We hasten to implant in new countries the civilization of old ones. This is like putting false teeth in the place of sound ones. In certain situations one has so often to hold one’s tongue that it at last becomes paralysed and can stammer out nothing but old worn-out phrases.
To every mortal is granted a tongue and even a pen to defend himself. Sovereigns alone are expected to be like God, who allows Himself to be slandered without replying.
A little contradiction animates conversation. This explains why courts are so dull.
To be the friend of a sovereign you must be without passion, without ambition, without egotism, clear-sighted and far-sighted; in short, not a man.
One often hears the phrase, “Put not your trust in princes!” quoted from the Bible; but the rest of the verse, “for they also are men,” is overlooked.
Women who meddle with politics are hens who make themselves vultures.
Politics resemble a desert: a blast of wind forms an enormous mountain, while mirages are frequent and dangerous.
Strictly speaking, a prince requires nothing but eyes and ears; he does not need a mouth, except to smile.
The profession of queen demands but three qualities: beauty, bounty, and fecundity.
The multitude is like the sea: it either bears you up or swallows you, according to the wind.