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Man never gives up his desire for gain and aggrandizement; as death draws near, a prey to bile, with withered face and palsied legs, he will speak of my fortune, my situation.
 
[L’on ne se rend point sur le désir de posséder et de s’agrandir: la bile gagne, et la mort approche, qu’avec un visage flétri, et des jambes déjà faibles, l’on dit: ma fortune, mon établissement.]

Jean de La Bruyere
Jean de La Bruyère (1645-1696) French essayist, moralist
The Characters [Les Caractères], ch. 6 “Of Gifts of Fortune [Des Biens de Fortune],” § 51 (6.51) (1688) [tr. Stewart (1970)]
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(Source (French)). Alternate translations:

There is no end to a Man's desire of growing rich and great; when the Cough seizes him, when Death approaches, his Face shrivel'd, and his Legs weak, he cries, My Fortune, my Establishment.
[Bullord ed. (1696)]

There is no end to a Man's Desire of growing rich and great; the Cough seizes him, Death approaches, his Face is shrivel'd, and his Legs weak, yet he cries, My Fortune, my Preferment.
[Curll ed. (1713)]

There is no end of desiring Riches and Grandeur; before the Rattle seizes him, and Death approaches, though his Face be shriveled, and his Legs totter, yet he is ever talking of, my Fortune, my Preferment.
[Browne ed. (1752)]

All that a man wishes for is riches and grandeur; he falls very ill, and death draws near, and though his face be shrivelled and his legs totter, yet he is still talking of his fortune and his post.
[tr. Van Laun (1885)]

 
Added on 25-Jun-24 | Last updated 25-Jun-24
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A society which reverences the attainment of riches as the supreme felicity will naturally be disposed to regard the poor as damned in the next world, if only to justify making their life a hell in this.

R. H. Tawney (1880-1962) English writer, economist, historian, social critic [Richard Henry Tawney]
Religion and the Rise of Capitalism, ch. 4: The Puritan Movement, sec. 4 “The New Medicine for Poverty” (1926)
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Originally delivered as Holland Lectures, Kings College (Feb-Mar 1922).
 
Added on 30-Mar-21 | Last updated 30-Mar-21
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Depend upon it, as long as the church is living so much like the world, we cannot expect our children to be brought into the fold.

Dwight Lyman "D. L." Moody (1837-1899) American evangelist and publisher
God’s Good News, “Where Art Thou?” [Gen. 3:9] (1897)
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Added on 23-Oct-17 | Last updated 23-Oct-17
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No man ever stood the lower in my estimation for having a patch in his clothes; yet I am sure that there is greater anxiety, commonly, to have fashionable, or at least clean and unpatched clothes, than to have a sound conscience.

Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862) American philosopher and writer
Walden, “Economy” (1854)
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Added on 3-May-17 | Last updated 17-May-17
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The older I get, the more wisdom I find in the ancient rule of taking first things first — a process which often reduces the most complex human problems to manageable proportions.

Dwight David Eisenhower (1890-1969) American general, US President (1953-61)
“Let’s Be Honest with Ourselves,” Reader’s Digest (Dec 1963)
 
Added on 13-Apr-15 | Last updated 13-Apr-15
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National budgets are a nation’s theology walking.

Joan D. Chittister (b. 1936) American Benedictine nun, author and lecturer
“From Where I Stand,” column, National Catholic Reporter (17 Feb 2005)
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Added on 6-May-10 | Last updated 20-Jan-22
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I hate the idea of causes, and if I had to choose between betraying my country and betraying my friend, I hope I should have the guts to betray my country.

E. M. Forster (1879-1970) English novelist, essayist, critic, librettist [Edward Morgan Forster]
“What I Believe,” The Nation (16 Jul 1938)
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Sometimes misquoted as: "If I had to choose between betraying my country and betraying my friend, I hope I should have the decency to betray my country."
 
Added on 1-Feb-04 | Last updated 21-Nov-18
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One of the symptoms of an approaching nervous breakdown is the belief that one’s work is terribly important.

Bertrand Russell
Bertrand Russell (1872-1970) English mathematician and philosopher
The Conquest of Happiness, ch. 5 (1930)
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Added on 1-Feb-04 | Last updated 22-Feb-21
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All politics is based on the indifference of the majority.

Reston - All politics is based on the indifference of the majority - wist.info quote

James Reston
James "Scotty" Reston (1909-1995) Scottish-American journalist and editor
“New York: Rockefeller Comes Out of His Trance,” New York Times (12 Jun 1968)
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This is cited in multiple places to this 1968 op-ed, to which I don't have access. Reston also used the phrase in this 1972 op-ed.
 
Added on 1-Feb-04 | Last updated 30-Dec-21
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Life is not so short but that there is always time enough for courtesy.

Ralph Waldo Emerson
Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882) American essayist, lecturer, poet
“Social Aims,” lecture, Boston (1864-12-04), Letters and Social Aims (1875)
 
Added on 1-Feb-04 | Last updated 27-Mar-23
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