Top Precisely Quotes

Browse top 692 famous quotes and sayings about Precisely by most favorite authors.

Favorite Precisely Quotes

1. "At the word witch, we imagine the horrible old crones from Macbeth. But the cruel trials witches suffered teach us the opposite. Many perished precisely because they were young and beautiful."
Author: André Breton
2. "Liberal soccer moms are precisely as likely to receive anthrax in the mail as to develop a capacity for linear thinking."
Author: Ann Coulter
3. "Feminist effort to end patriarchal domination should be of primary concern precisely because it insists on the eradication of exploitation and oppression in the family context and in all other intimate relationships. It is that political movement which most radically addresses the person – the personal – citing the need for the transformation of self, of relationships, so that we might be better able to act in a revolutionary manner, challenging and resisting domination, transforming the world outside the self."
Author: Bell Hooks
4. "I still maintain that the times get precisely the literature that they deserve, and that if the writing of this period is gloomy the gloom is not so much inherent in the literature as in the times."
Author: Bill Styron
5. "Meg often slept with me she didn't want to sleep with: she didn't know how to say no. More precisely, she didn't know she was allowed to say no."
Author: Caroline Knapp
6. "Differences are not intended to separate, to alienate. We are different precisely in order to realize our need of one another."
Author: Desmond Tutu
7. "[W]hat is always overlooked is that although the poor want to be rich, it does not follow that they either like the rich or that they in any way want to emulate their characters which, in fact, they despise. Both the poor and the rich have always found precisely the same grounds on which to complain about each other. Each feels the other has no manners, is disloyal, corrupt, insensitive - and has never put in an honest day's work in its life."
Author: Elaine Dundy
8. "They might not need me; but they might. I'll let my head be just in sight; a smile as small as mine might be precisely their necessity."
Author: Emily Dickinson
9. "You compare the nation to a parched piece of land and the tax to a life-giving rain. So be it. But you should also ask yourself where this rain comes from, and whether it is not precisely the tax that draws the moisture from the soil and dries it up. You should also ask yourself further whether the soil receives more of this precious water from the rain than it loses by the evaporation?"
Author: Frédéric Bastiat
10. "Though the sleepy, myopic, and rather bald-pated figure reflected in the mirror was precisely of such insignificant quality as to arrest decidedly no one's exclusive attention at first sight, its owner evidently remained perfectly pleased with all he saw in the mirror."
Author: Fyodor Dostoyevsky
11. "...in my opinion miracles will never confound a realist. It is not miracles that bring a realist to faith. A true realist, if he is not a believer, will always find in himself the strength and ability not to believe in miracles as well, and if a miracle stands before him as an irrefutable fact, he will sooner doubt his own senses than admit the fact. And even if he does admit it, he will admit it as a fact of nature that was previously unknown to him. In the realist, faith is not born from miracles, but miracles from faith. Once the realist comes to believe, then, precisely because of his realism, he must also allow for miracles. The Apostle Thomas declared that he would not believe until he saw, and when he saw, he said: "My Lord and My God!" Was it the miracle that made him believe? Most likely not, but he believed first and foremost because he wished to believe, and maybe already fully believed in his secret heart even as he was saying: "I will not believe until I see."
Author: Fyodor Dostoyevsky
12. "Is this what is called remorse of conscience or repentance? I do not know, and I cannot tell to this day. Perhaps this remembrance even now contains something pleasurable for my passions. No--what is unbearable to me is only this image alone, and precisely on the threshold, with its raised and threatening little fist, only that look alone, only that minute alone, only that shaking head. This is what I cannot bear, because since then it appears to me almost every day. It does not appear on its own, but I myself evoke it, and cannot help evoking it, even though I cannot live with it."
Author: Fyodor Dostoyevsky
13. "I know about an actual murder over a watch, it's in all the newspapers now. If a writer had invented it, the critics and connoisseurs of popular life would have shouted at once that it was incredible; but reading it in the newspapers as a fact, you feel that it is precisely from such facts that you learn about Russian reality."
Author: Fyodor Dostoyevsky
14. "A tragic situation exists precisely when virtue does NOT triumph but when it is still felt that man is nobler than the forces which destroy him."
Author: George Bernard Shaw
15. "I enjoyed the innocence of unhappiness and of helplessness; could I blame myself for a sin which attracted me, which flooded me with pleasure precisely to the extent it brought me to despair?"
Author: Georges Bataille
16. "Bonnie Jean (who thinks all philosophers are idiots) has this quarrel with Wittgenstein, who in several places says that reddish green is inconceivable. Yet every summer, when our peppers are drying from green to red, one can see an intermediate stage that is precisely reddish green."
Author: Guy Davenport
17. "In any case, though, I believe that I have no been fair to you and that, as a result, I must have led you around in circles and hurt you deeply. In doing so, however, I have led myself around in circles and hurt myself just as deeply. I say this not as an excuse or means of self-justification but because it's true. If I have left a wound inside you, it is not just your wound, but mine as well. So please try not to hate me. I am a flawed human being - a far more flawed human being than you realize. Which is precisely why I do not want you to hate me. Because if you were to do that I would really go to pieces. I can't do what you can do: I can't slip inside my shell and wait for things to pass. I don't know for a fact that you are really like that, but sometimes you give me that impression. I often envy that in you, which may be why I led you around in circles so much."
Author: Haruki Murakami
18. "In precisely the same way money is often hired, and the hire paid for the use of it is called Interest."
Author: John Buchanan Robinson
19. "I shuffled to the back. ‘You there—new girl. I can't see you.' Precisely: that had been the idea."
Author: Joss Stirling
20. "Let me put it more precisely: The ability to give birth is a natural characteristic. In the same way, everybody can grasp philosophical truths if they just use their innate reason."
Author: Jostein Gaarder
21. "This assumes an upward revision of the European Budget, which is precisely what Jacques Chirac refuses to do. On the contrary, he has demanded a reduction."
Author: Laurent Fabius
22. "Sometimes she didn't know what she feared, what she desired: whether she feared or desired what had been or what would be, and precisely what she desired, she did not know."
Author: Leo Tolstoy
23. "Can you see why Teresa DeBrito was so worried about Shepaug Valley? She is the principal of a middle school, teaching children at precisely the age when they begin to make the difficult transition to adolescence. They are awkward and self-conscious and anxious about seeming too smart. Getting them to engage, to move beyond simple question-and-answer sessions with their teacher, she said, can be "like pulling teeth." She wanted lots of interesting and diverse voices in her classrooms, and the kind of excitement"
Author: Malcolm Gladwell
24. "As all historians know, the past is a great darkness, and filled with echoes. Voices may reach us from it; but what they say to us is imbued with the obscurity of the matrix out of which they come; and try as we may, we cannot always decipher them precisely in the clearer light of our day."
Author: Margaret Atwood
25. "If we are defined by reason and morality, then reason and morality must define our choices, even when animals are concerned. When people say, for example, that they like their veal or hot dogs too much to ever give them up, and yeah it's sad about the farms but that's just the way it is, reason hears in that the voice of gluttony. We can say that what makes a human being human is precisely the ability to understand that the suffering of an animal is more important than the taste of a treat."
Author: Matthew Scully
26. "[T]he commitment to a framework neutral among ends can be seen as a kind of value [...] but its value consists precisely in its refusal to affirm a preferred way of life or conception of the good."
Author: Michael J. Sandel
27. "Eisenhower had run the Army; he knew all the ways decision making can go off the rails, and insisted on collective debate precisely to prevent senior officials from freelancing, or putting their departmental interests first. For all the formal machinery, Eisenhower was very literally the commander in chief, making the key decisions himself and monitoring closely how they were carried out. Even years after D-Day, when critics needled him for not being on the front lines with the invading forces, he retorted, "I planned it and took responsibility for it. Did you want me to unload a truck?"
Author: Nancy Gibbs
28. "It's usually best not to ask philosophers anything, precisely because they have the habit of what in the Persian language is called sanud: the profitless consideration of unsettling yet inconsequential things."
Author: Nick Harkaway
29. "Books are better than television, the internet, or the computer for educating and maintaining freedom.Books matter because they state ideas and then attempt to thoroughly prove them. They have an advantage precisely because they slow down the process, allowing the reader to internalize, respond, react and transform. The ideas in books matter because time is taken to establish truth, and because the reader must take the time to consider each idea and either accept it or, if he rejects it, to think through sound reasons for doing so. A nation of people who write and read is a nation with the attention span to earn an education and free society if they choose."
Author: Oliver DeMille
30. "The blighter's manner was so cold and unchummy that I bit the bullet and had a dash at being airy."Oh, well, tra-la-la!" I said."Precisely, sir," said Jeeves."
Author: P.G. Wodehouse
31. "Whereas the tourist generally hurries back home at the end of a few weeks or months, the traveler belonging no more to one place than to the next, moves slowly over periods of years, from one part of the earth to another. Indeed, he would have found it difficult to tell, among the many places he had lived, precisely where it was he had felt most at home."
Author: Paul Bowles
32. "It may be all very well in Dickens, but when you read Dickens you're reading a long ballad from a vanished world, where everything has to come together in the end like an equation, where the balance of what was once disturbed must be restored so that the gods can smile again. A consolation, maybe, or a protest against a world gone off the rails, but it is not like that any more, my world is not like that, and I have never gone along with those who believe our lives are governed by fate. They whine, they wash their hands and crave pity. I believe we shape our lives ourselves, at any rate I have shaped mine, for what it's worth, and I take complete responsibility. But of all the places I might have moved to, I had to land up precisely here."
Author: Per Petterson
33. "But if man genuinely produces man, it is precisely not through work and it's concrete results, not even the 'work on oneself' so widely praised in recent times, let alone through the alternatively invoked phenomena of 'interaction' or 'communication': it is through life in forms of practice. Practice is defined here as any operation that provides or improves the actor's qualification for the next performance of the same operation, whether it is declared as practice or not."
Author: Peter Sloterdijk
34. "Be that as it may, there is fixed in my mind a certain opinion of long [21] standing, namely that there exists a God who is able to do anything and by whom I, such as I am, have been created. How do I know that he did not bring it about that there is no earth at all, no heavens, no extended thing, no shape, no size, no place, and yet bringing it about that all these things appear to me to exist precisely as they do now?"
Author: René Descartes
35. "I despise my own past and that of others. I despise resignation, patience, professional heroism and all the obligatory sentiments. I also despise the decorative arts, folklore, advertising, radio announcers' voices, aerodynamics, the Boy Scouts, the smell of naphtha, the news, and drunks.I like subversive humor, freckles, women's knees and long hair, the laughter of playing children, and a girl running down the street.I hope for vibrant love, the impossible, the chimerical.I dread knowing precisely my own limitations."
Author: René Magritte
36. "And so began my final stage of my boyhood in Mohawk. Later, as an adult, I would return from time to time. As a visitor, though, never again as a true resident. But then I wouldn't be a true resident of any other place either, joining instead the great multitude of wandering Americans, so many of whom have a Mohawk in their past, the memory of which propels us we know not precisely where, so long as it's away. Return we do, but only to gain momentum for our next outward arc, each further than the last, until there is no elasticity left, nothing to draw us home."
Author: Richard Russo
37. "The silence lasted precisely five seconds, during which time eyes roamed other eyes, several throats were cleared, and no one moved in his chair. It was as if a decision were being reached without discussion: evasion was to be avoided. Congressman Efrem Walters, out of the hills of Tennessee by way of the Yale Law Review, was not to be dismissed with facile circumlocution that dealt with the esoterica of clandestine manipulations. Bullshit was out."
Author: Robert Ludlum
38. "Wild animals, like wild places, are invaluable to us precisely because they are not us. They are uncompromisingly different. The paths they follow, the impulses that guide them, are of other orders. The seal's holding gaze, before it flukes to push another tunnel through the sea, the hare's run, the hawk's high gyres : such things are wild. Seeing them, you are made briefly aware of a world at work around and beside our own, a world operating in patterns and purposes that you do not share. These are creatures, you realise that live by voices inaudible to you."
Author: Robert Macfarlane
39. "No need to go into details about what I said to Judy? I am no poet, and I suppose what I said was very much what everybody always says, and although I remember her as speaking golden words, I cannot recall precisely anything she said. If love is to be watched and listened to without embarrassment, it must be transmuted into art, and I don't know how to do that, and it is not what I have come to Zürich to learn."
Author: Robertson Davies
40. "But it was for your own good." – Nick"So's the spanking I'm about to give you." – Cherise"I'm too big to spank." – Nick"Fine, you're grounded until your grandkids are old." – Cherise"Kind of hard to do. How am I supposed to have grandkids if I'm grounded?" – Nick"Precisely my point, you demon spawn. You're never going to get off restriction." – Cherise"
Author: Sherrilyn Kenyon
41. "By seeing the multitude of people around it, by being busied with all sorts of worldly affairs, by being wise to the ways of the world, such a person forgets himself, in a divine sense forgets his own name, dares not believe in himself, finds being himself too risky, finds it much easier and safer to be like the others, to become a copy, a number, along with the crowd. Now this form of despair goes practically unnoticed in the world. Precisely by losing oneself in this way, such a person gains all that is required for a flawless performance in everyday life, yes, for making a great success out of life. Here there is no dragging of the feet, no difficulty with his self and its infinitizing, he is ground smooth as a pebble, as exchangeable as a coin of the realm. Far from anyone thinking him to be in despair, he is just what a human being ought to be. Naturally, the world has generally no understanding of what is truly horrifying."
Author: Søren Kierkegaard
42. "Faith is the most important factor in religious questions. If I am capable of grasping God objectively, I do not believe, but precisely because I cannot do this I must believe. If I wish to preserve myself in faith I must constantly be intent upon holding fast the objective uncertainty, so as to remain out upon the deep, over seventy thousand fathoms of water, still preserving my faith."
Author: Søren Kierkegaard
43. "The specific character of despair is precisely this: it is unaware of being despair."
Author: Søren Kierkegaard
44. "And Dil was realizing that there are few things that so shake belief as seeing, clearly and precisely, the object of that belief. Seeing, contrary to popular wisdom, isn't believing. It's where belief stops, because it isn't needed anymore."
Author: Terry Pratchett
45. "Modern amorists are sometimes taken aback at the prospect of investing in a relationship with no guarantee of reward. It is precisely that absence, however, that separates gift from shrewdness. Love cannot be extracted, commanded, demanded, or wheedled. It can only be given. (208)"
Author: Thomas Lewis
46. "And life? Life itself? Was it perhaps only an infection, a sickening of matter? Was that which one might call the original procreation of matter only a disease, a growth produced by morbid stimulation of the immaterial? The first step toward evil, toward desire and death, was taken precisely then, when there took place that first increase in the density of the spiritual, that pathologically luxuriant morbid growth, produced by the irritant of some unknown infiltration; this, in part pleasurable, in part a motion of self-defense, was the primeval stage of matter, the transition from the insubstantial to the substance. This was the Fall."
Author: Thomas Mann
47. "There is a simple mantra you can carry about you in traffic: When a situation feels dangerous to you, it's probably more safe than you know; when a situation feels safe, that is precisely when you should feel on guard. Most crashes, after all, happen on dry roads, on clear, sunny days, to sober drivers."
Author: Tom Vanderbilt
48. "Don't aim at success. The more you aim at it and make it a target, the more you are going to miss it. For success, like happiness, cannot be pursued; it must ensue, and it only does so as the unintended side effect of one's personal dedication to a cause greater than oneself or as the by-product of one's surrender to a person other than oneself. Happiness must happen, and the same holds for success: you have to let it happen by not caring about it. I want you to listen to what your conscience commands you to do and go on to carry it out to the best of your knowledge. Then you will live to see that in the long-run—in the long-run, I say!—success will follow you precisely because you had forgotten to think about it"
Author: Viktor E. Frankl
49. "I'm not writing a book of Western history,' I tell him. 'I've written enough history books to know this isn't one. I'm writing about something else. A marriage, I guess. Deadwood was just a blank space in the marriage. Why waste time on it?'Rodman is surprised. So am I, actually — I have never formulated precisely what it is I have been doing, but the minute I say it I know I have said it right. What interests me in all these papers is not Susan Burling Ward, the novelist and illustrator, and not Oliver Ward the engineer, and not the West they spend their lives in. What really interests me is how two such unlike particles clung together, and under what strains, rolling downhill into their future until they reached the angle of repose where I knew them. That's where the interest is. That's where the meaning will be if I find any."
Author: Wallace Stegner
50. "Perhaps the sallow drunk should have taken the hint. But he needed to feel confident in his life. It was only when he drank that he felt he could be anything. He felt this precisely because his perceptions had grown so constricted that he could no longer be cognizant of his limitations, like those old people who when sight, hearing and memory slip away make unflattering remarks in loud voices about others who are still present but out of their dwindling sensory range. How amazed they'd be, if they understood that the nasty man who'd long since vanished from their apprehension like last Thursday's television show had just now heard them denounce his nastiness! For they'd meant no harm! Backstab gossip doesn't harm anybody, does it? It's only steam-letting, social sport, wit, liveliness, self-comfort like complaining over an arthritic wrist."
Author: William T. Vollmann

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What are the butcherly delights of meat? These are not sensual but analytical. The satisfaction of scientific curiosity in dissection. A clinical pleasure in the precision with which the process of reducing the living, moving, vivid object to the dead status of thing is accomplished. The pleasure of watching the spectacle of the slaughter that derives from the knowledge one is disassociated from the spectacle; the bloody excitation of the audience in the abattoir, who watch the dramatic transformation act, from living flesh to dead meat, derives from the knowledge they are safe from the knife themselves. There is the technical pleasure of carving and the anticipatory pleasure of the prospect of eating the meat, of the assimilation of the dead stuff, after which it will be humanly transformed into flesh."
Author: Angela Carter

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