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Poul Anderson

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Timidity can be as dangerous as rashness.
--
"The Saturn Game" (1981)

 
Poul Anderson

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Rashness is not Valour.

 
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Cornstalk was often seen with his warriors. Brave without being rash, he avoided exposure without shrinking; cautious without timidity in the hottest of the battle, he escaped without a wound. As one of the warriors near him showed some signs of timidity, the enraged chief, with one blow of his tomahawk, cleft his skull. In one of the assaults, Colonel Fields, performing his duty bravely, was shot dead. The faltering of the ranks encouraged the savages. "Be strong! Be strong!" echoed through the woods over the savage lines in the tones of Cornstalk; and as Captain after Captain, and files of men after files of men, fell, the yells of the Indians were more terrific and their assaults more furious.

 
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Beware of rashness, but with energy and sleepless vigilance go forward and give us victories.

 
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The saying that a little knowledge is a dangerous thing is, to my mind, a very dangerous adage. If knowledge is real and genuine, I do not believe that it is other than a very valuable possession, however infinitesimal its quantity may be. Indeed, if a little knowledge is dangerous, where is the man who has so much as to be out of danger?

 
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Timidity is the root of prudence in the majority of men.

 
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