Literary Quotations
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What's the use you learning to do right, when it's troublesome to do right and ain't no trouble to do wrong, and the wages is just the same?

Until the mind can love, and admire, and trust, and hope, and endure, reasoned principles of moral conduct are seeds cast upon the highway of life which the unconscious passenger tramples into dust.

PERCY BYSSHE SHELLEY, introduction, Prometheus Unbound

Do not do an immoral thing for moral reasons!

THOMAS HARDY, Jude the Obscure

Conventionality is not morality. Self-righteousness is not religion. To attack the first is not to assail the last. To pluck the mask from the face of the Pharisee, is not to lift an impious hand to the Crown of Thorns.

CHARLOTTE BRONTË, Preface, Jane Eyre

I have to live for others and not for myself; that's middle-class morality.


Everything's got a moral, if only you can find it.

There is a price for being good the same as for being bad; a cost to pay. And it’s the good men that can't deny the bill when it comes around. . . . The bad men can deny it; that’s why dont anybody expect them to pay on sight or any other time. . . . Maybe it takes longer to pay for being good than for being bad.


Moral education ... ought never, in any circumstances, to be rational.

ALDOUS HUXLEY, Brave New World

Right and wrong aren't dropped from the sky. We. We make them.

JOHN UPDIKE, Rabbit, Run