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Civilization's Quotations: Life's Ideal    by Richard Alan Krieger order for
Civilization's Quotations
by Richard Alan Krieger
Order:  USA  Can
Algora, 2002 (2002)
Hardcover, Softcover
* *   Reviewed by Hilary Williamson

Richard Krieger's answer to 'why put together another' book of quotations, is to invite the reader to 'walk with me through all the stages and facets of life, together savoring some of the insights and adages that civilization has bestowed upon us for each moment.' He then presents to us 8000 quotations organized into over 40 categories, from Life to The World and with themes under each of these, such as Respect under Character.

Though the format is simple, lacking author or keyword indexing, it's interesting to read all the different takes on one topic. Here are some on Goodness: 'Can we ever have too much of a good thing?' from Cervantes; B. Burgh answers 'You can have too much of a good thing'; and Mae West adds her two bits worth with 'Too much of a good thing is wonderful.' And there is a validation in the emergence of similar ideas from different cultures and times, such as the Arabian saying that 'Proverbs are the lamp of speech' and this from Miguel de Cervantes, 'Proverbs are short sentences drawn from long experiences.'

Here are some more of my favorites. 'Every path has its puddle' is an English proverb, new to me. Emerson asks us 'What is a weed? A plant whose virtues have not yet been discovered', and Einstein questions 'If a cluttered desk signs a cluttered mind, of what, then, is an empty desk a sign?' (can you guess what my desk looks like?) Voltaire told us 'I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.' From the Hopi Indians comes this wisdom - 'All dreams spin out from the same web', and George Aiken asserted 'I am not very keen for doves or hawks. I think we need more owls'.

Enjoy Civilization's Quotations : Life's Ideal as a very useful resource, full of the world's wisdom in pithy and 'inspiring sound-bites'.

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