Home  »  Forty Thousand Quotations: Prose and Poetical  »  Company—Companions

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


Wicked companions invite us to hell.


A pleasant companion is as good as a coach.


He that toucheth pitch shall be defiled therewith.


Company, villanous company, hath been the spoil of me.


There are like to be short graces where the devil plays host.


The freer you feel yourself in the presence of another, the more free is he.


No man can be provident of his time who is not prudent in the choice of his company.

Jeremy Taylor.

No possession is gratifying without a companion.


A companion is but another self; wherefore it is an argument that a man is wicked if he keep company with the wicked.

St. Clement.

No man in effect doth accompany with others but he learneth, ere he is aware, some gesture, voice, or fashion.


No man can possibly improve in any company for which he has not respect enough to be under some degree of restraint.


Our companions please us less from the charms we find in their conversation than from those they find in ours.

Fulke Greville.

We have been born to associate with our fellow-men, and to join in community with the human race.


It is certain that either wise bearing or ignorant carriage is caught as men take diseases one of another; therefore, let men take heed of their company.


No company is far preferable to bad, because we are more apt to catch the vices of others than virtues, as disease is far more contagious than health.


Let them have ever so learned lectures of breeding, that which will most influence their carriage will be the company they converse with, and the fashion of those about them.


  • Without good company all dainties
  • Lose their true relish, and like painted grapes,
  • Are only seen, not tasted.
  • Massinger.

    Be cautious with whom you associate, and never give your company or your confidence to persons of whose good principles you are not certain.

    Bishop Coleridge.

    Men or women that are greedy of acquaintance, or hasty in it, are oftentimes snared in ill company before they are aware, and entangled so, that they cannot easily get loose from it after, when they would.

    Sir Matthew Hale.

    Nature has left every man a capacity of being agreeable, though not of shining in company; and there are a hundred men sufficiently qualified for both, who, by a very few faults, that they might correct in half an hour, are not so much as tolerable.


    Take rather than give the tone to the company you are in. If you have parts you will show them more or less upon every subject; and if you have not, you had better talk sillily upon a subject of other people’s than of your own choosing.


    The most agreeable of all companions is a simple, frank man, without any high pretensions to an oppressive greatness; one who loves life, and understands the use of it; obliging alike at all hours; above all, of a golden temper and steadfast as an anchor. For such an one we gladly exchange the greatest genius, the most brilliant wit, the profoundest thinker.


    Bad company is like a nail driven into a post, which, after the first or second blow, may be drawn out with little difficulty; but being once driven up to the head, the pincers cannot take hold to draw it out, but which can only be done by the destruction of the wood.


    We should ever have it fixed in our memories that, by the character of those whom we choose for our friends, our own is likely to be formed, and will certainly be judged by the world. We ought, therefore, to be slow and cautious in contracting intimacy; but when a virtuous friendship is once established, we must ever consider it a sacred engagement.