Tintoretto, “Jonah Leaves the Whale’s Belly” (1577-78), oil on canvas, 265 x 370 cm, Scuola Grande di San Rocco, Venice (image via Web Gallery of Art) (click to enlarge)

The day after Donald Trump made his remarks about Hillary Clinton and the Second Amendment, the New York Daily News called on him to withdraw from the presidential race, and if he does not, “the Republican Party, including vice presidential nominee Mike Pence, must instead abandon Trump for toying with political bloodshed.”

When the mind withdraws into itself and dispenses with facts it makes only chaos.

—Edith Hamilton

As, for the safety of society, we commit honest maniacs to Bedlam, so judges should be withdrawn from their bench, whose erroneous biases are leading us to dissolution. It may indeed injure them in fame or in fortune; but it saves the republic, which is the first and supreme law.

—Thomas Jefferson

Man seeks to escape himself in myth, and does so by any means at his disposal. Drugs, alcohol, or lies. Unable to withdraw into himself, he disguises himself. Lies and inaccuracy give him a few moments of comfort.

—Jean Cocteau

A bizarre sensation pervades a relationship of pretense. No truth seems true. A simple morning’s greeting and response appear loaded with innuendo and fraught with implications. Each nicety becomes more sterile and each withdrawal more permanent.

—Maya Angelou

I could be the catalyst that sparks the revolution.
I could be an inmate in a long term institution.
I could lean to wild extremes I could do or die.
I could yawn and be withdrawn and watch them gallop by.
What a waste, what a waste, what a waste, what a waste.

—Ian Drury, “What a Waste”

This morning the British Ambassador in Berlin handed the German Government a
final Note stating that, unless we heard from them by 11 o’clock that they were
prepared at once to withdraw their troops from Poland, a state of war would
exist between us.

I have to tell you now that no such undertaking has been received, and that
consequently this country is at war with Germany.

—Neville Chamberlain, radio broadcast, Sept 3, 1939

To withdraw myself from myself has ever been my sole, my entire, my sincere motive in scribbling at all.

—Lord (George Gordon) Byron

I have loved badly, loved the great
Too soon, withdrawn my words too late;
And eaten in an echoing hall
Alone and from a chipped plate
The words that I withdrew too late.

—Edna St. Vincent Millay

While I drew, and wept along with the terrified children I was drawing, I really felt the burden I am bearing. I felt that I have no right to withdraw from the responsibility of being an advocate.

—Kathe Kollwitz

When the enemy advances, withdraw; when he stops, harass; when he tires, strike; when he retreats, pursue.


To withdraw is not to run away, and to stay is no wise action, when there’s more reason to fear than to hope.

—Miguel de Cervantes

Little said is soon amended. There is always time to add a word, never to withdraw one.

—Baltasar Gracian

If this life be not a real fight, in which something is eternally gained for the universe by success, it is no better than a game of private theatricals from which one may withdraw at will. But it feels like a real fight.

—William James, “The Will to Believe”

Hyperallergic's Weekend editors are Natalie Haddad, Thomas Micchelli, Albert Mobilio, and John Yau.