Words and tendernesses are like spires and pinnacles in architecture, beautiful if plainly they stand on good piers; otherwise, false things and terrors.
James Vila Blake (Unitarian, hymnist, clergy) More Than Kin (1896) p.13
Words may be said to be the echoes of the heart
Hosea Ballou (Universalist, clergy)
Of course, the very largest liberty must be and should be conceded to legitimate criticism…But misrepresentation for the purpose of detraction is not criticism at all…
Francis Ellingwood Abbot, “A Public Appeal for Redress to the Corporation and Overseers of Harvard” (1891) (Unitarian, theologian, educator, clergy)
Most people talk so they won’t hear.
May Sarton (Unitarian Universalist, poet, essayist, novelist, critic)
Weigh well, therefore, everything you say; be guarded in all your ways, and let your whole deportment be regulated by true wisdom; for by your lives you do more to form the characters of your children than by any other means.
Otis Ainsworth Skinner, Letters on the Moral Duties of Parents (1844) p.26 (Universalist, clergy, President of Lombard University, educator, editor, author)
To speak gentle words is to cherish the spirit of gentleness; to speak ungentle words is to grow ungentle in the deed, to double the evil by the apologies which sustain and renew it.
Thomas Treadwell Stone, The Rod and the Staff (1856) p.166-167 (Transcendentalist, Unitarian, abolitionist, reformer, clergy)
A word that has been said may be unsaid: it is but air. But when a deed is done, it cannot be undone, nor can our thoughts reach out to all the mischiefs that may follow.
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (Unitarian, poet)
A good word is an easy obligation; but not to speak ill requires only our silence, which costs us nothing.
O. H. Tillotson (Universalist, minister)
Nobody means all he says, and yet very few say all they mean, for words are slippery and thought is viscous.
Henry Brooks Adams (Unitarian, author)
The choice of words is more important than the choice of vitamins.
Edson Russell Miles, The Price of Freedom: Lenten Manual 1944 (Universalist, Homiletics Profession at St. Lawrence Theological School 1917-48, minister)