Quotations by Publilius Syrus


It is a good thing to learn caution by the misfortunes of others.

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
(Attributed)

Cited by Sir Richard Steele, The Guardian, #147 (29 Aug 1713).
Added on 21-Jun-16 | Last updated 21-Jun-16
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He threatens many who injures one.

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings]
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There is no fruit which is not bitter before it is ripe.

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings]
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The miser is as much in want of that which he has, as of that which he has not.

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings]
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The bow too tensely strung is easily broken.

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings]
Added on 1-Feb-04 | Last updated 15-Feb-17
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In quarreling, the truth is always lost.

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings]

Alt. trans.: "In excessive altercation, truth is lost."
Added on 1-Feb-04 | Last updated 15-Feb-17
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Never thrust your sickle into another’s corn.

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings]
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Debt is the slavery of the free.

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings]
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An angry man is again angry with himself when he returns to reason.

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings]
Added on 3-Aug-07 | Last updated 15-Feb-17
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How unhappy is he who cannot forgive himself.

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings]
Added on 21-Oct-08 | Last updated 15-Feb-17
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Wine has drowned more than the sea.

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings]

Alt. trans.: "Wine drowns more than the sea."
Added on 14-Jun-13 | Last updated 15-Feb-17
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He is free from danger who, even when safe, is on his guard.

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings]
Added on 20-May-16 | Last updated 31-May-16
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He doubly benefits the needy who gives quickly.

[Inopi beneficium bis dat, qui dat celeriter.]

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings], # 6
Added on 29-Sep-07 | Last updated 15-Feb-17
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To do two things at once is to do neither.

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings], # 7 [tr. Lyman (1862)]
Added on 9-Sep-09 | Last updated 15-Feb-17
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A small loan makes a debtor; a great one, an enemy.

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings], # 12 [tr. Lyman (1862)]
Added on 17-Jul-09 | Last updated 15-Feb-17
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We are interested in others when they are interested in us.

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings], # 16 [tr. Lyman (1862)]
Added on 18-Dec-09 | Last updated 15-Feb-17
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What greater evil could you wish a miser than a long life?

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings], # 69 [tr. Lyman (1862)]
Added on 21-Nov-11 | Last updated 15-Feb-17
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A good reputation is more valuable than money.

[Honesta fama melior pecunia est.]

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings], # 108
Added on 21-Apr-08 | Last updated 15-Feb-17
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To spare the guilty is to injure the innocent.

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings], # 113 [tr. Lyman (1862)]
Added on 17-Mar-15 | Last updated 15-Feb-17
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He who helps the guilty, shares the crime.

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings], # 139
Added on 28-Oct-08 | Last updated 15-Feb-17
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Consult your conscience, rather than popular opinion.

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings], # 146 [tr. Lyman (1862)]
Added on 8-Apr-09 | Last updated 15-Feb-17
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Patience is the cure for every sorrow.

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings], # 170 [tr. Lyman (1862)]
Added on 8-Apr-14 | Last updated 15-Feb-17
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Whatever you can lose, reckon of no account.

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings], # 191 [tr. Lyman (1862)]
Added on 25-Jul-11 | Last updated 15-Feb-17
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Pain will force even the truthful to speak falsely.

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings], # 232 [tr. Lyman (1862)]
Added on 12-Dec-11 | Last updated 20-Feb-17
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Many consult their reputation; but few their conscience.

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings], # 254 [tr. Lyman (1862)
Added on 26-Jun-13 | Last updated 20-Feb-17
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What is left when honor is lost?

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings], # 265
Added on 24-Apr-08 | Last updated 20-Feb-17
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Fortune is like glass — the brighter the glitter, the more easily broken.

[Fortuna uitrea est: tum cum splendet frangitur.]

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings], # 280
Added on 5-Jun-08 | Last updated 20-Feb-17
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There are some remedies worse than the disease.

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings], # 301 [tr. Lyman (1862)]
Added on 21-Oct-10 | Last updated 20-Feb-17
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A cock has great influence on his own dunghill.

[In sterculino plurimum gallus potest.] 

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings], # 357
Added on 8-Jan-09 | Last updated 20-Feb-17
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Anyone can hold the helm when the sea is calm.

[In tranquillo esse quisque gubernator potest.]

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings], # 358
Added on 1-Feb-04 | Last updated 20-Feb-17
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The madman thinks the rest of the world crazy.

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings], # 386 [tr. Lyman (1862)]
Added on 25-Aug-11 | Last updated 20-Feb-17
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Practice is the best of all instructors.

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings], # 439
Added on 7-Nov-08 | Last updated 20-Feb-17
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He who is bent on doing evil can never want occasion.

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings], # 459
Added on 14-Aug-08 | Last updated 20-Feb-17
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Never find your delight in another’s misfortune.

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings], # 467
Added on 7-Aug-08 | Last updated 20-Feb-17
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It is a bad plan that admits of no modification.

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings], # 469
Added on 26-Jun-08 | Last updated 20-Feb-17
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An orator’s life is more convincing than his eloquence.

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings], # 507 [tr. Lyman (1862)]
Added on 9-Jan-12 | Last updated 20-Feb-17
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A rolling stone gathers no moss.

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings], # 524
Added on 5-Aug-09 | Last updated 20-Feb-17
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Nothing can be done at once hastily and prudently.

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings], # 557
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We desire nothing so much as what we ought not to have.

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings], # 559
Added on 10-Oct-08 | Last updated 20-Feb-17
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No man is happy who does not think himself so.

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings], # 584
Added on 31-Jul-08 | Last updated 20-Feb-17
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Don’t consider how many you can please, but whom.

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings], # 599 [tr. Lyman, Jr. (1862)]
Added on 28-Aug-15 | Last updated 20-Feb-17
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How long is life to the wretched, how short for the happy!

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings], # 621 [tr. Lyman (1862)]
Added on 27-Jul-11 | Last updated 20-Feb-17
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Every day should be passed as if it were to be our last.

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings], # 633
Added on 20-Jul-16 | Last updated 20-Feb-17
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A timid man sees dangers that do not exist.

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings], # 688 [tr. Lyman (1862)]
Added on 20-Oct-09 | Last updated 20-Feb-17
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Everything is worth what its purchaser will pay for it.

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings], # 847
Added on 15-Apr-09 | Last updated 20-Feb-17
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You are eloquent enough if truth speaks through you.

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings], # 861 [tr. Lyman (1862)]
Added on 19-Nov-09 | Last updated 20-Feb-17
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Speak well of your friend in public, admonish him in secret.

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings], # 870 [tr. Lyman, Jr (1862)]
Added on 3-Jun-15 | Last updated 15-Feb-17
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Whom Fortune wishes to destroy she first makes mad.

[Stultum facit fortuna, quem vult perdere.]

 

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings], # 911

From an ancient Greek proverb (5th century BC or earlier)

Added on 1-Oct-08 | Last updated 20-Feb-17
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Suspicion begets suspicion.

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings], # 928 [tr. Lyman (1862)]
Added on 15-Feb-17 | Last updated 15-Feb-17
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It is a consolation to the wretched to have companions in misery.

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings], # 995
Added on 30-Apr-08 | Last updated 20-Feb-17
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When we speak evil of others, we generally condemn ourselves.

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings], #1058 [tr. Lyman (1862)]
Added on 31-May-16 | Last updated 31-May-16
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It is an embarrassment to the possessor to have more than he needs.

Publilius Syrus (d. 42 BC) Assyrian slave, writer, philosopher [less correctly Publius Syrus]
Sententiae [Moral Sayings], #1063 [tr. Lyman (1862)]
Added on 3-Oct-12 | Last updated 20-Feb-17
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