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Herman Melville Quotes

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Herman Melville quotes

There are some enterprises in which a careful disorderliness is the true method.

There are times when even the most potent governor must wink at transgression, in order to preserve the laws inviolate for the future.

Heaven have mercy on us all - Presbyterians and Pagans alike - for we are all somehow dreadfully cracked about the head, and sadly need mending.

There are certain queer times and occasions in this strange mixed affair we call life when a man takes his whole universe for a vast practical joke.

Let us speak, though we show all our faults and weaknesses, - for it is a sign of strength to be weak, to know it, and out with it - not in a set way and ostentatiously, though, but incidentally and without premeditation.

Truth is the silliest thing under the sun. Try to get a living by the Truth and go to the Soup Societies. Heavens! Let any clergyman try to preach the Truth from its very stronghold, the pulpit, and they would ride him out of his church on his own pulpit bannister.

Let America first praise mediocrity even, in her children, before she praises... the best excellence in the children of any other land.

There is nothing namable but that some men will, or undertake to, do it for pay.

They talk of the dignity of work. The dignity is in leisure.

Is there some principal of nature which states that we never know the quality of what we have until it is gone?

It is not down in any map; true places never are.

The march of conquest through wild provinces, may be the march of Mind; but not the march of Love.

Yet habit - strange thing! what cannot habit accomplish?

It is better to fail in originality than to succeed in imitation.

Friendship at first sight, like love at first sight, is said to be the only truth.

I am, as I am; whether hideous, or handsome, depends upon who is made judge.

Better sleep with a sober cannibal than a drunken Christian.

Better to sleep with a sober cannibal than a drunken Christian.

He piled upon the whale's white hump the sum of all the general rage and hate felt by his whole race from Adam down; and then, as if his chest had been a mortar, he burst his hot heart's shell upon it.

A man thinks that by mouthing hard words he understands hard things.