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Joseph Hall Quotes


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       Joseph Hall
       1574-1656
      
       Joseph Hall was an English bishop, satirist and moralist. His contemporaries knew him as a devotional writer, and a high-profile controversialist of the early 1640s. In church politics, he tended in fact to a middle way.
      
       Bishop Hall's polemical writings, although vigorous and effective, were chiefly of ephemeral interest, but many of his devotional writings have been often reprinted.


    Joseph Hall on:    

I never love those salamanders that are never well but when they are in the fire of contention. I will rather suffer a thousand wrongs than offer one. I have always found that to strive with a superior, is injurious; with an equal, doubtful; with an inferior, sordid and base; with any, full of unquietness.

    Topics: Adversity, Fire

No marvel if the worldling escape earthly afflictions. God corrects him not. He is base born and begot. God will not do him the favour to whip him. The world afflicts him not, because it loves him: for each man is indulgent to his own. God uses not the rod where He means to use the Word. The pillory or scourge is for those malefactors that shall escape execution.

    Topics: Affliction

Not to be afflicted is a sign of weakness; for, therefore God imposeth no more on me, because he sees I can bear no more.

    Topics: Affliction, Weakness

The most generous vine, if not pruned, runs out into many superfluous stems and grows at last weak and fruitless: so doth the best man if he be not cut short in his desires, and pruned with afflictions.

    Topics: Apathy, Affliction

The best ground, unfilled and neglected, soonest runs out into rank weeds. A man of knowledge that is either negligent or uncorrected cannot but grow wild and godless.

    Topics: Apathy, Knowledge

What a world of wit is here packed together! I know not whether the sight doth more dismay or comfort me. It dismays me to think that here is so much I cannot know; it comforts me to think that this variety yields so good helps to know what I should. Blessed be the memory of those who have left their blood, their spirits, their lives, in these precious books, and have willingly wasted themselves into these during monuments, to give light unto others.

    Topics: Books, Comfort

Everyone would have something, such perhaps as we are ashamed to utter. The proud man would have honor; the covetous man, wealth and abundance; the malicious, revenge on his enemies; the epicure, pleasure and long life; the barren, children; the wanton, beauty; each would be humored in his own desire, though in opposition both to God's will, and his own good.

    Topics: Character, Enemies, Revenge

He is great enough that is his own master.

    Topics: Character

Nothing doth so fool a man as extreme passion. This doth make them fools which otherwise are not, and show them to be fools which are so.

    Topics: Character, Foolishness, Passion

Recreation is intended to the mind as whetting is to the scythe, to sharpen the edge of it, which otherwise would grow dull and blunt. He, therefore, that spends his whole time in recreation is ever whetting, never mowing; his grass may grow and his steed starve. As, contrarily, he that always toils and never recreates, is ever mowing, never whetting; laboring much to little purpose; as good no scythe as no edge.

    Topics: Character

Garments that have once one rent in them are subject to be torn on every nail, and glasses that are once cracked are soon broken. Such is man's good name when once tainted with just reproach.

    Topics: Character

Rich people should consider that they are only trustees for what they possess, and should show their wealth to be more in doing good than merely in having it. They should not reserve their benevolence for purposes after they are dead, for those who give not of their property till they die show that they would not then if they could keep it any longer.

    Topics: Charity, Wealth

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