The Best Quotations


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Classic Quotations


Well known quotations with some historic value

Benjamin DisraeliThere are three kinds of lies: Lies, Damn Lies, and Statistics.

—  Benjamin Disraeli, 1804-1881, British Prime Minister

SenecaReligion is regarded by the common people as true, by the wise as false, and by rulers as useful.

—  Seneca, 4 AD-65 AD, Roman philosopher

Galeazzo CianoVictory has a thousand fathers, but defeat is an orphan.

—  Galeazzo Ciano, 1903-1944, Italian politician

Thomas EdisonGenius is one percent inspiration, ninety-nine percent perspiration.

—  Thomas Edison, 1847-1934, American inventor

Khalil GibranIf you love somebody, let them go, for if they return, they were always yours. If they don't, they never were.

—  Khalil Gibran, 1883-1931, Lebanese-American poet & philosopher

HippocratesArt is long, life is short.

Ars longa, vita brevis.

—  Hippocrates, 460-377 BC, Ancient Greek physician, the 'Father of Medicine'

George SantayanaThose who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.

—  George Santayana, 1863-1952, Spanish-American philosopher

Robert FrostTwo roads diverged in a wood, and I —
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

—  Robert Frost, 1874-1963, American poet

René DescartesI think therefore I exist.

Cogito ergo sum.

—  René Descartes, 1596-1650, French philosopher

HoraceSeize the day.

Carpe diem.

—  Horace, 65-8 BC, Roman poet

Latin phraseHannibal at the gates.

Hannibal ad portas.

—  Latin phrase

     (Roman alert when Hannibal was approaching to Rome, around 217 BC)

Latin phraseGod wills.

Deus vult.

—  Latin phrase

     (the motto of the Christian warriors in the Crusades)

VoltaireI disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.

—  Voltaire, 1694-1778, French philosopher & writer

Charles BaudelaireThe finest trick of the devil is to persuade you that does not exist.

—  Charles Baudelaire, 1821-1867, French poet

Robert FrostPoetry is what gets lost in translation.

—  Robert Frost, 1874-1963, American poet

Latin phraseDivide and conquer.

Divide ut regnes.

—  Latin phrase

Friedrich NietzscheVivere pericolosamente.

To live dangerously.

—  Friedrich Nietzsche, 1844-1900, German philosopher

     (the phrase in its Italian version was popularized by Mussolini)

The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes (1939)Elementary, my dear Watson. Purely elementary.

—  from the film The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes (1939)

St. AmbroseWhen in Rome, do as the Romans do.

—  St. Ambrose, 340-397, Bishop of Milan, Church Father

St Bernard de ClairvauxThe road to hell is paved with good intentions

—  St Bernard de Clairvaux, 1091-1153, French saint & abbot of the Cistercian order

EpicurusTo make a man happy, add not unto his riches but take away from his desires.

—  Epicurus, 341-270 BC, Ancient Greek philosopher

Louis XIV of FranceL' etat c'est moi.

I myself am the state.

—  Louis XIV of France, 1638-1715, King of France (le Roi Soleil)

Pierre de CoubertinThe most important thing in the Olympic Games is not winning but taking part.

—  Pierre de Coubertin, 1863-1937, French, father of the Olympic Games

William ShakespeareTo be, or not to be: that is the question.

—  William Shakespeare, 1564-1616, English poet & playwright

Sudden Impact (1983)Go ahead, make my day.

—  from the film Sudden Impact (1983)

Edmund BurkeThe only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.

—  Edmund Burke, 1729-1797, British statesman & philosopher

NapoleonHistory is written by the winners.

—  Napoleon, 1769-1821, French Emperor

Blaise PascalIf you gain, you gain all. If you lose, you lose nothing. Wager then, without hesitation, that He exists.

—  Blaise Pascal, 1623-1662, French thinker

Mahatma GandhiFirst they ignore you, then they ridicule you, then they fight you, and then you win.

—  Mahatma Gandhi, 1869-1948, Indian leader of independence

Winston ChurchillDemocracy is the worst form of government, except for all the others.

—  Winston Churchill, 1874-1965, British Prime Minister, Nobel 1953

Winston ChurchillI have nothing to offer but blood, toil, tears and sweat.

—  Winston Churchill, 1874-1965, British Prime Minister, Nobel 1953

Otto von BismarckLaws are like sausages. It is better not to see them being made.

—  Otto von Bismarck, 1815-1898, German chancellor

Otto von BismarckPeople never lie so much as after a hunt, during a war, or before an election.

—  Otto von Bismarck, 1815-1898, German chancellor

Benjamin FranklinThose who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.

—  Benjamin Franklin, 1706-1790, American politician & writer

Benjamin FranklinTime is money.

—  Benjamin Franklin, 1706-1790, American politician & writer

Albert EinsteinGod doesn't play dice with the world.

—  Albert Einstein, 1879-1955, German-Jewish physicist

Karl MarxReligion is the opium of the people.

—  Karl Marx, 1818-1883, German philosopher

Friedrich NietzscheWhat does not kill me, makes me stronger.

—  Friedrich Nietzsche, 1844-1900, German philosopher

George OrwellAll animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others.

—  George Orwell, 1903-1950, British writer

Georges ClemenceauWar is much too serious a thing to be left to military men.

—  Georges Clemenceau, 1841-1929, French Prime Minister

John KennedyAsk not what your country can do for you… ask what you can do for your country.

—  John Kennedy, 1917-1963, American President [1961-1963]

Francis BaconKnowledge is power.

—  Francis Bacon, 1561-1626, English philosopher

Francis BaconHope is a good breakfast, but it is a bad supper.

—  Francis Bacon, 1561-1626, English philosopher

Charles de GaulleNations have no friends, only interests.

—  Charles de Gaulle, 1890-1970, French President

VoltaireIf God did not exist, it would be necessary to invent him.

—  Voltaire, 1694-1778, French philosopher & writer

VauvenarguesThose who can bear all can dare all.

—  Vauvenargues, 1715-1747, French author of maxims

Martin Luther KingI have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.

—  Martin Luther King, 1929-1968, American leader in the Civil Rights Movement

Lord ActonPower tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.

—  Lord Acton, 1834-1902, English historian

William PrescottDon't one of you fire until you see the whites of their eyes.

—  William Prescott, American general

T. S. EliotThis is the way the world ends
Not with a bang but a whimper.

—  T. S. Eliot, 1888-1965, British poet, Nobel 1948

Dwight EisenhowerPlans are nothing; planning is everything.

—  Dwight Eisenhower, 1890-1969, American general & President

Harry TrumanIt’s a recession when your neighbor loses his job; it’s a depression when you lose your own.

—  Harry Truman, 1884-1972, American President [1945-1953]

Harry TrumanWork Hard. Do your best. Keep your word. Never get too big for your britches. Trust in God. Have no fear; and Never forget a friend.

—  Harry Truman, 1884-1972, American President [1945-1953]

Vince LombardiWinners never quit and quitters never win.

—  Vince Lombardi, 1913-1970, American football coach

David Lloyd GeorgeA young man who isn't a socialist hasn't got a heart; an old man who is a socialist hasn't got a head.

—  David Lloyd George, 1863-1945, British Prime Minister [1916-1922]

Charles DarwinIt is not the strongest of the species that survives, not the most intelligent that survives. It is the one that is the most adaptable to change.

—  Charles Darwin, 1809-1882, British scientist

Charles DarwinI have called this principle, by which each slight variation, if useful, is preserved, by the term of Natural Selection.

—  Charles Darwin, 1809-1882, British scientist

Rutherford B. HayesHe serves his party best who serves the country best.

—  Rutherford B. Hayes, 1822-1893, American President [1877-1881]

Walt DisneyIf you can dream it, you can do it.

—  Walt Disney, 1901-1966, American businessman & cartoonist



relative quote
A classic is a book that has never finished saying what it has to say.
Italo Calvino

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2017: Manolis Papathanassiou