positive evaluations made by a person of another's products, performances, or attributes

Praise is the act of making positive statements about a person, object or idea, either in public or privately. Praise is typically, but not exclusively, earned relative to achievement and accomplishment. Praise is often contrasted with criticism, where the latter is held to mean exclusively negative statements made about something, although this is not technically correct.

Anyone who delights in praise destroys it. ~ Guigo I


  • It is not for minds like ours to give or to receive flattery; yet the praises of sincerity have ever been permitted to the voice of friendship.
    • Lord Byron, "Childe Harold's Pilgrimage," canto 4, dedication, Paul E. More, ed., The Complete Poetical Works of Lord Byron (1905), p. 54.
  • Praise enough
    To fill the ambition of a private man,
    That Chatham's language was his mother-tongue.
  • I am about courting a girl I have had but little acquaintance with. How shall I come to a knowledge of her faults, and whether she has the virtues I imagine she has? Answer. Commend her among her female acquaintance.
    • Benjamin Franklin, "Miscellaneous Observations," The Works of Benjamin Franklin, ed. Jared Sparks, vol. 2, p. 550 (1836).
  • Anyone who delights in praise destroys it.
    • Guigo I, The Meditations of Guigo I, Prior of the Charterhouse, as translated by A. Gordon Mursell (1995), #20
  • He who praises every body, praises nobody.
    • Attributed to Samuel Johnson, "Johnsoniana", The European Magazine and London Review (January 1785), p. 55. The anecdote which quotes this line was reprinted in The Works of Samuel Johnson, vol. 11 (Apophthegms, Sentiments, Opinions and Occasional Reflections), p. 216 (1787). According to George Birkbeck Hill, Johnsonian Miscellanies (1897, reprinted 1966), vol. 2, p. 1, 312, the author of this anecdote was George Steevens.
  • Alas! the praise given to the ear
    Ne'er was nor e'er can be sincere.
  • Praise — actual personal praise— oftener frets and embarrasses than it encourages. It is too small when too near.
  • You are pretty,—we know it; and young,—it is true; and rich,—who can deny it? But when you praise yourself extravagantly, Fabulla, you appear neither rich, nor pretty, nor young.
    • Martial, Epigrams (c. 80-104 AD), Book I, Epigram 64.
  • Join voices, all ye living souls: ye birds,
    That singing up to heaven-gate ascend,
    Bear on your wings and in your notes his praise.
  • And touch'd their golden harps, and hymning praised
    God and his works.
  • Delightful praise!—like summer rose,
    That brighter in the dew-drop glows,
    The bashful maiden's cheek appear'd,
    For Douglas spoke, and Malcolm heard.
  • Remember, I have not appointed you as commanders and tyrants over the people. I have sent you as leaders instead, so that the people may follow your example. Give the Muslims their rights and do not beat them lest they become abused. Do not praise them unduly, lest they fall into the error of conceit. Do not keep your doors shut in their faces, lest the more powerful of them eat up the weaker ones. And do not behave as if you were superior to them, for that is tyranny over them.
    • Umar as quoted in Omar the Great : The Second Caliph Of Islam (1962) by Muhammad Shibli Numani, Vol. 2, p. 33
  • I grant the man is vain who writes for praise.
    Praise no man e'er deserved who sought no more.

Hoyt's New Cyclopedia Of Practical Quotations

Quotes reported in Hoyt's New Cyclopedia Of Practical Quotations (1922), p. 624-25.
  • Praise undeserved is satire in disguise.
    • Henry Broadhurst, British Beauties. Epigram in the Garland signed B. (1721). Attributed also to Dr. Kendrick. Appears also in Tonson's Miscellanies. Anon. The Celebrated Beauties of the British Court.
  • Trahimur omnes laudis studio, et optimus quisque maxime gloria ducitur.
    • We are all excited by the love of praise, and the noblest are most influenced by glory.
    • Cicero, Oratio Pro Licinio Archia, XI.
  • Lætus sum
    Laudari me abs te, pater, laudato viro.
    • I am pleased to be praised by a man so praised as you, father. [Words used by Hector.]
    • Quoted by Cicero, Tusc. Quæst, IV. 31, 67; Epist, Book XV. 6.
  • Earth, with her thousand voices, praises God.
  • When needs he must, yet faintly then he praises;
    Somewhat the deed, much more the means he raises:
    So marreth what he makes, and praising most, dispraises.
  • Long open panegyric drags at best,
    And praise is only praise when well address'd.
  • Good people all, with one accord,
    Lament for Madame Blaize,
    Who never wanted a good word—
    From those who spoke her praise.
  • Praise me not too much,
    Nor blame me, for thou speakest to the Greeks
    Who know me.
    • Homer, The Iliad, Book X, line 289. Bryant's translation.
  • Praise from a friend, or censure from a foe,
    Are lost on hearers that our merits know.
    • Homer, The Iliad, Book X, line 293. Pope's translation.
  • Laudator temporis acti.
    • A eulogist of past times.
    • Horace, Ars Poetica (18 BC), 173.
  • Principibus placuisse viris nou ultima laus est.
    • To please great men is not the last degree of praise.
    • Horace, Epistles, I. 17. 35.
  • Cela est beau, et je vous louerais davantage si vous m'aviez loué moins.
    • That is fine, and I would have praised you more had you praised me less.
    • Attributed to Louis XIV.
  • Approbation from Sir Hubert Stanley is praise indeed.
  • Praise undeserved is scandal in disguise.
  • Id facere laus est quod decet, non quod licet.
    • He deserves praise who does not what he may, but what he ought.
    • Seneca the Younger, Octavia, 454.
  • We bow our heads before Thee, and we laud
    And magnify Thy name, Almighty God!
    But Man is Thy most awful instrument,
    In working out a pure intent.
  • The most pleasing of all sounds that of your own praise.
    • Xenophon, Hiero, I. 14. Watson's translation.
  • The love of praise, howe'er conceal'd by art,
    Reigns more or less, and glows, in ev'ry heart.

See also

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