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Francois duc de La Rochefoucauld published his Reflexions ou sentences et maximes morales in 1665. In them he analyzes the motives lying behind human conduct with merciless penetration. Greeting with scepticism avowals of loyalty, friendship and affection, he reveals pure virtue and disinterested sentiments to be almost always tainted with some element of egoism.
The philosophy of La Rochefoucauld, which influenced French intellectuals as diverse as Voltaire and the Jansenists, is captured here in more than 600 penetrating and pithy aphorisms.
For more than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,700 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.