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


All men wear a disguised habit.


We endeavor to conceal our vices under the disguise of the opposite virtues.


  • When my love swears that she is made of truth,
  • I do believe her, though I know she lies.
  • Shakespeare.

    He who knows not how to dissimulate knows not how to rule.

    Metellus of Macedon.

  • Away and mock the time with fairest show;
  • False face must hide what false heart doth know.
  • Shakespeare.

  • Thus ’tis with all—their chief and constant care
  • Is to seem everything but what they are.
  • Goldsmith.

    We are so much accustomed to disguise ourselves to others that at length we disguise ourselves to ourselves.

    La Rochefoucauld.

    Dissimulation, even the most innocent in its nature, is ever productive of embarrassment; whether the design is evil or not, artifice is always dangerous and almost inevitably disgraceful.

    La Bruyère.

    Dissimulation is the only thing that makes society possible; without its amenities the world would be a bear-garden.


    Dissimulation is but a faint kind of policy or wisdom; for it asketh a strong wit and a strong heart to know when to tell truth, and to do it; therefore, it is the weaker sort of politicians that are the greatest dissemblers.


    Dissimulation in youth is the forerunner of perfidy in old age; its first appearance is the fatal omen of growing depravity and future shame. It degrades parts and learning, obscures the luster of every accomplishment and sinks us into contempt. The path of falsehood is a perplexing maze. After the first departure from sincerity, it is not in our power to stop; one artifice unavoidably leads on to another, till, as the intricacy of the labyrinth increases, we are left entangled in our snare.