C.N. Douglas, comp. Forty Thousand Quotations: Prose and Poetical. 1917.


Neither above nor below his business.


Shoemaker, stick to your last.


Avoid as much as possible multiplicity of business.

Bishop Wilson.

Few people do business well who do nothing else.


I attend to the business of other people, having lost my own.


To business that we love, we rise betimes and go to it with delight.


A man who cannot mind his own business is not fit to be trusted with the king’s.


Every man has business and desire, such as it is.


The master looks sharpest to his own business.


Do you fear to trust the word of a man whose honesty you have seen in business?


Hasty and adventurous schemes are at first view flattering, in execution difficult and in the issue disastrous.


That which is everybody’s business is nobody’s business.

Izaak Walton.

Let every one engage in the business with which he is best acquainted.


The most important part of every business is to know what ought to be done.


All inconsiderate enterprises are impetuous at first, but soon languish.


It very seldom happens to a man that his business is pleasure.

Dr. Johnson.

Business despatched is business well done; but business hurried is business ill done.


Physicians attend to the business of physicians and workmen handle the tools of workmen.


The old proverb about having too many irons in the fire is an abominable old lie. Have all in, shovel, tongs, and poker.

Adam Clarke.

Have you so much leisure from your own business that you can take care of other people’s that does not at all belong to you?


Not because of any extraordinary talents did he succeed, but because he had a capacity on a level for business and not above it.


Success in business is seldom owing to uncommon talents or original power which is untractable and self-willed, but to the greatest degree of commonplace capacity.


Men of great parts are often unfortunate in the management of public business, because they are apt to go out of the common road by the quickness of their imagination.


Formerly when great fortunes were only made in war, war was a business; but now, when great fortunes are only made by business, business is war.


Never shrink from doing anything which your business calls you to do. The man who is above his business may one day find his business above him.


Call on a business man at business times only, and on business, transact your business and go about your business, in order to give him time to finish his business.

Duke of Wellington.

The great secret both of health and successful industry is the absolute yielding up of one’s consciousness to the business and diversion of the hour—never permitting the one to infringe in the least degree upon the other.


Business is the salt of life, which not only gives a grateful smack to it, but dries up those crudities that would offend, preserves from putrefaction and drives off all those blowing flies that would corrupt it.


To men addicted to delights, business is an interruption; to such as are cold to delights, business is an entertainment. For which reason it was said to one who commended a dull man for his application: “No thanks to him; if he had no business, he would have nothing to do.”


  • He that attends to his interior self,
  • That has a heart, and keeps it; has a mind
  • That hungers, and supplies it; and who seeks
  • A social, not a dissipated life,
  • Has business.
  • Cowper.

    It is very sad for a man to make himself servant to a thing, his manhood all taken out of him by the hydraulic pressure of excessive business. I should not like to be merely a great doctor, a great lawyer, a great minister, a great politician—I should like to be also something of a man.

    Theodore Parker.

    Business in a certain sort of men is a mark of understanding, and they are honored for it. Their souls seek repose in agitation, as children do by being rocked in a cradle. They may pronounce themselves as serviceable to their friends as troublesome to themselves. No one distributes his money to others, but every one therein distributes his time and his life. There is nothing of which we are so prodigal as of those two things, of which to be thrifty would be both commendable and useful.


    Rare almost as great poets, rarer, perhaps, than veritable saints and martyrs, are consummate men of business. A man, to be excellent in this way, requires a great knowledge of character, with that exquisite tact which feels unerringly the right moment when to act. A discreet rapidity must pervade all the movements of his thought and action. He must be singularly free from vanity, and is generally found to be an enthusiast who has the art to conceal his enthusiasm.


    Business is religion, and religion is business. The man who does not make a business of his religion has a religious life of no force, and the man who does not make a religion of his business has a business life of no character.
    The world is God’s workshop; the raw materials are His; the ideals and patterns are His; our hands are “the members of Christ,” our reward His recognition. Blacksmith or banker, draughtsman or doctor, painter or preacher, servant or statesman, must work as unto the Lord, not merely making a living, but devoting a life. This makes life sacramental, turning its water into wine. This is twice blessed, blessing both the worker and the work.

    Maltbie Babcock.