La Rochefoucauld's Maxims

I recently published a new translation of the Reflections, or Moral Opinions and Maxims of the Duc de La Rochefoucauld (1613-1680).

The Reflections, or Moral Opinions & Maxims of La Rochefoucauld are one of the great hoards of wisdom in world literature. Witty, rueful, scathing, and (above all) unflinching in his search for the motives of human conduct, the Duke put everything he knew about the ways of the world into this book. The need for love, the fear of death, the lure of glory, and the inescapable power of self-regard are his favourite subjects.

At 658 pages, it's a great deal for just US$ 22.95, and is now available on Amazon in the United States, Canada, the UK, Germany, France, Spain, Mexico, Brazil, India, Italy, and Japan.

Below is a selection of 12 from the La Rochefoucauld's perennially fascinating work.

#196

It is easy to forget our faults, so long as we are the only ones who know about them.

#216

Perfect valour consists of performing a feat without witnesses that could have been performed in front of everyone.

#459

There are many cures for love, but none are guaranteed.

#451

No fool is more annoying than the one with brains.

#70

No disguise can long hide love where it exists, nor simulate it where it does not.

#199

The desire to seem clever often prevents a man from becoming clever.

#476

Our envy always outlasts the happiness of those we envy.

#238

It is not as dangerous to harm most men as it is to do them too much good.

#226

Excessive zeal to repay a debt is a kind of ingratitude.

#300

There are stupidities that catch on like contagious diseases.

#95

The sign of exceptional merit is that those who envy it the most are obliged to praise it.

#107

It is a form of flirting to call attention to the fact that you never flirt.