Francis Quarles quotes

  • The average person's ear weighs what you are, not what you were.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Average #Ears #Reputation

  • If thou wouldst preserve a sound body, use fasting and walking; if a healthful soul, fasting and praying. Walking exercises the body; praying exercises the soul; fasting cleanses both.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Exercise #Soul #Sound

  • The heart is a small thing, but desireth great matters. It is not sufficient for a kite's dinner, yet the whole world is not sufficient for it.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Love #Heart #Literature

  • The place of charity, like that of God, is everywhere.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Charity

  • Beware of him that is slow to anger; for when it is long coming, it is the stronger when it comes, and the longer kept. Abused patience turns to fury.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Power #Long #Abuse

  • That friendship will not continue to the end which is begun for an end.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Friendship #Literature #Ends

  • If thou desire the love of God and man, be humble, for the proud heart, as it loves none but itself, is beloved of none but itself. Humility enforces where neither virtue, nor strength, nor reason can prevail.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Love #Heart #Humble

  • Humility enforces where neither virtue nor strength can prevail, nor reason.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Humility #Virtue #Reason

  • He that gives all, though but little, gives much; because God looks not to the quantity of the gift, but to the quality of the givers.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Giving #Generosity #Quality

  • The road to perseverance lies by doubt.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Perseverance #Lying #Doubt

  • Read not books alone, but men, and amongst them chiefly thyself. If thou find anything questionable there, use the commentary of a severe friend, rather than the gloss of a sweet-lipped flatterer there is more profit in a distasteful truth than in deceitful sweetness.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Sweet #Lying #Book

  • I wish thee as much pleasure in the reading, as I had in the writing.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Reading #Writing #Wish

  • Flatter not thyself in thy faith in God if thou hast not charity for thy neighbor.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Love #Charity #Faith In God

  • Hath any wounded thee with injuries? Meet them with patience. Hasty words rankle the wound; soft language dresses it.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Dresses #Language #Injury

  • Meditation is the life of the soul: Action, the soul of meditation; and honor the reward of action.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Meditation #Soul #Honor

  • Before thou reprehend another, take heed thou art not culpable in what thou goest about to reprehend. He that cleanses a blot with blotted fingers makes a greater blur.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Art #Fingers #Blur

  • Demean thyself more warily in thy study than in the street. If thy public actions have a hundred witnesses, thy private have a thousand. The multitude looks but upon thy actions; thy conscience looks into them: the multitude may chance to excuse thee, if not acquit thee; thy conscience will accuse thee, if not condemn thee.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Retirement #Looks #May

  • Reason can discover things only near,--sees nothing that's above her.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Reason

  • So use prosperity, that adversity may not abuse thee: if in the one, security admits no fears, in the other, despair will afford no hopes; he that in prosperity can foretell a danger can in adversity foresee deliverance.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Adversity #Abuse #Despair

  • Wouldst thou multiply thy riches? diminish them wisely; or wouldst thou make thy estate entire? divide it charitably. Seeds that are scattered increase; but, hoarded up, they perish.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Riches #Increase #Estates

  • Be not too great a niggard in the commendations of him that professes thy own quality: if he deserve thy praise, thou hast discovered thy judgment; if not, thy modesty: honor either returns or reflects to the giver.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Honor #Quality #Return

  • The way to subject all things to thyself is to subject thyself to reason; thou shalt govern many, if reason govern thee. Wouldst thou be crowned the monarch of a little world? command thyself.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #World #Littles #Way

  • My mind's my kingdom.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Mind #Kingdoms

  • Necessity of action takes away the fear of the act, and makes bold resolution the favorite of fortune.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Fear #Literature #Action

  • To bear adversity with an equal mind is both the sign and glory of a brave spirit.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Adversity #Brave #Mind

  • The birds of the air die to sustain thee; the beasts of the field die to nourish thee; the fishes of the sea die to feed thee. Our stomachs are their common sepulchre. Good God! with how many deaths are our poor lives patched up! how full of death is the life of momentary man!
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Death #Men #Air

  • Hath fortune dealt thee ill cards? let wisdom make thee a good gamester. In a fair gale, every fool may sail, but wise behavior in a storm commends the wisdom of a pilot; to bear adversity with an equal mind is both the sign and glory of a brave spirit.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Wise #Adversity #Brave

  • In giving of thy alms, inquire not so much into the person, as his necessity. God looks not so much upon the merits of him that requires, as into the manner of him that relieves; if the man deserve not, thou hast given it to humanity.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Men #Giving #Humanity

  • If thou neglectest thy love to thy neighbor, in vain thou professest thy love to God; for by thy love to God, the love to thy neighbor is begotten, and by the love to thy neighbor thy love to God is nourished.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Charity #Neighbor #Vain

  • Flatter not thyself in thy faith to God, if thou wantest charity for thy neighbor; and think not thou halt charity for thy neighbor, if thou wantest faith to God; where they are not both together, they are both wanting; they are both dead, if once divided.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Thinking #Together #Charity

  • If virtue accompany it, it is the heart's paradise; if vice associate it, it is the soul's purgatory.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Beauty #Heart #Soul

  • Gaze not on beauty too much, lest it blast thee; nor too long, lest it blind thee; nor too near, lest it burn thee. If thou like it, it deceives thee; if thou love it, it disturbs thee; if thou hunt after it, it destroys thee. If virtue accompany it, it is the heart's paradise; if vice associate it, it is the soul's purgatory. It is the wise man's bonfire, and the fool's furnace.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Beauty #Wise #Heart

  • Things temporal are sweeter in the expectation, things eternal are sweeter in the fruition; the first shames thy hope, the second crowns it; it is a vain journey, whose end affords less pleasure than the way.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Journey #Expectations #Fruition

  • When ambitious men find an open passage, they are rather busy than dangerous; and if well watched in their proceedings, they will catch them selves in their own snare, and prepare a way for their own destruction.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Ambition #Men #Self

  • If thou expect death as a friend, prepare to entertain it; if thou expect death as an enemy, prepare to overcome it; death has no advantage, but when it comes a stranger.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Death #Enemy #Overcoming

  • The goods we spend we keep; and what we save We lose; and only what we lose we have.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Possession #Goods

  • Be as far from desiring the popular love as fearful to deserve the popular hate; ruin dwells in both: the one will hug thee to death; the other will crush thee to destruction: to escape the first, be not ambitious; to avoid the second, be not seditious.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Crush #Hate #Hug

  • Let the fear of a danger be a spur to prevent it; he that fears not gives advantage to the danger; it is less folly not to endeavor the prevention of the evil thou fearest than to fear the evil which thy endeavor cannot prevent.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Fear #Evil #Giving

  • If thy faith have no doubts, thou has just cause to doubt thy faith; and if thy doubts have no hope, thou hast just reason to fear despair; when therefore thy doubts shall exercise thy faith, keep thy hopes firm to qualify thy doubts; so shall thy faith be secured from doubts; so shall thy doubts be preserved from despair.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Faith #Exercise #Doubt

  • I'll ne'er distrust my God for cloth and bread while lilies flourish and the raven 's fed.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Faith #Ravens #Lilies

  • Pleasures bring effeminacy, and effeminacy foreruns ruin; such conquests, without blood or sweat, sufficiently do revenge themselves upon their intemperate conquerors.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Revenge #Blood #Sweat

  • Before thy undertaking of any design, weigh the glory of thy action with the danger of the attempt; if the glory outweigh the danger, it is cowardice to neglect it; if the danger exceed the glory, it is rashness to attempt it; if the balances stand poised, let thy own genius cast them.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Design #Balance #Genius

  • Of all vices take heed of drunkenness; other vices are but fruits of disordered affections--this disorders, nay, banishes reason; other vices but impair the soul--this demolishes her two chief faculties, the understanding and the will; other vices make their own way--this makes way for all vices; he that is a drunkard is qualified for all vice.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Two #Understanding #Soul

  • Be not too rash in the breaking of an inconvenient custom; as it was gotten, so leave it by degrees. Danger attends upon too sudden alterations; he that pulls down a bad building by the great may be ruined by the fall, but he that takes it down brick by brick may live to build a better.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Fall #Degrees #May

  • In the commission of evil, fear no man so much as thyself; another is but one witness against thee, thou art a thousand; another thou mayest avoid, thyself thou canst not. Wickedness is its own punishment.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Art #Men #Evil

  • Be very vigilant over thy child in the April of his understanding, lest the frost of May nip his blossoms. While he is a tender twig, straighten him; whilst he is a new vessel, season him; such as thou makest him, such commonly shall thou find him. Let his first lesson be obedience and his second shall be what thou wilt.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Children #Understanding #Frost

  • Be very circumspect in the choice of thy company. In the society of thine equals thou shalt enjoy more pleasure; in the society of thy superiors thou shalt find more profit. To be the best in the company is the way to grow worse; the best means to grow better is to be the worst there.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Mean #Choices #Way

  • They who cannot be induced to fear for love will never be enforced to love for fear. Love opens the heart, fear shuts it; that encourages, this compels; and victory meets encouragement, but flees compulsion.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Encouragement #Fear #Heart

  • Hath any wronged thee? be bravely revenged; slight it, and the work is begun; forgive it, and it is finished; he is below himself that is not above an injury.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Forgiveness #Forgiving #Injury

  • Make philosophy thy journey, theology thy journey's end: philosophy is a pleasant way, but dangerous to him that either tires or retires; in this journey it is safe neither to loiter nor to rest, till thou hast attained thy journey's end; he that sits down a philosopher rises up an atheist.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Atheist #Philosophy #Journey

  • With a bloody flux of oaths vows deep revenge.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Revenge #Vow #Flux

  • No man's condition is so base as his; None more accurs'd than he; for man esteems Him hateful, 'cause he seems not what he is; God hates him, 'cause he is not what he seems; What grief is absent, or what mischief can Be added to the hate of God and man?
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Hate #Grief #Men

  • No labor is hard, no time is long, wherein the glory of eternity is the mark we level at.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Long #Levels #Glory

  • Let the words of a virgin, though in a good cause, and to as good purpose, be neither violent, many, nor first, nor last; it is less shame for a virgin to be lost in a blushing silence than to be found in a bold eloquence.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Silence #Purpose #Lasts

  • If you desire to be magnanimous, undertake nothing rashly, and fear nothing thou undertakest; fear nothing but infamy; dare anything but injury; the measure of magnanimity is neither to be rash nor timorous.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Desire #Injury #Fear Nothing

  • Wrinkle not thy face with too much laughter, lest thou become ridiculous; neither wanton thy heart with too much mirth, lest thou become vain: the suburbs of folly is vain mirth, and profuseness of laughter is the city of fools.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Laughter #Heart #Wrinkles

  • Thy ignorance in unrevealed mysteries is the mother of a saving faith, and thy understanding in revealed truths is the mother of a sacred knowledge; understand not therefore that thou mayest believe, but believe that thou mayest understand; understanding is the wages of a lively faith and faith is the reward of an humble ignorance.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Mother #Believe #Humble

  • Rather do what is nothing to the purpose than be idle; that the devil may find thee doing. The bird that sits is easily shot, when fliers scape the fowler. Idleness is the Dead Sea that swallows all the virtues, and the self-made sepulchre of a living man.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Men #Self #Sea

  • If thy desire to raise thy fortunes encourage thy delights to the casts of fortune, be wise betimes, lest thou repent too late; what thou gettest, thou gainest by abused providence; what thou losest, thou losest by abused patience; what thou winnest is prodigally spent; what thou losest is prodigally lost; it is an evil trade that prodigally drives; and a bad voyage where the pilot is blind.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Wise #Gambling #Evil

  • Too much is a vanity; enough is a feast.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Vanity #Too Much #Abstinence

  • To fear death is the way to live long; to lie afraid of death is to be long a dying.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Death #Lying #Long

  • Read not books alone, but men, and amongst them chiefly thyself.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Book #Men #Thyself

  • Thy pride is but the prologue of thy shame; where vain-glory commands, there folly counsels; where pride rides, there shame lackeys.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Pride #Vanity #Shame

  • Every man's vanity ought to be his greatest shame; and every man's folly ought to be his greatest secret.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Men #Vanity #Secret

  • The light of the understanding, humility kindleth and pride covereth.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Humility #Pride #Light

  • We sack, we ransack to the utmost sands Of native kingdoms, and of foreign lands: We travel sea and soil; we pry, and prowl, We progress, and we prog from pole to pole.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Travel #Sea #Land

  • When the flesh presents thee with delights, then present thyself with dangers; where the world possesses thee with vain hopes, there possess thyself with true fear; when the devil brings thee oil, bring thou vinegar. The way to be safe is never to be secure.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Oil #Temptation #Devil

  • Poor thieves in halters we behold; And great thieves in their chains of gold.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Gold #Thieves #Poor

  • If thy words be too luxuriant, confine them, lest they confine thee; he that thinks he never can speak enough may easily speak too much. A full tongue and an empty brain are seldom parted.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Thinking #Talking #Brain

  • If any speak ill of thee, flee home to thy own conscience, and examine thy heart: if thou be guilty, it is a just correction; if not guilty, it is a fair instruction: make use of both; so shalt thou distil honey out of gall, and out of an open enemy create a secret friend.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Home #Heart #Secret

  • Sin is a basilisk whose eyes are full of venom. If the eye of thy soul see her first, it reflects her own poison and kills her; if she see thy soul, unseen, or seen too late, with her poison, she kills thee: since therefore thou canst not escape thy sin, let not thy sin escape thy observation.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Eye #Soul #Unseen

  • Though virtue give a ragged livery, she gives a golden cognizance; if her service make thee poor, blush not. Thy poverty may disadvantage thee, but not dishonor thee.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Giving #May #Golden

  • Virtue is nothing but an act of loving that which is to be beloved, and that act is prudence, from whence not to be removed by constraint is fortitude; not to be allured by enticements is temperance; not to be diverted by pride is justice.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Pride #Justice #Beloved

  • I see no virtue where I smell no sweat.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Sweat #Smell #Virtue

  • Nothing is more pleasing to God than an open hand, and a closed mouth.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Hands #Mouths

  • If thou desire to purchase honor with thy wealth, consider first how that wealth became thine; if thy labor got it, let thy wisdom keep it; if oppression found it, let repentance restore it; if thy parent left it, let thy virtues deserve it; so shall thy honor be safer, better and cheaper.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Parent #Honor #Desire

  • The next way home's the farthest way about.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Home #Way #Next

  • When two agree in their desire, One sparke will set them both on fire.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Fire #Two #Desire

  • My soul, what's lighter than a feather? Wind. Than wind? The fire. And what than fire? The mind. What's lighter than the mind? A thought. Than thought? This bubble world. What than this bubble? Nought.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Fire #Wind #Soul

  • The world is deceitful; her end is doubtful, her conclusion is horrible, her judge terrible, and her judgment is intolerable.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Judging #World #Judgment

  • O who would trust this world, or prize what's in it, That gives and takes, and chops and changes, ev'ry minute?
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Giving #World #Give And Take

  • What money creates, money preserves: if thy wealth decays, thy honor dies; it is but a slippery happiness which fortunes can give, and frowns can take; and not worth the owning which a night's fire can melt, or a rough sea can drown.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Night #Fire #Sea

  • If thou desire to be held wise, be so wise as to hold thy tongue.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Wise #Silence #Desire

  • If thou seest anything in thyself which may make thee proud, look a little further and thou shalt find enough to humble thee; if thou be wise, view the peacock's feathers with his feet, and weigh thy best parts with thy imperfections.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Wise #Humble #Feet

  • Prize not thyself by what thou hast, but by what thou art; he that values a jewel by her golden frame, or a book by her silver clasps, or a man by his vast estate, errs; if thou art not worth more than the world can make thee, thy Redeemer had a bad pennyworth, or thou an uncurious Redeemer.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Art #Book #Men

  • It is no happiness to live long, nor unhappiness to die soon; happy is he that hath lived long enough to die well.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Happiness #Long #Enough

  • If thou hast no inferiors, have patience awhile, and thou shalt have no superiors. The grave requires no marshal.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Graves #Having Patience

  • There be three sorts of government--monarchical, aristocratical, democratical; and they are apt to fall three several ways into ruin--the first, by tyranny; the second, by ambition; the last, by tumults. A commonwealth grounded upon any one of these is not of long continuance; but, wisely mingled, each guards the other and makes that government exact.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Fall #Ambition #Government

  • Of all the difficulties in a state, the temper of a true government most felicifies and perpetuates it; too sudden alterations distemper it. Had Nero tuned his kingdom as he did his harp, his harmony had been more honorable, and his reign more prosperous.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Government #Nero #Kingdoms

  • Think not thy love to God merits God's love to thee; His acceptance of thy duty crowns His own gifts in thee; man's love to God is nothing but a faint reflection of God's love to man.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #God #Acceptance #Reflection

  • In all thy actions think God sees thee; and in all His actions labor to see Him; that will make thee fear Him; this will move thee to love Him; the fear of God is the beginning of knowledge, and the knowledge of God is the perfection of love.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #God #Moving #Thinking

  • Deliberate long before thou consecrate a friend, and when thy impartial justice concludes him worthy of thy bosom, receive him joyfully, and entertain him wisely; impart thy secrets boldly, and mingle thy thoughts with his: he is thy very self; and use him so; if thou firmly think him faithful, thou makest him so.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Friends #Thinking #Self

  • If opinion hath lighted the lamp of thy name, endeavor to encourage it with thy own oil, lest it go out and stink; the chronical disease of Popularity is shame; if thou be once up, beware; from fame to infamy is a beaten road.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Names #Oil #Lamps

  • The World's a Printing-House, our words, our thoughts, Our deeds, are characters of several sizes. Each soul is a Compos'tor, of whose faults The Levites are Correctors; Heaven Revises. Death is the common Press, from whence being driven, We're gather'd, Sheet by Sheet, and bound for Heaven.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Character #House #Heaven

  • Even as the needle that directs the hour, (Touched with the loadstone) by the secret power Of hidden Nature, points upon the pole; Even so the wavering powers of my soul, Touch'd by the virtue of Thy spirit, flee From what is earth, and point alone to Thee.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Soul #Secret #Earth

  • Knowledge descries; wisdom applies.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Knowledge

  • Diogenes found more rest in his tub than Alexander on his throne.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Thrones #Tubs #Found

  • Be not too slow in the breaking of a sinful custom; a quick, courageous resolution is better than a gradual deliberation; in such a combat he is the bravest soldier that lays about him without fear or wit. Wit pleads, fear disheartens; he that would kill Hydra had better strike off one neck than five heads: fell the tree, and the branches are soon cut off.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Cutting #Tree #Soldier

  • Tis not, to cry God mercy, or to sit And droop, or to confess that thou hast fail'd: 'Tis to bewail the sins thou didst commit: And not commit those sins thou hast bewail' d. He that bewails and not forsakes them too; Confesses rather what he means to do.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Mean #Cry #Sin

  • Sweet tastes have sour closes; and he repents on thorns that sleeps in beds of roses.
    -- Francis Quarles

    #Sweet #Sleep #Rose