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Michel Eyquem de Montaigne
1533 - 1592

French Renaissance philosopher, city councilor and eventually mayor of Bordeaux, France. Author of Essais (Books 1-3, 1572-80 and 1588) which made lasting contributions to literature by describing the ideas and personalities of his time, and his explorations of the meaning in them.


The conduct of our lives is the true mirror of our doctrine.

1580 - from "Of the Education of Our Children" in Essays
The births of all things are weak and tender, and therefore we should have our eyes intent on beginnings.

1580 - from "Of Managing the Will" in Essays
He who establishes his argument by noise and command shows that his reason is weak.

He who would be cured of ignorance must confess it.

There never were, in the world, two opinions alike, no more than two hairs, or two grains; the most universal quality is diversity.