Books are those faithful mirrors that reflect to our mind the minds of sages and heroes.
The courage of a soldier is found to be the cheapest and most common quality of human nature.
I have but one lamp by which my feet are guided, and that is the lamp of experience. I know no way of judging of the future but by the past.
I never make the mistake of arguing with people for whose opinions I have no respect.
The style of an author should be the image of his mind, but the choice and command of language is the fruit of exercise.
The pathetic almost always consists in the detail of little events.
In every deed of mischief he had a heart to resolve, a head to contrive, and a hand to execute.
The winds and waves are always on the side of the ablest navigators.
We improve ourselves by victories over ourselves. There must be contest, and we must win.
Of the various forms of government which have prevailed in the world, an hereditary monarchy seems to present the fairest scope for ridicule.
I understand by this passion the union of desire, friendship, and tenderness, which is inflamed by a single female, which prefers her to the rest of her sex, and which seeks her possession as the supreme or the sole happiness of our being.
In the end, they wanted security more than they wanted freedom.
But the power of instruction is seldom of much efficacy, except in those happy dispositions where it is almost superfluous.
My early and invincible love of reading I would not exchange for all the riches of India.
Every man who rises above the common level has received two educations: the first from his teachers; the second, more personal and important, from himself.
History is little more than the register of the crimes, follies, and misfortunes of mankind.
The principles of a free constitution are irrecoverably lost, when the legislative power is nominated by the executive.
It has always been my practice to cast a long paragraph in a single mould, to try it by my ear, to deposit it in my memory, but to suspend the action of the pen till I had given the last polish to my work.
Conversation enriches the understanding, but solitude is the school of genius.
The end comes when we no longer talk with ourselves. It is the end of genuine thinking and the beginning of the final loneliness.
Unprovided with original learning, unformed in the habits of thinking, unskilled in the arts of composition, I resolved to write a book.
Their poverty secured their freedom, since our desires and our possessions are the strongest fetters of despotism.
A heart to resolve, a head to contrive, and a hand to execute.
Corruption, the most infallible symptom of constitutional liberty.
The author himself is the best judge of his own performance; none has so deeply meditated on the subject; none is so sincerely interested in the event.
The laws of probability, so true in general, so fallacious in particular.
My English text is chaste, and all licentious passages are left in the decent obscurity of a learned language.
Let us read with method, and propose to ourselves an end to which our studies may point. The use of reading is to aid us in thinking.