Richard Steele

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A favor well bestowed is almost as great an honor to him who confers it as to him who receives it.

Sir Richard Steele (bap. March 12, 1672September 1, 1729) was an Irish writer and politician, remembered, along with his friend, Joseph Addison, as co-founder of The Spectator magazine.


  • Though her mien carries much more invitation than command, to behold her is an immediate check to loose behavior; to love her is a liberal education.
    • Tatler (1709-1711), no. 49. On Lady Elizabeth Hastings.
  • Reading is to the mind what exercise is to the body.
    • Tatler (1709-1711), no. 147.

Letters to His Wife (1707-1712)[edit]

  • I am come to a tavern alone to eat a steak, after which I shall return to the office.
    • October 28, 1707.
  • I was going home two hours ago, but was met by Mr. Griffith, who has kept me ever since. I will come within a pint of wine.
    • Eleven at night, January 5, 1708.
  • A little in drink, but at all times yr faithful husband.
    • September 27, 1708.
  • The finest woman in nature should not detain me an hour from you; but you must sometimes suffer the rivalship of the wisest men.
    • September 17, 1712.

The Spectator (1711-1714)[edit]

  • When you fall into a man's conversation, the first thing you should consider is, whether he has a greater inclination to hear you, or that you should hear him.
    • No. 49 (April 26, 1711).
  • Of all the affections which attend human life, the love of glory is the most ardent.
    • No. 139 (August 9, 1711).
  • Age in a virtuous person, of either sex, carries in it an authority which makes it preferable to all the pleasures of youth.
    • No. 153 (August 25, 1711).
  • Among all the diseases of the mind there is not one more epidemical or more pernicious than the love of flattery.
    • No. 238 (December 3, 1711).
  • Will Honeycomb calls these over-offended ladies the outrageously virtuous.
    • No. 266 (January 4, 1712).
  • A favor well bestowed is almost as great an honor to him who confers it as to him who receives it.
    • No. 497 (September 30, 1712).
  • No man was ever so completely skilled in the conduct of life, as not to receive new information from age and experience…
    • No. 544 (November 24, 1712).

External links[edit]

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