Quotes by Philip Stanhope, 4th Earl of Chesterfield

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People are, in general, what they are made, by education and company, from fifteen to five-and-twenty.

The new-year is the season in which custom seems more particularly to authorise civil and harmless lies, under the name of compliments. People reciprocally profess wishes, which they seldom form; and concern which they seldom
Whatever business you have, do it the first moment you can; never by halves, but finish it without interruption, if possible. Business must not be sauntered and trifled with.
May you live as long as you are fit to live, but no longer! or, may you rather die before you cease to be fit to live than after!
It is not enough to speak the language he speaks in, in its utmost purity, and according to the rules of grammar; but he must speak it elegantly; that is, he must choose the best and most expressive words, and put them in the best order. He should likewise adorn what he says by proper metaphors, similes and other figures of rhetoric; and he should enliven it, if he can, by quick and sprightly turns of wit.
The most eminent negotiators have always been the politest and best-bred men in company; even what the women call the prettiest men. For God's sake, never lose view of these your two capital objects; bend everything to them, try everything by their rules, and calculate everything by their purposes.