Hoyt & Roberts, comps. Hoyt’s New Cyclopedia of Practical Quotations. 1922.


A chaste and lucid style is indicative of the same personal traits in the author.
Hosea Ballou—MS. Sermons.

Le style c’est l’homme.
The style is the man.
Buffon—Discourse on taking his seat in the French Academie. Aug. 25, 1753. Le style c’est l’homme même. Œuvres Completes. (1778). Histoire Naturelle. (1769). Le style est de l’homme. Discours sur Style.

Style is the dress of thoughts.
Chesterfield—Letter to his Son. On Education. Nov. 24, 1749.

And, after all, it is style alone by which posterity will judge of a great work, for an author can have nothing truly his own but his style.
Isaac D’Israeli—Literary Miscellanies. Style.

Style! style! why, all writers will tell you that it is the very thing which can least of all be changed. A man’s style is nearly as much a part of him as his physiognomy, his figure, the throbbing of his pulse,—in short, as any part of his being is at least subjected to the action of the will.

The gloomy comparisons of a disturbed imagination, the melancholy madness of poetry without the inspiration.
Junius—To Sir W. Draper. Letter No. VIII.

Neat, not gaudy.
Lamb—Letter to Wordsworth. June, 1806.

Che stilo oltra l’ingegno non si stende.
For style beyond the genius never dares.
Petrarch—Morte di Laura. Sonnet 68.

Such labour’d nothings, in so strange a style,
Amaze th’ learn’d, and make the learned smile.
Pope—Essay on Criticism. Pt. II. L. 126.

Expression is the dress of thought, and still
Appears more decent as more suitable;
A vile conceit in pompous words express’d,
Is like a clown in regal purple dress’d.
Pope—Essay on Criticism. L. 318.

When Croft’s “Life of Dr. Young” was spoken of as a good imitation of Dr. Johnson’s style, “No, no,” said he, “it is not a good imitation of Johnson; it has all his pomp without his force; it has all the nodosities of the oak, without its strength; it has all the contortions of the sibyl, without the inspiration.”
Prior—Life of Burke.

La clarté orne les pensées profondes.
Clearness ornaments profound thoughts.
Vauvenargues—Reflexions et Maximes. 4.

L’obscurité est le royaume de l’erreur.
Obscurity is the realm of error.
Vauvenargues—Reflexions et Maximes. 5.

Tous les genres sont bons, hors le genre ennuyeux.
All styles are good except the tiresome kind.
Voltaire—L’Enfant Prodigue. Preface.

The flowery style is not unsuitable to public speeches or addresses, which amount only to compliment. The lighter beauties are in their place when there is nothing more solid to say; but the flowery style ought to be banished from a pleading, a sermon, or a didactic work.
Voltaire—Philosophical Dictionary. Style.