The past is not what it was.

Gilbert Keith Chesterton

Gilbert Keith Chesterton

Profession: Author
Nationality: British

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But it is impossible to be an artist and not care for laws and limits. Art is limitation; the essence of every picture is the frame.

Only the Christian Church can offer any rational objection to a complete confidence in the rich. For she has maintained from the beginning that the danger was not in man's environment, but in man. Further, she has maintained that if we come to talk of a dangerous environment, the most dangerous environment of all is the commodious environment.

Music with dinner is an insult, both to the cook and the violinist.

Some dogma, we are told, was credible in the twelfth century, but is not credible in the twentieth. You might as well say that a certain philosophy can be believed on Mondays, but cannot be believed on Tuesdays.

The reader cannot even begin to see the sense of a story that may well seem to him a very wild one, until he understands that to this great mystic his religion was not a thing like a theory but a thing like a love-affair.

I do not know by what extraordinary mental accident modern writers so constantly connect the idea of progress with the idea of independent thinking.

My best friends are all either bottomless skeptics or quite uncontrollable believers...

The dragon without St. George would not even be grotesque.

Art consists of limitation. The most beautiful part of every picture is the frame.

All his actions had something at once ambitious and conscientious; he drank no wine, but was slightly intoxicated with words. And his face and phrases were on the front page of all the newspapers just then, because he was contesting the safe seat of Sir Francis Verner in the great by-election in the west.

I find it said, if only of Atys or Adonis, "There was a conception that the god sacrificed himself to himself." The man who can read those words without a thrill is dead.

Blessed are they who did not see, but being blind, believed.

There is only one thing that can never go past a certain point in its alliance with oppression--and that is orthodoxy. I may, it is true, twist orthodoxy so as partly to justify a tyrant. But I can easily make up a German philosophy to justify him entirely.

There is a corollary to the conception of being too proud to fight. It is that the humble have to do most of the fighting.