Talk:Joseph Addison

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I added the cleanup tag to this page because the sourced quotes need some reorganization. There seem to be quotes from the same source (or the same source, but different dates) strewn throughout the page that should be gathered together. ~ UDScott 16:54, 13 January 2006 (UTC)

From Wikipedia[edit]

I deleted the following bunch from Wikipedia - just need to check that they are included here. BD2412 T 21:37, 7 November 2007 (UTC)

  • "There are three sides to every story -- your side, my side and the right side."
  • "The grand essentials for happiness in this life are something to do, something to love and something to hope for."
  • "Admiration is a very short-lived passion, that immediately decays upon growing familiar with its object."
  • "Beauty soon grows familiar to the lover,/ Fades in his eye, and palls upon the sense."
  • "A man must be both stupid and uncharitable who believes there is no virtue or truth but on his own side."
  • "It is only imperfection that complains of what is imperfect. The more perfect we are, the more gentle and quiet we become towards the defects of others."
  • "The spacious firmament on high,/ With all the blue ethereal sky,/ And shining heav'ns, a spangled frame,/ Their great Original proclaim."
  • "I do not believe that sheer suffering teaches. If suffering alone taught, all the world would be wise, since everyone suffers. To suffering must be added mourning, understanding, patience, love, openness and the willingness to remain vulnerable."
  • "What sunshine is to flowers, smiles are to humanity. These are but trifles, to be sure; but, scattered along life's pathway, the good they do is inconceivable."
  • "Discretion is the perfection of reason, and a guide to win all the duties of life."
  • Last words — "See in what peace a Christian can die."
  • "Certain is it that there is no kind of affection so purely angelic as of a father to a daughter. In love to our wives there is desire; to our sons, ambition; but to our daughters there is something which there are no words to express."


  • The unassuming youth seeking instruction with humility gains good fortune.
    • Though it appears on some websites as an Addison quote, I can find no reliable source for this attributing it to Addison or anyone else. This is the only remnant of the quotes I will otherwise reorganize into sourced, disputed or misattributed sections on the article page. ~ Kalki 08:36, 1 May 2009 (UTC)

Bold faced Quotations[edit]

Is there any rhyme or reason to the way in which quotes, or parts of quotes are bolded on this page? I find it very distracting. Are we suggesting some additional relevance to those quotes or parts of quotes? Thenub314 23:11, 19 May 2011 (UTC)

There have occasionally been inquires or objections to the bolding of quotes as a means of emphasis of notable quotes or portions of quotes, and occasional disputes of which portions most merit such emphasis, but it has been widely practiced as a means of emphasis on most author pages, and especially on many of the larger pages, since the earliest days of the wiki, in 2003, and one I have generally encouraged. ~ Kalki (talk · contributions) 23:58, 19 May 2011 (UTC)
I had seen it at other pages of course, and it seems appropriate for attracting peoples attention to the most well known quotes. But comments about the policy in general aside, how are we selecting things on this page, because it seems to me glancing that approximately half of the sourced quotes have some bolding. So I suppose I wanted to know if there was a rule of thumb in place so debold some of the bolded comments to make the page easier to read. Thenub314 23:04, 20 May 2011 (UTC)
Scanning the page, I only see a couple areas where there probably IS visually some overuse, and an overly large section bolded to the detriment of the aesthetics of the page, but I hesitate to remove bolding even there, because in these cases the bolding is actually applied to a cohesive statement, or even to only a PORTION of a VERY long sentence within a poem, such as modern mentalities often have a very hard time following or appreciating. I am well aware there are some cases on some pages where even I believe bolding is excessive visually, but often this is because there is a density of very clearly significant thoughts, and I am reluctant to slight any of these. ~ Kalki (talk · contributions) 23:29, 20 May 2011 (UTC)
To answer the query in Thenub314's second post: no, there is no rule of thumb in place. It has always been a matter of editorial discretion. I have added boldface only rarely myself, usually to highlight the more famous portion of a longer passage that is less familiar but is included to provide context. More generally, bolding is used to emphasize things that an editor finds most interesting, significant, or important. The choices are far too subjective to be guided by any formulaic rule of thumb, and if the result is sometimes less than ideal it is difficult to be objective about improving it. Everyone has a different thumb, so there is no rule. ~ Ningauble 15:53, 21 May 2011 (UTC)
Fair enough, well my objection is noted here, if in the future other editors agree perhaps this will encourage them to be bold, if other editors do not agree it stays as it is and "No harm, no foul." Thenub314 21:09, 22 May 2011 (UTC)