Great Throughts Treasury

A database of quotes

Owen Feltham

English Author, Author of book entitled, "Resolves, Divine, Moral and Political"

"Irresolution loosens all our joints: like an auger, it shakes not this limb or that limb, but all the body is at once in a fit. The irresolute man hatches nothing, but addles all his actions."

"It is much safer to reconcile an enemy than to conquer him; victory may deprive him of his poison, but reconciliation of his will."

"It is to be doubted whether he will ever find the way to heaven who desires to go thither alone."

"Laughter should dimple the cheek, not furrow the brow. A jest should be such that all shall be able to join in the laugh which it occasions; but if it bears hard upon one of the company, like the crack of a string, it makes a stop in the music."

"Laws were made to restrain and punish the wicked; the wise and good do not need them as a guide, but only as a shield against rapine and oppression; they can live civilly and orderly, though there were no law in the world."

"Love is never lasting which flames before it burns."

"Meditation is the soul?s perspective glass, whereby in her long removes she discerneth God as if he were nearer at hand."

"Men are like wine; not good before the lees of clownishness be settled."

"Occasion reins the motions of the stirring mind."

"Of all trees, I observe God hath chosen the vine, a low plant that creeps upon the helpful wall; of all beasts, the soft and patient lamb; of all fowls, the mild and guileless dove. Christ is the rose of the field, and the lily of the valley. When God appeared to Moses, it was not in the lofty cedar nor the sturdy oak nor the spreading palm; but in a bush, a humble, slender, abject shrub; as if He would, by these"

"Prevention is the best bridle."

"Riches, though they may reward virtue, cannot cause it. - He is much more noble who deserves a benefit than he who bestows one."

"Show me the man who would go to heaven alone if he could, and I will show you one who will never be admitted there."

"Some are so uncharitable as to think all women bad, and others are so credulous as to believe they are all good. All will grant her corporeal frame more wonderful and more beautiful than man's. And can we think God would put a worse soul into her better body?"

"Take heed of a speedy professing friend; love is never lasting which flames before it burns."

"The married man is like the bee that fixes his hive, augments the world, benefits the republic, and by a daily diligence, without wronging any, profits all; but he who contemns wedlock, like a wasp, wanders an offence to the world, lives upon spoil and rapine, disturbs peace, steals sweets that are none of his own, and, by robbing the hives of others, meets misery as his due reward."

"The true boundary of man is moderation. - When once we pass that pale, our guardian angel quits his charge of us."

"The world is all a carcass and vanity, the shadow of a shadow, a play and in one word, just nothing."

"There is no belittling worse than to over praise a man."

"This wonder we find in hope, that she is both a flatterer and a true friend. - How many would die did not hope sustain them; how many have died by hoping too much!"

"To go to law is for two persons to kindle a fire, at their own cost, to warm others and singe themselves to cinders; and because they cannot agree as to what is truth and equity, they will both agree to unplume themselves that others may be decorated with their feathers."

"To trust God when we have securities in our iron chest is easy, but not thankworthy; but to depend on him for what we cannot see, as it is more hard for man to do, so it is more acceptable to God."

"We do not wisely when we vent complaint and censure. - We cry out for a little pain, when we do but smile for a great deal of contentment."

"We make ourselves more injuries than are offered to us; they many times pass for wrongs in our own thoughts that were never meant so by the heart of him that speaketh. The apprehension of wrong hurts more than the sharpest part of the wrong done."

"When two friends part they should lock up one another's secrets, and interchange their keys."

"While we think to revenge an injury, we many times begin one, and after that repent our misconceptions."

"Words are rather the drowsy part of poetry; imagination the life of it."

"Words do sometimes fly from the tongue that the heart did neither hatch nor harbor."