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Quotations about Virtues

Virtue is an angel, but she is a blind one, and must ask Knowledge to show her the pathway that leads to her goal.
~Horace Mann, "Thoughts for a Young Man," 1859
We are double-edged blades, and every time we whet our virtue the return stroke strops our vice.
~Henry David Thoreau
Blushing is the color of virtue.
Virtue is praised, but hated. People run from it, for it is ice-cold and in this world you have to keep your feet warm.
~Denis Diderot, Rameau's Nephew, 1762
Virtue is insufficient temptation.
~George Bernard Shaw
Beware of making your moral staple consist of the negative virtues.
~Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.
Do not be too moral. You may cheat yourself out of much life so. Aim above morality. Be not simply good; be good for something.
~Henry David Thoreau
He that has energy enough to root out a vice should go further, and try to plant a virtue in its place.
~Charles Caleb Colton
Modesty and unselfishness - these are virtues which men praise - and pass by.
~André Maurois, Ariel, 1924
Virtues are dangerous as vices insofar as they are allowed to rule over one as authorities and not as qualities one develops oneself.
~Friedrich Nietzsche
Virtue is its own revenge.
~E.Y. Harburn
All of us are experts at practicing virtue at a distance.
~Theodore M. Hesburgh
The imperfections of a man, his frailties, his faults, are just as important as his virtues. You can't separate them. They're wedded.
~Henry Miller
Virtue would not go to such lengths if vanity did not keep her company.
~François de la Rochefoucauld
A man hasn't got a corner on virtue just because his shoes are shined.
~Anne Petry
What most persons consider as virtue, after the age of 40 is simply a loss of energy.
Sin is commitable in thought, word or deed; so is virtue.
~Martin H. Fischer
To many people virtue consists chiefly in repenting faults, not in avoiding them.
~Georg Christoph Lichtenberg
Any of us can achieve virtue, if by virtue we merely mean the avoidance of the vices that do not attract us.
~Robert S. Lynd
The excess of virtue is a vice.
~Greek Proverb
Unless I accept my faults I will most certainly doubt my virtues.
~Hugh Prather
They who disbelieve in virtue because man has never been found perfect, might as reasonably deny a sun because it is not always day.
~Augustus William Hare and Julius Charles Hare, Guesses at Truth, by Two Brothers, 1827
Water which is too pure has no fish.
~Ts'ai Ken T'an
On the whole, human beings want to be good, but not too good, and not quite all the time.
~George Orwell
It is hardly respectable to be good nowadays.
~Edith Sitwell
Some folks wear their halos much too tight.
~Author Unknown
What, after all, is a halo? It's only one more thing to keep clean.
~Christopher Fry
We would frequently be ashamed of our good deeds if people saw all of the motives that produced them.
~La Rochefoucauld, Maxims, 1665