Insults

expression, statement (or sometimes behavior) which is disrespectful or scornful
A portion of Hippolyte Delaroche's 1836 oil painting Charles I Insulted by Cromwell's Soldiers

Insults are expressions, statements (or sometimes behavior) which is considered degrading and offensive. Insults may be intentional or accidental. An example of the latter is a well-intended simple explanation, which in fact is superfluous, but is given due to underestimating the intelligence or knowledge of the other.

QuotesEdit

  • If you get your head above the crowd, you're going to be criticized. So get used to the idea.
    • Matthew C. Brush as quoted by Dale Carnegie in How to Stop Worrying and Start Living, chapter 21.
  • When I hear somebody cussing me now, I never turn my head to see who is talking.
    • Major General Smedley Butler, as quoted by Dale Carnegie in How to Stop Worrying and Start Living, chapter 21.
  • We should never insult others on account of their faults, for it is our duty to show charity and respect to everyone.
    • John Calvin Golden Booklet of the True Christian Life, pg. 33.
  • If he has deserved no kindness, but just the opposite, because he has maddened you with his injuries and insults, even this is no reason why you should not surround him with your affection and show him all sorts of favors.
    • John Calvin, Golden Booklet of the True Christian Life, pg. 38
  • mere insult or affront to plaintiff's dignity not qualifying as defamatory
    • Canadian Encyclopedic Digest - Defamation - chapter I.1
  • Many people get a sense of savage satisfaction out of denouncing those who are better educated than they are or more successful.
    • Dale Carnegie in How to Stop Worrying and Start Living, chapter 20.
  • I discovered years ago that although I couldn't keep people from criticizing me unjustly, I could do something infinitely more important: I could determine whether I would let the unjust condemnation disturb me.
    • Dale Carnegie in How to Stop Worrying and Start Living, chapter 20.
  • I am the insulted one, therefore I have the choice of weapons. I choose the sword.
    • Alexander Dumas in L’Étrangère
  • Why tarry ye, then, to repair so many wrongs, to avenge so many insults?
    • Francois Pierre Guillaume Guizot, A Popular History of France From The Earliest Times Volume II
  • I must bear with their violence and outrageous insults and villanous misdeeds; but, please God, they will get weak and old whilst I shall grow in strength and power, and shall be, in my turn, avenged according to my desire.
    • Francois Pierre Guillaume Guizot, A Popular History of France From The Earliest Times Volume II
  • No one ever kicks a dead dog.
    • William James Hutchins, as quoted by Dale Carnegie in How to Stop Worrying and Start Living, chapter 20.
  • τίς ὸμφαλητόμος σε τὸν διοπλῆγα
    ἔψησε κἀπέλουσεν ἀσκαρίζοντα
    • What navel-snipper [midwife] wiped and washed you as you squirmed about, you crack-brained creature?
    • Hipponax attributed by Aelius Herodianus (fl. 2nd c. CE), 'On Inflections'; as cited by Douglas Gerber, Greek Iambic Poetry, Loeb Classical Library (1999), page 367.
  • Hear me, you who know what is right,
you people who have taken my instruction to heart:
Do not fear the reproach of mere mortals
or be terrified by their insults.
For the moth will eat them up like a garment;
the worm will devour them like wool.
But my righteousness will last forever,
my salvation through all generations.
  • If they persecuted me, they will persecute you.
  • Sticks and stones may break my bones But words will never hurt me.
    • Alexander William Kinglake in his Eothen (written 1830, published in London, John Ollivier, 1844)
  • The truncheon leant back against the chimney, and took no notice of the personal insult, like a well-trained policeman as it was, though he was ready enough to avenge any transgression against morality or order.
  • If I were to try to read, much less answer, all the attacks made on me, this shop might as well be closed for any other business. I do the very best I know how — the very best I can; and I mean to keep doing so until the end. If the end brings me out all right, what's said against me won't amount to anything. If the end brings me out wrong, ten angels swearing I was right would make no difference.
    • Abraham Lincoln As quoted in The Life and Public Service of Abraham Lincoln (1865) by Henry J. Raymond
  • Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
  • If anyone strikes you on the right cheek, turn the other also;
  • To practice patience, you need a real rascal to help you. It's no use practicing on gentle and kind creatures, for they require no patience.
    • from "The Magic of Patience" a Jataka tale written around 300 B.C.
  • There is something liberating about public humiliation.
  • Those who hate to be rebuked are stupid . . . The prudent ignore an insult.
  • Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse them.
  • Never be bothered by what people say, as long as you know in your heart you are right.
    • Anna Roosevelt Cowles as quoted by Dale Carnegie in How to Stop Worrying and Start Living, chapter 21.
  • It is not the critic who counts, not the man who points out how the strong man stumbled, or where the doer of deeds could have done better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena; whose face is marred by the dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs and comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error or shortcoming; who knows the great enthusiasms, the great devotions and spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best, knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who, at worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly; so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who know neither victory or defeat.
    • Theodore Roosevelt "Citizenship in a Republic", a speech at the Sorbonne, Paris, France (23 April 1910)
  • Difficult people and events become interesting opportunities for further growth, rather than threatening obstacle courses we must endure.
    • M. J. Ryan in The Power of Patience
  • Let him alone and let him curse; for the Lord has bidden him. It may be that the Lord will look on my distress, and the Lord will repay me with good for this cursing of me today.
  • 'Tis the first art of kings, the power to suffer hate.
  • No one knows public humiliation like a comedian.
  • Let us lie in wait for the righteous man, because he is inconvenient to us and opposes our actions; . . . let us test him with insult and torture, so that we may find out how gentle he is, and make trial of his forbearance.
  • Nothing matters to a man who says nothing matters.

Hoyt's New Cyclopedia Of Practical QuotationsEdit

Quotes reported in Hoyt's New Cyclopedia Of Practical Quotations (1922), p. 398.
  • Qui se laisse outrager, mérite qu'on l'outrage
    Et l'audace impunie enfle trop un courage.
    • He who allows himself to be insulted deserves to be so; and insolence, if unpunished, increases!
    • Pierre Corneille, Heraclius, I. 2.
  • Kein Heiligthum heisst uns den Schimpf ertragen.
  • Quid facies tibi,
    Injuriæ qui addideris contumeliam?
    • What wilt thou do to thyself, who hast added insult to injury?
    • Phaedrus, Fables, V. 3. 4.
  • Contumeliam si dices, audies.
    • If you speak insults you will hear them also.
    • Plautus, Pseudolus, Act IV. 7. 77.
  • Sæpe satius fuit dissimulare quam ulcisci.
    • It is often better not to see an insult than to avenge it.
    • Seneca the Younger, De Ira, II. 32.

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