Thoughts on nobility

Published: Mar 30, 2019 08:47:04 AM IST
Updated: Mar 29, 2019 11:47:07 AM IST

g_114265_margaret_atwood_280x210.jpgImage: Alexandre Menghini

We want to be envied. We want to be immortal. We want to be Gods. But in addition, we want wisdom and justice. We want hope. We want to be good.
—Margaret Atwood

There is nothing noble in being superior to your fellow men. True nobility lies in being superior to your former self.
—WL Sheldon

It is for your private pleasure that you give two pence to a beggar as much as it is for my private pleasure that I drink another whiskey and soda.
—W Somerset Maugham

The righteous will hold to their ways, and those with clean hands will grow stronger.
—Job 17:9

Buying and selling is good and necessary; it is very necessary, and may, possibly, be very good; but it cannot be the noblest work of man.
—Anthony Trollope

He reminded her of the way male lions look sad, as if their nobility is a terrible weight.
—Elizabeth Kostova

Virtue and vice are like life and death or mind and matter: Things which cannot exist without
being qualified by their opposite.
—Samuel Butler

It’s too bad I’m not as wonderful a person as people say I am, because the world could use a few people like that.
 —Alan Alda

It is a question whether the benevolence of mankind does most good or harm.
—Walter Bagehot

You can fake virtue for an audience. You can’t fake it in your own eyes.
—Ayn Rand

Wealth without virtue is no harmless neighbour.
—Sappho

Content thyself to be obscurely good.
—Joseph Addison

How selfish soever man may be supposed, there are evidently some principles in his nature which interest him in the fortune of others.
 —Adam Smith

A man may lose his earthly all, yet if he retains his self-respect he can still be rich in the things that count, the things that endure, the things worthwhile.
 —BC Forbes

(This story appears in the 12 April, 2019 issue of Forbes India. You can buy our tablet version from Magzter.com. To visit our Archives, click here.)

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