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    Seneca Quotes

    Roman dramatist, philosopher, & politician

    Quotes by Seneca

    • All art is an imitation of nature.
    • An unpopular rule is never long maintained.
    • As was his language so was his life.
    • Be not too hasty either with praise or blame; speak always as though you were giving evidence before the judgement-seat of the Gods.
    • Be silent as to services you have rendered, but speak of favours you have received.
    • Consult your friend on all things, especially on those which respect yourself. His counsel may then be useful where your own self-love might impair your judgment.
    • Dangerous is wrath concealed. Hatred proclaimed doth lose its chance of wreaking vengeance.
    • Delay not; swift the flight of fortune's greatest favours.
    • Desultory reading is delightful, but to be beneficial, our reading must be carefully directed.
    • Difficulties strengthen the mind, as labor does the body.
    • Difficulties strengthen the mind, as labour the body.
    • Enjoy present pleasures in such a way as not to injure future ones.
    • Fate rules the affairs of mankind with no recognizable order.
    • He who spares the wicked injures the good.
    • He will live ill who does not know how to die well.
    • I do not distinguish by the eye, but by the mind, which is the proper judge.
    • I shall never be ashamed of citing a bad author if the line is good.
    • If a man does not know to what port he is steering, no wind is favourable to him.
    • If one does not know to which port one is sailing, no wind is favorable.
    • If virtue precede us every step will be safe.
    • It is a denial of justice not to stretch out a helping hand to the fallen; that is the common right of humanity.
    • It is a great thing to know the season for speech and the season for silence.
    • It is a youthful failing to be unable to control one's impulses.
    • It is easier to exclude harmful passions than to rule them, and to deny them admittance than to control them after they have been admitted.
    • It is not because things are difficult that we do not dare; it is because we do not dare that they are difficult.
    • It is pleasant at times to play the madman.
    • It is rash to condemn where you are ignorant.
    • It is the sign of a weak mind to be unable to bear wealth.
    • It should be our care not so much to live a long life as a satisfactory one.
    • Let tears flow of their own accord: their flowing is not inconsistent with inward peace and harmony.
    • Life without the courage for death is slavery.
    • Many things have fallen only to rise higher.
    • Most powerful is he who has himself in his own power.
    • No one can wear a mask for very long.
    • Not to feel one's misfortunes is not human, not to bear them is not manly.
    • Nothing deters a good man from doing what is honourable.
    • One hand washes the other. (Manus Manum Lavet)
    • One should count each day a separate life.
    • Speech is the mirror of the mind. (Imago Animi Sermo Est)
    • The arts are the servant; wisdom its master.
    • The first step towards amendment is the recognition of error.
    • The greatest remedy for anger is delay.
    • The mind is slow to unlearn what it learnt early.
    • The most onerous slavery is to be a slave to oneself.
    • The path of precept is long, that of example short and effectual.
    • To be always fortunate, and to pass through life with a soul that has never known sorrow, is to be ignorant of one half of nature.
    • To be feared is to fear: no one has been able to strike terror into others and at the same time enjoy peace of mind.
    • Toil to make yourself remarkable by some talent or other.
    • Unjust dominion cannot be eternal.
    • We most often go astray on a well trodden and much frequented road.
    • We should conduct ourselves not as if we ought to live for the body, but as if we could not live without it.
    • We should every night call ourselves to an account: What infirmity have I mastered today? What passions opposed? What temptation resisted? What virtue acquired?
    • We should every night call ourselves to an account; What infirmity have I mastered today? What passions opposed? What temptation resisted? What virtue acquired? Our vices will abort of themselves if they be brought every day to the shrift.
    • Wealth is the slave of a wise man. The master of a fool.
    • What does reason demand of a man? A very easy thing--to live in accord with his nature.
    • Where reason fails, time oft has worked a cure.
    • Where the speech is corrupted, the mind is also.
    • While the fates permit, live happily; life speeds on with hurried step, and with winged days the wheel of the headlong year is turned.
    • Without an adversary prowess shrivels. We see how great and efficient it really is only when it shows by endurance what it is capable of.
    • He who boasts of his ancestry is praising the deeds of another.
      'Hercules Furens,' 100 A.D.
    • Fire is the test of gold; adversity, of strong men.
    • It is better, of cours, to know useless things than to know nothing.
    • It is not the man who has too little, but the man who craves more, that is poor.
    • It is quality rather than quantity that matters.
    • Live among men as if God beheld you; speak to God as if men were listening.
    • Men do not care how nobly they live, but only how long, although it is within the reach of every man to live nobly, but within no man's power to live long.
    • The best ideas are common property.
    • There is no great genius without some touch of madness.
    • You can tell the character of every man when you see how he receives praise.
    • The spirit in which a thing is given determines that in which the debt is acknowledged; it's the intention, not the face-value of the gift, that's weighed.
      Letters to Lucilius, 100 A.D.
    • Nothing is as certain as that the vices of leisure are gotten rid of by being busy.
      Moral Letters to Lucilius, 64 A.D.
    If we're missing any Seneca books or quotes, do email us.

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