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Welcome to Balthasar Gracian's "The Art of Worldly Wisdom" mailing list and website. In the 1600s, Balthasar Gracian, a jesuit priest, wrote 300 aphorisms on living life effectively called "The Art of Worldly Wisdom." The book stays relevent to modern day society and has been used such as Machiavelli's "The Prince" or Sun Tzu's "The Art of War" as a guidebook for everything from business to sports.

This website is updated daily with a new aphorism that is also sent out via email and RSS to our subscribers. For further reading consider this Balthasar Gracian biography or this searchable version of "The Art of Worldly Wisdom".

Aphorism #275
Join in the Game as far as Decency permits.

Do not always pose and be a bore: this is a maxim for gallant bearing. You may yield a touch of dignity to gain the general good-will: you may now and then go where most go, yet not beyond the bounds of decorum. He who makes a fool of himself in public will not be regarded as discreet in private life. One may lose more on a day of pleasure than has been gained during a whole life of labour. Still you must not always keep away: to be singular is to condemn all others. Still less act the prude--leave that to its appropriate sex: even religious prudery is ridiculous. Nothing so becomes a man as to be a man: a woman mayaffect a manly bearing as an excellence, but not vice versā.

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