Daniel Defoe quotes

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Daniel Defoe

Birthdate: 13. September 1660
Date of death: 24. April 1731

Daniel Defoe , born Daniel Foe, was an English trader, writer, journalist, pamphleteer, and spy. He is most famous for his novel Robinson Crusoe, which is second only to the Bible in its number of translations. Defoe is noted for being one of the earliest proponents of the novel, as he helped to popularise the form in Britain with others such as Aphra Behn and Samuel Richardson, and is among the founders of the English novel.

Defoe was a prolific and versatile writer, producing more than three hundred works – books, pamphlets, and journals – on diverse topics, including politics, crime, religion, marriage, psychology, and the supernatural. He was also a pioneer of business journalism and economic journalism.

Works

„It is never too late to be wise.“

—  Daniel Defoe, La vie et les aventures de Robinson Crusoe

Source: Robinson Crusoe (1719), Ch. 12, A Cave Retreat.

„Fear of danger is ten thousand times more terrifying than danger itself.“

—  Daniel Defoe, La vie et les aventures de Robinson Crusoe

Variant: Fear of danger is ten thousand times more terrifying than danger itself.
Source: Robinson Crusoe (1719), Ch. 11, Finds Print of Man's Foot on the Sand.

„From this amphibious ill-born mob began
That vain, ill-natured thing, an Englishman.“

—  Daniel Defoe

Pt. I, l. 132.
The True-Born Englishman http://www.luminarium.org/editions/trueborn.htm (1701)

„Those people cannot enjoy comfortably what God has given them because they see and covet what He has not given them. All of our discontents for what we want appear to me to spring from want of thankfulness for what we have.“

—  Daniel Defoe, La vie et les aventures de Robinson Crusoe

Source: Robinson Crusoe (1719), Ch. 9, A Boat.
Context: I learned to look more upon the bright side of my condition, and less upon the dark side, and to consider what I enjoyed rather than what I wanted; and this gave me sometimes such secret comforts, that I cannot express them; and which I take notice of here, to put those discontented people in mind of it, who cannot enjoy comfortably what God has given them, because they see and covet something that He has not given them. All our discontents about what we want appeared to me to spring from the want of thankfulness for what we have.

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