The Science of Government it is my duty to study, more than all other Sciences: the Art of Legislation and Administration and Negotiation, ought to take place, indeed to exclude in a manner all other Arts.&emdash;I must study politics and war that my sons may have liberty to study Mathematics and Philosophy. My sons ought to study Mathematics and Philosophy, Geography, natural History, Naval Architecture, navigation, Commerce and Agriculture, in order to give their Children a right to study Painting, Poetry, Musick, Architecture, Statuary, Tapestry and Porcelaine. --John Adams, letter to Abigail Adams, after May 12, 1780.&emdash;Adams Family Correspondence, ed. L. H. Butterfield, vol. 3, p. 342 (1973).
If all men were just, there would be no need of valor~Agesilaus (444-400 BC) from _Plutarch, Lives, Agesilaus_, sec. 23.
Eighty percent of success is showing up --Woody Allen in Thomas J. Peters and Robert H. Waterman _In Search of Excellence_(1982)
May the road rise to meet you.
May the wind be ever at your back
May the Good Lord keep you in the hollow of His hand.
May your heart be as warm as your hearthstone.
And when you come to die
may the wail of the poor
be the only sorrow
you'll leave behind.
May God bless you always.
anonymous ''An Irish Wish'' in Ralph L. Woods, A Third Treasury of the Familiar (1970) p.644
All political parties die at last of swallowing their own lies. - John Arbuthnot, in Richard Garnett, Life of Emerson 887
Stop all the clocks, cut off the telephone,
Prevent the dog from barking with a juicy bone,
Silence the pianos and with muffled drum
Bring out the coffin, let the mourners come.
Let aeroplanes circle moaning overhead
cribbling on the sky the message He Is Dead.
Put crepe bows round the white necks of public doves,
Let the traffic policemen wear black cotton gloves.
He was my North, my South, my East and West.
My working week and my Sunday rest,
My noon, my midnight, my talk, my song;
I thought that love would last forever; I was wrong.
The stars are not wanted now: put out every one;
Pack up the moon and dismantle the sun;
Pour away the ocean and sweep up the wood;
For nothing now can ever come to any good.
W. H. Auden (1907-1973) "Twelve Songs, No. 9" (1936)
All the possibilities
It had to reject are
What give life and warmth to
An actual character;
The roots of wit and charm tap
Secret springs of sorrow,
Every brilliant doctor
Hides a murderer.
W. H. Auden - Many Happy Returns [for John Rettger]
Nam et ipsa scientia potestas est. Knowledge is power. -- Francis Bacon (1561-1626), Meditationes Sacrae, De Haeresibus
Rules are for the obedience of fools and the guidance of wise men. --Douglas Bader
One picture is worth a thousand words. -- Frederick R. Barnard, Printers' Ink March 10, 1927.
Unity in things Necessary, Liberty in things Unnecessary, and Charity in all. --Richard Baxter 1651
The lessons of history? There are four: The bee fertilizes the flower it robs; whom the gods would destroy they first make mad with power; the mills of God grind slowly, but they grind exceeding small; when it is dark enough, you can see the stars. Charles A. Beard
Blood thought he knew the native mind;
He said you must be firm, but kind.
A mutiny resulted.
I shall never forget the way
That Blood stood upon this awful day
Preserved us all from death.
He stood upon a little mound
Cast his lethargic eyes around,
And said beneath his breath:
'Whatever happens, we have got
The Maxim Gun, and they have not.'
Hilaire Belloc (1870-1953)"The Modern Traveller" (1896)
It has been said that if you would plant for days, plant flowers. If you would plant for years, plant trees. If you would plant for eternity, plant ideas. (Ben-hadad to Zacchaeus) --Og Mandino, _The Greatest Success in the World_ (1984)
Senator, I knew Jack Kennedy; Jack Kennedy was a friend of mine. (contemptuous pause) Senator, you're no Jack Kennedy! -- Lloyd Bentsen to Dan Quayle
People may forget what you said, but they will never forget how you made them feel. --Carl W. Buechner
But now thy kingdom shall not continue: the Lord hath sought him a man after his own heart, and the Lord hath appointed him to be prince over his people, because thou hast not kept that which the Lord commanded thee.--Holy Bible, I Samuel ch13 v14
Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life. -- Proverbs IV:23 KJV
I returned, and saw under the sun, that the race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, neither yet bread to the wise, nor yet riches to men of understanding, nor yet favour to men of skill; but time and chance happeneth to them all.--Ecclesiastes 9:11
If there is ever another war in Europe, it will come out of some damned silly thing in the Balkans. -- Otto von Bismarck
The less people know about how sausages and laws are made, the better they'll sleep at night. -- Otto von Bismarck
Politics is the art of the possible. Otto von Bismarck (1815-1898)
[speaking of air combat] It consists of long hours of boredom punctuated by brief moments of sheer terror. --"Pappy" Boyington, Pacific air combat ace, auto-biograpy: _Baa Baa Black Sheep_
If I'd known I was going to live this long, I would've taken better care of myself.- James Herbert Blake 1883-1983
There are those who scoff at the school boy, calling him frivolous and shallow. Yet it was the school boy who said, Faith is believing what you know ain't so.- Mark Twain, Following the Equator, Pudd'nhead Wilson's Calendar
But for the grace of God there goes John Bradford.
John Bradford 1510-1555 English reformer seeing criminals taken to execution. He was burned at the stake at Smithfield, a Protestant martyr. Quoted in Dictionary of National Biography according to Oxford Dictionary of Quotations 1953.
Rebellion to tyrants is obedience to God.
John Bradshaw (1602-59), English lawyer, regicide. Inscription at Bradshaw's final burial place near Martha Bay. See Henry S. Randall "Life of Thomas Jefferson" (1865) vol. 3, appendix 4, p.585. He presided at the trial of Charles I. Buried in Westminster abbey, his body was exhumed at the Restoration and hanged in public, like that of Cromwell.
Publicity is justly commended as a remedy of social and inductrial diseases. Sunlight is said to be the best of disinfectants; electric light the most efficient policeman. L. Brandeis, Other People's Money (1933 edition, p. 62)
As for you, my galvanized friend, you want a heart. You don't know how lucky you are not to have one. Hearts will never be practical until they can be made unbreakable. The Wizard, Baum's Wizard of Oz
I don't know if it be a peculiarity in me, but I am seldom
otherwise than happy while watching in the chamber of death, should
no frenzied or despairing mourner share the duty with me. I see a
repose that neither earth nor hell can break, and I feel an assurance
of the endless and shadowless hereafter--the Eternity they have
entered--where life is boundless in its duration, and love in its
sympathy, and joy in its fulness. I noticed on that occasion how much
selfishness there is even in a love like Mr Linton's, when he so
regretted Catherine's blessed release! To be sure, one might have
doubted, after the wayward and impatient existence she had led,
whether she merited a haven of peace at last. One might doubt in
seasons of cold reflection; but not then, in the presence of her
corpse. It asserted its own tranquillity, which seemed a pledge of
equal quiet to its former inhabitant.
Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, but expecting different results. -- Rita Mae Brown
I give the fight up: let there be an end,
A privacy, an obscure nook for me.
I want to be forgotten even by God.
Robert Browning it was: Paracelsus pt V
The year's at the spring,
And day's at the morn;
Morning's at seven;
The hill-side's dew-pearled;
The lark's on the wing;
The snail's on the thorn;
God's in His heaven--
All's right with the world!
Robert Browning, "Song" from Pippa Passes
Ah, but a man's reach should exceed his grasp,
Or what's a heaven for?"
Robert Browning 1812-89 (Andrea del Sarto (1855) L.97
Grow old along with me!
The best is yet to be,
The last of life, for which the first was made:
Our times are in His hand
Who saith, 'A whole I planned,
Youth shows but half; trust God:
See all not be afraid!'
Robert Browning, "Rabbi ben Ezra" (1864).
The Revolution is like Saturn&emdash;it eats its own children. -- Georg Büchner, Danton's Death 
I'd rather entrust the government of the United States to the first 400 people listed in the Boston telephone directory than to the faculty of Harvard University. William F. Buckley, Jr.
It was a dark and stormy night and the rain fell in torrents -- except at occasional intervals, when it was checked by a violent gust of wind which swept up the streets (for it is in London that our scene lies), rattling along the housetops, and fiercely agitating the scanty flame of the lamps that struggled against the darkness. -- Paul Cliffordby Edward George Bulwer-Lytton, 1830
I NEVER saw a Purple Cow;
I never hope to See One;
But I can Tell you, Anyhow,
I'd rather See than Be One.
Gelett Burgess -- The Purple Cow
The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.--- Edmund Burke (1729-1797), attributed
When bad men combine, the good must associate; else they will fall, one by one, an unpitied sacrifice in a contemptible struggle. Edmund Burke (1729-1797) Thoughts on the Cause of the Present Discontents (1770)
The best laid schemes o' mice and men
Gang aft a-gley;
And leave us naught but grief and pain
For promised joy.
Robert Burns - To a Mouse
An expert is one who knows more and more about less and less.
Nicholas Murray Butler, President Columbia University, Commencement Address
He who complies against his will
Is of the same opinion still.
Samuel Butler (1612-1680) Hudibras, Part 3, Canto 3, 555-556.
The optimist proclaims that we live in the best of all possible
worlds; and the pessimist fears this is true.
James Branch Cabell (1879-1958) "The Silver Stallion" (1926), Ch. 6.
Abstract art: a product of the untalented sold by the unprincipled to the utterly bewildered. -Al Capp
The true University of these days is a collection of books.
Thomas Carlyle, 1795-1881, 'The Hero as A Man of Letters', On Heroes, Hero-Worship, and the Heroic. (1841)
"When I use a word," Humpty Dumpty said in a rather scornful tone,"it means just what I choose it to mean - neither more nor less." -- Lewis Carroll (1832-1898) Through The Looking Glass 1871
The time has come' the Walrus said,
To talk of many things
Of Shoes and ships and sealing wax
Of cabbages and kings
And why the sea is boiling hot
and whether pigs have wings.
Lewis Carroll _Through the Looking-Glass, and What Alice Found There._chapter 4
Let's all go down the Strand---have a banana!
Harry Castling (d. 1930)``From the song, `Let's All Go Down the Strand' (1904), written with C. W. Murphy. The words `Have a banana' were interpolated by audiences. Although not part of the original yrics, they were included in later versions.'' (from Rees Cassell Companion to Quotations (1997))
Silent till you see the whites of their eyes. -- Prince Charles of Prussia, at Jagerndorf, May 23, 1745.
The pleasure is momentary, the position ridiculous, and the expense damnable. Lord Chesterfield
Journalism largely consists in saying 'Lord Jones Dead' to people
who never knew that Lord Jones was alive.
G. K. Chesterton
I cannot forecast to you the action of Russia. It is a riddle
wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma.
Winston Churchill (radio speech, Oct. 1, 1939)
Many forms of government have been tried, and will be tried in this world of sin and woe. No one pretends that democracy is perfect or all-wise. Indeed, it has been said that democracy is the worst form of Government except all those other forms that have been tried from time to time. -- Winston Churchill, House of Commons, 11 Nov. 1947
To jaw-jaw is always better than to war-war.--Winston Churchill, Speech at White House, June 26, 1954 in New York Times 27 June 1954, p. 1
I have, myself, full confidence that if all do their duty, if nothing is neglected, and if the best arrangements are made, as they are being made, we shall prove ourselves once again able to defend our Island home, to ride out the storm of war, and to outlive the menace of tyranny, if necessary for years, if necessary alone. At any rate, that is what we are going to try to do. That is the resolve of His Majesty's Government-every man of them. That is the will of Parliament and the nation. The British Empire and the French Republic, linked together in their cause and in their need, will defend to the death their native soil, aiding each other like good comrades to the utmost of their strength. Even though large tracts of Europe and many old and famous States have fallen or may fall into the grip of the Gestapo and all the odious apparatus of Nazi rule, we shall not flag or fail. We shall go on to the end, we shall fight in France, we shall fight on the seas and oceans, we shall fight with growing confidence and growing strength in the air, we shall defend our Island, whatever the cost may be, we shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills; we shall never surrender, and even if, which I do not for a moment believe, this Island or a large part of it were subjugated and starving, then our Empire beyond the seas, armed and guarded by the British Fleet, would carry on the struggle, until, in God's good time, the New World, with all its power and might, steps forth to the rescue and the liberation of the old. - Winston Churchill June 4, 1940 House of Commons
In time of war, when truth is so precious, it must be attended by a bodyguard of lies.-- Winston Churchill, remark at Teheran, 1943.
You've got to sing like you don't need the money,
Love like you'll never get hurt.
You've got to dance like no one is watching,
It's gotta come from the heart, if you want it to work. -- Susannah Clark and Richard Leighfrom the song, "It's Got to Come From the Heart", by Kathy Mattea.
If you're not part of the solution, you're part of the problem. -- Attributed to Eldridge Cleaver
My son is twenty-two years old. If he had not become a Communist at twenty-two I would have disowned him. If he is still a Communist at thirty, I will do it then.-- Clemenceau, Georges (1841-1929) Attributed
They [corporations] cannot commit treason, nor be
outlawed, nor excommunicate, for they have no souls.
Sir Edward Coke (1552-1634) English jurist The Reports of Sir Edward Coke (1658) The case of Sutton's Hospital
For a man's house is his castle, et domus sua cuique tutissimum
refugium [and one's home is the safest refuge to
Sir Edward Coke (1552-1634), Third Institute
Her frowns are fairer far
than smiles of other maiden's are.
HARTLEY COLERIDGE, (1796-1849)
What if you slept, and what if in your sleep you dreamed, and what
if in your dreams you went to heaven and there you plucked a strange
and beautiful flower, and what if when you awoke you had the flower
in your hand? Ah, what then?
Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Biographia Literaria (1817).
Each maitin bell, the Baron saith, knells us back to a world of
Samuel Taylor Coleridge, "Christabel"(1798), pt. 2.
Keep your friends close but your enemies closer! -- Don Vito Corleone THE GODFATHER, PART II.
The opera ain't over till the fat lady sings.-- Dan Cook.1976 San Antonio News-Express
Writing about music is like dancing about architecture - it's a really stupid thing to want to do. ~Elvis Costello, in an interview by Timothy White entitled "A Man out of Time Beats the Clock." Musician magazine No. 60 (October 1983), p. 52.
That was the best ice-cream soda I ever tasted. -- Lou Costello, last words, d. 1959
A man said to the universe:
"Sir, I exist!"
"However," replied the universe,
"The fact has not created in me
A sense of obligation."
Stephen Crane, in "War is Kind"
I leave this rule for others when I'm dead,
Be always sure you're right, then go ahead.
David Crockett (1786-1836), A Narrative of the Life of David Crockett, 1834. His motto for the War of 1812.
You have sat too long here for any good you have been doing. Depart, I say, and let us have done with you. In the name of God, go! -- Oliver Cromwell on the dismissal of the Rump Parliament (20 Apr 1653)
There are no atheists in the foxholes.
William Thomas Cummings, in Carlos P. Romulo, I Saw the Fall of the Philippines (1942).
When I see a bird that walks like a duck and swims like a duck and
quacks like a duck, I call that bird a duck.
Richard Cardinal Cushing, Archbishop of Boston, (1895-1970)
The day will come when, after harnessing space, the winds, the tides, and gravitation, we shall harness for God the energies of Love. And on that day, for the second time in the history of the world, we shall have discovered fire. Pierre Teilhard de Chardin
I think, therefore I am. 'Cogito, ergo sum' -- Rene Descartes 1596-1650: Le Discours de la methode (1637)
It is a far, far better thing that I do, than I have ever done; It
is a far, far better rest that I go to , than I have ever known.
Charles Dickens. A Tale of Two Cities
Had I not seen the Sun
I could have borne the shade
But Light a newer Wilderness
My Wilderness has made
There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies and statistics. -- Benjamin Disraeli
Never complain and never explain. - Benjamin Disraeli (1804-1881)
No man is an Island, entire of it self; every man is a piece of
the Continent, a part of the main; if a clod be washed away by the
sea, Europe is the less, as well as if a promontory were, as well as
if a manor of thy friends or of thine own were; any man's death
diminishes me, because I am involved in Mankind; And therefore never
send to know for whom the bell tolls; it tolls for thee.
John Donne (c.1571-1631) Devotions upon Emergent Occasions (1624) "Meditation XVII"
You hoard not health for your own private use,
But on the public spend the rich produce.
When, often urged, unwilling to be great,
Your cuntry calls you from your loved retreat,
And sends to senates, charged with common care,
Which none more shuns, and none can better bear:
Where could they find another formed so fit,
To poise, with solid sense, a sprightly wit
John Dryden - Epistle 15
Great wits are sure to madness near allied,
And thin partitions do their bounds divide.
John Dryden,, Absalom and Achitophel. Part i. Line 163.
Thrust ivrybody, but cut th' ca-ards.
Finley Peter Dunne [Mr. Dooley] (1867-1936) "Mr. Dooley's Opinions" , "Casual Observations"
The newspaper does ivrything f'r us. It runs th' polis foorce an'
th' banks, commands th' milishy, conthrols th' ligislachure, baptizes
th' young, marries th' foolish, comforts th' afflicted, afflicts th'
comfortable, buries th' dead an' roasts thim aftherward
Finley Peter Dunne (Mr. Dooley), 1867-1938 in Observations by Mr. Dooley: The Newspaper. 1902
Beware of the fury of the patient man. -- John Dryden, Absolem and Achitophel
I cannot believe that God plays dice with the cosmos. -- Albert Einstein, in Observer, 1954
If I would be a young man again and had to decide how to make my
living, I would not try to become a scientist or scholar or teacher.
I would rather choose to be a plumber or a peddler in the hope to
find that modest degree of independence still available under present
Albert Einstein, The Reporter, November 18 1954
Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind.-Albert Einstein _Science, Philosophy and Religion: a Symposium_ (1941) ch. 13
It is better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to open your mouth and remove all doubt . -- George Eliot
We shall not cease from exploration
And the end of all our exploring
Will be to arrive where we started
And know the place for the first time.
T.S. Eliot Little Gidding V, Four Quartets. (1943)
This is the way the world ends
Not with a bang but a whimper.
T. S. Eliot, 'The Hollow Men'
By the rude bridge that arched the flood,
Their flag to April's breeze unfurled,
Here once the embattled farmers stood,
And fired the shot heard round the world.
Ralph Waldo Emerson, "Concord Hymn" - 1836
Though we travel the world over to find the beautiful, we must
carry it with us, or we find it not.
Ralph Waldo Emerson, Essays: First Series, Essay XII, "Art", 1841
Don't SAY things. What you ARE stands over you the while, and thunders so that I cannot hear what you say to the contrary. -- Ralph Waldo Emerson
For nonconformity the world whips you with its displeasure. ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803&endash;1882) "Self-Reliance," Essays, First Series (1841, repr. 1847).
In the country of the blind, the one-eyed man is king. -- Desiderius Erasmus (1465-1536), Adagia, 1508
The past is never dead. It's not even past. William Faulkner:_Requiem For A Nun_.
I have heard many arguments which influenced my opinion, but never
one which influenced my vote.
Fergusson, Sir James (1832-1907) Attributed in J. B. Foreman (ed.) _Collins Gem Dictionary of Quotations_ (1961) p.195
I was in love with a beautiful blonde once, dear. She drove me to
drink. That's the one thing I'm indebted to her for.
The Great Man (W. C. Fields), NEVER GIVE A SUCKER AN EVEN BREAK (1941), screenplay by Prescott Chaplin and John T.Neville, from a story by W. C. Fields.
Is not a kiss the very autograph of love? -- Henry Finck
The moving hand writes; and, having writ,
Moves on: nor all thy Piety nor Wit
Shall lure it back to cancel half a Line
Nor all thy Tears wash out a Word of it.
Fitzgerald, Omar Khayyam
The test of a first-rate intelligence is the ability to hold two opposing ideas in mind at the same time and still retain the ability to function. -- F. Scott Fitzgerald
Goldfinger's flat hard stare didn't flicker....He said " Mr. Bond, they have a saying in Chicago: "Once is happenstance. Twice is coincidence. The third time is enemy action.".-- Goldfinger to James Bond in Ian Fleming's "Goldfinger".(1959)
Whether you think you can or think you can't, you're right. -- Henry Ford
The majestic equality of laws forbids the rich as well as the poor to sleep under bridges, to beg in the streets and to steal bread. Anatole France, Le Lys rouge (1910)
Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety. -- Benjamin Franklin, Pennsylvania Assembly: Reply to the Governor, November 11, 1755. _The Papers of Benjamin Franklin_, ed. Leonard E. Labaree, vol. 6, p. 242 (1963).
In this world, nothing can be said to be certain except death and taxes. -- Benjamin Franklin, letter to J.-B. LeRoy, Nov. 13, 1789
By push of bayonets, no firing till you see the whites of their eyes. -- Frederick the Great, at Prague, May 6, 1757.
The woods are lovely, dark and deep,
But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep,
And miles to go before I sleep.
Robert Frost (1874-1963), Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening
Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;
Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,
And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.
I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I--
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.
Robert Frost -- "The Road Not Taken"
Home is the place where, when you have to go there,
They have to take you in.
I should have called it
Something you somehow haven't to deserve.
Robert Frost, The Death of the Hired Man, 1914
Man is a self-balancing, 28-jointed adapter-base biped, and electro-chemical reduction plant, integral with the segregated stowages of special energy extracts in storage batteries, for subsequent activation of thousands of hydraulic and pneumatic pumps, with motors attached; 62,000 miles of capillaries, millions of warning signal, railroad and conveyor systems, crushers and cranes, and a universally distributed telephone system needing no service for seventy years if well managed, the whole extraordinary complex mechanism guided with exquisite precision from a turret in which are located telescopic and microscopic self-registering and recording range-finders, a spectroscope, etc. .. the turret control being closely allied with an air-conditioning intake and exhaust, and a main fuel intake .R. Buckminster Fuller, "A Definition of a Man"
Honi soit qui mal y pense. Evil to him who evil thinks. -- motto of the Order of the Garter
In this inquiry I shall unfold the events that rescued our ancestors of Britain, and our neighbors of Gaul, from the civil and religious yoke of the Koran; that protected the majesty of Rome, and delayed the servitude of Constantinople; that invigorated the defence of the Christians, and scattered among their enemies the seeds of division and decay.--- Gibbon, Decline and Fall, Chap. 52
Believe those who are seeking the truth. Doubt those who find it. -- Andre Gide
As some day it may happen that a victim must be found,
I've got a little list--I've got a little list
Of society offenders who might well be underground,
And who never would be missed--who never would be missed!
"They'll Never Be Missed", by Gilbert & Sullivan.
The internet interprets censorship as damage and routes around it, -- John Gilmour
Until one is committed, there is hesitancy, the chance to draw back, always ineffectiveness. Concerning all acts of initiative (and creation) there is one elementary truth, the ignorance of which kills countless ideas and splendid plans: that the moment one definitely commits oneself, then providence moves too. Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, 1749-1832
If you want to know what God thinks of money, just look at the
people he gave it to. Dorothy ParkerWhen I hear the word `gun' I
reach for my culture.
I. J. Good, "The Scientist Speculates: An Anthology of Partly-Baked Ideas", Capricorn Books, New York, 1965, p. 188. [A play on the line "When I hear the word `culture', I reach for my gun", frequently attributed to Hermann Göring. Actually, this line originated in "Schlageter", a 1933 German play.
The kiss of sun for pardon,
The song of the birds for mirth --
One is nearer God's Heart in a garden
Than anywhere else on earth.
Dorothy Gurney "The Lord God Planted A Garden"
This book fills a much-needed gap. - Moses Hadas (1900 - 1966)
Questioner: Mr. Haldane, what can you tell about the Creator from
your study of biology?
The Creator, if He exists, has a special preference for beetles.
J. B. S. Haldane (1892-1964) report of lecture, 7 April 1951 in Journal of the British Interplanetary Society (1951) vol. 10, p. 156
Somebody in a crowd|: Yeah! An eye for an eye and a tooth for a
Tevye|: And then the whole world would be blind and toothless.
Sheldon Harnick (1924-) _A Fiddler on the Roof_ (1964)
And I said to the man who stood at the gate of the year: "Give me a light. that I may tread safely into the unknown." And he replied: "Go out into the darkness and put your hand into the hand of God. That shall be to you better than light, and safer than a known way."- Minnie L. Haskins "The Desert."
A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, con a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyse a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects. R.A Heinlein, Notebook of Lazarus Long
Nothing endures but change. -- Heraclitus
You could not step twice into the same rivers; for other waters are ever flowing onto you. Heraclitus (c. 540-480 ce), _On the Universe_
I am happy now that Charles calls on my bedchamber less frequently than of old. As it is, I now endure but two calls a week and when I hear his steps outside my door I lie down on my bed, close my eyes, open my legs and think of England.--- Lady Hillingdon 1857-1940, Journal , 1912.
the life of man, solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short. -- Thomas Hobbes, 'Leviathan'
What refuge is there for the victim who is oppressed with the feeling that there are a thousand new books he ought to read while life is only long enough for him to attempt to read a hundred. Oliver Wendell Holmes Snr 1809-1894, Over the Teacups (1891)
O bed! O bed! delicious bed!
That heaven upon earth to the weary head!
_Miss Kilmansegg, Her Dream._~Thomas Hood. (1799-1845
It is much easier to apologize than to ask permission. -- Grace Murray Hopper (1906-1992)
Ensanguining the skies
How heavily it dies
Into the west away;
Past touch and sight and sound,
Not further to be found,
How hopeless under ground
Falls the remorseful day.
A. E. Housman, 'How clear, how lovely bright'
And like a skylit water stood
The bluebells in the azured wood.
A. E. Housman, _A Shropshire Lad_
Extreme remedies are very appropriate for extreme diseases. -- Hippocrates. 460-359 B. C. Aphorism i.
The most stringent protection of free speech would not protect a
man in falsely shouting fire in a theater and causing a panic. . The
question in every case is whether the words used are used in such
circumstances and are of such a nature as to create a clear and
present danger that they will bring about the substantive evils that
Congress has a right to prevent.
Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr., Schenck v. United States, 1919.
Man's mind stretched to a new idea never goes back to its original dimensions. -- Oliver Wendell Holmes
It's always easier to ask forgiveness than it is to get permission."--- Admiral Grace Hopper (1906-1992)
Never explain -- your friends do not need it and your enemies will not believe you anyway.-- Elbert Green Hubbard (1856-1915) [Motto Book, 1907]
The safest way to double your money is to fold it over once and put it in your pocket. - Frank McKinney "Kin" Hubbard
It's a damn poor mind that can only think of one way to spell a word. -- Andrew Jackson
But above all things, my brethren, swear not, neither by heaven, neither by the earth, neither by any other oath: but let your yea be yea; and your nay, nay; lest ye fall into condemnation. James 5:12
The first casualty when war comes is truth. -- Hiram Johnson, statement to the U.S. Senate, 1917
Among the calamities of war may be justly numbered the diminution of the love of truth by falsehoods which interest dictates and credulity encourages. A peace will equally leave the warrior and the relater of wars destitute of employment; and I know not whether more is to be dreaded from streets filled with soldiers accustomed to plunder, or from garrets filled with scribblers accustomed to lie. --Samuel Johnson, _The Idler_, No. 30, November 11, 1758
There's nothing like a hanging in the morning to clear a man's thoughts. Depend upon it, sir, when a man knows he is to be hanged in a fortnight, it concentrates his mind wonderfully.-- Samuel Johnson, "The Life of Samuel Johnson" (1791)
I called on Dr. Johnson one morning, when Mrs. Williams, the blind
lady, was conversing with him. She was telling him where she had
dined the day before. "There were several gentlemen there," said she,
"and when some of them came to the tea-table, I found that there had
been a good deal of hard drinking." She closed this observation with
a common and trite moral reflection; which, indeed, is very
ill-founded, and does great injustice to animals -- "I wonder what
pleasure men can take in making beasts of themselves." "*I* wonder,
Madam," replied the Doctor, "that you have not penetration to see the
strong inducement to this excess; for he who makes a *beast* of
himself gets rid of the pain of being a man."
Anecdotes of the Revd. Percival Stockdale; collected in "Johnsonian Miscellanies," edited by G.B. Hill.
[Johnson } said "the poor in England were better provided for, than in any other country of the same extent: he did not mean little Cantons, or pretty Republicks. Where a great proportion of the people are suffered to languish in helpless misery, that country must be ill policed, and wretchedly governed: a decent provision for the poor is the true test of civilization." -- James Boswell: The Life of Samuel Johnson
I would say to Robertson what an old tutor of a college said to one of his pupils:'Read over your compositions, and where ever you meet with a passage which you think is particularly fine, strike it out.'" - Samuel Johnson (Boswell: Life of Johnson)
Among the many things that he requested of me tonight, this is the principal, &emdash; that on his gravestone shall be this inscription: "Here lies one whose name was writ in water." -- Richard Moncton Milnes in a letter (published in 1848) wrote of John Keats
When one door of happiness closes, another opens; but often we look so long at the closed door that we do not see the one which has been opened for us. --Helen Keller
The most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched, they must be felt with the heart. -- Helen Keller
Qui custodiet ipsos custodes.
Juvenal (loosely translated: "Who watches the watchmen?" literally:"Who will guard the guardians themselves?")
Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent
John F. Kennedy, Whitehouse speech, March 13, 1962
When the going gets tough, the tough get going .-- Joseph P. Kennedy (1888-1969), in J. H. Cutler 'Honey Fitz' (1962)
Once you label me, you negate me. -Soren Kierkegaard
We sleep softly in our beds because rough men stand ready in the night to visit violence on those who would do us harm.--unknown! It is commonly attributed to George Orwell, often said to be from _1984_, but it is not contained in any of Orwell's work. The nearest version is contained in Orwell's essay on Rudyard Kipling (1942):
And a woman is only a woman, but a good Cigar is a Smoke. -- Rudyard Kipling "The Betrothed
If you wake at midnight, and hear a horse's feet,
Don't go drawing back the blind, or looking in the street,
Them that asks no questions isn't told a lie,
Watch the wall, my darling, while the Gentlemen go by!
Five and twenty ponies,
trotting through the dark-
Brandy for the Parson,
'Baccy for the Clerk;
Laces for a lady, letters for a spy,
Watch the wall, my darling, while the Gentlemen go by!
Rudyard Kipling (1865-1936) Puck of Pook's Hill , "A Smuggler's Song" (1906)
Oh, East is East, and West is West, and never the twain shall
Till Earth and Sky stand presently at God's great Judgment Seat;
But there is neither East nor West, Border, nor Breed, nor Birth,
When two strong men stand face to face, though they come from the ends of the earth
!Rudyard Kipling THE BALLAD OF EAST AND WEST 1889
Insanity: a perfectly rational adjustment to an insane world. R. D. Laing
Revenge is a dish best served cold. --Pierre Ambroise Francois
Choderlos, de LaClos [1741-1803],_Les Liaisons Dangereuse
However this is probably from a mistranslation.
Votre querelle devient la mienne. Acceptez pour ce soir, un souper dansma petite maison, et j' espère ne pas différer plus longtemps votre vengeance.--- Choderlos de LaClos, Les Liaisons Dangereuses [Your quarrel becomes mine. Have supper with me this evening in my humble abode, and I hope to put off your revenge no longer.]
The historian works with documents... There is no substitute for documents: no documents, no history.- C. V. Langlois & Charles Seignobos, _Introduction to the Study of History_ (1898)
"Are you lost, daddy?" I asked tenderly.
"Shut up," he explained.
Ring Lardner (1885-1933), _The Young Immigrants_ 
And still I look for the men who will dare to be
roses of England
wild roses of England
men who are wild roses of England
with metal thorns, beware!
but still more brave and still more rare
the courage of rosiness in a cabbage world
fragrance of roses in a stale stink of lies
rose-leaves to bewilder the clever fools
and rose-briars to strangle the machine.
D H Lawrence, a poem called 'Rose and Cabbage':
All men dream: but not equally. Those who dream by night in the
dusty recesses of their minds wake in the day to find that it was
vanity: but the dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may
act their dreams with open eyes, to make it possible. This I did.
Thomas Edward Lawrence --Seven Pillars of Wisdom Suppressed Introductory Chapter
Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans~John Lennon, _Beautiful Boy__Double Fantasy_album (1980).
Half the money I spend on advertisin is wasted, and the trouble is
I don't know which half.
William Hesketh Lever, attributed in David Ogilvy: Confessions of an Advertising Man.
Better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak out
and remove all doubt.
Abraham Lincoln (also attr. Confucius)
One meteorologist remarked that if the theory were correct, one
flap of a seagull's wings would be enough to alter the course of the
Does the Flap of a Butterfly's Wings in Brazil Set Off a Tornado
Conrad Lorenz address at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in Washington, 29 December 1979
This is a helluva way to run a railroad. - Leonor F. Loree
Stone walls do not a prison make,
Nor iron bars a cage;
Minds innocent and quiet take
That for an hermitage
If I have freedom in my love,
And in my soul am free,
Angels alone that soar above
Enjoy such liberty.
Richard Lovelace, from "To Althea, from Prison"
Unless I am convicted by scripture and plain reason -- I do not accept the authority of the popes and councils, for they have contradicted each other -- my conscience is captive to the Word of God. I cannot and I will not recant anything for to go against conscience is neither right nor safe. God help me. Amen. --- Martin Luther, at the Imperial Diet at Worms, 18 April 1521.
Toute nation a le gouvernement qu'elle m\'erite. Every nation has
the government it deserves.
Maistre, Joseph de (1753-1821) [1811.08.15] Letter to X in _Lettres et Opuscules In\'edits_ (1851) vol. 1, Letter 53
In yon strait path a thousand
May well be stopped by three.
Lord Macaulay Horatius
Lets be frank about it; most of our people have never had it so
Harold Macmillan (First Earl of Stockton), 1957.
I must down to the seas again, to the lonely sea and the sky,
And all I ask is a tall ship and a star to steer her by,
And the wheel's kick and the wind's song and the white sail's shaking,
And a grey mist on the sea's face and a grey dawn breaking.
I must down to the seas again, for the call of the running
Is a wild call and a clear call that may not be denied;
And all I ask is a windy day with the white clouds flying,
And the flung spray and the blown spume, and the sea-gulls crying.
I must down to the seas again to the vagrant gypsy life.
To the gull's way and the whale's way where the wind's like a whetted knife;
And all I ask is a merry yarn from a laughing fellow-rover,
And quiet sleep and a sweet dream when the long trick's over.
John Masefield SEA-FEVER
Because it's there.
Supposedly said by G. H. L. Mallory, explaining why he wanted to climb Mt.Everest, when asked on an American lecture tour in 1923 (quoted in John Hunt, 'The Ascent of Everest' and D. Robertson 'George Mallory').
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful committed citizens
can change the world: Indeed it's the only thing that ever has.
As I was walking down the stair
I met a man who wasn't there
He wasn't there again today
Oh I wish he'd go away!
"Antigonish" by Hughes Mearns
Whom the Gods love dies young. -- Menander, 'The Double Deceiver'
Explanations exist; they have existed for all times, for there is
always an easy solution to every human problem - neat, plausible, and
H. L. Mencken, "The Divine Afflatus," in the New York Evening Mail, November 15, 1917
No one in this world, as far as I know.... has ever lost money by
underestimating the intelligence of the great masses of the plain
H.L.Mencken , Notes on journalism, Chicago Tribune Sept. 19, 1926
War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things: the decayed
and degraded state of moral and patriotic feeling which thinks
nothing worth a war, is worse. When a people are used as mere human
instruments for firing cannon or thrusting bayonets, in the service
and for the selfish purposes of a master, such war degrades a people.
A war to protect other human beings against tyrannical injustice; a
war to give victory to their own ideas of right and good, and which
is their own war, carried on for an honest purpose by their own free
choice--is often the means of their regeneration. A man who has
nothing which he cares about more than he does about his personal
safety is a miserable creature who has no chance of being free,
unless made and kept so by the existing of better men than himself.
As long as justice and injustice have not terminated their ever
renewing fight for ascendancy in the affairs of mankind, human beings
must be willing, when need is, to do battle for the one against the
John Stuart Mill, "The Contest in America," pp. 208-09, in John Stuart Mill, Dissertations and Discussions (Boston: William V. Spencer, 1867).
My candle burns at both ends;
It will not last the night.
But ah, my foes, and ah, my friends,
It gives a lovely light.
-Edna St Vincent Millay
When I consider how my light is spent,
Ere half my days, in this dark world and wide,
And that one talent which is death to hide
Lodged with me useless, though my soul more bent
To serve therewith my Maker, and present
My true account, lest he returning chide,
`Doth God exact day-labour, light denied?'
I fondly ask. But Patience, to prevent
That murmur, soon replies: `God doth not need
Either man's work or his own gifts; who best
Bear his mild yoke, they serve him best. His state
Is kingly; thousands at his bidding speed,
And post o'er land and ocean without rest;
They also serve who only stand and wait.
John Milton, On His Blindness
Abash'd the Devil stood,
And felt how awful goodness is, and saw
Virtue in her shape how lovely.
John Milton, "Paradise Lost", bk III, st. 1.
Here we may reign secure, and in my choice
To reign is worth ambition though in hell:
Better to reign in hell than serve in heaven.
John Milton, 1608-74, Paradise Lost, Book 1
The childhood shows the man,
As morning shows the day.
John Milton (1608-1674)_Paradise Regained_ , Book IV, Line 220
Those who danced were thought to be quite insane by those who could not hear the music. Angela Monet
For a desperate disease a desperate cure. -- Montaigne: Chap. iii. The Custom of the Isle of Cea.
A man always has two reasons for what he does - a good one, and
the real one.
J.P. Morgan 1837-1913, attrib. by Owen Wister in Roosevelt :The Story of a Friendship (1930)
"What hath God wrought!"--Numbers 22:23. Quoted by Samuel F.B. Morse in the first telegraph message, from Washington to Baltimore in 1844.
England is a nation of shopkeepers. -- Napoléon
You know Foley, I have only one eye - I have a right to be blind
sometimes...I really do not see the signal.
Nelson to Captain Foley, Battle of Copenhagen, 1801, raising his telescope to his blind eye in disregard of Admiral Hyde-Parker's order to break off action. Nelson went on to win the battle in breach of orders.
When Hitler attacked the Jews I was not a Jew, therefore, I was
not concerned. And when Hitler attacked the Catholics, I was not a
Catholic, and therefore, I was not concerned. And when Hitler
attacked the unions and the industrialists, I was not a member of the
unions and I was not concerned. Then, Hitler attacked me and the
Protestant church -- and there was nobody left to be concerned.
Martin Niemoller (1892-1984), in Congressional Record 14 October 1968, p. 31636, (Howard Samuels speaking and "recalling the answer that Pastor Martin Niemoller...gave...")
What a great artist dies with me.-- Nero
I do not know what I may appear to the world; but to myself I seem to have been only like a boy playing on the seashore, and diverting myself now and then finding a smoother pebble or a prettier shell than ordinary, whilst the great ocean of truth lay all undiscovered before me. -- Sir Isaac Newton
Whoever fights monsters should see to it that in the process he does not become a monster. And when you look long into an abyss, the abyss also looks into you. -- Nietzsche, Beyond Good and Evil_ (1885-86)
What does not kill me makes me stronger. - - "Twilight of the Idols" by Friedrich Nietzsche (1844-1900)
A SOLDIER of the Legion lay dying in Algiers,
There was a lack of woman's nursing, there was dearth of woman'stears;
But a comrade stood beside him, while his lifeblood ebbed away,
Caroline Norton, Bingen on the Rhine
The world's a stage and most of us are desperately unrehearsed.~Sean O'Casey
I am become Death, the Shatterer of worlds.
J. Robert Oppenheimer, quoting a line from the Bhagavad Gita that came to his mind at the test of the first atom bomb, July 16, 1945, cited in N. P. Davis, 'Lawrence and Oppenheimer'
A little government and a little luck are necessary in life, but only a fool trusts either of them.- P. J. O'Rourke, "Parliament of Whores" 
'... belief in survival after death - the individual survival of
John Smith, still conscious of himself as John Smith - is enormously
less widesread than it was. Even among professing Christians it is
probably decaying: other people, as a rule, don't even entertain the
possibility that it might be true. ... There is little doubt that the
modern cult of power worship is bound up with the modern man's
feeling that life here and now is the only life there is. ... I would
say that the decay of belief in personal immortality has been as
important as the rise of machine civilization. ... I do not want the
belief in life after death to return.... What I do point out is that
its disappearance has left a big hole, and that we ought to take
notice of that fact. ... [Mankind] is not likely to salvage
civilization unless he can evolve a system of good and evil which is
independent of heaven and hell.
George Orwell, 'As I Please' 3 March 1944
We are the music makers,
And we are the dreamer of dreams,
Wandering by lone sea-breakers,
And sitting by desolate streams;
World-losers and world-forsakers,
On whom the pale moon gleams:
Yet we are the movers and shakers
Of the world for ever, it seems.
Ode by Arthur William Edgar O'Shaughnessy
When we walk to the edge of all the light you have
and take the step into the darkness of the unknown,
you must believe that one of two things will happen:
There will be something solid for us to stand upon,
or we will be taught to fly.
Patrick Overton, Faith
War is the common harvest of all those who participate in the division and expenditure of public money, in all countries. It is the art of *conquering at home:* the object of it is an increase of revenue; and as revenue cannot be increased without taxes, a pretence must be made for expenditures. In reviewing the history of the English government, its wars, and taxes, an observer, not blinded by prejudice, nor warped by interest would declare, that taxes were not raised to carry on wars, but that wars were raised to carry on taxes. --Thomas Paine, _Rights of Man_
If you want to know what God thinks of money, just look at the people he gave it to. Dorothy Parker
Every year, back comes Spring, with nasty little birds yapping their fool heads off and the ground all mucked up with plants. Dorothy Parker
I have made this letter longer than usual, only because I have not
had the time to make it shorter.
Blaise Pascal, in Lettres Provinciales (dated 1657), xvi
Men never do evil so completely and cheerfully as when they do it
from religious conviction.
Blaise Pascal (1623-1662), Pense'es, #895.
In the field of observation, chance favours only the prepared mind. -- Louis Pasteur (1822-1895) , lecture 1854.
We have met the enemy, and he is ours. --- Oliver Perry in a message to his commander, General W. H. Harrison, in 1813 after the Battle of Lake Erie
We has met the enemy, and he is us! --- Pogo comic strip dialogue by Walt Kelly, early 1970's regarding environmental issues
I know not how I may seem to others, but to myself I am but a small child wandering upon the vast shores of knowledge, every now and then finding a small bright pebble to content myself with. -- PLATO
To err is human; to forgive, divine --Alexander Pope, from An Essay on Criticism .
Hope springs eternal in the human breast:
Man never is, but always to be blest.
The soul, uneasy and confined from home,
Rests and expatiates in a life to come.
Alexander Pope. 1688-1744. Essay on Man. Epistle i. Line 95.
Honour and shame from no condition rise;
Act well your part, there all the honour lies.
Alexander Pope, "An Essay on Man" Epistle IV, 1733-34
Damn with faint praise, assent with civil leer,
And, without sneering, teach the rest to sneer;
Willing to wound, and yet afraid to strike,
Just hint a fault, and hesitate dislike;
Alike reserv'd to blame or to commend,
A tim'rous foe, and a suspicious friend;
Dreading e'en fools, by flatterers besieged,
And so obliging that he ne'er oblig'd;
Like Cato, give his little Senate laws,
And sit attentive to his own applause.
--Alexander Pope,_Epistle to Dr. Arbuthnot_
O, what a tangled web we weave,
When first we practise to deceive!
But when we've practised quite a while
How vastly we improve our style.
J.R. Pope, A Word of Encouragement (updating Sir Walter Scott's Marmion)
What thou lovest well remains,
the rest is dross
What thou lov'st well shall not be reft from thee
What thou lov'st well is thy true heritage.
Ezra Pound , Homage to Sextus Propertius
Don't one of you fire until you see the whites of their eyes. -- William Prescott at the battle fo Bunker Hill, June 17, 1775.
I am sitting in the smallest room of my house. I have your review
before me. In a moment it will be behind me.
Max Reger (1873-1916) German composer Responding to a savage review of his music (1906) In Nicolas Slonimsky, Lexicon of Musical Invective (1953)
Hypocrisy is the homage that vice pays to virtue. -- Francois, duc de la Rochefoucauld
We can't all be heroes because somebody has to sit on the curb and clap as they go by. -- Will Rogers
The only thing we have to fear is fear itself--nameless, unreasoning, unjustified terror which paralyzes needed efforts to convert retreat into advance. F D Roosevelt, First Inaugural Address, March 4th, 1933
Some reformers may urge that in the ages distant future, patriotism, like the habit of monogamous marriage, will become a needless and obsolete virtue; but just at present the man who loves other countries as much as he does his own is quite as noxious a member of society as the man who loves other women as much as he loves his wife. Love of country is an elemental virtue, like love of home." --Theodore Roosevelt
Man is born free; and everywhere he is in chains. --Jean Jacques Rousseau _The Social Contract_ (1762)
You were gone
From all the lives
You left your mark upon
Lyrics from "Afterimage", by Rush, from the album: Grace Under Pressure(1984).
[I]t seems to be the fate of idealists to obtain what they have struggled for in a form which destroys their ideals. Bertrand Russell Chapter 7 of _Marriage & Morals_.
. . . once, when my feet were bare, and I had not the means of obtaining shoes. I came to the chief of Kufah in a state of much dejection, and saw there a man who had no feet. I returned thanks to God and acknowledged his mercies, and endured my want of shoes with patience . . . --- Sadi. The Gulistan
Progress, far from consisting in change, depends on retentiveness
when experience is not retained, as among savages, infancy is
perpetual. Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat
it....This is the condition of children and barbarians, in whom
instinct has learned nothing from experience.
George Santayana (1863-1952), Life of Reason, vol. 1, chap. 12, p. 284 (1905)
Academic politics is the most vicious and bitter form of politics, because the stakes are so low.-- Wallace Sayre
Every truth passes through three stages before it is recognized In the first it is ridiculed, in the second it s opposed, in the third it is regarded as self-evident. Schopenhauer
Oh what a tangled web we weave,
When first we practise to deceive!
Sir Walter Scott. 1771-1832. Marmion. Canto vi.Stanza 17.
Age cannot wither her, nor custom stale
Her infinite variety, other women cloy~
Shakespeare, Antony and Cleopatra Act II, sc. ii
Neither a borrower nor a lender be; -- Polonius: Hamlet, Act 1, Scene 3
This above all, to thine own self be true,
And it must follow as the night the day
Thou canst not then be false to any man.
William Shakespeare, Hamlet Prince of Denmark (Polonius at I, iii)
For in that sleep of death what dreams may come,
When we have shuffled off this mortal coil,
Must give us pause; there's the respect
That makes calamity of so long life;
Hamlet's soliloquy in Act II, Scene i.
What a piece of work is a man, how noble in reason, how infinite in faculties, in form and moving how express and admirable, in action how like an angel, in apprehension how like a god: the beauty of the world, the paragon of animals! And yet to me what is this quintessence of dust? Man delights not me - nor woman neither, though by your smiling you seem to say so. -- Hamlet, Act II, Scene 2, lines 303-310.
Diseases desperate grown
By desperate appliance are relieved,
Or not at all.
Hamlet Act iv. Sc. 3.
Alas, poor Yorick. I knew him, Horatio; a fellow of infinite jest,
of most excellent fancy.
Shakespeare Hamlet act 5, sc. 1, l. 
It is a custom more honored in the breach than the observance.-- Shakespeare, Hamlet, I,iv,15.
O, I die, Horatio!
The potent poison quite o'ercrows my spirit.
I cannot live to hear the news from England,
But I do prophesy th' election lights
On Fortinbras. He has my dying voice.
So tell him, with th' occurrents, more and less,
Which have solicited-- The rest is silence.
Now cracks a noble heart. Good night, sweet prince,
And flights of angels sing thee to thy rest!
Shakespeare, 'Hamlet', V, ii
We few, we happy few, we band of brothers;
For he to-day that sheds his blood with me
Shall be my brother; be he ne'er so vile,
This day shall gentle his condition:
And gentlemen in England now a-bed
Shall think themselves accursed they were not here,
And hold their manhoods cheap whiles any speaks
That fought with us upon Saint Crispin's day.
Shakespeare Henry V
Friends, Romans, countrymen, lend me your ears.
I come to bury Caesar, not to praise him.
The evil that men do lives after them;
The good is oft interred with their bones--
So let it be with Caesar
Mark Antony's speech in "Julius Caesar"
"It was Greek to me." Cassius in _Julius Caesar_, Shakespeare.
Cry 'Havoc,' and let slip the dogs of war. Antony, "Julius Caesar", Act 3, Scene I, William Shakespeare
Cowards die many times before their deaths;
The valiant never taste of death but once.
PORTER: Drink, sir, is a great provoker of three things.
MACDUFF: What three things does drink especially provoke?
PORTER: Marry, sir, nose-painting, sleep, and urine. Lechery, sir, it provokes, and unprovokes; it provokes the desire, but it takes away the performance.
Shakespeare, Macbeth, 2:iii
Stand not upon the order of your going,
But go at once.
Macbeth III, iv,
Life's but a walking shadow, a poor player
Life's but a walking shadow, a poor player
That struts and frets his hour upon the stage
And then is heard no more. It is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
Shakespeare, Macbeth Act 5 Scene 5
Why then, the world's mine oyster, Which I with sword will open. - William Shakespeare *The Merry Wives of Windsor* II, 2
No more of that. I pray you, in your letters,
When you shall these unlucky deeds relate,
Speak of me as I am; nothing extenuate,
Nor set down aught in malice: then must you speak
Of one that loved not wisely but too well;
Of one not easily jealous, but, being wrought,
Perplex'd in the extreme; of one whose hand,
Like the base Indian, threw a pearl away
Richer than all his tribe; of one whose subdued eyes,
Albeit unused to the melting mood,
Drop tears as fast as the Arabian trees
Their medicinal gum. Set you down this;
And say besides, that in Aleppo once,
Where a malignant and a turban'd Turk
Beat a Venetian and traduced the state,
I took by the throat the circumcised dog
And smote him, thus.
Hath not a Jew eyes? hath not a Jew hands, organs, dimensions, senses, affections, passions? fed with the same food, hurt with the same weapons, subject to the same diseases, healed by the same means, warmed and cooled by the same winter and summer, as a Christian is? If you prick us, do we not bleed? if you tickle us, do we not laugh? if you poison us, do we not die? and if you wrong us, shall we not revenge? -- Shakespeare, The Merchant of Venice
A horse! A horse! My kingdom for a horse! -- Wm Shakespeare, Richard III, Act V, scene iv.
When I do count the clock that tells the time,
And see the brave day sunk in hideous night;
When behold the violet past prime,
And sale curls all silver'd o'er with white;
When lofty trees I see barren of leaves
Which erst from heat did canopy the herd,
And summer's green all girded up in sheaves
Borne on the bier with white and bristly beard,
Then of thy beauty do I question make,
That thou among the wastes of time must go,
Since sweets and beauties do themselves forsake
And die as fast as they see others grow;
And nothing 'gainst Time's scythe can make defence
Save breed, to brave him when he takes thee hence
Shakespeare's Twelfth Sonnet
Our revels now are ended. These our actors
As I foretold you, were all spirits and
Are melted into air, into thin air:
And, like the baseless fabric of this vision,
The cloud-capp'd tow'rs, the gorgeous palaces,
The solemn temples, the great globe itself,
Yea, all which it inherit, shall dissolve
And, like this insubstantial pageant faded,
Leave not a rack behind. We are such stuff
As dreams are made on, and our little life
Is rounded with a sleep.
Shakespeare, THE TEMPEST, Act IV, scene 1 (spoken by Prospero).
Lawn as white as driven snow. -- Shakespeare, The Winter's Tale, iv, iii [220
Youth is a wonderful thing. What a crime to waste it on children. -- George Bernard Shaw
A drama critic is a man who leaves no turn unstoned. -- George Bernard Shaw (1856-1950)
Life to me is no brief candle; it is a sort of splendid torch which I have got hold of for the moment, and I want to make it burn as brightly as possible before handing it on to future generations. -- George Bernard Shaw, MAN AND SUPERMAN.
We have no more right to consume happiness without producing it than to consume wealth without producing it.~ George Bernard Shaw, Candida I
You see things; and you say, 'Why?' But I dream things that never were; and I say, 'Why not?'" - Shaw, George Bernard (1856-1950) 'Back to Methuselah' 1921
The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore all progress depends on the unreasonable man.-- George Bernard Shaw, 'Man and Superman,' ``Maxims for Revolutionists''
Nothing contributes so much to tranquilizing the mind as a steady
purpose-a point on which the soul may fix its intellectual eye.
Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley 1797-1851
I met a traveller from an antique land
Who said: Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the desert . . . Near them, on the sand,
Half sunk, a shattered visage lies, whose frown,
And wrinkled lip, and sneer of cold command,
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
Which yet survived, stamped on these lifeless things,
The hand that mocked them, and the heart that fed:
And on the pedestal these words appear:
`My name is Oxymandias, king of kings:
Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!'
Nothing beside remains. Round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare
The lone and level sands stretch far away.
Ozymandias by Percy Bysshe Shelley:
God helps those who help themselves.--Algernon Sidney (1622-1683)_Discourses on Government_ , Ch. 2
THE UNEXAMINED LIFE IS NOT WORTH LIVING -- Socrates (quoted in Plato's _Apology_)
Go West, young man, and grow up with the Country. -- John Babsone Soule (1815-1891)
Sweet is the rose, but grows upon a briar;
Sweet in the Juniper, but sharp his bough;
Sweet is the Eglantine, but pricketh near;
Sweet is the firbloom, but his branches rough.
Sweet is the Cypress, but his rind is tough,
Sweet is the nut, but bitter is his pill;
Sweet is the broom-flower, but yet sour enough;
And sweet is Moly, but his root is ill.
So every sweet with sour is tempered still
That maketh it be coveted the more:
For easy things that may be got at will,
Most sorts of men do set but little store.
Why then should I account of little pain
~Edmund Spenser, Amoretti, 26
Nature abhors a vacuum. -- Benedict Spinoza (1632-1677), [Ethics, Pt. I, 15, note]
If you want the truth to go round the world you must hire an
express train to pull it; but if you want a lie to go round the
world. it will fly; it is as light as a feather, and a breath will
carry it. It is well said in the old proverb,'a lie will go round the
world while truth is putting its boots on.
C H Spurgeon (1834-1892) Gems from Spurgeon 1859.
Euclid alone has looked on beaty bare.-- Edna St Vincent Millay, The harp-Weaver (1923), 4, sonnet 22.
A man got to do what he got to do.
John Steinbeck, The Grapes of Wrath, 1939, the first published use of the phrase.
A woman needs a man like a fish needs a bicycle. -- Gloria Steinem
This be the verse you grave for me:
'Here he lies, where he longed to be;
Home is the sailor, home from sea,
And the hunter home from the hill.'
Robert Louis Stevenson, 'Requiem' from 'Underwoods' (1887).
The flapping of a single butterfly's wing today produces a tiny change in the state of the atmosphere. Over a period of time, what the atmosphere actually does diverges from what it would have done. So, in a month's time, a tornado that would have devastated the Indonesian coast doesn't happen. Or maybe one that wasn't going to happen, does.-- Ian Stewart ,"Does God play Dice?"
Ave imperator, te morituri salutant. [Hail, Emperor! We who (are about to) die salute you!]- Suetonius, Claudius 21.6
It is useless to attempt to reason a man out of a thing he was never reasoned into.- Jonathan Swift
Those that the gods wish to destroy they first make mad -- Publilius Syrus, "Moral Sayings", #911, circa 42 BC.
Sea-kings' daughter from over the sea, Alexandra!
Saxon and Norman and Dane are we,
But all of us Danes in our welcome of thee, Alexandra!
Alfred, Lord Tennyson, 1809-1892'A Welcome to Alexandra' (March 7, 1863) in Enoch Arden and other poems &c.
Tis only noble to be good.
Kind hearts are more than coronets,
And simple faith more than Norman blood.
Alfred, Lord Tennyson, 'Lady Clara Vere de Vere' VI
"Forward the Light Brigade!"
Was there a man dismay'd?
Not tho' the soldier knew
Someone had blunder'd:
Their's not to make reply,
Their's not to reason why,
Their's but to do and die;
Into the valley of death
Rode the six hundred.
Cannon to right of them
Cannon to left of them,
Cannon in front of them
Volley'd and thundere'd.
Alfred, Lord Tennyson, The Charge of the Light Brigade
In the Spring a livelier iris changes on the burnish'd dove;
In the Spring a young man's fancy lightly turns to thoughts of love.
Alfred Lord Tennyson, _Locksley Hall_
Moderation in all things. -- Terence (Publius Terentius Afer, 190-159 B.C.), The Lady of AndrosThe wicked are wicked, no doubt, and they go astray and they fall, and they come by their deserts; but who can tell the mischief which the very virtuous do? (The Newcomes ch. 20) William Makepeace Thackeray
Do not go gentle into that good night,
Old age should burn and rave at close of day;
Rage, rage against the dying of the light...
Dylan Thomas (1914-1953)
The mass of men lead lives of quiet desperation.-- Henry David Thoreau, Walden(1854),I,Economy
If you have built castles in the air, your work need not be lost; that is where they should be. Now put the foundations under them. --Henry David Thoreau_Walden_ (1854)
My birthday-present! It came to me on my birthday, my precious,"
So he had always said to himself.
J. R. R. Tolkien, THE HOBBIT, Chapter 5: Riddles in the Dark.
The more one gets to know of men, the more one values dogs. -- A. Toussenel (1803-1885) L'Esprit des betes (1847) ch. 3
We don't need no stinking badges! -- Treasure of the Sierra Madre
If you want a friend in Washington, get a dog? -- Harry Truman
I've been rich and I've been poor; rich is better-Sophie Tucker
It will start in here in November and rain about four, and
sometimes as much as seven days on a stretch; after that, you may
loan out your umbrella for twelve months, with the serene confidence
which a Christian feels in four aces.
Mark Twain, "Washoe. -- `Information Wanted'" In: Works of Mark Twain: Early Tales and Sketches, Vol. I 1851-1864 (University of California Press, 1979), 368.
All democrats are insane, but not one of them knows it; none but
the republicans and mugwumps know it. All the republicans are insane,
but only the democrats and mugwumps can perceive it. The rule is
perfect: in all matters of opinion our adversaries are insane.
Mark Twain, "What Is Man and Other Philosophical Writings", p. 235.
The greatest trick the devil ever played was convincing the world
he didn't exist.
The Usual Suspects, spoken by Kevin Spacey's character Verbal Klint/Kaiser Souze
God is in the details -- Mies van der Rohe
There was reason to fear that the Revolution, like Saturn, might
devour in turn each one of her children.
Pierre Vergniaud (1753-1793), Lamartine, Histoire des Girondins, Bk. XXXVIII, Ch. 20
Doubt is not a pleasant condition, but certainty is an absurd one.--Voltaire (Francois Marie Arouet), Letter to Frederick the Great, April 6, 1767
The best is the enemy of the good.--Voltaire (1694-1778), French philosopher, author. Philosophical Dictionary, "Dramatic Art" (1764)
Ce corps qui s'appelait et qui s'appelle encore le saint empire
romain n'\'etait en aucune mani\`ere ni saint, ni romain, ni empire.
This agglomeration which was called and which still calls itself the
Holy Roman Empire was neither holy, nor Roman, nor an Empire.
Voltaire (1694-1778) _Essai sur l'histoire g\'en\'erale et sur les moeurs et l'esprit des nations_ (1756) ch. 70
Les mortels sont égaux; ce n'est point la naissance, c'est la seule vertu qui fait leur différence. Mortals are equal; it is not birth but virtue alone that makes the difference between them. - Voltaire _Mahomet ou le Fanatisme_.Act I, Scene 4
I know half the money I spend on advertising is wasted, but I can never find out which half. - John Wanamaker (1838 - 1922)
I know of no pursuit in which more real and important services can
be rendered to any country than by improving its agriculture, its
breed of useful animals, and other branches of a husbandman's
George Washington (1732-99), U.S. general, president. Letter, 20 July 1794.
Must I be carried to the skies
On flowery beds of ease,
While others fought to win the prize,
And sailed through bloody seas?
Isaac Watts, Am I a Soldier of the Cross? 1721.
A man's got to do what a man's got to do.--John Wayne 1939 *Stagecoach*.
Cover her face,
Mine eyes dazzle,
She died so young.
John Webster (1580-1625) "Duchess of Malfi" (1623) act4 scene2.
He killed the noble Mudjovikis.
Of the skin he made him mittens,
Made them with the fur side inside,
Made them with the skin side outside.
He, to get the warm side inside,
Put the inside skin side outside;
He, to get the cold side outside.
That's why he put the fur side inside,
Why he put the skin side outside,
Why he turned them inside outside.
" The Modern Hiawatha " A Parody Anthology. Ed. Carolyn Wells. New York: Scribner's, 1910. 120.
I used to be Snow White...but I drifted.-- Mae West (1892-1980), quoted in "Peel Me a Grape"(1975)
We have a saying in the movement that we don't trust anybody over thirty."--Jack Weinberg (1940- ) (1964 interview)
Time is what prevents everything from happening at once. -- attributed to John Archibald Wheeler (1911- )
For of all the sad words of tongue or pen,
The saddest are these: "It might have been.
John Greenleaf Whittier (1807-1892) Maud Miller, stanza 53
The age is dull and mean. Men creep,
Not walk; with blood too pale and tame
To pay the debt we owe to shame;
Buy cheap, sell dear; eat, drink, and sleep
Down-pillowed, deaf to moaning want;
Pay tithes for soul-insurance; keep
Six day to Mammon, one to Cant.
John Greeleaf Whittier (1809-1892), For Righteousness' Sake, 1855
Indeed, in many respects she was quite English and was an excellent example of the fact that we have really everything in common with America nowadays, except, of course, the language. -- Oscar Wilde, The Canterville Ghost (1888)
There is only one thing in the world worse than being talked
about, and that is not being talked about.
Oscar Wilde, The Picture of Dorian Gray, ch 1
Yet each man kills the thing he loves,
By each let this be heard,
Some do it with a bitter look,
Some with a flattering word.
The coward does it with a kiss,
The brave man with a sword.
Oscar Wilde (The Ballad of Reading Gaol).
A man who knows the price of everything and the value of
Oscar Wilde, LADY WINDERMERE'S FAN, act III.
The English country gentleman galloping after a fox--the unspeakable in full pursuit of the uneatable.--Oscar Wilde, _A Woman of No Importance_
[Earl of Sandwich:] 'Pon my soul, Wilkes, I don't know
whether you'll die upon the gallows or of the pox.
[Wilkes:] That depends, my Lord, whether I first embrace your Lordship's principles, or your Lordship's mistresses.
Wilkes, John (1727-1797) in Sir Charles Petrie _The Four Georges_ (1935) Probably apocryphal.
What's good for the country is good for General Motors, and vice
Charles Wilson, U.S. Industrialist, Secretary of Defense. Usual version of statement by Wilson, head of General Motors Corporation, 1941-53, to a U.S. Sentate committee, January 1953. The statement as reported by the _New York Times_ (24 Feb. 1953) was, "For years I thought what was good for our country was good for General Motors and vice versa. The difference did not exist. Our company is too big. It goes with the welfare of the country." The Democrats on the committee, who were in a majority, focused on the "vice versa" of Wilson's statement, to question his true loyalties.
If I am to speak for ten minutes, I need a week for preparation;
if fifteen minutes, three days; if half an hour, two days; if an
hour, I am ready now.
Woodrow Wilson (1856-1924) (From Josephus Daniels' _The Wilson Era: Years of War and After_ )
... you do know what would have happened if it had been three wise WOMEN instead of men, don't you? They would have asked for directions, arrived on time, helped deliver the baby, and brought disposable diapers as gifts. - Jill Holly Bethune Wood
You can't live a perfect day without doing something for someone who will never be able to repay you.John Wooden
The world is too much with us; late and soon,
Getting and spending, we lay waste our powers:
Little we see in Nature that is ours;
We have given out hearts away, a sordid boon!
This Sea that bares her bosom to the moon;
The winds that will be howling at all hours,
And are up-gathered now like sleeping flowers;
For this, for every thing, we are out of tune;
It moves us not.-Great God! I'd rather be
A Pagan suckled in a creed outworn;
So might I, standing on this pleasant lea,
Have glimpses that would make me less forlorn;
Have sight of Proteus rising from the sea;
Or hear old Triton blow his wreathed horn.
Si monumentum requiris, circumspice. --inscription in St, Paul's, commemorating Sir Christopher Wren Had I the heavens' embroidered cloths,
Enwrought with golden and silver light,
And the blue and the dim and the dark cloths
Of night and light and the half-light,
I would spread the cloths under your feet:
But I, being poor, have only my dreams;
I have spread my dreams under your feet;
Tread softly because you tread on my dreams.
W. B Yeats "He Wishes for the Clothes of Heaven"
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