How to Win Friends and Influence People

Dale Carnegie

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Shortly after the close of World War I, I learned an invaluable lesson one night in
London. I was manager at the time for Sir Ross Smith. During the war, Sir Ross had
been the Australian ace out in Palestine; and shortly after peace was declared, he
astonished the world by flying halfway around it in thirty days. No such feat had ever
been attempted before. It created a tremendous sensation. The Australian government
awarded him fifty thousand dollars; the King of England knighted him; and, for a while,
he was the most talked-about man under the Union Jack. I was attending a banquet one
night given in Sir Ross’s honor; and during the dinner, the man sitting next to me told a
humorous story which hinged on the quotation “There’s a divinity that shapes our
ends, rough-hew them how we will.”
The raconteur mentioned that the quotation was from the Bible. He was wrong. I knew
that, I knew it positively. There couldn’t be the slightest doubt about it. And so, to get a
feeling of importance and display my superiority, I appointed myself as an unsolicited
and unwelcome committee of one to correct him. He stuck to his guns. What? From
Shakespeare? Impossible! Absurd! That quotation was from the Bible. And he knew it.
The storyteller was sitting on my right; and Frank Gammond, an old friend of mine,
was seated at my left. Mr. Gammond had devoted years to the study of Shakespeare, So
the storyteller and I agreed to submit the question to Mr. Gammond. Mr. Gammond
listened, kicked me under the table, and then said: “Dale, you are wrong. The
gentleman is right. It is from the Bible.”
On our way home that night, I said to Mr. Gammond: “Frank, you knew that quotation
was from Shakespeare,”
“Yes, of course,” he replied, "Hamlet, Act Five, Scene Two. But we were guests at a