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  • Published: 7 March 2011
  • ISBN: 9780141442457
  • Imprint: Penguin Classics
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 176
  • RRP: $19.99

The Pocket Oracle and Art of Prudence



The perennially popular book of advice on how to achieve personal and professional success, new to Penguin Classics

Written over 350 years ago, The Pocket Oracle and the Art of Prudence is a charming collection of 300 witty and thought-provoking aphorisms. From the art of being lucky to the healthy use of caution, these elegant maxims were created as a guide to life, with further suggestions given on cultivating good taste, knowing how to refuse, the foolishness of complaining and the wisdom of controlling one's passions. Baltasar Gracian intended that these ingenious aphorisms would encourage each reader to challenge themselves both in understanding and applying each axiom.

  • Published: 7 March 2011
  • ISBN: 9780141442457
  • Imprint: Penguin Classics
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 176
  • RRP: $19.99

About the authors

Balthasar Gracian

Baltasar Gracián was born in 1601 in Belmonte, Aragon and entered the Society of Jesus in 1619. Teaching in Jesuit colleges across the Kingdom of Aragon, he was also at one time confessor to the viceroy of Aragon and chaplain to the Spanish army. But it is as one of the great Spanish stylists and moralists that he is best known. He wrote a series of short moral tracts marked by their elliptical, epigrammatic style, as well as a three volume allegorical novel, The Critic (1651-57). Published in 1647, The Pocket Oracle and Art of Prudence influenced the vogue for the form in France, and was quickly translated into the major European languages.

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