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


Best men oft are moulded out of faults.


Condemn the fault, but not the actor.


Faults are beauties in a lover’s eye.


A fault finds its own authors.

Law Maxim.

Is she not a wilderness of faults and follies?


Bad men excuse their faults, good men will leave them.

Ben Jonson.

Unless you bear with the faults of a friend, you betray your own.


He who overlooks a fault, invites the commission of another.


The greatest of faults, I should say, is to be conscious of none.


The first fault is the child of simplicity, but every other the offspring of guilt.


All his faults are such that one loves him still the better for them.


Had we not faults of our own we should take less pleasure in observing those of others.

La Rochefoucauld.

Why do we discover faults so much more readily than perfections?

Madame de Sévigné.

We are often more agreeable through our faults than through our good qualities.

La Rochefoucauld.

It is not so much the being exempt from faults, as the having overcome them, that is an advantage to us.

Alexander Pope.

Every one fault seeming monstrous till his fellow-fault came to match it.


If the best man’s faults were written on his forehead, he would draw his hat over his eyes.


We easily forget those faults which are known only to ourselves.

La Rochefoucauld.

  • The faults of our neighbours with freedom we blame,
  • But tax not ourselves, though we practise the same.
  • Cunningham.

  • Excusing of a fault
  • Doth make the fault worse by the excuse.
  • Shakespeare.

    Only those faults which we encounter in ourselves are insufferable to us in others.

    Madame Swetchine.

    Why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother’s eye, but perceivest not the beam that is in thine own eye?


    No man is born without faults, he is best who has the fewest.


    A woman will confess her faults sooner than her follies.

    Alfred Bougeart.

    The great fault in women is to desire to be like men.

    De Maistre.

    ’Tis a meaner part of sense to find a fault than taste an excellence.


    It requires less character to discover the faults of others than to tolerate them.

    J. Petit-Senn.

    He shall be immortal who liveth till he be stoned by one without fault.


    Just as you are pleased at finding faults, you are displeased at finding perfections.


    Women will sometimes confess their sins, but I never knew one to confess her faults.


    God Himself allows certain faults; and often we say, “I have deserved to err; I have deserved to be ignorant.”

    Mme. Swetchine.

    It is a shrewd device to pretend we have some one unimportant fault,—it overshadows so many serious defects.

    Mme. Deluzy.

    Most of their faults women owe to us, whilst we are indebted to them for the most of our better qualities.


    It is well that there is no one without a fault, for he would not have a friend in the world. He would seem to belong to a different species.


    We need not be much concerned about those faults which we have the courage to own.

    La Rochefoucauld.

    Every man has a bag banging before him, in which he puts his neighbor’s faults, and another behind him in which he stows his own.

    Knight’s Shakespeare.

    Relative to getting rid of it, a fault is serious or not in proportion to the depth of its root rather than the amount of its foliage.

    George MacDonald.

    What sort of faults may we retain, nay, even cherish in ourselves? Those faults which are rather pleasant than offensive to others.


    A woman’s faults, be they never so small, cast a shadow which all her virtues cannot dispel.

    Achilles Poincelot.

    While we are indifferent to our good qualities, we keep on deceiving ourselves in regard to our faults, until we at last come to look upon them as virtues.


    There are some faults which, when well managed, make a greater figure than virtue itself.

    La Rochefoucauld.

    The ability to find fault is believed, by some people, to be a sure sign of great wisdom, when, in most cases, it only indicates narrowness of mind and ill nature.


  • None, none descends into himself, to find
  • The secret imperfections of his mind:
  • But every one is eagle-ey’d to see
  • Another’s faults, and his deformity.
  • Dryden.

  • Then gently scan your brother man,
  • Still gentler, sister woman;
  • Tho’ they may gang a kennin’ wrang;
  • To step aside is human!
  • Burns.

  • Men still had faults, and men will have them still;
  • He that hath none, and lives as angels do,
  • Must be an angel.
  • Wentworth Dillon.

  • O wad some pow’r the giftie gie us
  • To see ourselves as others see us!
  • It wad frae mony a blunder free us,
  • And foolish notion.
  • Burns.

    I like her, with all her faults: nay, like her for her faults. Her follies are so natural, or so artful, that they become her; and those affections which in another woman would be odious serve but to make her more agreeable.


    Moral epochs have their course as well as the seasons. We can no more hold them fast than we can hold sun, moon, and stars. Our faults perpetually return upon us; and herein lies the subtlest difficulty of self-knowledge.


    To acknowledge our faults when we are blamed, is modesty; to discover them to one’s friends in ingenuousness, is confidence; but to preach them to all the world, if one does not take care, is pride.


    He who exhibits no faults is a fool or a hypocrite, whom we should mistrust. There are faults so intimately connected with fine qualities that they indicate them, and we do well not to correct them.


    It is not so much the being exempt from faults as the having overcome them that is an advantage to us; it being with the follies of the mind as with weeds of a field, which, if destroyed and consumed upon the place where they grow, enrich and improve it more than if none had ever sprung there.


    If we were faultless, we should not be so much annoyed by the defects of those with whom we associate. If we were to acknowledge honestly that we have not virtue enough to bear, patiently with our neighbor’s weaknesses, we should show our own imperfection, and this alarms our vanity.


    Do you wish to find out a person’s weak points? Note the failings he has the quickest eye for in others. They may not be the very failings he is himself conscious of; but they will be their next door neighbors. No man keeps such a jealous lookout as a rival.

    J. C. and A. W. Hare.

    As there are some faults that have been termed faults on the right side, so there are some errors that might be denominated errors on the safe side. Thus we seldom regret having been too mild, too cautious, or too humble; but we often repent having been too violent, too precipitate, or too proud.