thoughts can be understood only in virtue of the unoriginal elements which they contain."

"Heaven takes care that no man secures happiness by crime."

"It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it."

"I had seen the great, but I had not seen the small."

"To err is human; but contrition felt for the crime distinguishes the virtuous from the wicked."

"Where there are laws, he who has not broken them need not tremble."

"The guilty is he who meditates a crime; the punishment is his who lays the plot."