W. Somerset Maugham (1874-1965) English novelist, playwright

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Excess on occasion is exhilarating. It prevents moderation from acquiring the deadening effect of a habit. - W. Somerset Maugham

A woman can forgive a man for the harm he does her, but she can never forgive him for the sacrifices he makes on her account. - W. Somerset Maugham

We know our friends by their defects rather than by their merits. - W. Somerset Maugham

When I read a book I seem to read it with my eyes only, but now and then I come across a passage, perhaps only a phrase, which has a meaning for me, and it becomes part of me. - W. Somerset Maugham

Dying is a very dull, dreary affair. And my advice to you is to have nothing whatever to do with it. - W. Somerset Maugham

It is unsafe to take your reader for more of a fool than he is. - W. Somerset Maugham

You can't learn too soon that the most useful thing about a principle is that it can always be sacrificed to expediency. - W. Somerset Maugham

Men seek but one thing in life, their pleasure. - W. Somerset Maugham

The common idea that success spoils people by making them vain, egotistic, and self-complacent is erroneous; on the contrary, it makes them, for the most part, humble, tolerant, and kind. Failure makes people cruel and bitter. - W. Somerset Maugham