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William Penn. (1644–1718). Fruits of Solitude.
The Harvard Classics. 1909–14.

Part I


396. Patience is a Virtue every where; but it shines with great Lustre in the Men of Government.

397. Some are so Proud or Testy, they won’t hear what they should redress.

398. Others so weak, they sink or burst under the weight of their Office, though they can lightly run away with the Salary of it.

399. Business can never be well done, that is not well understood: Which cannot be without Patience.

400. It is Cruelty indeed not to give the Unhappy an Hearing, whom we ought to help: But it is the top of Oppression to Browbeat the humble and modest Miserable, when they seek Relief.

401. Some, it is true, are unreasonable in their Desires and Hopes: But then we should inform, not rail at and reject them.

402. It is therefore as great an Instance of Wisdom as a Man in Business can give, to be Patient under the Impertinencies and Contradictions that attend it.

403. Method goes far to prevent Trouble in Business: For it makes the Task easy, hinders Confusion, saves abundance of Time, and instructs those that have Business depending, both what to do and what to hope.