Literary Quotations
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Virtue itself turns vice, being misapplied;
And vice sometimes by action dignified.


Even amid bacchic celebrations, the woman who is truly virtuous will not be corrupted.

EURIPIDES, The Bacchae

Is it a world to hide virtues in?


Some rise by sin, and some by virtue fall.

WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE, Measure for Measure

The world has long ago settled that morality and virtue are what bring men peace at the last. "Be virtuous," says the copy-book, "and you will be happy." Surely if a reputed virtue fails often in this respect it is only an insidious form of vice, and if a reputed vice brings no very serious mischief on a man's later years it is not so bad a vice as it is said to be. Unfortunately, though we are all of a mind about the main opinion that virtue is what tends to happiness, and vice what ends in sorrow, we are not so unanimous about details.

SAMUEL BUTLER, The Way of All Flesh

Virtue is bold, and goodness never fearful.

WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE, Measure for Measure

Virtue and vice are concepts invented by human beings, words for a morality which human beings arbitrarily devised.

OSAMU DAZAI, No Longer Human

Virtue ... makes its home in a dark cave amid cave dwellers, some dangerous indeed.


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