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

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