Joseph Joubert

Literary Birthday – 7 May – Joseph Joubert

Joseph Joubert was born 7 May 1754 and died 4 May 1824.


  1. The worst thing about new books is that they keep us from reading the old ones.
  2. Imagination is the eye of the soul.
  3. Never write anything that does not give you great pleasure. Emotion is easily transferred from the writer to the reader.
  4. To teach is to learn twice.
  5. Strength is natural, but grace is the growth of habit. This charming quality requires practice if it is to become lasting.
  6. The aim of an argument or discussion should not be victory, but progress.
  7. Those who never retract their opinions love themselves more than they love truth.
  8. Close your eyes and see.
  9. We must respect the past, and mistrust the present, if we wish to provide for the safety of the future.
  10. When you go in search of honey, you must expect to be stung by bees.
  11. He who has imagination without learning has wings but no feet.
  12. We may convince others by our arguments, but we can only persuade them by their own.
  13. Writing is closer to thinking than speaking.

Joseph Joubert was a French moralist and essayist. He is remembered today largely for his Pensées, which was published posthumously.

Source for image

A portrait of the French writer Joseph Joubert (1754-1824)

by Amanda Patterson

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Posted on: 7th May 2017