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

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