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The quotations below offer various definitions for various terms. These quotations can be used when writing about a given topic. You may agree or disagree with the quotations. If you agree, use the quotation as a hook and agree with it. If you disagree, then prove the famous person quoted incorrect. Remember, just because someone is famous doesn't mean that he or she is always right.

Noble/Nobility

  • "A noble hear cannot suspect in others the pettiness and malice that it has never felt" (Jean Racine).

  • "A brother noble, Whose nature is so far from doing harms That he suspects none" (William Shakespeare).

  • "If there is anything good about nobility it is that it enforces the necessity of avoiding degeneracy" (Boethius).

  • There are obligations to nobility" (Duc de Levis).


Peace

  • “Peace comes from within. Do not seek it without” (The Buddha).

  • “I feel within me a peace above all earthly dignities, a still and quiet conscience” (Shakespeare).

  • “It isn’t enough to talk about peace. One must believe in it. And it isn’t enough to believe in it. One must work at it” (Eleanor Roosevelt).

  • “Even peace can be purchased at too high a price” (Benjamin Franklin).

  • “Peace begins with a smile” (Mother Teresa).

  • “Peace has never come from dropping bombs. Real peace comes from enlightenment and educating people to behave in a more divine manner” (Carlos Santana).

  • “Fair peace becomes men; ferocious anger belongs to beasts” (Ovid).

  • “Peace and friendship with all mankind is our wisest policy, and I wish we may be permitted to pursue it” (Thomas Jefferson).


Politician/Politics

  • “Every good communist should know that political power grows out of the barrel of a gun” (Mao Tse Tung).

  • “Politics is war without bloodshed while war is politics with bloodshed” (Mao Tse Tung).

  • “I was really too honest a man to be a politician and live” (Socrates).

  • “I have come to the conclusion that politics are too serious a matter to be left to politicians” (Charles De Gaulle).

  • “Politics, n. Strife of interests masquerading as a contest of principles” (Ambrose Bierce).

  • “Being in politics is like being a football coach. You have to be smart enough to understand the game, and dumb enough to think it’s important” (Eugene McCarthy).

  • “Man is by nature a political animal” (Aristotle).

  • “Politicians are the same all over. They promise to build a bridge even where there is no river” (Nikita Khrushchev).


Poverty

  • “By experts in poverty I do not mean sociologists, but poor men” (G. K. Chesterton).

  • “What a devil art thou, Poverty! How many desires – how many aspirations after goodness and truth – how many noble thoughts, loving wishes toward our fellows, beautiful imaginings thou hast crushed under thy heel, without remorse or pause!” (Walt Whitman).

  • “The community which has neither poverty nor riches will always have the noblest principles” (Plato).

  • “People with a culture of poverty suffer much less from repression than we of the middle class and indeed, if I may make the suggestion with due qualification, they often have a hell of a lot more fun than we have” Brian Friel).

  • “Where justice is denied, where poverty is enforced, where ignorance prevails, and where any one class is made to feel that society is in an organized conspiracy to oppress, rob, and degrade them, neither persons nor property will be safe” (Frederick Douglass).

  • “Through our sunless lanes creeps Poverty with her hungry eyes, and Sin with his sodden face follows close behind her. Misery wakes us in the morning and Shame sits with us at night” (Oscar Wilde).

  • “Money is better than poverty, if only for financial reasons” (Woody Allen).


Power

  • “Power tends to corrupt and absolute power corrupts absolutely” (Lord Acton).

  • “Power corrupts the few, while weakness corrupts the many.... The resentment of the weak does not spring from any injustice done to them but from the sense of their inadequacy and impotence. They hate not wickedness but weakness. When it is in their power to do so, the weak destroy weakness wherever they see it” (Eric Hoffer).

  • “Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely. Great men are almost always bad man” (John Emerich Acton).

  • “Power and violence are opposites; where the one rules absolutely, the other is absent. Violence appears where power is in jeopardy, but left to its own course it ends in power’s disappearance” (Hannah Arendt).

  • “Show respect for those in power, but do not follow them blindly” (Christopher Paolini).

  • “Power acquired by violence is only a usurpation, and lasts only as long as the force of him who commands prevails over that of those who obey” (Denis Diderot).

  • “When power leads man towards arrogance, poetry reminds him of his limitations. When power narrows the area of man’s concern, poetry reminds him of the richness and diversity of existence. When power corrupts, poetry cleanses” (John F. Kennedy).

  • “Power without authority is tyranny” (Jacques Maritain).


Prejudice

  • “Common sense is the collection of prejudices acquired by age eighteen” (Albert Einstein).

  • “On the field, blacks have been able to be super giants. But, once our playing days are over, this is the end of it and we go back to the back of the bus again” (Hank Aaron).

  • “Begin challenging your own assumptions. Your assumptions are your windows into the world. Scrub them off every once in awhile, or the light won’t come in” (Alan Alda).

  • “Hating people because of color is wrong. And it doesn’t matter which color does the hating. It’s just plain wrong” (Muhammed Ali).

  • “Prejudices, it is well known, are most difficult to eradicate from the heart whose soil has never been loosened or fertilized by education; they grow there, firm as weeds among rocks” (Charlotte Bronte).

  • “Prejudice is like a hair across your cheek. You can’t see it, you can’t find it with your fingers, but you keep brushing at it because the feeling of it is irritating” (Marian Anderson).

  • “I hope that people will finally come to realize that there is only one ‘race’ – the human race – and that we are all members of it” (Margaret Atwood).

    Progress

    • “Progress should mean that we are always changing the world to fit the vision; instead we are always changing the vision” (G. K. Chesterton).

    • “All progress has resulted from people who took unpopular positions” (Adlai Stevenson).

    • “Progress is the injustice each generation with regard to its predecessors” (E. M. Cioran).

    • “All progress is experimental” (John Jay Chapman).

    • “In the progress of politics, as in the common occurrences of life, we are not only apt to forget the ground we have travelled over, but frequently neglect to gather up experiences as we go” (Thomas Paine).

    • “All progress is based upon a universal innate desire on the part of every organism to live beyond its income” (Samuel Butler).

    • “Progress is not an illusion, it happens, but it is slow and invariably disappointing” (George Orwell).

    • “Progress may feel more like loss than gain” (Mason Cooley).


    Reading

    • “I read my eyes out and can’t read half enough… The more one reads the more one sees we have to read” (John Adams).

    • “Reading maketh a full man; conference a ready man; and writing an exact man” (Francis Bacon).

    • “Writing and reading is to me synonymous with existing” (Gertrude Stein).

    • “To feel most beautifully alive means to be reading something beautiful, ready always to apprehend in the flow of language the sudden flash of poetry” (Gaston Bachelard).

    • “No entertainment is so cheap as reading, nor any pleasure as lasting” (Lady Montagu).

    • “There is then creative reading as well as creative writing. When the mind is braced by labor and invention, the page of whatever book we read becomes luminous with manifold allusion. Every sentence is doubly significant, and the sense of our author is as broad as the world” (Ralph Waldo Emerson).

    • “With one day’s reading a man may have the key in his hands” (Ezra Pound).

    • “Go three days without reading and your speech will become tasteless” (Chinese Proverb).

    • “My first reading of Tolstoy affected me as a revelation from heaven, as the trumpet of the judgment. What he made me feel was not the desire to imitate, but the conviction that imitation was futile” (Ellen Glasgow).

    • “Reading is merely a surrogate for thinking for yourself; it means letting someone else direct your thoughts. Many books, moreover, serve merely to show how many ways there are of being wrong, and how far astray you yourself would go if you followed their guidance. You should read only when your own thoughts dry up, which will of course happen frequently enough even to the best heads; but to banish your own thoughts so as to take up a book is a sin against the holy ghost; it is like deserting untrammeled nature to look at a herbarium or engravings of landscapes” (Arthur Schopenhauer).

    • “Reading gives us someplace to go when we have to stay where we are” (Mason Cooley).

    • “One of the greatest gifts adults can give – to their offspring and to their society – is to read to children” (Carl Sagan).


    Religion

    • “People can be believers, atheists, or agnostics. I’m an agnostic. I’m 95% sure that there is no God, but if I’m agnostic, I don’t have to explain myself” (Robert Welsh).

    • “If we had more hell in the pulpit, we would have less hell in the pew” (Billy Graham).

    • “All I have seen teaches me to trust in the Creator for all I have not seen” (Ralph Waldo Emerson).

    • “I don’t like to commit myself about heaven and hell – you see, I have friends in both places” (Mark Twain).

    • “A moment of silence is not inherently religious” (Justice Sandra Day O’Connor).

    • “God proved His love on the Cross. When Christ hung, and bled, and died, it was God saying to the world, ‘I love you’” (Billy Graham).

    • “All religions, arts, and sciences are branches of the same tree” (Albert Einstein).

    • “God may be subtle, but he isn’t plain mean” (Albert Einstein).

    • “He hoped and prayed that there wasn’t an afterlife. Then he realized there was a contradiction involved here and merely hoped that there wasn’t an afterlife” (Douglas Adams).

    • “Just as a candle cannot burn without fire, men cannot live without spiritual life” (The Buddha).

    • “Each man is good in the sight of the great spirit” (Sitting Bull).


    Rulers

    • “What luck for rulers, that men do not think” (Adolph Hitler).

    • “They [who] seek to establish systems of government based on the regimentation of all human beings by a handful of individual rulers … call this a new order. It is not new and it is not order” (Franklin D. Roosevelt).

    • “The object of government in peace and in war is not the glory of rulers or of races, but the happiness of the common man” (Lord William Beveridge).

    • “Experience should teach us to be most on our guard to protect liberty when the government's purposes are beneficent. Men born to freedom are naturally alert to repel invasion of their liberty by evil-minded rulers. The greatest dangers to liberty lurk in insidious encroachment by men of zeal, well meaning but without understanding” (Louis D. Brandeis).

    • “For me every ruler is alien that defies public opinion” (Gandhi).

    • “In politics a capable ruler must be guided by circumstances, conjectures, and conjunctions” (Catherine II).

    • “The new ruler must determine all the injuries that he will need to inflict. He must inflict them once and for all” (Niccolo Machiavelli).

    • “The first method for estimating the intelligence of a ruler is to look at the men he has around him” (Niccolo Machiavelli).


    School

    • “A school is four walls – with tomorrow inside” (John Locke).

    • “As long as there are tests, there will be prayer in public schools” (George Carlin).

    • “Every time you stop a school, you will have to build a jail. What you gain at one end you lose at the other. It's like feeding a dog on his own tail. It won't fatten the dog” (Mark Twain).


    Self-Respect

    • “In the depth of winter, I finally learned that there was within me an invincible summer” (Albert Camus).


    Success

    • “It is hard to fail, but it is worse never to have tried to succeed” (Theodore Roosevelt).

    • “It is high time that the ideal of success should be replaced by the ideal of service” (Albert Einstein).

    • “Success is to be measured not by the position that one has reached in life as by the obstacles he has overcome while trying to succeed” (Booker T. Washington).


    Teachers/Teaching

    • “A child cannot be taught by anyone who despises him, and a child cannot afford to be fooled” (James Baldwin).

    • “Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime” (Chinese Proverb).

    • “It is noble to teach oneself, but still nobler to teach others--and less trouble” (Mark Twain).

    • “Example isn’t another way to teach, it is the only way to teach” (Albert Einstein).


    Tolerance

    • “Tolerance is a very dull virtue. It is boring. Unlike love, it has always had a bad press. It is negative. It merely means putting up with people, being able to stand things” (E. M. Forster).

    • “In our P.C. efforts to be tolerant of everything, we have become intolerant of everyone” (Catherine Wishart).

    • “Tolerance is only another name for indifference” (W. Somerset Maugham).

    • “It is thus tolerance that is the source of peace, and intolerance that is the source of disorder and squabbling” (Pierre Bayle).

    • “The degree of tolerance attainable at any moment depends on the strain under which society is maintaining its cohesion” (George Bernard Shaw).

    • “Respect—not tolerance—must be our goal if we would diminish prejudice in our time. For tolerance is often but a gentle disguise for prejudice: the tolerant often behave as self-appointed connoisseurs of weaknesses in others, or self-appointed protectors of those whom they deem to be their inferiors” (Selma G. Hirsch).

    • “How will our kids learn tolerance for others if our hearts are filled with hate?” (Fred G. Gosman).

    • “The highest result of education is tolerance” (Helen Keller).


    War

    • “If there is a God, the phrase that must disgust him is – holy war” (Steve Allen).

    • “Take the diplomacy out of war and things would fall flat in a week” (Will Rogers).

    • “You can’t say that civilization don’t advance, however, for in every war they kill you in a new way” (Will Rogers).

    • “That’s the way it is in war. You win or lose, live or die – and the difference is just an eyelash” (Douglas MacArthur).

    • “I don't believe the war is simply the work of politicians and capitalists. Oh no, the common man is every bit as guilty; otherwise, people and nations would have rebelled long ago!” (Anne Frank).

    • “So long as there are men, there will be wars” (Albert Einstein).

    • “To jaw-jaw is always better than to war-war” (Winston Churchill).

    • “All of us who served in one war or another know very well that all wars are the glory and the agony of the young” (Gerald R. Ford).

    • “In order for a war to be just, three things are necessary. First, the authority of the sovereign… Secondly, a just cause… Thirdly, a rightful intention” (St. Thomas Aquinas).

    • “A riot is a spontaneous outburst. A war is subject to advance planning” (Richard M. Nixon).

    • “Sometime they’ll give a war and nobody will come” (Carl Sandburg).


    Wisdom

    • “Everyone honors the wise” (Aristotle).

    • “Whether you are happy or whether you are sad, it is wise to remember you are really in process” (Maya Angelou).

    • “Patience is the companion of wisdom” (St. Augustine).

    • “Wisdom outweighs any wealth” (Sophocles).

    • “There is a wisdom of the mind, and a wisdom of the heart” (Charles Dickens).

    • “Wisdom begins in wonder” (Socrates).

    • “He who knows others is wise; he who knows himself is enlightened” (Lao-tzu).


    Words

    • “’When I use a word,’ Humpty Dumpty said, in rather a scornful tone, ‘it means just what I choose it to mean – neither more nor less’” (Lewis Carroll).

    • “Occasionally in life there are those moments of unutterable fulfillment which cannot be completely explained by those symbols called words. Their meanings can only be articulated by the inaudible language of the heart” (Martin Luther King, Jr.).


    Writing

    • “Go out and write something real” (Charles Swannell).

    • “A ratio of failures is built into the process of writing. The wastebasket has evolved for a reason” (Margaret Atwood).

    • “Any writer, I suppose, feels that the world in which he is born is nothing less than a conspiracy against the cultivation of his talent” (James Baldwin).

    • “Love. Fall in love and stay in love. Write only what you love, and love what you write” (Ray Bradbury).

    • “In Hollywood the woods are full of people that learned to write but evidently can't read. If they could read their stuff, they'd stop writing” (Will Rogers).

    • “Writing has laws of perspective, of light and shade just as painting does or music. If you are born knowing them, fine. If not, learn them. Then rearrange the rules to suit yourself” (Truman Capote).

    • “My aim is to put down on paper what I see and what I feel in the best and simplest way” (Ernest Hemmingway).

    • “Those who write clearly have readers; those who write obscurely have commentators” (Albert Camus).






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