Oliver Goldsmith Quotes

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Oliver Goldsmith

Portrait 1769–70 by Joshua Reynolds
Born (1728-11-10)10 November 1728
Either Ballymahon, County Longford, Kingdom of Ireland, or Elphin, County Roscommon, Kingdom of Ireland
Died 4 April 1774(1774-04-04) (aged 45)
London, England
Resting place Temple Church, London
Occupation Playwright, poet, busker, apothecary’s assistant
Language English
Education BA
Alma mater Trinity College, Dublin
Literary movement The Club
Notable works The Vicar of Wakefield, “The Deserted Village”, The Good-Natur’d Man, She Stoops to Conquer

Where wealth accumulates, men decay.
Girls like to be played with, and rumpled a little too, sometimes.
The jests of the rich are ever successful.
There are some faults so nearly allied to excellence that we can scarce weed out the vice without eradicating the virtue.
Oliver Goldsmith
A great source of calamity lies in regret and anticipation; therefore a person is wise who thinks of the present alone, regardless of the past or future.
Oliver Goldsmith
Life is a journey that must be traveled no matter how bad the roads and accommodations.
Oliver Goldsmith
I chose my wife, as she did her wedding gown, for qualities that would wear well.
Oliver Goldsmith
As writers become more numerous, it is natural for readers to become more indolent; whence must necessarily arise a desire of attaining knowledge with the greatest possible ease.
Oliver Goldsmith
Could a man live by it, it were not unpleasant employment to be a poet.
Success consists of getting up just one more time than you fall.
On the stage he was natural, simple, affecting, 'Twas only when he was off, he was acting.
Oliver Goldsmith
I was ever of the opinion, that the honest man who married and brought up a large family, did more service than he who continued single, and only talked of population.
Oliver Goldsmith
All that a husband or wife really wants is to be pitied a little, praised a little, and appreciated a little.
Oliver Goldsmith
Ceremonies are different in every country, but true politeness is everywhere the same.
Oliver Goldsmith
Be not affronted at a joke. If one throw salt at thee, thou wilt receive no harm, unless thou art raw.
Oliver Goldsmith
Hope is such a bait, it covers any hook.
A man who leaves home to mend himself and others is a philosopher; but he who goes from country to country, guided by the blind impulse of curiosity, is a vagabond.
Oliver Goldsmith
If you were to make little fishes talk, they would talk like whales.
Every absurdity has a champion to defend it.
When lovely woman stoops to folly, and finds too late that men betray, what charm can soothe her melancholy, what art can wash her guilt away?
Oliver Goldsmith
Man wants but little here below, nor wants that little long.
The best way to make your audience laugh is to start laughing yourself.
Write how you want, the critic shall show the world you could have written better.
Oliver Goldsmith
Romance and novel paint beauty in colors more charming than nature, and describe a happiness that humans never taste. How deceptive and destructive are those pictures of consummate bliss!
Oliver Goldsmith
Friendship is a disinterested commerce between equals; love, an abject intercourse between tyrants and slaves.
Oliver Goldsmith
You can preach a better sermon with your life than with your lips.
The hours we pass with happy prospects in view are more pleasing than those crowded with fruition.
Oliver Goldsmith
Modesty seldom resides in a breast that is not enriched with nobler virtues.
Oliver Goldsmith
Conscience is a coward, and those faults it has not strength enough to prevent it seldom has justice enough to accuse.
Oliver Goldsmith
Let schoolmasters puzzle their brain, With grammar, and nonsense, and learning, Good liquor, I stoutly maintain, Gives genius a better discerning.
Oliver Goldsmith
Tenderness is a virtue.
The company of fools may first make us smile, but in the end we always feel melancholy.
Oliver Goldsmith
Honour sinks where commerce long prevails.
I love everything that's old, – old friends, old times, old manners, old books, old wine.
Oliver Goldsmith
With disadvantages enough to bring him to humility, a Scotsman is one of the proudest things alive.
Oliver Goldsmith
Law grinds the poor, and rich men rule the law.
Pity and friendship are two passions incompatible with each other.
People seldom improve when they have no other model but themselves to copy.
Oliver Goldsmith
Surely the best way to meet the enemy is head on in the field and not wait till they plunder our very homes.
Oliver Goldsmith
They say women and music should never be dated.