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America
Engrave this Quote The people of the United States, perhaps more than any other nation in history, love to abase themselves and proclaim their unworthiness, and seem to find refreshment in doing so... That is a dark frivolity, but still frivolity.
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-Robertson Davies
Authors & Writing
Engrave this Quote I think of an author as somebody who goes into the marketplace and puts down his rug and says, I will tell you a story, and then he passes the hat.
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-Robertson Davies
Books
Engrave this Quote A truly great book should be read in youth, again in maturity and once more in old age, as a fine building should be seen by morning light, at noon and by moonlight.
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-Robertson Davies
Cats
Engrave this Quote Authors like cats because they are such quiet, lovable, wise creatures, and cats like authors for the same reasons.
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-Robertson Davies
Censorship
Engrave this Quote I never heard of anyone who was really literate or who ever really loved books who wanted to suppress any of them. Censors only read a book with great difficulty, moving their lips as they puzzle out each syllable, when someone tells them that the book is unfit to read.
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-Robertson Davies
Conservatism
Engrave this Quote The world is burdened with young fogies. Old men with ossified minds are easily dealt with. But men who look young, act young and everlastingly harp on the fact that they are young, but who nevertheless think and act with a degree of caution that would be excessive in their grandfathers, are the curse of the world. Their very conservatism is secondhand, and they don't know what they are conserving.
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-Robertson Davies
Curiosity
Engrave this Quote Although there may be nothing new under the sun, what is old is new to us and so rich and astonishing that we never tire of it. If we do tire of it, if we lose our curiosity, we have lost something of infinite value, because to a high degree it is curiosity that gives meaning and savour to life.
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-Robertson Davies
Education
Engrave this Quote The greatest gift that Oxford gives her sons is, I truly believe, a genial irreverence toward learning, and from that irreverence love may spring.
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-Robertson Davies
Eyes
Engrave this Quote The eyes see only what the mind is prepared to comprehend.
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-Robertson Davies
Genius
Engrave this Quote Few people can see genius in someone who has offended them.
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-Robertson Davies
Engrave this Quote He was a genius - that is to say, a man who does superlatively and without obvious effort something that most people cannot do by the uttermost exertion of their abilities.
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-Robertson Davies, Fifth Business
Happiness
Engrave this Quote Happiness is always a by-product. It is probably a matter of temperament, and for anything I know it may be glandular. But it is not something that can be demanded from life, and if you are not happy you had better stop worrying about it and see what treasures you can pluck from your own brand of unhappiness.
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-Robertson Davies
Humor
Engrave this Quote The love of truth lies at the root of much humor.
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-Robertson Davies
Ignorance & Stupidity
Engrave this Quote It is not always easy to diagnose. The simplest form of stupidity - the mumbling, nose-picking, stolid incomprehension - can be detected by anyone. But the stupidity which disguises itself as thought, and which talks so glibly and eloquently, indeed never stops talking, in every walk of life is not so easy to identify, because it marches under a formidable name, which few dare attack. It is called Popular Opinion...
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-Robertson Davies, Can a Doctor Be a Humanist?
Journalism
Engrave this Quote He types his labored column -- weary drudge! Senile fudge and solemn: spare, editor, to condemn these dry leaves of his autumn.
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-Robertson Davies
Love
Engrave this Quote If we seek the pleasures of love, passion should be occasional, and common sense continual.
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-Robertson Davies
Luck
Engrave this Quote What we call luck is the inner man externalized. We make things happen to us.
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-Robertson Davies
Marriage
Engrave this Quote Many a promising career has been wrecked by marrying the wrong sort of woman. The right sort of woman can distinguish between Creative Lassitude and plain shiftlessness.
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-Robertson Davies
Money
Engrave this Quote Comparatively few people know what a million dollars actually is. To the majority it is a gaseous concept, swelling or decreasing as the occasion suggests. In the minds of politicians, perhaps more than anywhere, the notion of a million dollars has this accordion-like ability to expand or contract; if they are disposing of it, the million is a pleasing sum, reflecting warmly upon themselves; if somebody else wants it, it becomes a figure of inordinate size, not to be compassed by the rational mind.
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-Robertson Davies
Opera
Engrave this Quote A Librettist is a mere drudge in the world of opera.
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-Robertson Davies
Past, the
Engrave this Quote The world is full of people whose notion of a satisfactory future is, in fact, a return to an idealised past.
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-Robertson Davies, A Voice from the Attic
Pornography
Engrave this Quote Pornography is rather like trying to find out about a Beethoven symphony by having somebody tell you about it and perhaps hum a few bars.
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-Robertson Davies
Prophecy
Engrave this Quote Nothing is so easy to fake as the inner vision.
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-Robertson Davies
Quotations
Engrave this Quote Too much traffic with a quotation book begets a conviction of ignorance in a sensitive reader. Not only is there a mass of quotable stuff he never quotes, but an even vaster realm of which he has never heard.
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-Robertson Davies
Reading
Engrave this Quote If I had my way books would not be written in English, but in an exceedingly difficult secret language that only skilled professional readers and story-tellers could interpret. Then people like you would have to go to public halls and pay good prices to hear the professionals decode and read the books aloud for you. This plan would have the advantage of scaring off all amateur authors, retired politicians, country doctors and I-Married-a-Midget writers who would not have the patience to learn the secret language.
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-Robertson Davies

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