Women are female humans. The term woman (irregular plural: women) usually is used for an adult, with the term girl being the usual term for a female child or adolescent. However, the term woman is also sometimes used to identify a female human, regardless of age, as in phrases such as "Women's rights".
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- Please don’t repeat such poetry which is pictured by the red spots of kissing on the lips of beautiful women. Kunti, a rustic old woman is now knocking door to door to search for a job. She is beaten by her own sons.
- If particular care and attention is not paid to the Ladies we are determined to foment a Rebellion, and will not hold ourselves bound by any Laws in which we have no voice, or Representation.
- Abigail Adams, letter to John Adams, March 31, 1776. Published in L. H. Butterfield, ed., Adams Family Correspondence, vol. 1 (1963), p. 370.
- When a man becomes familiar with his goddess, she quickly sinks into a woman.
- Loveliest of women! heaven is in thy soul,
Beauty and virtue shine forever round thee,
Bright'ning each other! thou art all divine!
- Joseph Addison, Cato, A Tragedy (1713), Act III, scene 2.
- She could just pack up and leave, but she does not visualize what's beyond ahead.
- Núria Añó, Presage.
- But woman's grief is like a summer storm,
Short as it violent is.
- Joanna Baillie, Count Basil (1798), Act V, scene 3; in A Series of Plays.
- You see, dear, it is not true that woman was made from man's rib; she was really made from his funny bone.
- J. M. Barrie, What Every Woman Knows (1908).
- Then, my good girls, be more than women, wise:
At least be more than I was; and be sure
You credit anything the light gives life to
Before a man.
- Beaumont and Fletcher, The Maid's Tragedy (c. 1609; published 1619), Act II, scene 2.
- Las mujeres son el impuesto que pagamos por el placer.
- Women are the tax we pay on pleasure.
- Adolfo Bioy Casares, Una muñeca rusa, 1991.
- Next to God, we are indebted to women, first for life itself, and then for making it worth having.
- Christian Nestell Bovee, Thoughts, Feelings, and Fancies (1857), p. 308.
- They talk about a woman's sphere as though it had a limit;
There's not a place in Earth or Heaven,
There's not a task to mankind given,
There's not a blessing or a woe,
There's not a whispered yes or no,
There's not a life, or death, or birth,
That has a feather's weight or worth—
Without a woman in it.
- C. E. Bowman, "The Sphere of Woman". in Joseph M. Chapple, Heart Throbs in Prose and Verse (1905), p. 343. A similar version:
They talk about 'a woman's sphere'
As though it has a limit;
There's not a spot on sea or shore,
In sanctum, office, shop or store,
Without a woman in it.
Author unknown; reported in Jennie Day Haines, Sovereign Woman Versus Mere Man (1905), p. 50.
- C. E. Bowman, "The Sphere of Woman". in Joseph M. Chapple, Heart Throbs in Prose and Verse (1905), p. 343. A similar version:
- You forget too much
That every creature, female as the male,
Stands single in responsible act and thought,
As also in birth and death.
- Elizabeth Barrett Browning, Aurora Leigh (1856), Book II, line 472.
- The female defects – greed, hate, and delusion and other defilements – are greater than the male’s…You [women] should have such an intention…Because I wish to be freed from the impurities of the woman’s body, I will acquire the beautiful and fresh body of a man.
- In crossing the river [from Saṃsāra to emancipation] ... crocodiles are a designation for women.
- If it were not for women being admitted into [our order], my teachings would have lasted 1000 years, now they will not last 500.
- Women, with their two-fingered wisdom [i.e. stupid], have a difficult time [understanding what I teach].
- It cannot happen that a woman may become a Tathāgata, a Sammsambuddha.
- I will not take final Nirvana until I have nuns and female disciples who are accomplished…until I have laywomen followers…who will….teach the Dhamma
- In all things, there is neither male nor female.
- Women are more powerful than they think. A mother's warmth is the essence of motivation. If we could liquefy the encouragement, care and compassion we deliver to our children it would surely fill an expanse greater than the Pacific
- Louise Burfitt-Dons, speech to Women's Institute, 2007.
- More than a billion women around the world want to emulate western women's lifestyles and are rapidly acquiring the material ability to do so. It is therefore vital that in our leadership we display some reserve and responsibility in our spending so that the world's finite resources will be available for our children, their children and their children's children
- Louise Burfitt-Dons, from a speech about the Hot Women Campaign. London, April 2008.
- There is equality in the office but not on the street.
- Louise Burfitt-Dons from a speech Wilson Room, Portcullis House, Westminster, 11th June 2013.
- It is a woman's reason to say I will do such a thing because I will.
- Jeremiah Burroughs, On Hosea, Volume IV (1652).
- Women wear the breeches.
- Robert Burton, The Anatomy of Melancholy (1621), Democritus to the Reader.
- Believe a woman or an epitaph,
Or any other thing that's false.
- Lord Byron, English Bards and Scotch Reviewers (1809).
- Soft as the memory of buried love,
Pure as the prayer which childhood wafts above.
- Lord Byron, Bride of Abydos (1813), Canto I, Stanza 6.
- She was his life,
The ocean to the river of his thoughts,
Which terminated all.
- Lord Byron, The Dream (1816), Stanza 2. "River of his Thought" from Dante—Purgatorio, XIII. 88.
- Heart on her lips, and soul within her eyes,
Soft as her clime, and sunny as her skies.
- Lord Byron, Beppo (1818), Stanza 45.
- The Niobe of nations! there she stands,
Childless and crownless, in her voiceless woe.
- A lady with her daughters or her nieces
Shine like a guinea and seven-shilling pieces.
- I love the sex, and sometimes would reverse
The tyrant's wish, "that mankind only had
One neck, which he with one fell stroke might pierce;"
My wish is quite as wide, but not so bad,
And much more tender on the whole than fierce;
It being (not now, but only while a lad)
That womankind had but one rosy mouth,
To kiss them all at once, from North to South.
- I've seen your stormy seas and stormy women,
And pity lovers rather more than seamen.
- But she was a soft landscape of mild earth,
Where all was harmony, and calm, and quiet,
Luxuriant, budding; cheerful without mirth.
- What a strange thing is man! and what a stranger
Is woman! What a whirlwind is her head,
And what a whirlpool full of depth and danger
Is all the rest about her.
- And whether coldness, pride, or virtue dignify
A woman, so she's good, what does it signify?
- A woman's heart is a deep ocean of secrets.
- The world was sad; the garden was a wild;
And man, the hermit, sigh'd—till woman smiled.
- Thomas Campbell, Pleasures of Hope (1799), Part II, line 37.
- Of all the girls that are so smart,
There's none like pretty Sally.
- Henry Carey, Sally in our Alley (c. 1725).
- La muger que se determina á ser honrada entre un ejército de soldados lo puede ser.
- The woman who is resolved to be respected can make herself so even amidst an army of soldiers.
- Miguel de Cervantes, La Gitanilla (c. 1590-1612; published 1613).
- Women eat double than men. They have four times more wisdom than men, they have six times more courage, and eight times more sensual urge than men.
- Chanakya Section II Chanakya Niti.
- "There have been women I have loved … A lot, as discreetly as possible."
- We shall find no fiend in hell can match the fury of a disappointed woman,—scorn'd! slighted! dismiss'd without a parting pang.
- Colley Cibber, Love's Last Shift (1696), Act IV, scene 1.
- [Woman is] the promise that cannot be kept; but it is precisely in this that [her] grace consists.
- Of all people, girls and servants are the most difficult…If you are familiar with them, they lose their humility. If you maintain a reserve towards them, they are discontented.
- Heaven has no rage like love to hatred turned,
Nor hell a fury like a woman scorned.
- William Congreve, The Mourning Bride (1697), Act III, scene 2.
- It's queer how out of touch with truth women are. They live in a world of their own, and there has never been anything like it, and never can be. It is too beautiful altogether, and if they were to set it up it would go to pieces before the first sunset. Some confounded fact we men have been living contentedly with ever since the day of creation would start up and knock the whole thing over.
- "Man is not of the woman, but the woman of the man. And man was not created for the cause of the woman, but the woman for the cause of man; and therefore ought the woman to have a power upon her head"
- Certum est enim: longos esse crines omnibus sed breves sensus mulieribus.
- One thing is certain: women have long hair, but short wits.
- Cosmas of Prague, Chronica Boemorum, Chapter IV.
- Were there no women, men might live like gods.
- Thomas Dekker, The Honest Whore (1604), Part I, Act III, scene 1.
- There's no music when a woman is in the concert.
- Thomas Dekker, The Honest Whore (1604), Part II, Act IV, scene 3.
- A woman’s perfume tells more about her than her handwriting.
- Christian Dior, Gaille, Brandon (July 23, 2013). "List of 38 Famous Fashion Quotes and Sayings". BrandonGaille.com. Retrieved November 15, 2013.
- My words of encouragement for women, for that to be given for women in the East, it is to have confidence and encourage them that they can accomplish Dharma just like the men; but in the West you have already realized the equality of women and men sometime ago, so I do not have to really encourage you – you already know that.
- And, like another Helen, fir'd another Troy.
- John Dryden, Alexander's Feast (1697), line 154.
- She hugg'd the offender, and forgave the offence;
Sex to the last.
- John Dryden, Cymon and Iphigenia (1700), line 367.
- Cherchez la femme.
- Find the woman.
- Alexandre Dumas, Les Mohicans de Paris (1854), Volume III, Chapter X, and elsewhere in the novel, Act III, scene 7, of the 1864 play. Probably from the Spanish. A common question of Charpes. See Revue des Deux Mondes, XI, 822.
- And I find more bitter than death the woman, whose heart is snares and nets, and her hands as bands: who so pleaseth God shall escape from her; but the sinner shall be taken by her. Behold, this have I found, saith the preacher, counting one by one, to find out the account Which yet my soul seeketh, but I find not: one man among a thousand have I found; but a woman among all those have I not found.
- Ecclesiastes 7, 26-29.
- Oh, woman, perfect woman! what distraction
Was meant to mankind when thou wast made a devil!
What an inviting hell invented.
- John Fletcher, Comedy of Monsieur Thomas (c. 1610–16; published 1639), Act III, scene 1.
- I grudged her nothing except my company. But it has gone further, like the degradation of rural England: this afternoon (Sunday in Aprril) all the young men had women with them in far-flung cameradeie. If women ever wanted to be by themselves all would be well. But I don't believe they ever want to be, except for reasons of advertisement, and their instinct is never to let men be by themselves. This, I begin to see, is sex-war, and D.H.L. has seen it, in spite of a durable marriage, and is far more on the facts than Bernard Shaw and his Life Force.
- E. M. Forster, Commonplace Book, p. 59.
- One can run away from women, turn them out, or give in to them. No fourth course.
- E. M. Forster, Commonplace Book, p. 92.
- The great question . . . which I have not been able to answer, despite my thirty years of research into the feminine soul, is 'What does a woman want?'
- Sigmund Freud, letter to Marie Bonaparte, quoted in Sigmund Freud, Life and Work, Ernest Jones (Hogarth Press, 1953).
- To call woman the weaker sex is a libel; it is man's injustice to woman. If by strength is meant brute strength, then, indeed, is woman less brute than man. If by strength is meant moral power, then woman is immeasurably man's superior. Has she not greater intuition, is she not more self-sacrificing, has she not greater powers of endurance, has she not greater courage? Without her, man could not be. If nonviolence is the law of our being, the future is with woman. Who can make a more effective appeal to the heart than woman?
- Mahatma Gandhi, Young India (4 October 1930)
- And when a lady's in the case,
You know all other things give place.
- John Gay, Fables (1727), The Hare and Many Friends, line 41.
- 'Tis a woman that seduces all mankind;
By her we first were taught the wheedling arts.
- John Gay, The Beggar's Opera (1728), Act I, scene 1.
- How happy could I be with either,
Were t'other dear charmer away!
But, while ye thus tease me together,
To neither a word will I say.
- John Gay, The Beggar's Opera (1728), Act II, scene 2.
- If the heart of a man is depressed with cares,
The mist is dispell'd when a woman appears.
- John Gay, The Beggar's Opera (1728), Act II.
- And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel.
- Genesis 3:15 KJV.
- When lovely woman stoops to folly,
And finds too late that men betray,
What charm can soothe her melancholy?
What art can wash her guilt away?
- Oliver Goldsmith, The Vicar of Wakefield (1766), Chapter XXIV.
- She who must be obeyed.
- H. Rider Haggard, She (1887).
- If you take out uncovered meat and place it outside on the street, or in the the garden or in the park, or in the backyard without a cover, and the cats come and eat it … whose fault is it, the cats or the uncovered meat? The uncovered meat is the problem. If she was in her room, in her home, in her hijab, no problem would have occurred.
- Man has his will,—but woman has her way.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr., The Autocrat of the Breakfast Table (1858), Prologue.
- I confess that I do not understand the principle on which the power to fix a minimum for the wages of women can be denied by those who admit the power to fix a maximum for their hours of work. I fully assent to the proposition that here as elsewhere the distinctions of the law are distinctions of degree, but I perceive no difference in the kind or degree of interference with liberty, the only matter with which we have any concern, between the one case and the other. The bargain is equally affected whichever half you regulate…. It will need more than the Nineteenth Amendment to convince me that there are no differences between men and women, or that legislation cannot take those differences into account.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr., dissenting, Adkins, et al., Constituting the Minimum Wage Board of the District of Columbia, v. Children's Hospital of the District of Columbia; Same v. Lyons, 261 U.S. 569–70 (1923).
- To make women learned, and foxes tame, hath the same operation, which teacheth them to steale more cuningly, but the possibility is not equall, for when it doth one good, it doth twenty harme.
- Attributed to James I of England; reported in Thomas Overbury, Edward Francis Rimbault, The Miscellaneous Works in Prose and Verse of Sir Thomas Overbury (1856), p. 261.
- In every disadvantage that a woman suffers at the hands of a man, there is inevitably, in what concerns the man, an element of cowardice. When I say "inevitably," I mean that this is what the woman sees in it.
- Henry James, Confidence (1879), Chapter XIX.
- Women strangely hug the knife that stabs them
- Jerome K. Jerome, Three Men in a Boat (To Say Nothing of the Dog) (1889).
- And she gave birth to a son, a male, who is to shepherd all the nations with an iron rod. And her child was snatched away to God and to his throne. And the woman fled into the wilderness, where she has a place prepared by God and where they would feed her for 1,260 days. And war broke out in heaven: Mi′cha·el and his angels battled with the dragon, and the dragon and its angels battled but they did not prevail, nor was a place found for them any longer in heaven.
- Wretched, un-idea'd girls.
- A Nation spoke to a Nation,
A Queen sent word to a Throne:
'Daughter am I in my mother's house,
But mistress in my own.
The gates are mine to open,
As the gates are mine to close,
And I set my house in order,'
Said our Lady of the Snows.
- Rudyard Kipling, "Our Lady of the Snows", stanza 1, The Collected Works of Rudyard Kipling: The Seven Seas, The Five Nations, The Years Between (1941, reprinted 1970), vol. 26, p. 227. The poem is about the Canadian preferential tariff of 1897.
- Woman in her greatest perfection was made to serve and obey man, not to rule and command him.
- What! still retaining your Utopian visions of female felicity? To talk of our happiness! — ours, the ill-used and oppressed! You remind me of the ancient tyrant, who, seeing his slaves sink under the weight of their chains, said, 'Do look at the indolent repose of those people!'
- Whenever I hear a man talking of the advantages of our ill-used sex, I look upon it as the prelude to some new act of authority.
- A woman only can understand a woman; and it is pleasant to be understood sometimes.
- The life of woman is full of woe,
Toiling on and on and on,
With breaking heart, and tearful eyes,
The secret longings that arise,
Which this world never satisfies!
Some more, some less, but of the whole
Not one quite happy, no, not one!
- Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Christus (1872), The Golden Legend.
- A Lady with a lamp shall stand
In the great history of the land,
* A noble type of good,
* Heroic womanhood.
- Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Santa Filomena (1858), Stanza 10.
- Like a fair lily on a river floating
She floats upon the river of his thoughts.
- A woman’s dress should be like a barbed-wire fence: serving its purpose without obstructing the view.” ― Sophia Loren
- [[Sophia Loren], Gaille, Brandon (July 23, 2013). "List of 38 Famous Fashion Quotes and Sayings". BrandonGaille.com. Retrieved November 15, 2013.
- Women and girls begin to bare themselves behind and in front, and there is nobody to punish and hold in check, and besides, God’s word is mocked.
- To His Housewife (An Seine Hausfrau), end of July 1545, De Wette, vol. v (Fünfter Theil, 1828), p. 753. No. MMCCLXXXVI  McGiffert, P.374 (English tr.).
- Martin Luther, McGiffert, Arthur Cushman. Martin Luther: The Man and His Work (Century, 1911), from Google Books. Reprint from Kessinger Publishing (July 2003), ISBN 076617431X
- Few are the women and maidens who would let themselves think that one could at the same time be joyous and modest. They are all bold and coarse in their speech, in their demeanor wild and lewd. That is now the fashion of being in good cheer. But it is specially evil that the young maiden folk are exceedingly bold of speech and bearing, and curse like troopers, to say nothing of their shameful words and scandalous coarse sayings, which one always hears and learns from another.
- The First Sermon on the Day of the Visitation of Mary (Die erste Predigt am Tag der Heimsuchung Mariä). (1532).
- Martin Luther, Denifle, Heinrich, Luther and Lutherdom, vol.1, part 1, tr. from 2nd rev. ed. of German by Raymund Volz, Somerset, England: Torch Press, 1917, (Cornell University Library 2009), ISBN 1112168176 ISBN 9781112168178, p. 305. Denifle cites Luther’s Sämtliche Werke (Vols 4-6 in 1), Erlangen-Frankfurt edition, 1865, Heyder & Zimmer, vol. vi, p. 401.
- A male hero, at best, lacks the qualities of maternal love and tenderness which are as essential to a normal child as the breath of life. Suppose your child's ideal becomes a superman who uses his extraordinary power to help the weak. The most important ingredient in the human happiness recipe still is missing-love. It's smart to be strong. It's big to be generous. But it's sissified according to exclusively masculine rules, to be tender, loving affectionate, and alluring. "Aw, that;'s girls stuff!" snorts our young comics reader. "Who wants to be a girl?" And that's the point. Not even girls want to be girls so long as our feminine archetype lacks force, strength, and power. Not wanting to be girls, they don't want to be tender, submissive, peace-loving as good women are. Women's strong qualities have become despised because of their weakness. The obvious remedy is to create a feminine character with all the strength of Superman plus all the allure of a good and beautiful woman.
- Believe me Delmar, woman is the most fiendish instrument of torture ever devised to bedevil the days of man.
- Ulysses McGill, O Brother, Where Art Thou (2000).
- On one issue, at least, men and women agree: they both distrust women.
- H. L. Mencken, A Little Book in C Major (1916), p. 59.
- I expect that woman will be the last thing civilized by man.
- George Meredith, The Ordeal of Richard Feverel (1859), first page.
- My latest found,
Heaven's last best gift, my ever new delight!
- Grace was in all her steps, heaven in her eye,
In every gesture dignity and love.
- For nothing lovelier can be found
In woman, than to study household good.
- Oh! why did God,
Creator wise, that peopled highest Heaven
With Spirits masculine, create at last
This novelty on Earth, this fair defect
Of Nature, and not fill the World at once
With men as Angels, without feminine.
- O People, it is true that you have certain rights with regard to your women, but they also have right over you. If they abide by your right then to them belongs the right to be fed and clothed in kindness. Do treat your women well and be kind to them for they are your partners and committed helpers.
- On 'Id ul Fitr or 'Id ul Adha Allah's Apostle (p.b.u.h) went out to the Musalla. After finishing the prayer, he delivered the sermon and ordered the people to give alms. He said, "O people! Give alms." Then he went towards the women and said. "O women! Give alms, for I have seen that the majority of the dwellers of Hell-Fire were you (women)." The women asked, "O Allah's Apostle! What is the reason for it?" He replied, "O women! You curse frequently, and are ungrateful to your husbands. I have not seen anyone more deficient in intelligence and religion than you. O women, some of you can lead a cautious wiseman astray." Then he left. And when he reached his house, Zainab, the wife of Ibn Masud, came and asked permission to enter. It was said, "O Allah's Apostle! It is Zainab." He asked, 'Which Zainab?" The reply was that she was the wife of Ibn Mas'ub. He said, "Yes, allow her to enter." And she was admitted. Then she said, "O Prophet of Allah! Today you ordered people to give alms and I had an ornament and intended to give it as alms, but Ibn Masud said that he and his children deserved it more than anybody else." The Prophet replied, "Ibn Masud had spoken the truth. Your husband and your children had more right to it than anybody else."
- Muhammad narrated Abu Said Al-Khudri, in Bukhari, Volume 2, Book 24, Number 541
- A man came to the Prophet (peace_be_upon_him) and said: I have found a woman of rank and beauty, but she does not give birth to children. Should I marry her? He said: No. He came again to him, but he prohibited him. He came to him third time, and he (the Prophet) said: Marry women who are loving and very prolific, for I shall outnumber the peoples by you.
- Muhammad narrated Ma'qil ibn Yasar, in AbuDawud, Book 11, Number 2045
- It is narrated on the authority of 'Abdullah b. Umar that the Messenger of Allah observed: O womenfolk, you should give charity and ask much forgiveness for I saw you in bulk amongst the dwellers of Hell. A wise lady among them said: Why is it, Messenger of Allah, that our folk is in bulk in Hell? Upon this the Holy Prophet observed: You curse too much and are ungrateful to your spouses. I have seen none lacking in common sense and failing in religion but (at the same time) robbing the wisdom of the wise, besides you. Upon this the woman remarked: What is wrong with our common sense and with religion? He (the Holy Prophet) observed: Your lack of common sense (can be well judged from the fact) that the evidence of two women is equal to one man, that is a proof of the lack of common sense, and you spend some nights (and days) in which you do not offer prayer and in the month of Ramadan (during the days) you do not observe fast, that is a failing in religion. This hadith has been narrated on the authority of Abu Tahir with this chain of transmitters.
- Muhammad Sahih Muslim, Book 001, Number 0142
- The Prophet said, "Isn't the witness of a woman equal to half of that of a man?" The women said, "Yes." He said, "This is because of the deficiency of a woman's mind."
- Muhammad arrated Abu Said Al-Khudri, in Bukhari, Volume 3, Book 48, Number 826
- When I got married, Allah's Apostle said to me, "What type of lady have you married?" I replied, "I have married a matron' He said, "Why, don't you have a liking for the virgins and for fondling them?" Jabir also said: Allah's Apostle said, "Why didn't you marry a young girl so that you might play with her and she with you?
- Muhammad narrated Jabir bin 'Abdullah, in Bukhari, Volume 7, Book 62, Number 17
- If they [women] were not fundamentally evil, they would not have been born women at all.
- The Tale of Genji, Murasaki Shikibu
- Let man fear woman when she hateth: for man in his innermost soul is merely evil; woman, however, is mean.
- The same emotions are in man and woman, but in different TEMPO, on that account man and woman never cease to misunderstand each other
- In revenge and in love woman is more barbarous than man.
- … woman would like to believe that love can do EVERYTHING -- it is the SUPERSTITION peculiar to her. Alas, he who knows the heart finds how poor, helpless, pretentious, and blundering even the best and deepest love is -- he finds that it rather DESTROYS than saves!
- Friedrich Nietzsche, Beyond Good and Evil (1886).
- On aime plus âprement que l'on ne hait.
- Translation: We women love more bitterly than we hate.
- Anna de Noailles, Poème de l'amour (1924), CII.
- In context the "on" refers to "woman".
- You know, today, women make up about half our workforce, but they still make 77 cents for every dollar a man earns. That is wrong, and in 2014, it's an embarrassment. Women deserve equal pay for equal work.
- Barack Obama on Tuesday, January 28th, 2014 in the State of the Union address
- Patience makes a woman beautiful in middle age.
- Attributed to Elliot Paul. Reported as unverified in Respectfully Quoted: A Dictionary of Quotations (1989).
- There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.
- Paul of Tarsus, Galatians 3:28, The Holy Bible.
- Most women have no characters at all.
- Alexander Pope, Moral Essays (1731-35), Epistle II, line 2.
- Ladies, like variegated tulips, show
'Tis to their changes half their charms we owe.
- Alexander Pope, Moral Essays (1731-35), Epistle II, line 41.
- Offend her, and she knows not to forgive;
Oblige her, and she'll hate you while you live.
- Alexander Pope, Moral Essays (1731-35), Epistle II, line 137.
- Men some to business, some to pleasure take;
But every woman is at heart a rake;
Men some to quiet, some to public strife;
But every lady would be queen for life.
- Alexander Pope, Moral Essays (1731-35), Epistle II, line 215.
- O! bless'd with temper, whose unclouded ray
Can make to-morrow cheerful as to-day;
She who can own a sister's charms, or hear
Sighs for a daughter with unwounded ear;
She who ne'er answers till a husband cools,
Or, if she rules him, never shows she rules.
Charms by accepting, by submitting sways,
Yet has her humour most when she obeys.
- Alexander Pope, Moral Essays (1731-35), Epistle II, line 257.
- And mistress of herself, though china fall.
- Alexander Pope, Moral Essays (1731-35), Epistle II, line 268.
- Woman's at best a contradiction still.
- Alexander Pope, Moral Essays (1731-35), Epistle II, line 270.
- I am woman, hear me roar.
- Helen Reddy, I Am Woman (song), 1972.
- Such a plot must have a woman in it.
- Samuel Richardson, Sir Charles Grandison (1753–1754), Volume I. Letter 24.
- I remember when OB tampons came out and you could hold them in your hand, and I'd walk down the hall holding my little OB tampon and I thought, "If I open my hand and show this to anybody, the whole building is going to explode."
- Toute fille lettrée restera fille toute sa vie, quand il n'y aura que des hommes sensés sur la terre.
- Every blue-stocking will remain a spinster as long as there are sensible men on the earth.
- Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Émile: Or, On Education (1762), I. 5.
- Une femme bel-esprit est le fléau de son mari, de ses enfants, de ses amis, de ses valets, de tout le monde.
- A blue-stocking is the scourge of her husband, children, friends, servants, and every one.
- Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Émile: Or, On Education (1762), I. 5.
- And one false step entirely damns her fame.
In vain with tears the loss she may deplore,
In vain look back on what she was before;
She sets like stars that fall, to rise no more.
- Nicholas Rowe, Jane Shore (1714), Act I.
- Not only am I scared of big, strong men, I'm scared of mean little women. It's just little skinny men and nice big women that I get along with.
- Rudy Rucker in The Sex Sphere, p. 40.
- This brought back the sick, ashamed feeling I'd woken up with. I was no better than some geek with a foam-rubber woman's torso like they advertise in Hustler. What a pathetic, twisted version of womanhood: all the "inessential" parts lopped off, nothing left behind but tits and ass and holes. Lifelike washable plastic skin. Greek and French features. But yet, in a way, wasn't the sex sphere always what I'd wanted in a woman? An ugly truth there. "Shut up and spread!" How many times had I told Sybil that, if not in so many words?
- Rudy Rucker in The Sex Sphere, p. 69
- And behind every man who's a failure there's a woman, too!
- John Ruge, cartoon caption, Playboy (March 1967), p. 138.
- Hence, it will be found that the fundamental fault of the female character is that is has no sense of justice. This is mainly due to the fact, already mentioned, that women are defective in the powers of reasoning and deliberation; but it is also traceable to the position which Nature has assigned to them as the weaker sex. They are dependent, not upon strength, but upon craft; and hence their instinctive capacity for cunning, and their ineradicable tendency to say what is not true. For as lions are provided with claws and teeth, and elephants and boards with tusks, bulls with horns, and cuttle fish with its clouds of inky fluid, so Nature has equipped woman, for her defense and protection, with the arts of dissimulation.
- Arthur Schopenhauer, Über die Weiber (Of Women), 1851 essay.
- Woman's faith, and woman's trust,
Write the characters in dust.
- Walter Scott, The Betrothed (1825), Chapter XX.
- Widowed wife and wedded maid.
- Walter Scott, The Betrothed (1825), last chapter.
- O Woman! in our hours of ease,
Uncertain, coy, and hard to please,
And variable as the shade
By the light quivering aspen made;
When pain and anguish wring the brow,
A ministering angel thou!
- Walter Scott, Marmion (1808), Canto VI, Stanza 30.
- Age cannot wither her, nor custom stale
Her infinite variety.
- If ladies be but young and fair,
They have the gift to know it.
- Run, run, Orlando: carve on every tree
The fair, the chaste, and unexpressive she.
- I thank God I am not a woman, to be touched with so many giddy offences as He hath generally taxed their whole sex withal.
- O most delicate fiend!
Who is't can read a woman?
- Frailty, thy name is woman!—
A little month, or ere those shoes were old
With which she follow'd my poor father's body,
Like Niobe, all tears;—why she, even she,
* * * married with my uncle.
- And is not my hostess of the tavern a most sweet wench?
As the honey of Hybla, my old lad of the castle.
- 'Tis beauty that doth oft make women proud;
But, God he knows, thy share thereof is small:
'Tis virtue that doth make them most admired;
The contrary doth make thee wondered at:
'Tis government that makes them seem divine.
- Her sighs will make a battery in his breast;
Her tears will pierce into a marble heart;
The tiger will be mild whiles she doth mourn;
And Nero will be tainted with remorse,
To hear and see her plaints.
- Two women plac'd together makes cold weather.
- I grant I am a woman, but withal,
A woman that Lord Brutus took to wife:
I grant I am a woman; but withal
A woman well-reputed; Cato's daughter.
- Ah me, how weak a thing
The heart of woman is!
- She in beauty, education, blood,
Holds hand with any princess of the world.
- There was never yet fair woman but she made mouths in a glass.
- A child of our grandmother Eve, a female; or, for thy more sweet understanding, a woman.
- Fair ladies mask'd are roses in their bud:
Dismask'd, their damask sweet commixture shown,
Are angels veiling clouds, or roses blown.
- Would it not grieve a woman to be overmaster'd with a piece of valiant dust? to make an account of her life to a cloud of wayward marl?
- She speaks poniards, and every word stabs: if her breath were as terrible as her terminations, there were no living near her; she would infect to the north star.
- One woman is fair, yet I am well; another is wise, yet I am well: another virtuous, yet I am well; but till all graces be in one woman, one woman shall not come in my grace.
- A maid
That paragons description and wild fame;
One that excels the quirks of blazoning pens,
And in the essential vesture of creation
Does tire the ingener.
- You are pictures out of doors,
Bells in your parlours, wild-cats in your kitchens,
Saints in your injuries, devils being offended,
Players in your housewifery, and housewives in your beds.
- Have you not heard it said full oft,
A woman's nay doth stand for nought?
- William Shakespeare, The Passionate Pilgrim (c. 1599–1602), line 339.
- Think you a little din can daunt mine ears?
Have I not in my time heard lions roar?
* * * * * *
Have I not heard great ordnance in the field,
And heaven's artillery thunder in the skies?
* * * * * *
And do you tell me of a woman's tongue,
That gives not half so great a blow to hear
As will a chestnut in a farmer's fire?
- Why, then thou canst not break her to the lute?
Why, no; for she hath broke the lute to me.
- Say that she rail, why then I'll tell her plain
She sings as sweetly as a nightingale;
Say that she frown; I'll say she looks as clear
As morning roses newly wash'd with dew;
Say she be mute and will not speak a word;
Then I'll commend her volubility,
And say she uttereth piercing eloquence.
- A woman mov'd is like a fountain troubled,
Muddy, ill-seeming, thick, bereft of beauty.
- Why are our bodies soft and weak and smooth,
Unapt to toil and trouble in the world,
But that our soft conditions and our hearts
Should well agree with our external parts?
- Muse not that I thus suddenly proceed;
For what I will, I will, and there an end.
- To be slow in words is a woman's only virtue.
- If, one by one, you wedded all the world,
Or from the all that are took something good,
To make a perfect woman, she you kill'd
Would be unparallel'd.
- Women will love her that she is a woman
More worth than any man; men, that she is
The rarest of all women.
- Woman's dearest delight is to wound Man's self-conceit, though Man's dearest delight is to gratify hers.
- Bernard Shaw, Unsocial Socialist (1883, published 1887), Chapter V.
- You sometimes have to answer a woman according to her womanishness, just as you have to answer a fool according to his folly.
- Bernard Shaw, Unsocial Socialist (1883, published 1887), Chapter XVIII.
- Women, for the sake of their children and parents, submit to slaveries and prostitutions that no unattached woman would endure.
- Bernard Shaw, preface to Androcles and the Lion (1916).
- One moral's plain, * * * without more fuss;
Man's social happiness all rests on us:
Through all the drama—whether damn'd! or not—
Love gilds the scene, and women guide the plot.
- Richard Brinsley Sheridan, The Rivals (1775), Epilogue.
- If we are to use women for the same things as the men, we must also teach them the same things.
- As a jewel of gold in a swine's snout, so is a fair woman which is without discretion.
- Favour is deceitful, and beauty is vain; but a woman that feareth the LORD, she shall be praised.
- What wilt not woman, gentle woman, dare
When strong affection stirs her spirit up?
- Robert Southey, Madoc in Wales (1805), Part II, II.
- Ahh, women! I never met one yet that was half as reliable as a horse!
- The state will only ever be a half of itself.
- I read somewhere that their periods attract bears. The bears can smell the menstruation.
- Brick Tamland, Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy, 2004.
- With prudes for proctors, dowagers for deans,
And sweet girl-graduates in their golden hair.
- Alfred Tennyson, The Princess (1847), Prologue, line 141.
- A rosebud set with little wilful thorns,
And sweet as English air could make her, she.
- Alfred Tennyson, The Princess (1847), Prologue, line 153.
- The woman is so hard
Upon the woman.
- Alfred Tennyson, The Princess (1847), VI.
- For woman is not undeveloped man
But diverse; could we make her as the man
Sweet love were slain; his dearest bond is this
Not like to like but like in difference.
- Alfred Tennyson, The Princess (1847), VII.
- Queen rose of the rosebud garden of girls.
- Alfred Tennyson, Maud; A Monodrama (1855), Part I, XXII, Stanza 9.
- For men at most differ as Heaven and Earth,
But women, worst and best, as Heaven and Hell.
- She with all the charm of woman,
She with all the breadth of man.
- Alfred Tennyson, Locksley Hall Sixty Years After (1886), line 48.
- I do not allow a woman to teach or to usurp authority over the man.
- 1 Timothy 2 v 12
- I love beautiful women, and beautiful women love me. It has to be both ways.
- Varium et mutabile semper,
- Furens quid fœmina possit.
- Very learned women are to be found, in the same manner as female warriors; but they are seldom or ever inventors.
- Voltaire, Dictionnaire philosophique portatif ("A Philosophical Dictionary") (1764), Women.
- What cannot a neat knave with a smooth tale
Make a woman believe?
- John Webster, Duchess of Malfi (1623), I, II.
- Women are a decorative sex. They never have anything to say, but they say it charmingly.
- Women treat us just as humanity treats its gods. They worship us, and are always bothering us to do something for them.
- Women represent the triumph of matter over mind, just as men represent the triumph of mind over morals.
- There are only two kinds of women, the plain and the coloured.
- One should never trust a woman who tells one her real age. A woman who would tell one that would tell one anything.
- Oscar Wilde, A Woman of No Importance (1893), act I, in The Complete Works of Oscar Wilde, vol. 7 (1923), p. 197. Lord Illingworth is speaking.
- Taught from their infancy that beauty is woman's sceptre, the mind shapes itself to the body, and roaming round its gilt cage, only seeks to adorn its prison.
- Mary Wollstonecraft, A Vindication of the Rights of Woman (1792), Chapter 3.
- A Creature not too bright or good
For human nature's daily food;
For transient sorrows, simple wiles,
Praise, blame, love, kisses, tears and smiles.
- William Wordsworth, She was a Phantom of Delight (1804).
- And now I see with eye serene,
The very pulse of the machine;
A Being breathing thoughtful breath,
A Traveller betwixt life and death;
The reason firm, the temperate will,
Endurance, foresight, strength, and skill.
- William Wordsworth, She was a Phantom of Delight (1804).
- A perfect Woman, nobly planned
To warn, to comfort, and command.
- William Wordsworth, She was a Phantom of Delight (1804).
- She was a Phantom of delight
When first she gleamed upon my sight;
A lovely Apparition, sent
To be a moment's ornament.
- William Wordsworth, She was a Phantom of Delight (1804).
- Shalt show us how divine a thing
A Woman may be made.
- William Wordsworth, To a Young Lady, Dear Child of Nature (1805).
- How sad it is to be a woman!
Nothing on earth is held so cheap.
Boys stand leaning at the door
Like Gods fallen out of Heaven.
Their hearts brave the Four Oceans,
The wind and dust of a thousand miles.
No one is glad when a girl is born:
By her the family sets no store.
When she grows up, she hides in her room
Afraid to look at a man in the face.
- And beautiful as sweet!
And young as beautiful! and soft as young!
And gay as soft! and innocent as gay.
- Edward Young, Night Thoughts (1742-1745), Night III, line 81.
Hoyt's New Cyclopedia Of Practical Quotations
- Quotes reported in Hoyt's New Cyclopedia Of Practical Quotations (1922), p. 886-97.
- Divination seems heightened and raised to its highest power in woman.
- Amos Bronson Alcott, Concord Days, August, Woman.
- Oh the gladness of their gladness when they're glad,
And the sadness of their sadness when they're sad;
But the gladness of their gladness, and the sadness of their sadness,
Are as nothing to their badness when they're bad.
- Oh, the shrewdness of their shrewdness when they are shrewd,
And the rudeness of their rudeness when they're rude;
But the shrewdness of their shrewdness and the rudeness of their rudeness,
Are as nothing to their goodness when they're good.
- Anonymous; answer to preceding.
- On one she smiled, and he was blest;
She smiles elsewhere—we make a din!
But 'twas not love which heaved her breast,
Fair child!—it was the bliss within.
- Matthew Arnold, Euphrosyne.
- Woman's love is writ in water,
Woman's faith is traced in sand.
- William E. Aytoun, Lays of Scottish Cavaliers, Prince Edward at Versailles.
- Not she with trait'rous kiss her Saviour stung,
Not she denied Him with unholy tongue;
She, while apostles shrank, could danger brave,
Last at His cross, and earliest at His grave.
- Eaton S. Barrett, Woman, Part I, line 141. "Not she with trait'rous kiss her Master stung, / Not she denied Him with unfaithful tongue; / She, when apostles fled, could danger brave, / Last at His cross, and earliest at His grave." Version in ed. of 1810.
- "And now, Madam," I addressed her, "we shall try who shall get the breeches."
- William Beloe, Miscellanies (1795). Translation of a Latin story by Antonius Musa Brassavolus. (1540).
- Phidias made the statue of Venus at Elis with one foot upon the shell of a tortoise, to signify two great duties of a virtuous woman, which are to keep home and be silent.
- W. De Britaine, Human Prudence (Ed. 1726), p. 134. Referred to by Burton—Anatomy of Melancholy, Part III, Section III. Mem. 4. Subs. 2.
- A worthless woman! mere cold clay
As all false things are! but so fair,
She takes the breath of men away
Who gaze upon her unaware:
I would not play her larcenous tricks
To have her looks!
- Elizabeth Barrett Browning, Bianca among the Nightingales, Stanza 12.
- Thy daughters bright thy walks adorn,
Gay as the gilded summer sky,
Sweet as the dewy milk-white thorn,
Dear as the raptured thrill of joy.
- Robert Burns, Address to Edinburgh.
- Auld Nature swears, the lovely dears
Her noblest work she classes, O:
Her 'prentice hand she tried on man,
An' then she made the lasses, O.
- Robert Burns, Green Grow the Rashes.
- Their tricks and craft hae put me daft,
They've ta'en me in, and a' that,
But clear your decks, and—Here's the sex!
I like the jads for a' that.
- Robert Burns, Jolly Beggars.
- The souls of women are so small,
That some believe they've none at all;
Or if they have, like cripples, still
They've but one faculty, the will.
- Samuel Butler, Miscellaneous Thoughts.
- Ther seyde oones a clerk in two vers, "what is bettre than Gold? Jaspre. What is bettre than Jaspre? Wisdom. And what is bettre than Wisdom? Womman. And what is bettre than a good Womman? No thyng."
- Geoffrey Chaucer, Canterbury Tales, Melibeus, line 2,300.
- The sweetest noise on earth, a woman's tongue;
A string which hath no discord.
- Barry Cornwall, Rafaelle and Fornarina, scene 2.
- Her air, her manners, all who saw admired;
Courteous though coy, and gentle, though retired:
The joy of youth and health her eyes display'd,
And ease of heart her every look convey'd.
- George Crabbe, Parish Register, Part II.
- Whoe'er she be,
That not impossible she,
That shall command my heart and me.
- Richard Crashaw, Wishes to his (Supposed) Mistress.
- Man was made when Nature was but an apprentice, but woman when she was a skilful mistress of her art.
- Cupid's Whirligig (1607).
- Les femmes ont toujours quelque arrière pensée.
- Women always have some mental reservation.
- Philippe Néricault Destouches, Dissipateur, V, 9.
- But were it to my fancy given
To rate her charms, I'd call them heaven;
For though a mortal made of clay,
Angels must love Ann Hathaway;
She hath a way so to control,
To rapture the imprisoned soul,
And sweetest heaven on earth display,
That to be heaven Ann hath a way;
She hath a way,
To be heaven's self Ann hath a way.
- Charles Dibdin, A Love Dittie. In his novel Hannah Hewitt (1795). Often attributed to Shakespeare.
- But in some odd nook in Mrs. Todgers's breast, up a great many steps, and in a corner easy to be overlooked, there was a secret door, with "Woman" written on the spring, which, at a touch from Mercy's hand, had flown wide open, and admitted her for shelter.
- Charles Dickens, Martin Chuzzlewit, Volume II, Chapter XII.
- She was not made out of his head, Sir,
To rule and to govern the man;
Nor was she made out of his feet, Sir,
By man to be trampled upon.
* * * * *
But she did come forth from his side, Sir,
His equal and partner to be;
And now they are coupled together,
She oft proves the top of the tree.
- Ballads and Songs of the Peasantry of England; collected by James Henry Dixon.
- Be then thine own home, and in thyself dwell;
And seeing the snail, which everywhere doth roam,
Carrying his own home still, still is at home,
Follow (for he is easy-paced) this snail:
Be thine own palace, or the world's thy jail.
- For women with a mischief to their kind,
Pervert with bad advice our better mind.
- John Dryden, The Cock and the Fox, line 555.
- A woman's counsel brought us first to woe,
And made her man his paradise forego,
Where at heart's ease he liv'd; and might have been
As free from sorrow as he was from sin.
- John Dryden, The Cock and the Fox, line 557.
- I am resolved to grow fat and look young till forty, and then slip out of the world with the first wrinkle and the reputation of five and twenty.
- John Dryden, The Maiden Queen, Act III, scene 1.
- And that one hunting, which the devil design'd
For one fair female, lost him half the kind.
- John Dryden, Theodore and Honoria, line 427.
- What all your sex desire is Sovereignty.
- John Dryden, Wife of Bath.
- Her lot is made for her by the love she accepts.
- George Eliot, Felix Holt, Chapter XLIII.
- When greater perils men inviron,
Then women show a front of iron;
And, gentle in their manner, they
Do bold things in a quiet way.
- Thomas Dunn English, Betty Zane.
- There is no worse evil than a bad woman; and nothing has ever been produced better than a good one.
- Euripides, Melanippe.
- Our sex still strikes an awe upon the brave,
And only cowards dare affront a woman.
- George Farquhar, Constant Couple, Act V, scene 1.
- A woman friend! He that believes that weakness,
Steers in a stormy night without a compass.
- John Fletcher, Woman Pleased, Act II, scene 1.
- Woman, I tell you, is a microcosm; and rightly to rule her, requires as great talents as to govern a state.
- Samuel Foote, The Minor.
- Toute femme varie
Bien fol est qui s'y fie.
- Woman is always fickle—foolish is he who trusts her.
- François I; scratched with his ring on a window of Chambord Castle. (Quoted also "souvent femme.") See Brantome—Œuvres, VII. 395. Also Le Livre des Proverbes François, by Le Roux de Lincy. I. V. 231. (Ed. 1859).
- Are women books? says Hodge, then would mine were
An Almanack, to change her every year.
- Benjamin Franklin, Poor Richard (Dec., 1737).
- A cat has nine lives and a woman has nine cats' lives.
- Thomas Fuller, Gnomologia.
- Es ist doch den Mädchen wie angeboren, dass sie allem gefallen wollen, was nur Augen hat.
- The desire to please everything having eyes seems inborn in maidens.
- Salomon Gessner, Evander und Alcima, III. 1.
- I am a woman—therefore I may not
Call to him, cry to him,
Fly to him,
Bid him delay not!
- R. W. Gilder, A Woman's Thought.
- Denn geht es zu des Bösen Haus
Das Weib hat tausend Schritt voraus.
- Denn das Naturell der Frauen
Ist so nah mit Kunst verwandt.
- Das Ewig-Weibliche zieht uns hinan.
- 'Tis Lilith.
Adam's first wife is she.
Beware the lure within her lovely tresses,
The splendid sole adornment of her hair;
When she succeeds therewith a youth to snare,
Not soon again she frees him from her jesses.
- Ein edler Mann wird durch ein gutes Wort
Der Frauen weit geführt.
- A noble man is led far by woman's gentle words.
- Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Iphigenia auf Tauris, I, 2, 162.
- Der Umgang mit Frauen ist das Element guter Sitten.
- The society of women is the foundation of good manners.
- Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Die Wahlverwandtschaften, II, 5.
- Mankind, from Adam, have been women's fools;
Women, from Eve, have been the devil's tools:
Heaven might have spar'd one torment when we fell;
Not left us women, or not threatened hell.
- George Granville, 1st Baron Lansdowne, She-Gallants.
- Vente quid levius? fulgur. Quid fulgure? flamma
Flamma quid? mulier. Quid mulier? nihil.
- What is lighter than the wind? A feather.
What is lighter than a feather? fire.
What lighter than fire? a woman.
What lighter than a woman? Nothing.
- Harleian Manuscript, No. 3362, Folio 47.
- What is lighter than the wind? A feather.
- De wimmin, dey does de talkin' en de flyin', en de mens, dey does de walkin en de pryin', en betwixt en betweenst um, dey ain't much dat don't come out.
- Joel Chandler Harris, Brother Rabbit and His Famous Foot.
- That the woman was made of a rib out of the side of Adam; not out of his feet to be trampled upon by him, but out of his side to be equal with him, under his arm to be protected, and near his heart to be loved.
- Matthew Henry, Note on Genesis II, 21 and 22. Also in Chaucer, Persones Tale.
- First, then, a woman will, or won't,—depend on't;
If she will do't, she will; and there's an end on't.
But, if she won't, since safe and sound your trust is,
Fear is affront: and jealousy injustice.
- Aaron Hill, Epilogue to Zara.
- Where is the man who has the power and skill
To stem the torrent of a woman's will?
For if she will, she will, you may depend on't;
And if she won't, she won't; so there's an end on't.
- From the Pillar Erected on the Mount in the Dane John Field, Canterbury. Examiner (May 31, 1829).
- Women may be whole oceans deeper than we are, but they are also a whole paradise better. She may have got us out of Eden, but as a compensation she makes the earth very pleasant.
- John Oliver Hobbes, The Ambassador, Act III.
- She moves a goddess, and she looks a queen.
- Homer, The Iliad, Book III, line 208. Pope's translation.
- O woman, woman, when to ill thy mind
Is bent, all hell contains no fouler fiend.
- Homer, The Odyssey, Book XI, line 531. Pope's translation.
- What mighty woes
To thy imperial race from woman rose.
- Homer, The Odyssey, Book XI, line 541. Pope's translation.
- But, alas! alas! for the woman's fate,
Who has from a mob to choose a mate!
'Tis a strange and painful mystery!
But the more the eggs the worse the hatch;
The more the fish, the worse the catch;
The more the sparks the worse the match;
Is a fact in woman's history.
- Thomas Hood, Miss Kilmansegg, Her Courtship, Stanza 7.
- God in his harmony has equal ends
For cedar that resists and reed that bends;
For good it is a woman sometimes rules,
Holds in her hand the power, and manners, schools
And laws, and mind; succeeding master proud.
With gentle voice and smiles she leads the crowd,
The somber human troop.
- Victor Hugo, Eviradnus, V.
- O woman! thou wert fashioned to beguile:
So have all sages said, all poets sung.
- Jean Ingelow, The Four Bridges, Stanza 68.
- In that day seven women shall take hold of one man.
- Isaiah, IV. 1.
- I am very fond of the company of ladies. I like their beauty, I like their delicacy, I like their vivacity, and I like their silence.
- Samuel Johnson, Seward's Johnsoniana, 617.
- Ladies, stock and tend your hive,
Trifle not at thirty-five;
For, howe'er we boast and strive,
Life declines from thirty-five;
He that ever hopes to thrive
Must begin by thirty-five.
- Samuel Johnson, To Mrs. Thrale, when Thirty-five, line 11.
- One woman reads another's character
Without the tedious trouble of deciphering.
- Ben Jonson, New Inn, Act IV.
- And where she went, the flowers took thickest root,
As she had sow'd them with her odorous foot.
- Ben Jonson, The Sad Shepherd, Act I, scene 1.
- Nulla fere causa est in qua non femina litem moverit.
- There's scarce a case comes on but you shall find
A woman's at the bottom.
- Juvenal, Satires, VI. 242.
- There's scarce a case comes on but you shall find
Nemo magis gaudet, quam femina.
- Revenge we find,
The abject pleasure of an abject mind
And hence so dear to poor weak woman kind.
- Juvenal, Satires, XIII. 191.
- Revenge we find,
- I met a lady in the meads
Full beautiful—a faery's child,
Her hair was long, her foot was light,
And her eyes were wild.
- John Keats, La Belle Dame sans Merci.
- When the Hymalayan peasant meets the he-bear in his pride,
He shouts to scare the monster, who will often turn aside.
But the she-bear thus accosted, rends the peasant tooth and nail,
For the female of the species is more deadly than the male.
- Rudyard Kipling, The Female of the Species.
- Ich hab' es immer gesagt: das Weib wollte die Natur zu ihrem Meisterstücke machen.
- I have always said it—Nature meant woman to be her masterpiece.
- Gotthold Ephraim Lessing, Emilia Galotti, V, 7.
- Was hätt ein Weiberkopf erdacht, das er
Nicht zu beschönen wüsste?
- What could a woman's head contrive
Which it would not know how to excuse?
- Gotthold Ephraim Lessing, Nathan der Weise, III.
- What could a woman's head contrive
- 'Twas kin' o' kingdom-come to look
On sech a blessed cretur.
- James Russell Lowell, Biglow Papers. Introduction to Second Series. The Courtin', Stanza 7.
- Earth's noblest thing, a Woman perfected.
- James Russell Lowell, Irene, line 62.
- Parvula, pumilio, chariton mia tota merum sal.
- A little, tiny, pretty, witty, charming darling she.
- Lucretius, De Rerum Natura, IV. 1158.
- A cunning woman is a knavish fool.
- George Lyttelton, 1st Baron Lyttelton, Advice to a Lady.
- When all the medical officers have retired for the night, and silence and darkness have settled down upon those miles of prostrate sick, she [Florence Nightingale] may be observed alone, with a little lamp in her hand, making her solitary rounds.
- Mr. MacDonald, on the staff of the London Times, in a letter to that paper when leaving Scutari. See Pictorial History of the Russian War (1854–5–6), p. 310.
- Of all wild beasts on earth or in sea, the greatest is a woman.
- Menander, E Supposititio, p. 182.
- O woman, born first to believe us;
Yea, also born first to forget;
Born first to betray and deceive us,
Yet first to repent and regret.
- Joaquin Miller, Charity.
- Too fair to worship, too divine to love.
- Henry Hart Milman, Apollo Belvidere.
- I always thought a tinge of blue
Improved a charming woman's stocking.
- Richard Monckton Milnes, Four Lovers, II. In Summer.
- Disguise our bondage as we will,
'Tis woman, woman rules us still.
- Thomas Moore, Sovereign Woman, Stanza 4.
- My only books
Were woman's looks,
And folly's all they've taught me.
- Thomas Moore, The Time I've Lost in Wooing.
- The virtue of her lively looks
Excels the precious stone;
I wish to have none other books
To read or look upon.
- Songs and Sonnets (1557).
- For if a young lady has that discretion and modesty, without which all knowledge is little worth, she will never make an ostentatious parade of it, because she will rather be intent on acquiring more, than on displaying what she has.
- Hannah More, Essays on Various Subjects, Thoughts on Conversation.
- Queens you must always be: queens to your lovers; queens to your husbands and your sons, queens of higher mystery to the world beyond…. But, alas, you are too often idle and careless queens, grasping at majesty in the least things, while you abdicate it in the greatest.
- D. M. Mulock. Quoted from Ruskin on the title page of The Woman's Kingdom.
- A penniless lass wi' a lang pedigree.
- Carolina, Baroness Nairne, The Laird o' Cockpen.
- So I wonder a woman, the Mistress of Hearts,
Should ascend to aspire to be Master of Arts;
A Ministering Angel in Woman we see,
And an Angel need cover no other Degree.
- Charles Neaves, O why should a Woman not get a Degree?
- Who trusts himself to women, or to waves,
Should never hazard what he fears to lose.
- John Oldmixon, Governor of Cyprus.
- What mighty ills have not been done by woman!
Who was't betray'd the Capitol? A woman;
Who lost Mark Antony the world? A woman;
Who was the cause of a long ten years' war,
And laid at last old Troy in ashes? Woman;
Destructive, damnable, deceitful woman!
- Thomas Otway, The Orphan, Act III, scene 1.
- Who can describe
Women's hypocrisies! their subtle wiles,
Betraying smiles, feign'd tears, inconstancies!
Their painted outsides, and corrupted minds,
The sum of all their follies, and their falsehoods.
- Thomas Otway, Orpheus.
- O woman! lovely woman! Nature made thee
To temper man: we had been brutes without you;
Angels are painted fair, to look like you:
There's in you all that we believe of Heaven,
Amazing brightness, purity, and truth,
Eternal joy, and everlasting love.
- Thomas Otway, Venice Preserved, Act I, scene 1.
- Wit and woman are two frail things, and both the frailer by concurring.
- Still an angel appear to each lover beside,
But still be a woman to you.
- Thomas Parnell, When thy Beauty Appears.
- Ah, wasteful woman! she who may
On her sweet self set her own price,
Knowing man cannot choose but pay,
How has she cheapen'd Paradise!
How given for nought her priceless gift,
How spoil'd the bread and spill'd the wine,
Which, spent with due respective thrift,
Had made brutes men and men divine.
- Coventry Patmore, The Angel in the House, Unthrift, Book I, Canto III. 3.
- To chase the clouds of life's tempestuous hours,
To strew its short but weary way with flow'rs,
New hopes to raise, new feelings to impart,
And pour celestial balsam on the heart;
For this to man was lovely woman giv'n,
The last, best work, the noblest gift of Heav'n.
- Thomas Love Peacock, The Visions of Love.
- Those who always speak well of women do not know them sufficiently; those who always speak ill of them do not know them at all.
- Guillaume Pigault, Lebrun.
- Nam multum loquaces merito omnes habemus,
Nec mutam profecto repertam ullam esse
Hodie dicunt mulierem ullo in seculo.
- I know that we women are all justly accounted praters; they say in the present day that there never was in any age such a wonder to be found as a dumb woman.
- Plautus, Aulularia, II. 1. 5.
- Multa sunt mulierum vitia, sed hoc e multis maximum,
Cum sibi nimis placent, nimisque operam dant ut placeant viris.
- Women have many faults, but of the many this is the greatest, that they please themselves too much, and give too little attention to pleasing the men.
- Plautus, Pœnulus, V. 4. 33.
- Mulieri nimio male facere melius est onus, quam bene.
- A woman finds it much easier to do ill than well.
- Plautus, Truculentus, II. 5. 17.
- Oh! say not woman's heart is bought
With vain and empty treasure.
* * * * *
Deep in her heart the passion glows;
She loves and loves forever.
- Isaac Pocock, Song, in The Heir of Vironi, produced at Covent Garden, Feb. 27, 1817.
- Our grandsire, Adam, ere of Eve possesst,
Alone, and e'en in Paradise unblest,
With mournful looks the blissful scenes survey'd,
And wander'd in the solitary shade.
The Maker saw, took pity, and bestow'd
Woman, the last, the best reserv'd of God.
- Alexander Pope, January and May, line 63.
- Give God thy broken heart, He whole will make it:
Give woman thy whole heart, and she will break it.
- Edmund Prestwich, The Broken Heart.
- Be to her virtues very kind;
Be to her faults a little blind.
Let all her ways be unconfin'd;
And clap your padlock—on her mind.
- Matthew Prior, An English Padlock.
- The gray mare will prove the better horse.
- Matthew Prior, Epilogue to Lucius. Last line. Butler, Hudibras, Part II, Canto L, line 698. Fielding—The Grub Street Opera, Act II, scene 4. Pryde and Abuse of Women. (1550). The Marriage of True Wit and Science. Macaulay—History of England, Volume I, Chapter III. Footnote suggests it arose from the preference generally given to the gray mares of Flanders over the finest coach horses of England. Proverb traced to Holland. (1546).
- That if weak women went astray,
Their stars were more in fault than they.
- Matthew Prior, Hans Carvel.
- It is better to dwell in a corner of the housetop than with a brawling woman in a wide house.
- Proverbs, XXI. 9.
- Like to the falling of a star,
* * * *
Like to the damask rose you see,
Or like the blossom on the tree.
- Francis Quarles, Argalus and Parthenia. Claimed by him but attributed to John Phillipot (Philpott) in Harleian Manuscript, 3917. Folio 88 b., a fragment written about the time of James I. Credited to Simon Wastell (1629) by Mackay, as it is appended to his Microbiblion. Said to be an imitation of an earlier poem by Bishop Henry King.
- If she undervalue me,
What care I how fair she be?
- Sir Walter Raleigh.
- If she seem not chaste to me,
What care I how chaste she be?
- Sir Walter Raleigh. See Bayley's Life of Raleigh.
- That, let us rail at women, scorn and flout 'em,
We may live with, but cannot live without 'em.
- Frederick Reynolds, My Grandfather's Will, Act III.
- A woman is the most inconsistent compound of obstinacy and self-sacrifice that I am acquainted with.
- Jean Paul Richter, Flower, Fruit, and Thorn Pieces, Chapter V.
- O wild, dark flower of woman,
Deep rose of my desire,
An Eastern wizard made you
Of earth and stars and fire.
- Charles G. D. Roberts, The Rose of my Desire.
- Angels listen when she speaks;
She's my delight, all mankind's wonder;
But my jealous heart would break
Should we live one day asunder.
- John Wilmot, 2nd Earl of Rochester, Song. My Dear Mistress has a Heart, Stanza 2.
- C'est chose qui moult me deplaist,
Quand poule parle et coq se taist.
- It is a thing very displeasing to me when the hen speaks and the cock is silent.
- Roman de la Rose, XIV. Cent.
- Of Adam's first wife, Lilith, it is told
(The witch he loved before the gift of Eve)
That ere the snakes, her sweet tongue could deceive
And her enchanted hair was the first gold—
And still she sits, young while the earth is old
And, subtly of herself contemplative,
Draws men to watch the bright net she can weave,
Till heart and body and life are in its hold.
- Dante Gabriel Rossetti, Lilith.
- Aristotle could have avoided the mistake of thinking that women have fewer teeth than men, by the simple device of asking Mrs Aristotle to keep her mouth open while he counted.
- Bertrand Russell, "An Outline of Intellectual Rubbish", Unpopular Essays (1950).
- Ne l'onde solca, e ne l'arena semina,
E'l vago vento spera in rete accogliere
Chi sue speranze fonda in cor di femina.
- Such, Polly, are your sex—part truth, part fiction;
Some thought, much whim, and all a contradiction.
- Richard Savage, To a Young Lady.
- Ehret die Frauen! sie flechten und weben
Himmlische Rosen in's irdische Leben.
- Honor women! they entwine and weave heavenly roses in our earthly life.
- Friedrich Schiller, Würde der Frauen.
- The weakness of their reasoning faculty also explains why women show more sympathy for the unfortunate than men;… and why, on the contrary, they are inferior to men as regards justice, and less honourable and conscientious.
- Arthur Schopenhauer, On Women.
- In the beginning, said a Persian poet—Allah took a rose, a lily, a dove, a serpent, a little honey, a Dead Sea apple, and a handful of clay. When he looked at the amalgam—it was a woman.
- William Sharp, in the Portfolio (July, 1894), p. 6.
- Woman reduces us all to the common denominator.
- Bernard Shaw, Great Catherine, scene 1.
- The fickleness of the woman I love is only equalled by the infernal constancy of the women who love me.
- Bernard Shaw, Philanderer, Act II.
- A lovely lady garmented in light.
- Percy Bysshe Shelley, The Witch of Atlas, Stanza 5.
- She is her selfe of best things the collection.
- Sir Philip Sidney, The Arcadia, Thirsis and Dorus.
- Lor', but women's rum cattle to deal with, the first man found that to his cost,
And I reckon it's just through a woman the last man on earth'll be lost.
- G. R. Sims, Moll Jarvis o' Morley.
- He beheld his own rougher make softened into sweetness, and tempered with smiles; he saw a creature who had, as it were, Heaven's second thought in her formation.
- Richard Steele, Christian Hero (of Adam awaking, and first seeing Eve).
- She is pretty to walk with,
And witty to talk with,
And pleasant too, to think on.
- Sir John Suckling, Brennoralt, Act II, scene 1.
- Of all the girls that e'er was seen,
There's none so fine as Nelly.
- Jonathan Swift, Ballad on Miss Nelly Bennet.
- Daphne knows, with equal ease,
How to vex and how to please;
But the folly of her sex
Makes her sole delight to vex.
- Jonathan Swift, Daphne.
- Lose no time to contradict her,
Nor endeavour to convict her;
Only take this rule along,
Always to advise her wrong,
And reprove her when she's right;
She may then crow wise for spite.
- Jonathan Swift, Daphne.
- O Woman, you are not merely the handiwork of God, but also of men; these are ever endowing you with beauty from their own hearts…. You are one-half woman and one-half dream.
- Rabindranath Tagore, Gardener, 59.
- Femmina è cosa garrula e fallace:
Vuole e disvuole, è folle uom chi sen fida,
Si tra se volge.
- Women have tongues of craft, and hearts of guile,
They will, they will not; fools that on them trust;
For in their speech is death, hell in their smile.
- Torquato Tasso, Gerusalemme, XIX. 84.
- Women have tongues of craft, and hearts of guile,
- All virtuous women, like tortoises, carry their house on their heads, and their chappel in their heart, and their danger in their eye, and their souls in their hands, and God in all their actions.
- Jeremy Taylor, Life of Christ, Part I, II. 4.
- A woman's honor rests on manly love.
- Esais Tegnèr, Fridthjof's Saga, Canto VIII.
- Airy, fairy Lilian.
- Alfred Tennyson, Lilian.
- Novi ingenium mulierum;
Nolunt ubi velis, ubi nolis cupiunt ultro.
- I know the nature of women. When you will, they will not; when you will not, they come of their own accord.
- Terence, Eunuchus, IV. 7. 42.
- When I say that I know women, I mean that I know that I don't know them. Every single woman I ever knew is a puzzle to me, as I have no doubt she is to herself.
- William Makepeace Thackeray, Mr. Brown's Letters.
- Since the days of Adam, there has been hardly a mischief done in this world but a woman has been at the bottom of it.
- William Makepeace Thackeray, The Luck of Barry Lyndon, 1.
- Regard the society of women as a necessary unpleasantness of social life, and avoid it as much as possible.
- Leo Tolstoy, Diary.
- Woman is more impressionable than man. Therefore in the Golden Age they were better than men. Now they are worse.
- Leo Tolstoy, Diary.
- I think Nature hath lost the mould
Where she her shape did take;
Or else I doubt if Nature could
So fair a creature make.
- A Praise of his Lady. In Tottel's Miscellany (1557). The Earl of Surrey wrote similar lines, A Praise of his Love (Before 1547).
- He is a fool who thinks by force or skill
To turn the current of a woman's will.
- Sir Samuel Tuke, The Adventure of Five Hours (1663), Act V, scene 3, line 483. Translation from Calderon.
- A slighted woman knows no bounds.
- John Vanbrugh, The Mistake, Part I, Act II, scene 1.
- Let our weakness be what it will, mankind will still be weaker; and whilst there is a world, 'tis woman that will govern it.
- John Vanbrugh, Provoked Wife, Act III.
- All the reasonings of men are not worth one sentiment of women.
- "Woman" must ever be a woman's highest name,
And honors more than "Lady," if I know right.
- Walter von der Vogelweide. Translated in the Minnesinger of Germany, Woman and Lady.
- My wife is one of the best wimin on this Continent, altho' she isn't always gentle as a lamb with mint sauce.
- Artemus Ward, A War Meeting.
- She is not old, she is not young,
The Woman with the Serpent's Tongue.
The haggard cheek, the hungering eye,
The poisoned words that wildly fly,
The famished face, the fevered hand—
Who slights the worthiest in the land,
Sneers at the just, contemns the brave,
And blackens goodness in its grave.
- William Watson, Woman with the Serpent's Tongue.
- Not from his head was woman took,
As made her husband to o'erlook;
Not from his feet, as one designed
The footstool of the stronger kind;
But fashioned for himself, a bride;
An equal, taken from his side.
- Charles Wesley, Short Hymns on Select Passages of the Holy Scriptures.
- Oh! no one. No one in particular. A woman of no importance.
- Oscar Wilde, A Woman of No Importance (1893), Act I.
- Shall I, wasting in despaire,
Dye because a woman's faire?
Or make pale my cheeks with care
Cause another's rosie are?
Be shee fairer than the day,
Or the flow'ry meads in May;
If she be not so to me,
What care I how faire shee be?
- George Wither, Mistresse of Philarete, reported in Percy's Reliques.
- The liberated woman, or svairini, is one who refuses a husband and has relations in her own home or in other houses.
- Yashodhara, Jayamangala (twelfth-century commentary on the Kama Sutra) Book 6, chapter 6, verse 50.
The Dictionary of Legal Quotations (1904)
- Quotes reported in James William Norton-Kyshe, The Dictionary of Legal Quotations (1904), p. 249-250.
- A woman's notes will not signify much truly, no more than her tongue.
- Scroggs, L.C.J., Trial of Richard Langhorn (1679), 7 How. St. Tr. 437.
- A woman cannot be a pastor by the law of God. I say more, it is against the law of the realm.
- Sir Henry Hobart, 1st Baronet, C.J., Colt and another v. Bishop of Coventry and Lichfield (1612), Hob. Rep. 148.
- Women had prerogative in deliberative sessions touching either peace-government, or martial affairs.
- On the custom of the ancient Britons; Selden's Works, Vol. 3, p. 10, cited in Chorlton v. Lings (1868), L. R. 4 C. P. 389.
- All fiefs were originally masculine, and women were excluded from the succession of them because they cannot keep secrets.
- West's Inquiry into the manner of creating Peers, 44, cited 7 Mod. 272.