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

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