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Introduction

Most of these proverbs were collected by S.Coffin and he kindly gave me permission to publish the list. Some of these proverbs were merged into the Internet Go Dictionary.

The aphorisms by Pierre Audouard appeared between 1994 and 1995 in the French Go Review under the title "Some words about Go", and signed by Jean de Laveline (pseudonym of Pierre Audouard) and were translated by Tom Keel.

By default the proverbs are shown in a predefined order Alternatively, you can have them shuffled (the order is randomized) or ordered by author.

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Overview
  • To emphasize the lack of determination in his moves, one speaks of chance.
    Audouard, Pierre
  • Attach to the strongest stone in a pincer  --  anonymous
  • The L-group is dead  --  anonymous
  • Go is a game of chance where the strong player is he who renders circumstances favorable with tricks.
    Audouard, Pierre
  • A knight's move near the edge of the board cannot be cut.
    Taylor, Bill
  • One big eye kills one small eye  --  anonymous
  • Big groups never die  --  anonymous
  • One is never aware enough of the violence in go.
    Audouard, Pierre
  • The monkey jump is worth eight points  --  anonymous
  • Balance is not what players strive for, and if it does arise, it is in spite of them.
    Audouard, Pierre
  • Empty triangles are bad  --  anonymous
  • Make your own groups strong first, then attack  --  anonymous
  • Six eyes in a rectangle are alive  --  anonymous
  • There is damezumari at the bamboo joint  --  anonymous
  • Add one stone, then sacrifice both  --  anonymous
  • Don't disturb symmetry  --  anonymous
  • Extend one hand from the cross-cut  --  anonymous
  • For the comb formation in the corner, dame is necessary  --  anonymous
  • Capture what you cut off  --  anonymous
  • Only amateurs try to come up with fancy moves  --  anonymous
  • Territory is a closed space where time no longer exists. The transformation around it slowly alter it, and sometimes it cracks open like a rotten egg at the least shock.
    Audouard, Pierre
  • The ax's handle rots while the mind lives to the rhythm of the stones.
    Audouard, Pierre
  • Don't get surrounded! Ever!  --  anonymous
  • When in doubt, remove the enemy stones from the board.
    Taylor, Bill
  • Beware of going back to patch up your plays  --  anonymous
  • Don't count territory held by only one eye!  --  anonymous
  • Never try to cut bamboo joints  --  anonymous
  • (A shicho works or doesn't work, but sometimes you don't see it, you don't play it). The possible and the impossible are visible and invisible. What happens is always what you see, what is played.
    Audouard, Pierre
  • Hane? Extend! Make it a habit  --  anonymous
  • Go is essentially a form of harmony. Go in the 21st century will have to be go of the 'harmony of the six points - the four quarters, the above and the below.' As in life we will need to view the whole rather than the part. Japanese go has focused too heavily on the local (joseki) rather than the whole for 300 years. The reason the Chinese and Koreans are overtaking the Japanese is that they are closer to achieving this whole-board view.
    Go Seigen, 9p, 1994
  • Good moves and bad moves are bedfellows  --  anonymous
  • Five liberties for tactical stability  --  anonymous
  • Shoulder connections, hanging connections, and knight's move connections  --  anonymous
  • Every move brings change.
    Audouard, Pierre
  • There are times when even a fight over nothing means something  --  anonymous
  • A meijin needs no joseki  --  anonymous
  • Nothing requires doing this or that, but necessity exists.
    Audouard, Pierre
  • Sacrifice small to take large  --  anonymous
  • Territory really exists only in the end.
    Audouard, Pierre
  • Eyes win semiais  --  anonymous
  • Five groups might live but the sixth will die  --  anonymous
  • Sacrifice for shape  --  anonymous
  • Keep away from thickness  --  anonymous
  • Beware of the clumsy double contact  --  anonymous
  • To reduce an opponent's large prospective territory, strike at the shoulder  --  anonymous
  • Know the eye-stealing tesuji  --  anonymous
  • Groups mustn't float  --  anonymous
  • There is death in the hane  --  anonymous
  • Dead group? Always win ko fights!  --  anonymous
  • The simplest move is the best move  --  anonymous
  • The stone in the bowl is idiotic.
    Audouard, Pierre
  • When your opponent has two weak groups, attack them both at once  --  anonymous
  • Corner, side, centre  --  anonymous
  • The poor player plays the opponent's game for him  --  anonymous
  • In the sound of the stone your can hear its purpose.
    Audouard, Pierre
  • Do not make moves that strengthen your opponent!  --  anonymous
  • Everything would seem to be possible in go. Like pulling a rabbit, by a magical move, out of a hat.
    Audouard, Pierre
  • If you don't know ladders, don't play go  --  anonymous
  • With only one group, you will win  --  anonymous
  • Don't peep at cutting points  --  anonymous
  • The second line is the line of defeat, the third line is the line of territory, and the fourth line is the line of influence  --  anonymous
  • In opponents' sphere of influence, avoid sharp conflict, don't move too deep
    Otake Hideo, 9p
  • Proverbs do not apply to White.
    Sand, Tero
  • The nature of a game comes from what is played, but it's the sensitivity to the possible and the impossible that gives it value.
    Audouard, Pierre
  • Learn the eye-stealing tesuji  --  anonymous
  • There is no territory in the centre  --  anonymous
  • Answer the keima with a kosumi  --  anonymous
  • From a cross-cut, extend  --  anonymous
  • Seek small gains but incur big losses  --  anonymous
  • Pon-nuki is worth thirty points  --  anonymous
  • A basic: Don't push too hard.
    jansteen
  • Learning josekis by heart is useless if you don't try departing from them.
    Audouard, Pierre
  • Take the cutting stone on the second line  --  anonymous
  • There are players who clack down ridiculous moves. Certain others place their moves with crisp, dry contact, like bones cracking. Still others drop their stones with a soft sound.
    Audouard, Pierre
  • If one player chooses influence, the other player may choose territory, and vice versa  --  anonymous
  • Be a little patient. Keshi works!  --  anonymous
  • One point in the center is worth ten in the corner  --  anonymous
  • Don't make territory near thickness  --  anonymous
  • Never be too sure about your plan, and always doubt your ability to kill your opponent's stones.
    zhong-pu liu, 1078 AD
  • Keep sente in the opening. A premature attack loses sente  --  anonymous
  • Don't reduce your own liberties.
    Taylor, Bill
  • Win the stones, lose the game  --  anonymous
  • If you have one stone on the third line, add another, then abandon both of them  --  anonymous
  • Keep inessential ataris till the end  --  anonymous
  • To do or not to do something is not determined by what is done in general, any more than by what is necessary. Doing or not doing something is determined by what you want, and to want in go is to want to win.
    Audouard, Pierre
  • Make a fist before striking
    Kim, Jay H.
  • With less than 15 stones in danger, tenuki  --  anonymous
  • Those who are good at winning, don't usually fight.
    zhang, 1078 AD
  • The comb formation is alive  --  anonymous
  • 2-1 is the vital point in the corner  --  anonymous
  • If your stone is capped, play the knight's move  --  anonymous
  • The rectangular six is normally alive  --  anonymous
  • This time and this space have certain properties, and for a long time, to progress means to become familiar with them.
    Audouard, Pierre
  • Conservative and slow will win. Believe it!  --  anonymous
  • It is difficult to know exactly what you are doing.
    Audouard, Pierre
  • On the second line six die, eight live  --  anonymous
  • You must incessantly question yourself about this time and this space.
    Audouard, Pierre
  • Attack two weak groups simultaneously  --  anonymous
  • Grab the shape points as kikashi  --  anonymous
  • Fighting must not be the key to go, it should be reserved as your last resource.
    zhong-pu liu, 1078 AD
  • Grab the border point between two moyos  --  anonymous
  • Don't make a play adjacent to a cutting-point  --  anonymous
  • Atari, atari is vulgar play  --  anonymous
  • Keep your own stones connected, and your opponent's apart.
    Taylor, Bill
  • The saki bottle shape is negative  --  anonymous
  • Strike at the waist of the knight's move  --  anonymous
  • Strange things happen at the one-two points  --  anonymous
  • Does white await black's errors? Certainly, in two ways: either he makes clean, clear, dangerous moves; or he makes confusing, twisted moves that are just as dangerous. The adequate answers are always difficult to find.
    Audouard, Pierre
  • The semeai where only one player has an eye is a fight over nothing  --  anonymous
  • For rectangular six in the corner, dame is necessary  --  anonymous
  • Contesting, destabilizing, and threatening are sources of transformation.
    Audouard, Pierre
  • Play slow, win slow; play fast, lose fast  --  anonymous
  • Don't defend - extend!
    Taylor, Bill
  • On the third line, four die, six live  --  anonymous
  • Ikken tobi is never wrong  --  anonymous
  • In the opening, when you don't know what to play, make a shimari.
    jansteen
  • Knight's moves win running battles  --  anonymous
  • Stop on second, extend on third  --  anonymous
  • Each step in a ladder is worth 7 points  --  anonymous
  • Always remember, keep the balance (between territory and influence)
    Figaro
  • There are lines, like roots, that plunge into the stone and shatter it.
    Audouard, Pierre
  • If there is no stone on the handicap point, the carpenter's square is dead  --  anonymous
  • The enemy's vital point is your own  --  anonymous
  • You must always consider the circumstances. Nothing is identical, yet things repeat.
    Audouard, Pierre
  • Keshi is worth as much as an invasion!  --  anonymous
  • Win the early ko to win the game  --  anonymous
  • The possibility or impossibility of an event results logically from the rules.
    Audouard, Pierre
  • (Any move that follows the rules is legal). Possibilities differ according to strength.
    Audouard, Pierre
  • There is a thin line between thick and slow.
    jansteen
  • Connect with good shape  --  anonymous
  • From the way the players perceive what can happen and what shouldn't happen springs what happens.
    Audouard, Pierre
  • Sacrifice and squeeze  --  anonymous
  • Don't try to enclose an open skirt  --  anonymous
  • If you plan to live inside enemy territory, play directly against his stones  --  anonymous
  • Don't play on dame points, but guarantee connections  --  anonymous
  • At the head of three stones in a row, play hane  --  anonymous
  • If you have won four corners, resign  --  anonymous
  • Use a wall to attack, not to make territory  --  anonymous
  • Don't make compact groups of stones  --  anonymous
  • If you lose by one point, take a rest  --  anonymous
  • There is a time for doing things.
    Audouard, Pierre
  • Thickness? Ladders always work! [or don't work if it belongs to your opponent!]  --  anonymous
  • There are players who don't accept exchanges: they play many moves that perpetuate a previous state of the game.
    Audouard, Pierre
  • Fill in a semiai from the outside  --  anonymous
  • There is a time and a space which are the same in all go games: the alternating of black and white, and the intersections.
    Audouard, Pierre
  • There are possible things, impossible things, and things that happen. Sometimes things happen that were impossible.
    Audouard, Pierre
  • More haste less speed.
    Fairbairn, John
  • To invade, need 20 points in open area; otherwise, keshi is best.
    Yang Yilun, 7p
  • The game plays itself, the players don't control it.
    Audouard, Pierre
  • Grab the 4th point of the bamboo joint.
    Taylor, Bill
  • When in a winning position, keep the game simple; Make it complex only when losing  --  anonymous
  • Don't play in direct contact with the opponent's stone caught in your squeeze-play  --  anonymous
  • Beginner's games are surprising, often incoherent and incomprehensible. When you improve, your game gains in consistency but flirts with stupidity: you become satisfied with truisms and mechanical movements, you try to obtain a feeling for clearness and style the easy way.
    Audouard, Pierre
  • If a formation is symmetrical, play at the center  --  anonymous
  • Josekis are not fixed, definitive things. They indicate the moments when everything can change.
    Audouard, Pierre
  • Error is one of the sources of transformation.
    Audouard, Pierre
  • Don't make empty triangles  --  anonymous
  • The strong player plays straight, the weak diagonally  --  anonymous
  • If black doesn't pile up enough errors to lose, then it will soon be time to lower the handicap.
    Audouard, Pierre
  • Don't overlook the edge of the board  --  anonymous
  • If there is a ko inside a semeai, capture it on the final play  --  anonymous
  • Do not fear furikawari  --  anonymous
  • White is always trying to kill a bigger group than black is trying to save  --  anonymous
  • At the head of two stones in a row, play hane  --  anonymous
  • 5 lines for extension in front of shimari
    Yang Yilun, 7p
  • The book says don't fight (The pen is mightier than the sword). But what else can be expected from a book (written by a pen)?  --  anonymous
  • When your opponent is thick, you must also become thick.
    Otake Hideo, 9p
  • The carpenter's square becomes ko  --  anonymous
  • If you have lost four corners, resign  --  anonymous
  • Very few good moves are played.
    Audouard, Pierre
  • If you cannot succeed, then die gloriously
    Chinese proverb
  • Turn, turn, turn!
    Taylor, Bill
  • When you study joseki, you lose two stones in strength  --  anonymous
  • You can hide nothing on the goban.
    Audouard, Pierre
  • Against three in a row, play right in the center  --  anonymous
  • Sometimes an idiotic stone loafs about the goban.
    Audouard, Pierre
  • Those who are good at making shape don't usually fight.
    zhang, 1078 AD
  • Don't make dango's  --  anonymous
  • Defend weak groups, not strong groups  --  anonymous
  • If White takes all four corners, Black should resign; if Black takes all four corners, Black should also resign.
    Kent, David
  • You have to like to win, and to learn to recognize the errors that gave you the victory.
    Audouard, Pierre
  • Strange things happen at the one-two points  --  anonymous
  • In the corner, five stones in a row on the third line are alive  --  anonymous
  • Learn to play under the stones  --  anonymous
  • Use the Knight's move to attack, the 1-point jump to defend  --  anonymous
  • In an unreasonable situation, an unreasonable move is reasonable
    Tamino
  • The intersection is rarely neutral.
    Audouard, Pierre
  • The weak player fears ko, the strong player seeks it.
    Taylor, Bill
  • Go is not a blocking game, it's a game of action.
    Audouard, Pierre
  • Everything happens on a grid-engraved board with black and white pieces, but if that's all you see then you don't know Go.
    Audouard, Pierre
  • Avoid the plate connection  --  anonymous
  • Don't be greedy!  --  anonymous

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