The Book of the City of Ladies
Important Quotations Explained
1. The man or the woman in whom resides greater virtue is the higher;
neither the loftiness nor the lowliness of a person lies in the body
according to the sex but in the perfection of conduct and
2. [A]nd there is nothing which so instructs a reasonable creature as
the exercise and experience of many different things.
3. Rest assured, dear friend, chaste ladies who live honestly take
absolutely no pleasure in being raped. Indeed, rape is the greatest possible
sorrow for them.
4. But, just as I told you before, the fool sees his neighbor’s
peccadillo and fails to see his own enormous crime.
5. Most excellent, revered, and honored princesses of France and of
all lands, and all ladies and maidens, and, indeed, all women who have loved
and do love and will love virtue and morality, as well as all who have died
or who are now living or who are to come, rejoice and exult in our new City
which, thanks to God, is already formed and almost finished and
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