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

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