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

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