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

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