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

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