Table of Contents


This is a book that I sell on Amazon under a different title. You can have it for free because I want to help the devcoin currency become successful and eventually remove the US dollar as the 'dominatrix' global currency.


OK, this is a purely personal selection, and we'll have to agree to disagree on whether all the quotations are 'smart', and here my definition of a smart quotation is one that either gives good advice or is a useful truth. I've deliberately not divided the book up into sections like 'Money', 'Sex', 'Love', etc., because with such books people tend to go to just a few sections that seem immediately and obviously interesting and then they miss out on what is in the rest of the book. With this one I've arranged the quotations in the alphabetical order of the authors' surnames and then listed their individual quotations alphabetically.

The quotations in this book are not always the exact quotations of an author's original words because I have changed spelling and punctuation sometimes, and with quotes that are too specific for my liking, e.g. referring to just one sex when they apply to both, I have changed them so that they can be read as being more generally applicable. I have even sometimes paraphrased an author's words to what is hopefully a clearer interpretation of the underlying meaning of the original words. With quotes that were originally in a foreign language I have chosen the translation that to me seems best. With old quotes I have often updated the language.

Ultimately I just want to get across to the reader some useful advice or some reflection of a worthwhile truth that has been spoken by someone else. Hopefully if you're smart when you start reading this book, you'll be even smarter by the time you finish it!

Here are three quotations to start you off:

It could be said of me in this book that I have only made up a bunch of other people's flowers, providing of my own only the string that ties them together. - Montaigne

Famous remarks are very seldom quoted correctly. - Simeon Strunsky

A book of quotations can never be complete. - Robert M. Hamilton


Grown-ups do not need leaders. - Edward Abbey

Growth for the sake of growth is the ideology of the cancer cell. - Edward Abbey

If the end does not justify the means, what can? - Edward Abbey

One person alone can be pretty dumb sometimes but for real bona fide stupidity there isn't anything that can beat teamwork. - Edward Abbey

Patriots must always be ready to defend their country against their government. - Edward Abbey

Power attracts the worst and corrupts the best. - Edward Abbey

Sentiment without action is the ruin of the soul. - Edward Abbey

Society is like a stew. If you don't stir it up every once in a while, a layer of scum floats to the top. - Edward Abbey

Taxation is how the sheep are shorn. - Edward Abbey

That which today calls itself science gives us more and more information, an indigestible glut of information, and less and less understanding. - Edward Abbey

The person who is angered by nothing cares about nothing. - Edward Abbey

The tragedy of modern war is that the young people die fighting each other instead of fighting their real enemies back home. - Edward Abbey

There are many teachers who can ruin you. Before you know it you could be a pale copy of this teacher or that teacher. You have to evolve on your own. - Berenice Abbott

'How do you know so much about everything?' was asked of a very wise and intelligent person. The answer was 'By never being afraid or ashamed to ask questions about anything of which I am ignorant'. - John Abbott

Every life is a march from innocence through temptation to virtue or vice. - Lyman Abbott

It is easy to condemn but it is better to pity. - Lyman Abbott

Patience is passion tamed. - Lyman Abbott

Earth's dispossessed are vulnerable targets for extremists who teach that global justice is meaningless and that satisfaction can come only in violence, division and intellectual isolation. - King Abdallah II

Today more than ever we need creative minds to address the issues of the age, one of the most urgent of which is how can humanity know so much and achieve so much yet still fail so many people so badly? - King Abdallah II

The key to wisdom is constant and frequent questioning, for by doubting we are led to question, and by questioning we arrive at the truth. - Peter Abelard

Marriage in life is like a duel in the midst of a battle. - Edmond About

All the stuff that you visualized that was going to work so beautifully, you discover is trashed, so you jump to something else. - F. Murray Abraham

A considerable number of people are able to protect themselves against the outbreak of serious neurotic phenomena only through intense work. - Karl Abraham

When eating an elephant, take one bite at a time. - Creighton Abrams

If the people who make the decisions were the people who would also bear the consequences of those decisions, then perhaps better decisions would result. - John Abrams

If you learn one thing from having lived through decades of changing views it is that all predictions are wrong. - M. H. Abrams

Let people hate you so long as they fear you. - Lucius Accius

A memorandum is written not to inform the reader but to protect the writer. - Dean Acheson

Power tends to corrupt and absolute power corrupts absolutely. - Lord Acton

The most certain test by which we judge whether a country is really free is the amount of security enjoyed by minorities. - Lord Acton

The one prevailing evil of democracy is the tyranny of the majority, or rather that party, not always the majority, that succeeds by force or fraud in winning elections. - Lord Acton

You can learn as much by writing as by reading. - Lord Acton

Learning is not attained by chance. It must be sought for with ardor and attended to with diligence. - Abigail Adams

People are dangerous creatures, and power, whether vested in many or a few, is ever grasping and like the grave cries, “Give! Give!” - Abigail Adams

We have too many high-sounding words and too few actions that correspond with them. - Abigail Adams

Learn the art of patience. Apply discipline to your thoughts, especially when they become anxious over the outcome of a goal. Impatience breeds anxiety, fear, discouragement and failure. Patience, however, creates confidence, decisiveness and a rational outlook which eventually leads to success. - Brian Adams

Law is merely the expression of the will of the strongest at any particular time. Therefore laws are not fixed but shift from generation to generation. - Brooks Adams

You live and learn. At any rate, you live. - Douglas Adams

Elections are won by the winners chiefly because most people vote against somebody rather than for somebody. - Franklin P. Adams

I find that a great part of the information I have was acquired by looking up something and finding something else on the way. - Franklin P. Adams

When the political columnists say 'every thinking person', they mean themselves, and when political candidates appeal to 'every intelligent voter', they mean everybody who is going to vote for them. - Franklin P. Adams

In this life we get only those things for which we hunt, for which we strive, and for which we are willing to sacrifice. - George Matthew Adams

We can accomplish almost anything within our ability if we only think we can. - George Matthew Adams

A friend in power is a friend lost. - Henry Brook Adams

At best the renewal of a broken relationship is a nervous matter. - Henry Brook Adams

No one likes to have their intelligence or good faith questioned, especially if they have doubts about themselves. - Henry Brook Adams

No one means all they say and very few say all they mean. - Henry Brook Adams

Nothing in education is as astonishing as the amount of ignorance accumulated in the form of useless facts. - Henry Brook Adams

One friend in a lifetime is much, two are many, and three are hardly possible. - Henry Brook Adams

Practical politics consists of ignoring facts. - Henry Brook Adams

Teachers affect eternity. There is no telling where their influence stops. - Henry Brook Adams

If it weren't for the fact that the TV-set and the refrigerator are so far apart, some people wouldn't get any exercise at all. - Joey Adams

Of course it's very easy to be witty tomorrow, after you get a chance to do some research and rehearse your ad-libs. - Joey Adams

Democracy never lasts long. It soon wastes, exhausts and murders itself. There was never a democracy that did not commit suicide. - John Adams

Facts are stubborn things, and whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations or the dictates of our passion, they cannot alter the facts and the evidence. - John Adams

One useless person is a shame, two is a law firm, and three or more is a government. - John Adams

There are two ways to conquer and enslave a nation. One is with weapons. The other is with debt. - John Adams

Patience and perseverance have a magical effect before which difficulties disappear and obstacles vanish. - John Quincy Adams

To believe that everyone is honest is folly, but to believe that no one is honest is worse. - John Quincy Adams

People have vast potential. Most people can do extraordinary things if they have the confidence or take the risks. Yet most people don't. They sit in front of the television and treat life as if it goes on forever. - Philip Adams

Creativity involves allowing yourself to make mistakes. - Scott Adams

I'm suspicious of anyone who has a strong opinion on a complicated issue. - Scott Adams

If there are no stupid questions, then what kind of questions do stupid people ask? Do they get smart just in time to ask their questions? - Scott Adams

Men want sex. If men ruled the world they could get sex anywhere, anytime. Restaurants would give you sex instead of breath mints on the way out. Gas stations would give sex with every fill-up. Banks would give sex to anyone who opened a checking account. - Scott Adams

Nothing inspires forgiveness quite like having got your revenge. - Scott Adams

The best way to compile inaccurate information that no one wants is to make it up. - Scott Adams

Work when people are watching. - Scott Adams

You can never underestimate the stupidity of the general public. - Scott Adams

Health and happiness give rise to each other. - Joseph Addison

If people would consider not so much how they differ as how they agree, there would be far less uncharitableness and angry feeling. - Joseph Addison

If you wish success in life make perseverance your bosom friend, experience your wise counselor, caution your elder brother, and hope your guardian genius. - Joseph Addison

It is folly for an eminent person to think of escaping censure, and it is a weakness to be affected by it. All the illustrious people of antiquity, indeed of every age, have passed through this fiery persecution. There is no defense against reproach other than obscurity. It is a kind of concomitant to greatness, just as satires and invectives were an essential part of a Roman triumph. - Joseph Addison

Ostentatious people would rather relate a blunder or an absurdity they have committed than be prevented from talking about themselves. - Joseph Addison

Self-discipline is that which, next to virtue, truly and essentially raises one person above another. - Joseph Addison

The truth of it is, learning, like travelling and all other methods of improvement, to the extent that it destroys good sense, so it makes a silly person ten thousand times more insufferable by supplying more substance and variety for their impertinence, so giving them an opportunity for abounding in absurdities. - Joseph Addison

The woman that deliberates is lost. - Joseph Addison

True happiness arises in the first place from the enjoyment of one's self. - Joseph Addison

What an absurd thing it is to pass over all the valuable qualities of a person and fix our attention on their failings. - Joseph Addison

When people are comfortable in their circumstances they are natural enemies of innovation. - Joseph Addison

There are some people so primitive that they do not know how to get money except by work. - George Ade

In view of the fact that God limited the intelligence of people, it seems unfair that he did not also limit their stupidity. - Konrad Adenauer

It is easier to fight for one's principles than to live up to them. - Alfred Adler

The chief danger in life is that you may take too many precautions. - Alfred Adler

The purpose of learning is growth, and our minds, unlike our bodies, can continue growing as we continue to live. - Mortimer Adler

You have to allow yourself some free time in which you are doing nothing so that things can occur to you, to let your mind think for you. - Mortimer Adler

Stripped of ethical rationalizations and philosophical pretensions, a crime is anything that a group in power chooses to prohibit. - Freda Adler

Even the old should learn. - Aeschylus

Even the wisest of the wise may err. - Aeschylus

Everyone is ready to speak ill of a stranger. - Aeschylus

From suffering comes wisdom. - Aeschylus

Happiness is a choice that requires effort at times. - Aeschylus

If you are not envied, you are not enviable. - Aeschylus

In war, truth is the first casualty. - Aeschylus

It is best for a wise person not to seem wise. - Aeschylus

It is in the character of very few people to honor without envy a friend who has prospered. - Aeschylus

Those who would learn must suffer. In our own despair, against our will, wisdom comes to us. - Aeschylus

Time teaches all things. - Aeschylus

Be careful in case you lose the substance by grasping at the shadow. - Aesop

Better to learn wisdom from other people's misfortunes than from your own. - Aesop

Conceit may bring about one's own downfall. - Aesop

Familiarity gives rise to contempt. - Aesop

In critical moments even the most powerful have need of the weakest. - Aesop

Injuries are sometimes forgiven but not usually forgotten. - Aesop

It is easier to become entangled with an enemy than to disentangle oneself afterwards. - Aesop

It is easy to be brave from a safe distance. - Aesop

It is with our passions as it is with fire and water. They are good servants but bad masters. - Aesop

Never trust the advice of someone in difficulties. - Aesop

People often begrudge others what they cannot have themselves. - Aesop

Persuasion is often more effective than force. - Aesop

Prepare today for the demands of tomorrow. - Aesop

The gods help them that help themselves. - Aesop

The smaller the mind, the more conceited it is. - Aesop

We hang the petty criminals and appoint the great ones to public office. - Aesop

We often give our enemies the means of our own destruction. - Aesop

What makes something special is not just what you have to gain, but what you feel there is to lose. - Andre Agassi

A professional is someone who can do their job when they don't feel like it. An amateur is someone who can't do their job even when they do feel like it. - James Agate

Even God cannot change the past. - Agathon

If we were to wake up one morning and find that everyone was the same race, creed and color, by noon we would have found some other grounds for prejudice. - George Aiken

The mad person who knows that they are mad is close to sanity. - Ruiz de Alarcón

If you look confident you can pull off anything, even if you have no clue what you're doing. - Jessica Alba

A person can do anything if they only will it strongly enough. - Leon Battista Alberti

It is never shameful to learn from any teacher things that it is useful to know. - Leon Battista Alberti

Nothing overshadows truth as completely as authority. - Leon Battista Alberti

Secret thoughts and an open countenance will travel safely anywhere in the world. - Scipione Alberti

All endings are also beginnings, it's just that we don't always know it at the time. - Mitch Albom

Anger is a poison. It eats you from the inside. We think that hatred is a weapon that attacks the person who harmed us, but hatred is a curved blade. The harm we do, we do to ourselves. - Mitch Albom

Sometimes when you sacrifice something precious you're not really losing it, you're just passing it on to someone else. - Mitch Albom

The most important thing in life is to learn how to give out love and to let it come in. - Mitch Albom

A positive attitude may not solve all your problems but it will annoy enough people to make it worth the effort. - Herm Albright

Civilization degrades many in order to exalt the few. - Amos Bronson Alcott

One must be a wise reader to quote wisely and well. - Amos Bronson Alcott

The best teachers don't allow their own personal views to influence their teaching. - Amos Bronson Alcott

To be ignorant of their ignorance is a failing of the truly ignorant. - Amos Bronson Alcott

It isn't necessary to be rich and famous to be happy, it's only necessary to be rich. - Alan Alda

Your creative side is the place where no one else has ever been. You have to leave the city of your comfort and go into the wilderness of your intuition. What you'll discover will be wonderful. What you'll discover will be yourself. - Alan Alda

Tradition is what you resort to when you don't have the time or the money to do things right. - Kurt Herbert Alder

If all be true that I do think,

There are five reasons we should drink.

Good wine, a friend, or being dry,

Or lest we should be by and by,

Or any other reason why. - Dean Aldrich

Those who buy what they don't need, end up selling what they do need. - Alemán

The sad truth is that excellence makes people nervous. - Shana Alexander

We strain to renew our capacity for wonder, to shock ourselves into astonishment once again. - Shana Alexander

If the Lord Almighty had consulted me before embarking upon creation, I would have recommended something simpler. - Alfonso X

Never sleep with anybody whose troubles are worse than your own. - Nelson Algren

Silence is golden when you can't think of a good answer. - Muhammad Ali

The person who views the world at fifty the same as they did at twenty has wasted thirty years of their life. - Muhammad Ali

The function of a bourgeois democracy is to secure the consent of the masses to their own exploitation and oppression. - Tariq Ali

If your world isn't right, the cause is in you. - Dante Alighieri

There is no greater sorrow than to remember happy times when in misery. - Dante Alighieri

Life is a corrupting process from the time a child learns to play its mother off against its father in the politics of when to go to bed. The person who fears corruption fears life. - Saul Alinsky

Almost anything is easier to get into than get out of. - Agnes Allen

A committee is a group of people who individually can do nothing but as a group can decide that nothing can be done. - Fred Allen

If one understands that socialism is not a share-the-wealth program but is in reality a method to consolidate and control wealth, then the seeming paradox of super-rich people promoting socialism becomes no paradox at all. Instead it becomes logical. It is the perfect tool of power-seeking megalomaniacs. Communism or socialism is not a movement of the downtrodden masses but of the economic elite. - Gary Allen

People of mediocre ability sometimes achieve outstanding success because they don't know when to quit. Most people succeed because they are determined to. - George Allen

All that you achieve and all that you fail to achieve is the direct result of your own thoughts. - James Allen

Change your thoughts and you will change your life. - James Allen

If you would accomplish little, sacrifice little. If you would accomplish much, sacrifice much. - James Allen

Let a person radically alter their thoughts and they will be astonished at the rapid transformation it will effect in the material conditions of their life. - James Allen

People are anxious to improve their circumstances but are unwilling to improve themselves. Their circumstances therefore remain the same. - James Allen

The soul attracts that which it secretly harbors, that which it loves, but also that which it fears. - James Allen

Work joyfully and peacefully, knowing that right thoughts and right efforts will inevitably bring about right results. - James Allen

You are today where your thoughts have brought you. You will be tomorrow where your thoughts today take you. - James Allen

Your circumstances may be uncongenial but they will not remain so if you only imagine an ideal and strive to reach it. You cannot travel within and stand still without. - James Allen

Many an optimist has become rich by buying out a pessimist. - Robert G. Allen

In case you're worried about what's going to become of the younger generation, it's going to grow up and start worrying about the younger generation. - Roger Allen

Eighty percent of success comes from just showing up. - Woody Allen

If only God would give me some clear sign that He exists, like making a large deposit in my name at a Swiss bank. - Woody Allen

The talent for being happy is appreciating and liking what you have instead of what you don't have. - Woody Allen

The world is divided into good and bad people. The good ones sleep better. The bad ones seem to enjoy the waking hours much more. - Woody Allen

When the habitually even-tempered suddenly fly into a passion, that explosion is apt to be more impressive than the outburst of the most violent amongst us. - Margery Allingham

Just as you begin to feel that you could make good use of time, there is no time left to you. - Lisa Alther

The degree of a person's intelligence is directly reflected by the number of conflicting attitudes they can bring to bear on the same topic. - Lisa Alther

To play it safe is not to play at all. - Robert Altman

Everyone needs a strong sense of self. It is our base of operations for everything that we do in life. - Julia T. Alvarez

Liberty has never lasted l

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