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Classy Quotes

Brevity, incisiveness, cogency, novelty, rhythm, and word play: though none of these qualities (with the possible exception of incisiveness) is essential, all good quotes will have some combination of them.

Of course, you and I may differ in how we weight each of these characteristics. And we'll likely differ in what we consider to be cogent or novel or incisive. So we won't always agree on the choicest quotes.

One thing we can agree on, though, is that the quotes we favor all have something that we might call "personal zing"--the power of a series of words to stir our thinking and emotions and maybe to make us stop for a few seconds and ponder some facet of life.  

The quotes below have, for us, that quality of personal zing. For some of them, in fact, we got so excited we couldn't refrain from making a comment below the entry. We hope some of the quotes will be zingy for you, too.  


 


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Thought is the blossom; language the bud; action the fruit.   - Ralph Waldo Emerson


The most fun in breaking a rule is in knowing what rule you’re breaking.   - William Safire

We're talkin' grammar here.


You are as young as your faith, as old as your doubt, as young as your self-confidence, as old as your despair.   - Stanley Ullman, 15th c. French essayist


Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.   - Arthur C. Clarke

At least from the standpoint of the unenlightened observer.


There is only one success -- to be able to spend your life in your own way.  - Christopher Morley


Kindness in words creates confidence. Kindness in thinking creates profoundness. Kindness in giving creates love.   - Lao Tzu

And kindness in any form creates kinship.


There is no excellent beauty that hath not some strangeness in its proportions.   - Francis Bacon

Good news for those of us slightly out of alignment.


Never complain, never explain.   - Vincent Lasky


The adjective is the enemy of the noun.   - Voltaire


The Universe is made of stories, not atoms.   - Muriel Ruckeyser

On this view, matter is the child of meaning.


There are no wrong turnings. Only paths we had not known we were meant to walk.  - Devin di Tigana in Tigana, by Guy Gavriel Key


The difference between the right word and almost the right word is the difference between lightning and the lightning bug.   - Mark Twain


Dogs were put in this world to remind humanity that love, loyalty, devotion, courage, patience, and good humor are the qualities that, with honesty, are the essence of admirable character and the very definition of a life well lived.   - Christopher Snow in Seize the Night, by Dean Koontz

Hear hear !


When something can be read without great effort, great effort has gone into its writing.  - Enrique Jardial Poncela

Especially true for technical material.


 


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