Sir William Temple, 1st Baronet

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Sir William Temple, 1st Baronet

Sir William Temple, 1st Baronet (25 April 162827 January 1699) was a statesman and essayist, who successfully negotiated the marriage of William, Prince of Orange and Princess Mary of England.


  • All the precepts of Christianity agree to teach and command us to moderate our passions, to temper our affections towards all things below; to be thankful for the possession, and patient under the loss whenever he that gave it shall see fit to take away.
    • "To the Countess of Essex, Upon Her Grief occasioned by the loss of Her only Daughter" (29 January 1674), in Miscellanea (4th ed. pub. 1705), p. 172.
    • Variant: "Christianity teaches us to moderate our passions; to temper our affections toward all things below; to be thankful for the possession, and patient under loss, whenever He who gave shall see fit to take away." Reported in Josiah Hotchkiss Gilbert, Dictionary of Burning Words of Brilliant Writers (1895), p. 140.
  • Whoever converses much among the old books, will be something hard to please among the new.
    • Miscellanea (1690), Part II, Essay "Upon the Ancient and Modern Learning".
  • Books, like proverbs, receive their chief value from the stamp and esteem of ages through which they have passed.
    • Miscellanea (1690), Part II, "Upon the Ancient and Modern Learning".
  • When all is done, human life is, at the greatest, and the best, but like a froward child, that must be played with and humored a little to keep it quiet till it falls asleep, and then the care is over.
    • Miscellanea (4th ed. pub. 1705), Part II, "Of Poetry".
  • No clap of thunder in a fair frosty day could astonish the world more than [England's] declaration of war against Holland in 1672.
    • Memoirs, Volume II, p. 255.
  • When these children are four years old, they shall be sent to the country workhouse and there taught to read two hours a day and kept fully employed the rest of their time in any of the manufactures of the house which best suits their age, strength and capacity. If it be objected that at these early years, they cannot be made useful, I reply that at four years of age there are sturdy employments in which children can earn their living; but besides, there is considerable use in their being, somehow or other, constantly employed at least twelve hours in a day, whether they earn a living or not; for by these means, we hope that the rising generation will be so habituated to constant employment that it would at length prove agreeable and entertaining to them...
    • Essay (1770) pp. 266 f. as quoted by Edgar Stevenson Furniss, The Position of the Laborer in a System of Nationalism: A Study in the Labor Theories of the Later English Mercantilists (1920) pp. 114-115.
  • From these famous Indians, it seems most probable that Pythagoras learned, and transported into Greece and Italy, the greatest part of his natural and moral philosophy, rather than from the Aegyptians ... Nor does it seem unlikely that the Aegyptians themselves might have drawn much of their learning from the Indians ..long before .. Lycurgus, who likewise traveled to India, brought from thence also the chief principles of his laws.
    • Mitter, Partha Much Maligned Monsters. A HistOJ), oj Europeal1 Reactions to Indiall Art p. 191. quoted in Londhe, S. (2008). A tribute to Hinduism: Thoughts and wisdom spanning continents and time about India and her culture. New Delhi: Pragun Publication. Essay upon the Ancient and Modern Learning (1690), also Readings in Early Anthropology By James S. Slotkin [1] [2]