Plato Quotes

Most popular Plato Quotes

Love is blind.
— Plato

cynical love

To be is to do.
— Plato

action

Truth is its own reward.
— Plato
Even the gods love jokes.
— Plato
Advice is a sacred thing.
— Plato
Excellent things are rare.
— Plato
Life must be lived as play.
— Plato

how to live life

Learning is only remembering.
— Plato
Time is the image of eternity.
— Plato
The true creator is necessity.
— Plato
Courage is a kind of salvation.
— Plato (The Republic)

courage

Knowledge is the food of the soul.
— Plato (Protagoras)

knowledge

Man - a being in search of meaning.
— Plato
Necessity is the mother of invention.
— Plato (Northern Memoirs)

invention necessity

Mankind — beings in search of meaning.
— Plato
The unexamined life is not worth living.
— Plato

introspection life

We are twice armed if we fight with faith.
— Plato

faith

Books are immortal sons deifying their sires.
— Plato
At the touch of love everyone becomes a poet.
— Plato

love

Wealth is well known to be a great comforter.
— Plato
Let no one ignorant of geometry enter my door.
— Plato

mathematics

At the touch of love, everyone becomes a poet.
— Plato

love poetry

Everything that deceives may be said to enchant.
— Plato (The Republic)

deceit lies

Thinking is the talking of the soul with itself.
— Plato
Poetry comes nearer to vital truth than history.
— Plato
Attention to health is life's greatest hindrance.
— Plato

health

The worst form of injustice is pretended justice.
— Plato

injustice justice

Knowledge becomes evil if the aim be not virtuous.
— Plato

knowledge

When the mind is thinking, it is talking to itself.
— Plato
In time shape, fortune, name, and nature all decay.
— Plato
Of all the animals, the boy is the most unmanageable.
— Plato (Theaetetus)
The beginning is the most important part of the work.
— Plato
To do injustice is more disgraceful than to suffer it.
— Plato

injustice

A good decision is based on knowledge and not on numbers.
— Plato

decision-making knowledge

Justice is nothing else than the interest of the stronger.
— Plato
Be kind, for every man you meet is fighting a hard battle.
— Plato
The true creator is necessity, who is the mother of our invention.
— Plato (The Republic)

invention necessity

Hereditary honors are a noble and splendid treasure to descendants.
— Plato
Men cannot be trusted always to know their true rational interests.
— Plato
Reason has a natural and rightful authority over desire and affection.
— Plato
I have hardly ever known a mathematician who was capable of reasoning.
— Plato
Knowledge which is acquired under compulsion obtains no hold on the mind.
— Plato

knowledge

Poets utter great and wise things which they do not themselves understand.
— Plato

poets

Beauty of style and harmony and grace and good rhythm depend on simplicity.
— Plato
Never discourage anyone who continually makes progress, no matter how slow.
— Plato

praise

If a man be endued with a generous mind, this is the best kind of nobility.
— Plato
Never discourage any man who continually makes progress, no matter how slow.
— Plato
The Earth viewed from above resembles a ball sewn from twelve pieces of skin.
— Plato
Human behaviour flows from three main sources: desire, emotion, and knowledge.
— Plato

human nature

Music gives a soul to the universe, wings to the mind, and life to everything.
— Plato
The excessive increase of anything causes a reaction in the opposite direction.
— Plato
Let parents bequeath to their children not riches, but the spirit of reverence.
— Plato

parenting

Love is the joy of the good, the wonder of the wise, the amazement of the Gods.
— Plato

love

False words are not only evil in themselves, but they infect the world with evil.
— Plato (Phaedo)

deceit lies

There are three classes of men — lovers of wisdom, lovers of honor, lovers of gain.
— Plato
You can discover more about a man in an hour of play than in a year of conversation.
— Plato
Justice means minding one's own business and not meddling with other men's concerns.
— Plato

justice

There are three classes of people: lovers of wisdom, lovers of humor, lovers of gain.
— Plato

mankind

If women are expected to do the same work as men, we must teach them the same things.
— Plato
You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation.
— Plato

character play

The passionate are like men standing on their heads; they see all things the wrong way.
— Plato
The direction in which education starts a man (person), will determine his future life.
— Plato

education

Until philosophers are kings . . . cities will never cease from ill, nor the human race.
— Plato
Wise men speak because they have something to say; Fools because they have to say something.
— Plato
Wise people talk because they have something to say; fools, because they have to say something.
— Plato
As empty vessels make the loudest sound, so they that have least wit are the greatest babblers.
— Plato
A wise man talks because he has something to say; fools, because they would like to say something.
— Plato
There is no greater nor keener pleasure than that of bodily love - and none which is more irrational.
— Plato

sex

Those who are too smart to engage in politics are punished by being governed by those who are dumber.
— Plato

politicians

When there is an income tax, the just man will pay more and the unjust less on the same amount of income.
— Plato

taxes

Kings are never without flatterers to seduce them; ambition to deprave them; and desires to corrupt them.
— Plato
The more the pleasures of the body fade away, the greater to me is the pleasure and charm of conversation.
— Plato (The Republic)

conversation

The most virtuous of all men is he that contents himself with being virtuous without seeking to appear so.
— Plato
Good people do not need laws to tell them to act responsibly, while bad people will find a way around the laws.
— Plato

law

Human nature was originally one and we were a whole, and the desire and the pursuit of the whole is called love.
— Plato (Symposium)

love

The learning and knowledge that we have, is, at the most, but little compared with that of which we are ignorant.
— Plato
We can easily forgive a child who is afraid of the dark; the real tragedy of life is when men are afraid of the light.
— Plato
Justice in the life and conduct of the State is possible only as first it resides in the hearts and souls of the citizens.
— Plato

justice

The punishment suffered by the wise who refuse to take part in the government is to live under a government of bad rulers.
— Plato
There are three arts which are concerned with all things; one which uses, another which makes, a third which imitates them.
— Plato
The first and greatest victory is to conquer yourself; to be conquered by yourself is of all things most shameful and vile.
— Plato

self-control

Any musical innovation is full of danger to the whole State... when modes of music change, the State always changes with them.
— Plato
Then not only custom, but also nature affirms that to do is more disgraceful than to suffer injustice, and that justice is equality.
— Plato

equality injustice

Courage is a special kind of knowledge: the knowledge of how to fear what ought to be feared and how not to fear what ought not to be feared.
— Plato
Seven years of silent inquiry are needful for a man to learn the truth, but fourteen in order to learn how to make it known to his fellow humans.
— Plato
The man who makes everything that leads to happiness depend upon himself, and not upon others, has adopted the very best plan for living happily.
— Plato
Mankind will never see an end of trouble until ... lovers of wisdom come to hold political power, or the holders of power ... become lovers of wisdom.
— Plato

politicians

Health, beauty, vigor, riches, and all the other things called good, operate equally as evils to the vicious and unjust, as they do as benefits to the just.
— Plato
A man who is of a calm and happy nature will hardly feel the pressure of age, but to a man who is of an opposite disposition, youth and age are equally a burden.
— Plato
One who intends to be a great man ought to love neither himself nor his own things, but only what is just, whether it happens to be done by himself or by another.
— Plato
All men are by nature equal, made all of the same earth by the same Creator, and however we deceive ourselves, as dear to God is the poor peasant as the mighty prince.
— Plato
Musical training is a more potent instrument than any other, because rhythm and harmony find their way into the inward places of the soul and take the strongest hold upon it.
— Plato
The people have always some champion whom they set over them and nurse into greatness....  This and no other is the root from which a tyrant springs; when he first appears he is a protector.
— Plato (The Republic)

tyranny

For neither birth, nor wealth, nor honors, can awaken in the minds of men the principles which should guide those who from their youth aspire to an honorable and excellent life, as Love awakens them.
— Plato
Do not teach children learning by force and harshness; but direct them to it by what amuses their minds, so that you may be the better able to discover with accuracy the peculiar bent of the genius of each.
— Plato
The judge should not be young; he should have learned to know evil, not from his own soul, but from late and long observation of the nature of evil in others: knowledge should be his guide, not personal experience.
— Plato
No physician, in so far as he is a physician, considers his own good in what he prescribes, but the good of his patient; for the true physician is also a ruler having the human body as a subject, and is not a mere money-maker.
— Plato
There will be no end to the troubles of states, or of humanity itself, till philosophers become kings in this world, or till those we now call kings and rulers really and truly become philosophers, and political power and philosophy thus come into the same hands.
— Plato

philosophers

Perfect wisdom hath four parts; wisdom, the principle of doing things aright; justice, the principle of doing things equally in public and private; fortitude, the principle of not flying danger, but meeting it; and temperance, the principle of subduing desires and living moderately.
— Plato