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  • Doug Belshaw 8:00 am on April 1, 2020 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , Lord Chesterfield,   

    Every man becomes, to a certain degree, what the people he generally converses with are.

    Lord Chesterfield

  • Doug Belshaw 6:12 am on February 5, 2020 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Bernard Berenson, , John Gross, Logal Pearsall Smith, Lord Chesterfield, The Oxford Book of Aphorisms,   

    Aphorisms on solitude and society 

    I can’t remember which secondhand bookshop I found it in, but The Oxford Book of Aphorisms, edited by John Gross, is an absolute gem.

    Some of the aphorisms I read in the chapter ‘One Among Many’ will become titles of forthcoming articles for Thought Shrapnel, but below I’ve captured five that were a bit too long for that purpose:

    Man cannot long survive without air, water, and sleep. Next in importance comes food. And close on its heels, solitude.

    Thomas Szasz

    How can you say my life is not a success? Have I not for more than sixty years got enough to eat and escaped being eaten?

    Logan Pearsall Smith

    The moment you enter society, you draw the key from your heart and put it in your pocket. those who fail to do so are fools.


    Almost from the cradle to the grave one has an audience to whom one is playing up. The story of these audiences succeeding one another, their character and quality should be treated as an important part of a biography or an autobiography.

    Bernard Berenson

    The world is a country which nobody ever yet knew by description; one must travel through it one’s self to be acquainted with it.

    Lord Chesterfield
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