I. Aesthetics

~ The Birth of Venus by Botticelli


Appearances are deceptive.

All that glitters is not gold.[1]

Cats hide their claws.

The bait hides the hook.


It is not the beard that makes the philosopher.

The cowl does not make the monk.

A straight stick is crooked in the water.

Things are not always what they seem.


A thing of beauty is a joy forever.[2]

Beauty is eloquent even when silent.

Beauty lies in the eye of the beholder.[3]

The owl thinks her own young fairest.[4]


Beauty is only skin-deep.

Beauty is only one layer.[5]

Beauty and honesty seldom agree.

Beauty and folly go often in company.

No one can live on beauty,

But they can die for it.

Those that do not have beauty,

Are ready to kill for it


Beauty may have fair leaves,

Yet bitter fruit.

The peacock has fair feathers,

But foul feet.


Beauty fades like a flower.

Beauty is but a blossom.

The fairest flowers soonest fade.

The fairest rose at last is withered.


Beauty’s sister is vanity,

And its daughter lust.

Pretty face, poor fate.[6]

All will turn to dust.

[1] Variants appear in Chaucer and Shakespeare.

[2] The first line of Keat’s poem Endymion.

[3] Attributed to Theocritus.

[4] An allusion to one of the fables attributed to Aesop.

[5] Japanese proverb.

[6] Chinese proverb.

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