Great Throughts Treasury

This site is dedicated to the memory of Dr. Alan William Smolowe who gave birth to the creation of this database.


"Fame has no necessary conjunction with praise; it may exist without the breath of a word: it is a recognition of excellence which must be felt, but need not be spoken. Even the envious must feel it, and hate in silence." -

"Better is the praise and love of men than riches in the storehouse." - Amen-em-apt NULL

"The praise that comes of love does not make us vain, but humble rather." - J.M. Barrie, fully Sir James Matthew Barrie, 1st Baronet

"All censure of a man’s self is oblique praise." - James Boswell

"Praise undeserved is satire in disguise." - Henry Broadhurst

"Praise has different effects, according to the mind it meets with; it makes a wise man modest, but a fool more arrogant, turning his weak brain giddy." - Owen Feltham

"There is no detraction worse than to over-praise a man, for if his worth proves short of what report doth speak of him, his own actions are ever giving the lie of his honor." - Owen Feltham

"We should not be too hasty in bestowing either our praise or censure on mankind, since we shall often find such a mixture of good and evil in the same character, that it may require a very accurate judgment and a very elaborate inquiry to determine on which side the balance turns." - Henry Fielding

"We can help raise our standard by praising the good whenever and wherever we find it. As we praise the good at hand we grow in our ability to find more good." - Lowell Fillmore

"One is led astray alike by sympathy and coldness, by praise and by blame." - Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

"Good actions crown themselves with lasting bays who deserves well, needs not another’s praise." -

"All censure of a man's self is oblique praise." -

"He that resigns his peace to little casualties, and suffers the course of his life to be interrupted for fortuitous inadvertencies or offences, delivers up himself to the direction of the wind, and loses all the constancy and equanimity which constitutes the chief praise of a wise man." -

"Praise, like gold and diamonds, owes its value only to its scarcity. It becomes cheap as it becomes vulgar, and will no longer raise expectation or animate enterprise." -

"The greatest human virtue bears no proportion to human vanity. We always think ourselves better than we are, and are generally desirous that others should think us still better than we think ourselves. To praise us for actions or dispositions which deserve praise is not to confer a benefit, but to pay a tribute. We have always pretensions to fame which, in our own hearts, we know to be disputable, and which we are desirous to strengthen by a new suffrage; we have always hopes which we suspect to be fallacious, and of which we eagerly snatch at every confirmation." -

"Praise is sometimes a good thing for the diffident and despondent. It teaches them properly to rely on the kindness of others." - Letitia Elizabeth Landon

"Our whole life should speak forth our thankfulness; every condition and place we are in should be a witness to our thankfulness. This will make the times and places we live in better for us. When we ourselves are monuments of God’s mercy, it is fit we should be patterns of His praises, and leave monuments to others. We should think it given to us to do something better than to live in. We live not to live: our life is not the end of itself, but the praise of the giver." - Richard Sibbes

"Praise, flattery, exaggerated manners, and fine, high-sounding words were no part of Lakota politeness. Excessive manners were put down as insincere, and the constant talker was considered rude and thoughtless. Conversation was never begun at once, or in a hurried manner. No one was quick with a question, no matter how important, and no one was pressed for an answer. A pause giving time for thought was the truly courteous way of beginning and conducting a conversation." - Chief Luther Standing Bear

"A man can be kind, honest, compassionate, even humble, and all inspired by a desire for recognition and praise." - Leibush Malbim, aka Malbim, Rabbi Meir Leibush ben Yehiel Michal "the Malbim", Meïr Leibush ben Jehiel Michel Weiser

"Self-praise and self-depreciation are alike absurd." -

"It is salutary to train oneself to be no more affected by censure than by praise." -

"People ask for criticism, but they only want praise." -

"So long as men praise you, you can only be sure that you are not on your own true path but on someone else's." -

"The goal to strive for is that it should be equal in your eyes if others happen to praise or insult you." - Bachya Ibn Pekudah

"We are too apt to love Praise, but not to Deserve it." - William Penn

"They who give, hoping to receive a requital, such as praise or honor... are in reality making a bargain." - Philo, aka Philo of Alexandria, Philo Judaeus, Philo Judaeus of Alexandria, Yedidia, "Philon", and Philo the Jew NULL

"It is not he who searches for praise who finds it." - George Ripley

"It is not poverty that we praise, it is the man whom poverty cannot humble or bend." -

"You can tell the character of every man when you see how he receives praise." -

"Praise Allah, and tie your camel to the post." - Sufi Proverbs

"Praise shames me, for I secretly beg for it." -

"It is a great sign of mediocrity to praise always moderately." -

"You will only offend men by praise which suggest the limits of their worth." -

"Wonder is involuntary praise." -

"The only way to do good deeds without being motivated by the need for approval from others is to reach the level of considering praise and insults equal." - Alexander Ziskind Maimon

"Some of a man's praise may be sung in his presence, all of it in his absence." - Elazar ben Azariah, alt. spelling Eleazar

"Praise is especially destructive to children, for they readily grasp the fact that praise is based on identification with their actions. Thus, they automatically blame themselves every time they make a mistake. This is the beginning of their lack of Self-Esteem." - L. S. Barksdale

"Recipe for success: Be polite, prepare yourself for whatever you are asked to do, keep yourself tidy, be cheerful, don't be envious, be honest with yourself so you will be honest with others, be helpful, interest yourself in your job, don't pity yourself, be quick to praise, be loyal to your friends, avoid prejudices, be independent, interest yourself in politics, and read the newspapers." - Bernard Baruch, fully Bernard Mannes Baruch

"Words of praise, indeed, are almost as necessary to warm a child into a congenial life as acts of kindness and affection. Judicious praise is to children what the sun is to flowers." - Christian Nestell Bovee

"Words of praise, indeed, are almost as necessary to warm a child into congenial life as acts of kindness and affection. Judicious praise is to children what the sun is to flowers." - John Christian Bovee

"How little praise warms out of a man the good that is in him, as the sneer of contempt which he feels is unjust chill the ardor to excel." - Edward Bulwer-Lytton, 1st Baron Lytton, fully Edward George Earle Lytton Bulwer-Lytton, Lord Lytton

"Praise, like gold and diamond,s owes its value only to its scarcity." - Samuel Butler

"Religion is not a perpetual moping over good books. Religion is not even prayer, praise, holy ordinances, these are necessary to religion - no man can be religious without them. But religion is mainly and chiefly the glorifying of god amid the duties and trials of the world; the guiding of our course amid adverse winds and currents of temptation by the sunlight of duty and the compass of Divine truth, the bearing up manfully, wisely, courageously, for the honor of Christ, our great Leader in the conflict of life." - John Caird

"Music is the language of praise; and one of the most essential preparations for eternity is delight in praising God; a higher acquirement, I do think, than even delight and devotedness to prayer." - Allan Chalmers, fully Allan Knight Chalmers

"Just as we can dig a channel to control the direction of a stream, we can control the direction of our children's activities through praise and recognition." - Natalie Cole

"Most of our censure of others is only oblique praise of self, uttered to show the wisdom and superiority of the speaker. It has all the invidiousness of self-praise, and all the ill-desert of falsehood." - Tyron Edwards

"He whose ruling passion is the love of praise is a slave to everyone who has a tongue for flattery and calumny." -

"These are the signs of a wise man: to reprove nobody, to praise nobody, to blame nobody, nor event speak of himself or his own efforts." -

"Most people like praise. Many people have an unreasonable fear of administering it; it is part of the puritanical dislike for anything that is agreeable - to others. When it is really deserved, most people expand under it into richer and better selves." - Joseph Farrell, fully Joseph Patrick Farrell