Revenge may be wicked, but it’s natural.

—William Makepeace Thackeray, 1847

Quarrels would not last long if the fault was only on one side.

—La Rochefoucauld, 1665

Today’s friend may be tomorrow’s foe.

—Sophocles, 440 BC

The hatred of relatives is the bitterest.

—Tacitus, 117

I shall embrace my rival—until I suffocate him.

—Jean Racine, 1669

Hate must make a man productive. Otherwise one might as well love.

—Karl Kraus, 1912

We often give our enemies the means for our own destruction.

—Aesop, c. 600 BC

Rivalry adds so much to the charms of one’s conquests.

—Louisa May Alcott, 1866

Enemies are so stimulating.

—Katharine Hepburn, 1969

Envy and hatred are apt to blind the eyes and render them unable to behold things as they are.

—Margaret of Valois, c. 1600

It is permitted to learn even from an enemy.

—Ovid, c. 8

The men of today are born to criticize; of Achilles they see only the heel.

—Marie von Ebner-Eschenbach, 1880

One of the most time-consuming things is to have an enemy.

—E.B. White, 1977

What mighty contests rise from trivial things.

—Alexander Pope, 1712

Better a thousand enemies outside the house than one inside.

—Arabic proverb

Hoping for new friendship from old enemies is / Like expecting to find a rose in a furnace.

—Muhammad Baqir Najm-i Sani, 1612

To outwit an enemy is not only just and glorious but profitable and sweet.

—Plutarch, c. 100

The only competition worthy a wise man is with himself.

—Anna Jameson, 1846

No one wins a quarrel by quarreling.

—German proverb

From hell’s heart I stab at thee; for hate’s sake I spit my last breath at thee.

—Herman Melville, 1851

How can we bear misfortune most easily? If we see our enemies faring worse.

—Thales of Miletus, c. 585 BC

Opposition may become sweet to a man when he has christened it persecution.

—George Eliot, 1857

Rivalry is the whetstone of talent.

—Roman proverb

He laughs best who laughs last.

—French proverb

Resentment kills a fool, and envy slays the simple.

—Book of Job, c. 600 BC

Put national causes first and personal grudges last.

—Sima Qian, c. 91 BC

Many need no other provocation to enmity than that they find themselves excelled.

—Samuel Johnson, 1751

When a coward sees a man he can beat, he becomes hungry for a fight.

—Chinua Achebe, 1960

We die of comfort and by conflict live.

—May Sarton, 1953

You shall judge of a man by his foes as well as by his friends.

—Joseph Conrad, 1900

An injury is much sooner forgotten than an insult.

—Philip Dormer Stanhope, 1746

Do we want laurels for ourselves most, / Or most that no one else shall have any?

—Amy Lowell, 1922

For what do we live, but to make sport for our neighbors, and laugh at them in our turn?

—Jane Austen, 1813

Enemies to me are the sauce piquant to my dish of life.

—Elsa Maxwell, 1955

Quarreling must lead to disorder, and disorder exhaustion.

—Xunzi, c. 250 BC

Perish the universe, provided I have my revenge.

—Savinien Cyrano de Bergerac, 1654

It would seem that in history it’s never a tooth for a tooth, but a thousand, a hundred thousand for one.

—Sybille Bedford, 1963

I tell you, there is such a thing as creative hate!

—Willa Cather, 1915

Don’t hit a man at all if you can avoid it, but if you have to hit him, knock him out.

—Theodore Roosevelt, 1916

All our enemies are mortal.

—Paul Valéry, 1942

The envious die not once, but as often as the envied win applause.

—Baltasar Gracián, 1647

It is very foolish to attack one’s enemy openly if one can injure him in secret.

—Giambattista Giraldi, 1543

Opposition is not necessarily enmity; it is merely misused and made an occasion for enmity.

—Sigmund Freud, 1930

With the dead there is no rivalry.

—Thomas Babington Macaulay, 1839