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Ninon de Lenclos

  • The loss of friends is a tax on age!

    • Ninon de Lenclos,
    • in Mrs. Griffith, trans., The Memoirs of Ninon de L'Enclos, vol. 1 ()
  • Wit is a dangerous talent in friendship.

    • Ninon de Lenclos,
    • in Mrs. Griffith, trans., The Memoirs of Ninon de L'Enclos, vol. 1 ()
  • Beauty without grace, is a hook without bait.

    • Ninon de Lenclos,
    • in Mrs. Griffith, trans., The Memoirs of Ninon de L'Enclos, vol. 1 ()
  • There is a certain time of life, when we value a good stomach more than the mind ...

    • Ninon de Lenclos,
    • in Mrs. Griffith, trans., The Memoirs of Ninon de L'Enclos, vol. 1 ()
  • It requires infinitely a greater genius to make love, than to make war.

    • Ninon de Lenclos,
    • in Mrs. Griffith, trans., The Memoirs of Ninon de L'Enclos, vol. 2 ()
  • A woman is more easily persuaded that she is loved by what she guesses than by what she is told.

    • Ninon de Lenclos,
    • c. 1660, Lettres de Ninon de Lenclos ()
  • Feminine virtue is nothing but a convenient masculine invention.

    • Ninon de Lenclos,
    • c. 1660, Lettres de Ninon de Lenclos ()
  • The most flattering words are not those which we fashion, but those which escape us unthinkingly.

    • Ninon de Lenclos,
    • c. 1660, Lettres de Ninon de Lenclos ()
  • Love never dies of starvation, but often of indigestion.

    • Ninon de Lenclos,
    • c. 1660, Lettres de Ninon de Lenclos ()
  • Love without desire is a delusion: it does not exist in nature.

    • Ninon de Lenclos,
    • in J. De Finod, ed., A Thousand Flashes of French Wit, Wisdom, and Wickedness ()
  • Men lose more conquests by their own awkwardness than by any virtue in the woman.

    • Ninon de Lenclos,
    • in Ethel Colburn Mayne, Enchanters of Men ()
  • Shall I tell you what makes love so dangerous? 'Tis the too high idea we are apt to form of it.

    • Ninon de Lenclos,
    • c. 1695, in M. Lincoln Schuster, The World's Great Letters ()
  • If God had to give a woman wrinkles, he might at least have put them on the soles of her feet.

    • Ninon de Lenclos,
    • 1665, in Lillian Day, Ninon: A Courtesan of Quality ()
  • A woman should not take a lover without the consent of her heart, nor a husband without the consent of her reason.

    • Ninon de Lenclos,
    • 1662, in Lillian Day, Ninon: A Courtesan of Quality ()
  • Never tell a loved one of an infidelity: you would be badly rewarded for your trouble. Although one dislikes being deceived, one likes even less to be undeceived.

    • Ninon de Lenclos,
    • 1665, in Lillian Day, Ninon: A Courtesan of Quality ()
  • We should lay in a store of food, but never of pleasures; these should be gathered day by day.

    • Ninon de Lenclos,
    • 1665, in Lillian Day, Ninon: A Courtesan of Quality ()
  • The joy of a spirit is the measure of its power.

    • Ninon de Lenclos,
    • 1694, in Edgar H. Cohen, Mademoiselle Libertine ()
  • I have always sworn to my lovers to love them eternally, but for me eternity is a quarter of an hour.

    • Ninon de Lenclos,
    • 1658, in Edgar H. Cohen, Mademoiselle Libertine ()
  • It takes one hundred times more intelligence to make love well than to command armies.

    • Ninon de Lenclos,
    • 1658, in Edgar H. Cohen, Mademoiselle Libertine ()
  • The mind has great advantages over the body; however the body often furnishes little treats ... which offer the mind relief from sad thoughts.

    • Ninon de Lenclos,
    • 1698, in Edgar H. Cohen, Mademoiselle Libertine ()
  • I hold those wise who know how to be happy.

    • Ninon de Lenclos,
    • 1699, in Edgar H. Cohen, Mademoiselle Libertine ()
  • It is not enough to be wise, one must be engaging.

    • Ninon de Lenclos,
    • 1699, in Edgar H. Cohen, Mademoiselle Libertine ()
  • One must choose between loving women and knowing them.

    • Ninon de Lenclos
  • After the age of eighty, all contemporaries are friends.

    • Ninon de Lenclos
  • The secret known to two is no longer a secret.

    • Ninon de Lenclos
  • In love-making, feigning lovers succeed much better than the really devoted.

    • Ninon de Lenclos
  • The resistance of a woman is not always a proof of her virtue, but more frequently of her experience.

    • Ninon de Lenclos
  • Every action we take, everything we do, is either a victory or defeat in the struggle to become what we want to be.

    • Ninon de Lenclos
  • Old age is a woman's hell.

    • Ninon de Lenclos

Ninon de Lenclos, French society figure, letterwriter

(1620 - 1705)

Real name: Anne de Lenclos, but also seen as Lanclos and L’Enclos.