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


In general, indulgence for those we know is rarer than pity for those we know not.


To be good to the vile is to throw water into the sea.


Clemency alone makes us equal to the gods.


Tender-handed stroke a nettle, and it stings you for your pains.

Aaron Hill.

Forgiveness, that noblest of all self-denial, is a virtue which he alone who can practise in himself can willingly believe in another.


Clemency, which we make a virtue of, proceeds sometimes from vanity, sometimes from indolence, often from fear, and almost always from a mixture of all three.

La Rochefoucauld.

  • No attribute
  • So well befits th’ exalted seat supreme,
  • And power’s disposing hand as clemency.
  • Each crime must from its quality be judged;
  • And pity there should interpose, where malice
  • Is not th’ aggressor.
  • Sir William Jones.

    The little I have seen of the world teaches me to look upon the errors of others in sorrow, not in anger. When I take the history of one poor heart that has sinned and suffered, and represent to myself the struggles and temptations it has passed through, the brief pulsations of joy, the feverish inquietude of hope and fear, the pressure of want, the desertion of friends, I would fain leave the erring soul of my fellow-man with Him from whose hand it came.