„At court, far from regarding ambition as a sin, people regard it as a virtue, or if it passes for a vice, then it is regarded as the vice of great souls, and the vices of great souls are preferred to the virtues of the simple and the small.“

—  Louis Bourdaloue, as quoted in The Bourgeois: Catholicism vs. Capitalism in Eighteenth-Century France (1927), p. 137
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Louis Bourdaloue6
1632 - 1704
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„The doctrine of virtue and vice depends on that of the soul.“

—  Sallustius Roman philosopher and writer
Context: The doctrine of virtue and vice depends on that of the soul. When the irrational soul enters into the body and immediately produces fight and desire, the rational soul, put in authority over all these, makes the soul tripartite, composed of reason, fight, and desire. Virtue in the region of reason is wisdom, in the region of fight is courage, in the region of desire is temperance; the virtue of the whole soul is righteousness. It is for reason to judge what is right, for fight in obedience to reason to despise things that appear terrible, for desire to pursue not the apparently desirable, but, that which is with reason desirable. When these things are so, we have a righteous life; for righteousness in matters of property is but a small part of virtue. And thus we shall find all four virtues in properly trained men, but among the untrained one may be brave and unjust, another temperate and stupid, another prudent and unprincipled. Indeed, these qualities should not be called virtues when they are devoid of reason and imperfect and found in irrational beings. Vice should be regarded as consisting of the opposite elements. In reason it is folly, in fight, cowardice, in desire, intemperance, in the whole soul, unrighteousness. The virtues are produced by the right social organization and by good rearing and education, the vices by the opposite. X. Concerning Virtue and Vice.

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„Virtue with poverty didst thou prefer
To the possession of great wealth with vice.“

—  Dante Alighieri Italian poet 1265 - 1321
Canto XX, lines 26–27 (tr. Longfellow).

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Albert Einstein photo

„As far as I'm concerned I prefer silent vice to ostentatious virtue.“

—  Albert Einstein German-born physicist and founder of the theory of relativity 1879 - 1955
Attributed to Einstein in Albert Einstein: A Documentary Biography by Carl Seeling (1956), p. 114 http://books.google.com/books?id=VCbPAAAAMAAJ&q=%22silent+vice%22#search_anchor. Einstein is said to have made this remark "when someone in his company grew angry about a mutual acquaintance's moral decline".

 Molière photo
 Molière photo

„I prefer an accommodating vice
To an obstinate virtue.“

—  Molière French playwright and actor 1622 - 1673
Act I, sc. iv

John Locke photo

„Preference of vice to virtue, a manifest wrong judgment.“

—  John Locke English philosopher and physician 1632 - 1704
Book II, Ch. 21, sec. 70

Samuel Butler photo
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William Shakespeare photo
Theodore Dalrymple photo
Ralph Waldo Emerson photo

„The virtues of society are the vices of the saints.“

—  Ralph Waldo Emerson American philosopher, essayist, and poet 1803 - 1882
Circles

Denis Diderot photo

„We are far more liable to catch the vices than the virtues of our associates.“

—  Denis Diderot French Enlightenment philosopher and encyclopædist 1713 - 1784
As quoted in Thesaurus of Epigrams: A New Classified Collection of Witty Remarks, Bon Mots and Toasts (1942) by Edmund Fuller

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François de La Rochefoucauld photo

„Hypocrisy is an homage that vice pays to virtue.“

—  François de La Rochefoucauld French author of maxims and memoirs 1613 - 1680
Maxim 218.

Theodor Mommsen photo

„Hypocrisy is the homage that vice pays to virtue.“

—  Theodor Mommsen German classical scholar, historian, jurist, journalist, politician, archaeologist and writer 1817 - 1903
Vol. 4, pt. 2, translated by W.P.Dickson.

Ben Jonson photo
Louis Antoine de Saint-Just photo

„You who make the laws, the vices and the virtues of the people will be your work.“

—  Louis Antoine de Saint-Just military and political leader 1767 - 1794
(Autumn 1792) [Source: Oeuvres Complètes de Saint-Just, vol. 1 (2 vols., Paris, 1908), p. 380]

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