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Inspirational and Insightful Quotations #8 --- Courtesy

Updated on March 8, 2011

Quotations on Courtesy

Courtesy is full of magic power. It is one of the most valuable traits that a person can acquire.

Courtesy will cause you to be great, honored, admired, trusted, important, and respected.

Courtesy will bring you many wonderful opportunities in life and make you the most desired of all.

Courtesy is putting a sparkle in one's personality. It is the noble, kindly, poised, confident way to make friends, to lift others UP, to make them feel that they are glad to know you.

Courtesy is powerful for good. When one is courteous to others, they are courteous in return and give him the approval he desires.

Courtesy is sympathetic politeness. It is graceful and considerate towards others.

Courtesy is the oil, or lubricant, on every moving part of human, social relationships.

—Alvin W. Fletcher, The Challenge, Stockholm, Sweden, April 3, 1965.

Courtesy is not a veneer to be put on for special occasions. It is used toward the sales clerk or the telephone operator, the bellboy or the maid, the cab driver or the newspaper vendor, the bus driver, just as naturally as toward the host at a formal dinner. It means treating every person you meet or live with, with such consideration that his memory of you will be pleasant. Keeping your appointments on time is courtesy. Look behind you when passing through a door. Be alert to congratulate, to compliment. Express sympathy whenever it will help ease sorrow and suffering. If you are genuinely pleased when someone does something you find enjoyable, tell him or her so. Our apologies should not be halfhearted or hypocritical. Patience is the essence of courtesy. Courtesy consists of little things. No one is likely to say "thank you" too often. When any service is performed, there should be no hesitation in expressing appreciation with a smile. To be truly courteous is to treat other people as if they were what they could be.

Motivator, Portland, Ore., November 1972.

Little acts of courtesy are the rich things of life, and they say so much for the man or woman who offers them. Given without thought of reward, they are priceless gifts and they go to add to the sum total of human happiness. They dispel gloom in that they unfold the better side of human nature, lifting the clouds which hide the sunshine.

—Frank Francis, Ogden Standard-Examiner, Ogden, Utah, May 29, 1926.

The cup of courtesy indicates the heart of gentleness. The cup of kindness tells of sympathy.

—Arthur Growden, The Commercial Dispatch, Columbus, Miss., March 1, 1925.

One can never be wrong by being courteous.

—Phil Conley, The Clarion-Ledger, Jackson, Miss., April 24, 1949.

Your own courtesy toward others makes you what you are. Observe the most courteous man you know and see if you do not find yourself wishing that you were like him.

—Lynn W. Landrum, Dallas Morning News, Dallas, Texas, Sept. 5, 1938.

Discourtesy is a species of dishonesty, for it cheats people out of what is due them. Courtesy is an obligation.

—H.W. Knickerbocker, Houston Post-Dispatch, Houston, Texas, May 19, 1930.

Courtesy may be likened to the hinges on which the doors of service hang. If these hinges are kept well oiled, the doors can open freely and wide. Or it might be said that courtesy is the gateway of the great field of service. It is the track on which the train of service runs. True courtesy, like service, is backed by kindness and the desire to benefit others. Service is the big brother of courtesy. The two belong to the same family.

—Claude Richards, Improvement Era, Salt Lake City, Utah, April 1914.

True courtesy does not rise or fall in accordance with the reward that may be expected in return. To be smooth and charming where you feel it will pay, and cool and indifferent where it doesn't seem to matter, is a dangerous practice–business or personal. True courtesy is of the heart–it is spontaneous and deeply concerned with the little things of life. That friendly smile, that extra gesture of helpfulness that goes beyond duty, that tactful change of an unfortunate subject of conversation which rescues a friend from embarrassment, that telephone call just to say you are standing by--it is of stuff like those that good will is woven.

—Elsa Conners, This Week, New York, N.Y., Nov. 29, 1953.

Courtesy is the saying of pleasant things and the doing of pleasant things in a pleasant and kindly way. This grace is for the most part a gift. Some people have it by nature. To such, courtesy is an easy thing. It is a matter largely of disposition, and happy is the man or woman to whom nature has given the disposition to be courteous without effort. For those of us who are not born that way there is much hope, for courtesy is one of the graces which may be easily cultivated. Perhaps it is the most easily cultivated of them all. And the smallest progress in the art is so full of stimulus and reward that each victory helps us some other to win.

—Hugh McLellan, San Antonio Express, San Antonio, Texas, May 29, 1911.

It costs more to be discourteous than to be inconvenienced

—Roy L. Smith, Tampa Morning Tribune, Tampa, Fla., July 13, 1934.

Self-forgetfulness breeds a courtesy that sits beautifully upon one's natural impulsiveness.

—Warner B. Riggs, Dallas Morning News, Dallas, Texas, July 24, 1893.

Courtesy is the oil of personality that lubricates the wheels of society.

—Vera Wise, The Daily Herald, Biloxi, Miss., April 25, 1944.

The test of courtesy is treating members of your own family as though they were guests.

—Gloria Young, Baptist Standard, Dallas, Texas, June 17, 1937.

Courtesy is defined in the dictionary as "politeness combined with kindness.'"The admixture of kindness is required in order to constitute courtesy. A person can say, "No thank you," in such a manner, and with such difference, that it sounds like, "No! Get out!" The perfunctory manner and the spirit of courtesy have no more affinity than oil and water. Courtesy is manifesting consideration for the feelings of others.

—H.S. Jenison, Florida Times-Union, Jacksonville, Fla., April 13, 1924.

The courteous man who is always mindful of the rights of others–who is careful not to offend their tastes or excite their prejudices, or irritate their temper--who is uniformly polite in manner, gentle in speech and considerate in action, must be more esteemed and better linked than the rough, rude, ill-bred person. ... Courtesy of manner will not amount to much unless it is underlaid and upheld by a genuine kindness, a real concern for the welfare of others, a true sympathy with suffering, and a hearty desire to alleviate the pains and ills of humanity.

—Edward Randall, Dallas Morning News, Dallas, Texas, May 4, 1893.

Courtesy is the only oil for the wheels of human contact that always retains its lubricating quality. As the piece of machinery wears itself into smooth-running efficiency with proper lubrication, so does a man fit himself into methods of smooth-running efficiency through the application of courtesy. Courtesy consists of quiet, unassuming behavior based on sincere consideration for the feelings of others.

—Oscar G. Olander, American Magazine, Springfield, Ohio, August 1938.

Courtesy in the great sense means a keen awareness of others. It means precisely the opposite of living in a sealed compartment. It is a way of being alive and sensitive to what other people are feeling and to what our own behaviors do to these people.

—Harry Allen Overstreet, This Week, New York, N.Y., Jan. 11, 1953.

Courtesy is the evolution of chivalry–courtesy from the strong to the weak, from the high to the low, from man to man, woman to woman.

—Burris A. Jenkins, Kansas City Post, Kansas City, Mo., Dec. 11, 1920.

Courtesy means to court, to seek favor. It is the art of pleasing. It is courtliness and graciousness of manner. It is politeness originating in kindliness and exercised habitually.

—E.G. Littlejohn, The Texas Outlook, Fort Worth, Texas, April 1933.

Discourtesy is much worse than a bad habit. It is a singularly acute kind of dumbness.

—Grove H. Patterson, Milwaukee Sentinel, Milwaukee, Wis., Aug. 21, 1930.

Be a gentleman as a matter of principle. It is not necessary to be a bear. Let courtesy rule your speech and control your conduct. It is not necessary to be rude in order to be honest. The people who are forever waiting to "speak their minds," usually have very ugly minds to speak.

—W.C. Scott, The Bogalusa Enterprise and American, Bogalusa, La., June 5, 1931.

Courtesy will smooth out the rough places, iron out the difficulties, and is worth a million dollars to anybody. But courtesy is more than an asset in a material sense. It is true that it is often the difference between success and failure, but aside from this it puts sunshine in others' lives and at the same time fills your own to overflowing. It's a habit, too, it can be cultivated, and becomes one's second nature. It is free as the air we breathe. Then why shouldn't we all acquire it?

—Nora Cole Skinner, Dallas Morning News, Dallas, Texas, Dec. 30, 1921.

Courtesy is the royal robe of nobility.

—I.A. White, Christian Index, Atlanta, Ga., May 5, 1921.

It’s impossible to be courteous without being humble.

—Jack Warwick, Pittsburgh Post Gazette, Pittsburgh, Pa., Dec. 19, 1935.


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