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Laurence Sterne (1713 – 1768)


Anglo-Irish novelist and clergyman.
Laurence Sterne
I believe in my conscience I intercept many a thought which heaven intended for another man.
Sterne quotes
My father was as proud of his eloquence as MARCUS TULLIUS CICERO could be for his life, and and for aught I am convinced of to the contrary at present, with as much reason: it was indeed his strength and his weakness, too. His strength for he was by nature eloquent and his weakness for he was hourly a dupe to it; and provided an occasion in life would but permit him to shew his talents, or say either a wise thing, a witty, or a shrewd one (bating the case of a systematic misfortune) he had all he wanted. A blessing which tied up my father's tongue, and a misfortune which let it loose with a good grace, were pretty equal: sometimes, indeed, the misfortune was the better of the two; for instance, where the pleasure of the harangue was as ten, and the pain of the misfortune was as five my father gained half in half, and consequently was as well again off, as if it had never befallen him.
Sterne
A man should know something of his own country too, before he goes abroad.




Sterne Laurence quotes
The desire of knowledge, like the thirst of riches, increases ever with the acquisition of it.
Sterne Laurence
They order, said I, this matter better in France.
Laurence Sterne quotes
Tant pis and tant mieux, being two of the great hinges in French conversation, a stranger would do well to set himself right in the use of them before he gets to Paris.
Laurence Sterne
Writing, when properly managed, (as you may be sure I think mine is) is but a different name for conversation.
Sterne Laurence quotes
The Accusing Spirit which flew up to heaven's chancery with the oath, blush'd as he gave it in; and the Recording Angel as he wrote it down, dropp'd a tear upon the word, and blotted it out forever.
Sterne
Who is this Yorick? you are pleased to ask me. You cannot, I imagine, have looked into his books: execrable I cannot but call them; for I am told that the third and fourth volumes are worse, if possible, than the two first, which, only, I have had the patience to run through. One extenuating circumstance attends his works, that they are too gross to be inflaming.
Sterne Laurence
Of all the cants which are canted in this canting world, though the cant of hypocrites may be the worst, the cant of criticism is the most tormenting!
Laurence Sterne
The sad vicissitude of things.




Laurence Sterne quotes
I have got him fast hung up, quoth Didius to himself, upon one of the two horns of my dilemma let him get off as he can.
Laurence Sterne
Our armies swore terribly in Flanders, cried my uncle Toby, but nothing to this. For my own part, I could not have a heart to curse my dog so.
Sterne quotes
Trust that man in nothing who has not a conscience in everything.
Sterne Laurence
Now or never was the time.
Sterne Laurence quotes
Digressions, incontestably, are the sunshine; & they are the life, the soul of reading; take them out of this book for instance, you might as well take the book along with them.
Laurence Sterne
He was within a few hours of giving his enemies the slip forever.
Laurence Sterne quotes
Go poor Devil, get thee gone, why should I hurt thee? This world surely is wide enough to hold both thee and me.
Laurence Sterne
"Pray, my dear," quoth my mother, "have you not forgot to wind up the clock?" "Good G!" cried my father, making an exclamation, but taking care to moderate his voice at the same time, "Did ever woman, since the creation of the world, interrupt a man with such a silly question?"
Sterne Laurence
I am convinced, Yorick, continued my father, half reading and half discoursing, that there is a Northwest Passage to the intellectual world; and that the soul of man has shorter ways of going to work, in furnishing itself with knowledge and instruction, than we generally take with it.


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