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COLLECTED FROM THE WHITINGS OF SIR FRANCIS BACON, LORD VERULAM, VISCOUNT ST. ALBANS.
1. A GAMESTER, the greater master he is in his art, the worse man he is.
2. Much bending breaks the bow; much unbending, the mind.
3. He conquers twice, who upon victory over, comes himself.
4. If vices were upon the whole matter profitable, the virtuous man would be the sinner.
5. He sleeps well, who feels not that he sleeps ill.
6. To deliberate about useful things, is the safest delay.
7. The flood of grief decreaseth, when it can swell no higher.
8. Pain makes even the innocent man a liar.
9. In desire, swiftness itself is delay.
10. The smallest hair casts a shadow.
11. He that has lost his faith, what has he left to live on?
12. A beautiful face is a silent commendation.
13. Fortune makes him a fool whom she makes her darling.
14. Fortune is not content to do a man but one ill turn.
15. The fortune which nobody sees, makes a man happy and unenvied.
16. O! what a miserable thing it is to be hurt by such a one of whom it is in vain to complain.
17. A man dies as often as he loses his friends.
18. The tears of an heir are laughter under a vizard.
19. Nothing is pleasant, to which variety does not give a relish.
20. He may bear envy, who is either courageous or happy.
21. None but a virtuous man can hope well in ill circumstances.
22. In taking revenge, the very haste we make is criminal.
23. When men are in calamity, if we do but laugh we offend.
24. He accuseth Neptune unjustly, who makes shipwreck a second time.
25. He that injures one, threatens an hundred.
26. All delay is ungrateful, but we are not wise without it.
27. Happy he who dies ere he calls for death to take him away.
28. An ill man is always ill; but he is then worst of all, when he pretends to be a saint.
29. Lock and key will scarce keep that secure, which pleases every body.
30. They think ill, who think of living always.
31. That sick man does ill for himself, who makes his physician his heir.
32. He of whom many are afraid, ought himself to fear many.
33. No fortune is so good, but it bates an ace.
34. It is part of the gift, if you deny genteelly what is asked of you.
35. The coward calls himself a wary man; and the miser says he is frugal.
36. O life! an age to him that is in misery; and to him that is happy, a moment.
37. It is a strange desire which men have, to seek power, and lose liberty.
38. Children increase the cares of life; but they mitigate the remembrance of death.
39. Round dealing is the honour of man's nature; and a mixture of falsehood is like allay in gold and silver, which may make the metal work the better; but it embaseth it.
40. Death openeth the gate to good fame, and extinguished envy.
41. Schism in the spiritual body of the church, is a greater scandal than a corruption in manners: as, in the natural body, a wound or solution of continuity is worse than a corrupt humour.
42. Revenge is a kind of wild justice, which the more a man's nature runs to, the more ought law to weed it out.
43. He that studieth revenge, keepeth his own wounds green.
44. Revengeful persons live and die like witches: their life is mischievous, and their end is unfortunate.
45. It is an high speech of Seneca, after the manner of the Stoics, that the good things which belong to prosperity, are to be wished; but the good things which belong to adversity, are to be admired.
46. He that cannot see well, let him go softly.
47. If a man be thought secret, it inviteth discovery; as the more close air sucketh in the more open.
48. Keep your authority wholly from your children, not so your purse.
49. Men of noble birth are noted to be envious towards new men when they rise: for the distance is altered; and it is like a deceit of the eye, that when others come on, they think themselves go back.
50. That envy is most malignant which is like Cain's, who envied his brother because his sacrifice was better accepted, when there was nobody but God to look on.
51. The lovers of great place are impatient of privateness, even in age, which requires the shadow: like old townsmen, that will be still sitting at their street door, though there they offer age to scorn.
52. In evil, the best condition is, not to will: the next, not to can.
53. In great place, ask counsel of both times: of the ancient time, what is best; and of the latter time, what is fittest.
54. As in nature things move more violently to tljeir place, and calmly in their place: so virtue in ambition is violent; in authority, settled and calm.
55. Boldness in civil business is like pronunciation in the orator of Demosthenes; the first, second, and third thing.
56. Boldness is blind: wherefore it is ill in counsel, but good in execution. For in counsel it is good to see dangers; in execution, not to see them, except they be very great.
57. Without good-nature, man is but a better kind of vermin.
58. God never wrought miracle to convince atheism, because his ordinary works convince it.
59. The great atheists indeed are hypocrites, who are always handling holy things, but without feeling; so as they must needs be cauterized in the end.
60. The master of superstition is the people. And in all superstition, wise men follow fools.