Samuel Johnson Quotes

Most popular Samuel Johnson Quotes

The chains of habit are generally too small to be felt until they are too strong to be broken. - Samuel Johnson quote.
The chains of habit are generally too small to be felt until they are too strong to be broken.
— Samuel Johnson

habit

A jest breaks no bones. - Samuel Johnson quote.
A jest breaks no bones.
— Samuel Johnson
Whatever you have, spend less. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Whatever you have, spend less.
— Samuel Johnson
The present hour is man's alone. - Samuel Johnson quote.
The present hour is man's alone.
— Samuel Johnson
Language is the dress of thought. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Language is the dress of thought.
— Samuel Johnson Lives of the English Poets

language

No man was ever great by imitation. - Samuel Johnson quote.
No man was ever great by imitation.
— Samuel Johnson
No man is a hypocrite in his pleasure. - Samuel Johnson quote.
No man is a hypocrite in his pleasure.
— Samuel Johnson

hypocrisy

Every man is of importance to himself. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Every man is of importance to himself.
— Samuel Johnson

egotism

The future is purchased by the present. - Samuel Johnson quote.
The future is purchased by the present.

future

The insolence of wealth will creep out. - Samuel Johnson quote.
The insolence of wealth will creep out.

wealth

The great source of pleasure is variety. - Samuel Johnson quote.
The great source of pleasure is variety.
— Samuel Johnson

variety

He who praises everybody praises nobody. - Samuel Johnson quote.
He who praises everybody praises nobody.
— Samuel Johnson

praise

Judgment is forced upon us by experience. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Judgment is forced upon us by experience.
— Samuel Johnson
Knowledge is more than equivalent to force. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Knowledge is more than equivalent to force.
— Samuel Johnson
It is better to live rich than to die rich. - Samuel Johnson quote.
It is better to live rich than to die rich.
— Samuel Johnson

wealth money

In all pleasure hope is a considerable part. - Samuel Johnson quote.
In all pleasure hope is a considerable part.
— Samuel Johnson
Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel.

patriotism

It is the only sensual pleasure without vice. - Samuel Johnson quote.
It is the only sensual pleasure without vice.
— Samuel Johnson European Magazine

music

Ignorance, when it is voluntary, is criminal. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Ignorance, when it is voluntary, is criminal.
— Samuel Johnson The History of Rasselas

ignorance

Nothing can be truly great which is not right. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Nothing can be truly great which is not right.
— Samuel Johnson
Man has a great aversion to intellectual labor. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Man has a great aversion to intellectual labor.
— Samuel Johnson
The true art of memory is the art of attention. - Samuel Johnson quote.
The true art of memory is the art of attention.
— Samuel Johnson The Idler

Attention memory

Men become friends by a community of pleasures. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Men become friends by a community of pleasures.
— Samuel Johnson
Where there is no hope there can be no endeavor. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Where there is no hope there can be no endeavor.
— Samuel Johnson
It matters not how a man dies, but how he lives. - Samuel Johnson quote.
It matters not how a man dies, but how he lives.
— Samuel Johnson
Few things are impossible to diligence and skill. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Few things are impossible to diligence and skill.
— Samuel Johnson

diligence

All intellectual improvement arises from leisure. - Samuel Johnson quote.
All intellectual improvement arises from leisure.
— Samuel Johnson
Deviation from Nature is deviation from happiness. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Deviation from Nature is deviation from happiness.
— Samuel Johnson

nature

There are charms made only for distant admiration. - Samuel Johnson quote.
There are charms made only for distant admiration.
— Samuel Johnson Lives of the Most Eminent English Poets
A country governed by a despot is an inverted cone. - Samuel Johnson quote.
A country governed by a despot is an inverted cone.

despotism

Employment, sir, and hardships, prevent melancholy. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Employment, sir, and hardships, prevent melancholy.

melancholy

The foundation of knowledge must be laid by reading. - Samuel Johnson quote.
The foundation of knowledge must be laid by reading.
— Samuel Johnson
Just praise is only a debt, but flattery is a present. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Just praise is only a debt, but flattery is a present.

flattery

Marriage is the strictest tie of perpetual friendship. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Marriage is the strictest tie of perpetual friendship.
— Samuel Johnson
A man of genius has been seldom ruined but by himself. - Samuel Johnson quote.
A man of genius has been seldom ruined but by himself.
— Samuel Johnson

genius

Marriage has many pains, but celibacy has no pleasures. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Marriage has many pains, but celibacy has no pleasures.
— Samuel Johnson

marriage

Those who do not feel pain seldom think that it is felt. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Those who do not feel pain seldom think that it is felt.

pain

The chief glory of every people arises from its authors. - Samuel Johnson quote.
The chief glory of every people arises from its authors.
— Samuel Johnson

writers

Promise, large promise, is the soul of an advertisement. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Promise, large promise, is the soul of an advertisement.
— Samuel Johnson The Idler

advertising

A biographical incident; a minute passage of private life. - Samuel Johnson quote.
A biographical incident; a minute passage of private life.
— Samuel Johnson anecdote

anecdote

Lexicographer—A writer of dictionaries, a harmless drudge. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Lexicographer—A writer of dictionaries, a harmless drudge.
— Samuel Johnson Dictionary of the English Language

dictionary lexicography

Riches exclude only one inconvenience, and that is poverty. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Riches exclude only one inconvenience, and that is poverty.
— Samuel Johnson
Disease generally begins that equality which death completes. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Disease generally begins that equality which death completes.

disease

Life cannot subsist in society but by reciprocal concessions. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Life cannot subsist in society but by reciprocal concessions.
— Samuel Johnson

compromise

Self-confidence is the first requisite to great undertakings. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Self-confidence is the first requisite to great undertakings.
— Samuel Johnson
The applause of a single human being is of great consequence. - Samuel Johnson quote.
The applause of a single human being is of great consequence.
— Samuel Johnson
Abstinence is as easy to me as temperance would be difficult. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Abstinence is as easy to me as temperance would be difficult.
— Samuel Johnson

abstinence

Expectation improperly indulged in must end in disappointment. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Expectation improperly indulged in must end in disappointment.

expectation

Every man's affairs, however little, are important to himself. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Every man's affairs, however little, are important to himself.

self-interest

Prejudice not founded on reason cannot be removed by argument. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Prejudice not founded on reason cannot be removed by argument.
— Samuel Johnson

prejudice

Kindness, at least actual, is in our power, but fondness is not. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Kindness, at least actual, is in our power, but fondness is not.

kindness

Great works are performed, not by strength, but by perseverance. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Great works are performed, not by strength, but by perseverance.
— Samuel Johnson

perseverance

Moderation is commonly firm, and firmness is commonly successful. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Moderation is commonly firm, and firmness is commonly successful.
— Samuel Johnson
A decent provision for the poor is the true test of civilization. - Samuel Johnson quote.
A decent provision for the poor is the true test of civilization.
— Samuel Johnson
The first years of a man's life must make provision for the last. - Samuel Johnson quote.
The first years of a man's life must make provision for the last.
— Samuel Johnson
A decent provision for the poor is the true test of civilisation. - Samuel Johnson quote.
A decent provision for the poor is the true test of civilisation.
— Samuel Johnson

poverty

To cultivate kindness is a valuable part of the business of life. - Samuel Johnson quote.
To cultivate kindness is a valuable part of the business of life.
— Samuel Johnson
Praise like gold and diamonds owes its value only to its scarcity. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Praise like gold and diamonds owes its value only to its scarcity.
— Samuel Johnson
Being in a ship is being in jail, with the chance of being drowned. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Being in a ship is being in jail, with the chance of being drowned.

ships

Life is a pill which none of us can bear to swallow without gilding. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Life is a pill which none of us can bear to swallow without gilding.
— Samuel Johnson Anecdotes of the Late Samuel Johnson

life

The morality of an action depends upon the motive from which we act. - Samuel Johnson quote.
The morality of an action depends upon the motive from which we act.
— Samuel Johnson
Impatience of study is the mental disease of the present generation. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Impatience of study is the mental disease of the present generation.
— Samuel Johnson
One is not a wise man that will quit a certainty for an uncertainty. - Samuel Johnson quote.
One is not a wise man that will quit a certainty for an uncertainty.
— Samuel Johnson
Life is a progress from want to want, not from enjoyment to enjoyment. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Life is a progress from want to want, not from enjoyment to enjoyment.
— Samuel Johnson Wanting
A fishing rod is a stick with a hook at one end and a fool at the other. - Samuel Johnson quote.
A fishing rod is a stick with a hook at one end and a fool at the other.
— Samuel Johnson

fishing

It is one of the maxims of the civil law, that definitions are hazardous. - Samuel Johnson quote.
It is one of the maxims of the civil law, that definitions are hazardous.
— Samuel Johnson
I am a great friend to public amusements; for they keep people from vice. - Samuel Johnson quote.
I am a great friend to public amusements; for they keep people from vice.
— Samuel Johnson
Wealth is nothing in itself; it is not useful but when it departs from us. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Wealth is nothing in itself; it is not useful but when it departs from us.
— Samuel Johnson
Curiosity is, in great and generous minds, the first passion and the last. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Curiosity is, in great and generous minds, the first passion and the last.

curiosity

What I gave, that I have; what I spent, that I had; what I left that I lost. - Samuel Johnson quote.
What I gave, that I have; what I spent, that I had; what I left that I lost.
— Samuel Johnson
I look upon every day to be lost, in which I do not make a new acquaintance. - Samuel Johnson quote.
I look upon every day to be lost, in which I do not make a new acquaintance.
— Samuel Johnson
The true effect of genuine politeness seems to be rather ease than pleasure. - Samuel Johnson quote.
The true effect of genuine politeness seems to be rather ease than pleasure.
— Samuel Johnson
A family is a little kingdom, torn with factions and exposed to revolutions. - Samuel Johnson quote.
A family is a little kingdom, torn with factions and exposed to revolutions.
— Samuel Johnson

family

To the strongest and quickest mind it is far easier to learn than to invent. - Samuel Johnson quote.
To the strongest and quickest mind it is far easier to learn than to invent.
— Samuel Johnson

education

What we hope ever to do with ease, we must learn first to do with diligence. - Samuel Johnson quote.
What we hope ever to do with ease, we must learn first to do with diligence.
— Samuel Johnson
The blaze of reputation cannot be blown out, but it often dies in the socket. - Samuel Johnson quote.
The blaze of reputation cannot be blown out, but it often dies in the socket.

reputation

The love of life is necessary to the vigorous prosecution of any undertaking. - Samuel Johnson quote.
The love of life is necessary to the vigorous prosecution of any undertaking.
— Samuel Johnson

enthusiasm

A man who has provoked the shaft of wit cannot complain that he smart from it. - Samuel Johnson quote.
A man who has provoked the shaft of wit cannot complain that he smart from it.
— Samuel Johnson
I live in the crowd of jollity, not so much to enjoy company as to shun myself. - Samuel Johnson quote.
I live in the crowd of jollity, not so much to enjoy company as to shun myself.
— Samuel Johnson
All crimes are safe, but hated poverty. This, only this, the rigid law pursues. - Samuel Johnson quote.
All crimes are safe, but hated poverty. This, only this, the rigid law pursues.
— Samuel Johnson
Friendship may well deserve the sacrifice of pleasure, though not of conscience. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Friendship may well deserve the sacrifice of pleasure, though not of conscience.

friendship

Gratitude is a fruit of great cultivation; you do not find it among gross people. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Gratitude is a fruit of great cultivation; you do not find it among gross people.
— Samuel Johnson The Journal of a Tour to the Hebrides with Samuel Johnson

gratitude

Curiosity is one of the permanent and certain characteristics of a vigorous mind. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Curiosity is one of the permanent and certain characteristics of a vigorous mind.
— Samuel Johnson
Language is only the instrument of science, and words are but the signs of ideas. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Language is only the instrument of science, and words are but the signs of ideas.
— Samuel Johnson
Nothing will ever be attempted if all possible objections must first be overcome. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Nothing will ever be attempted if all possible objections must first be overcome.
— Samuel Johnson

risk-taking

Gaming is a mode of transferring property without producing any intermediate good. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Gaming is a mode of transferring property without producing any intermediate good.

gambling

That which is to be loved long is to be loved with reason rather than with passion. - Samuel Johnson quote.
That which is to be loved long is to be loved with reason rather than with passion.
— Samuel Johnson
The chains of habit are too weak to be felt until they are too strong to be broken. - Samuel Johnson quote.
The chains of habit are too weak to be felt until they are too strong to be broken.
— Samuel Johnson

habit

In all pointed sentences some degree of accuracy must be sacrificed to conciseness. - Samuel Johnson quote.
In all pointed sentences some degree of accuracy must be sacrificed to conciseness.
— Samuel Johnson

writing

The two great movers of the human mind are the desire of good, and the fear of evil. - Samuel Johnson quote.
The two great movers of the human mind are the desire of good, and the fear of evil.
— Samuel Johnson
The seeds of knowledge may be planted in solitude, but must be cultivated in public. - Samuel Johnson quote.
The seeds of knowledge may be planted in solitude, but must be cultivated in public.
— Samuel Johnson
It is advantageous to an author, that his book should be attacked as well as praised. - Samuel Johnson quote.
It is advantageous to an author, that his book should be attacked as well as praised.

authors

The true measure of a man is how he treats someone who can do him absolutely no good. - Samuel Johnson quote.
The true measure of a man is how he treats someone who can do him absolutely no good.
— Samuel Johnson

character

Sir, I have found you an argument; but I am not obliged to find you an understanding. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Sir, I have found you an argument; but I am not obliged to find you an understanding.

arguments

It is a man's own fault, it is from want of use, if one's mind grows torpid in old age. - Samuel Johnson quote.
It is a man's own fault, it is from want of use, if one's mind grows torpid in old age.
— Samuel Johnson
Knowledge is more than equivalent to force.  The master of mechanics laughs at strength. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Knowledge is more than equivalent to force.  The master of mechanics laughs at strength.
— Samuel Johnson Rasselas

knowledge

We are inclined to believe those whom we do not know because they have never deceived us. - Samuel Johnson quote.
We are inclined to believe those whom we do not know because they have never deceived us.
— Samuel Johnson

beliefs

A man who both spends and saves money is the happiest man, because he has both enjoyments. - Samuel Johnson quote.
A man who both spends and saves money is the happiest man, because he has both enjoyments.
— Samuel Johnson

wealth

Men are wise in proportion, not to their experience, but to their capacity for experience. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Men are wise in proportion, not to their experience, but to their capacity for experience.
— Samuel Johnson

experience

As love without esteem is capricious and volatile, esteem without love is languid and cold. - Samuel Johnson quote.
As love without esteem is capricious and volatile, esteem without love is languid and cold.
— Samuel Johnson
Curiosity is one of the most permanent and certain characteristics of a vigorous intellect. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Curiosity is one of the most permanent and certain characteristics of a vigorous intellect.
— Samuel Johnson

curiosity

Almost all absurdity of conduct arises from the imitation of those whom we can not resemble. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Almost all absurdity of conduct arises from the imitation of those whom we can not resemble.
— Samuel Johnson
I am always sorry when any language is lost, because languages are the pedigrees of nations. - Samuel Johnson quote.
I am always sorry when any language is lost, because languages are the pedigrees of nations.
— Samuel Johnson Tour to the Hebrides

language

If a man talks of his misfortunes there is something in them that is not disagreeable to him. - Samuel Johnson quote.
If a man talks of his misfortunes there is something in them that is not disagreeable to him.

misfortune

The true, strong, and sound mind is the mind that can embrace equally great things and small. - Samuel Johnson quote.
The true, strong, and sound mind is the mind that can embrace equally great things and small.
— Samuel Johnson

intelligence

Claret is the liquor for boys, port for men; but he who aspires to be a hero must drink brandy. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Claret is the liquor for boys, port for men; but he who aspires to be a hero must drink brandy.
— Samuel Johnson
No place affords a more striking conviction of the vanity of human hopes than a public library. - Samuel Johnson quote.
No place affords a more striking conviction of the vanity of human hopes than a public library.

vanity libraries

The natural flights of the human mind are not from pleasure to pleasure, but from hope to hope. - Samuel Johnson quote.
The natural flights of the human mind are not from pleasure to pleasure, but from hope to hope.
— Samuel Johnson
Hope is itself a species of happiness, and, perhaps, the chief happiness which this world affords. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Hope is itself a species of happiness, and, perhaps, the chief happiness which this world affords.

hope happiness

It is better to suffer wrong than to do it, and happier to be sometimes cheated than not to trust. - Samuel Johnson quote.
It is better to suffer wrong than to do it, and happier to be sometimes cheated than not to trust.

trust

If a man could say nothing against a character but what he can prove, history could not be written. - Samuel Johnson quote.
If a man could say nothing against a character but what he can prove, history could not be written.
— Samuel Johnson

history

That kind of life is most happy which affords us most opportunities of gaining our own self-esteem. - Samuel Johnson quote.
That kind of life is most happy which affords us most opportunities of gaining our own self-esteem.
— Samuel Johnson
A man that would be superior to external influences must first become superior to his own passions. - Samuel Johnson quote.
A man that would be superior to external influences must first become superior to his own passions.
— Samuel Johnson
The law is the last result of human wisdom acting upon human experience for the benefit of the public. - Samuel Johnson quote.
The law is the last result of human wisdom acting upon human experience for the benefit of the public.
— Samuel Johnson
Were it not for imagination, Sir, a man would be as happy in the arms of a chambermaid as of a duchess. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Were it not for imagination, Sir, a man would be as happy in the arms of a chambermaid as of a duchess.

imagination

Friendship, like love, is destroyed by long absence, though it may be increased by short intermissions. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Friendship, like love, is destroyed by long absence, though it may be increased by short intermissions.
— Samuel Johnson The Idler

friendship absence

A transition from an author's book to his conversation is too often like an entrance into a large city. - Samuel Johnson quote.
A transition from an author's book to his conversation is too often like an entrance into a large city.

authors

Essay.  A loose sally of the mind; an irregular indigested piece; not a regular and orderly composition. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Essay.  A loose sally of the mind; an irregular indigested piece; not a regular and orderly composition.
— Samuel Johnson Dictionary of the English Language

essays

Good breeding consists in having no particular mark of any profession, but a general elegance of manners. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Good breeding consists in having no particular mark of any profession, but a general elegance of manners.
— Samuel Johnson
Almost every man wastes part of his life in attempts to display qualifications which he does not possess. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Almost every man wastes part of his life in attempts to display qualifications which he does not possess.
— Samuel Johnson
When once the forms of civility are violated, there remains little hope of return to kindness or decency. - Samuel Johnson quote.
When once the forms of civility are violated, there remains little hope of return to kindness or decency.
Knowledge is of two kinds. We know a subject ourselves, or we know where we can find information upon it. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Knowledge is of two kinds. We know a subject ourselves, or we know where we can find information upon it.
— Samuel Johnson

knowledge

Adversity has ever been considered as the state in which a man most easily becomes acquainted with himself. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Adversity has ever been considered as the state in which a man most easily becomes acquainted with himself.

adversity

Integrity without knowledge is weak and useless, and knowledge without integrity is dangerous and dreadful. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Integrity without knowledge is weak and useless, and knowledge without integrity is dangerous and dreadful.
— Samuel Johnson The History of Rasselas

knowledge integrity

The vanity of being known to be entrusted with a secret is generally one of the chief motives to disclose it. - Samuel Johnson quote.
The vanity of being known to be entrusted with a secret is generally one of the chief motives to disclose it.
— Samuel Johnson

secrets

In order that all men may be taught to speak truth, it is necessary that all likewise should learn to hear it. - Samuel Johnson quote.
In order that all men may be taught to speak truth, it is necessary that all likewise should learn to hear it.
— Samuel Johnson

listening

Nobody can write the life of a man, but those who have eat and drunk and lived in social intercourse with him. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Nobody can write the life of a man, but those who have eat and drunk and lived in social intercourse with him.
— Samuel Johnson

biography

Dictionaries are like watches: the worst is better than none, and the best cannot be expected to go quite true. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Dictionaries are like watches: the worst is better than none, and the best cannot be expected to go quite true.
— Samuel Johnson

dictionary

To improve the golden moment of opportunity and catch the good that is within our reach is the great art of life. - Samuel Johnson quote.
To improve the golden moment of opportunity and catch the good that is within our reach is the great art of life.
— Samuel Johnson
Pleasure is very seldom found where it is sought. Our brightest blazes are commonly kindled by unexpected sparks. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Pleasure is very seldom found where it is sought. Our brightest blazes are commonly kindled by unexpected sparks.
— Samuel Johnson
A fly, Sir, may sting a stately horse and make him wince; but one is but an insect, and the other is a horse still. - Samuel Johnson quote.
A fly, Sir, may sting a stately horse and make him wince; but one is but an insect, and the other is a horse still.

critics

If I have said something to hurt a man once, I shall not get the better of this by saying many things to please him. - Samuel Johnson quote.
If I have said something to hurt a man once, I shall not get the better of this by saying many things to please him.
— Samuel Johnson

insults

The hour of reformation is always delayed; every delay gives vice another opportunity of fortifying itself by habit. - Samuel Johnson quote.
The hour of reformation is always delayed; every delay gives vice another opportunity of fortifying itself by habit.

vice

No estimate is more in danger of erroneous calculation than those by which a man computes the force of his own genius. - Samuel Johnson quote.
No estimate is more in danger of erroneous calculation than those by which a man computes the force of his own genius.

self-deception

Be not too hasty to trust, or to admire, the teachers of morality: they discourse like angels, but they live like men. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Be not too hasty to trust, or to admire, the teachers of morality: they discourse like angels, but they live like men.
— Samuel Johnson Rasselas, Prince of Abyssinnia

morals

I would rather be attacked than unnoticed. For the worst thing you can do to an author is to be silent as to his work. - Samuel Johnson quote.
I would rather be attacked than unnoticed. For the worst thing you can do to an author is to be silent as to his work.
— Samuel Johnson
There is nothing which has yet been contrived by man by which so much happiness is produced as by a good tavern or inn. - Samuel Johnson quote.
There is nothing which has yet been contrived by man by which so much happiness is produced as by a good tavern or inn.
It is by studying little things that we attain the great art of having as little misery and as much happiness as possible. - Samuel Johnson quote.
It is by studying little things that we attain the great art of having as little misery and as much happiness as possible.
— Samuel Johnson
Excellence in any department can be attained only by the labor of a lifetime; it is not to be purchased at a lesser price. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Excellence in any department can be attained only by the labor of a lifetime; it is not to be purchased at a lesser price.
— Samuel Johnson
Everything that enlarges the sphere of human powers, that shows man he can do what he thought he could not do, is valuable. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Everything that enlarges the sphere of human powers, that shows man he can do what he thought he could not do, is valuable.
— Samuel Johnson

science

Courage is a quality so necessary for maintaining virtue, that it is always respected, even when it is associated with vice. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Courage is a quality so necessary for maintaining virtue, that it is always respected, even when it is associated with vice.

courage vice & virtue

What a strange narrowness of mind now is that, to think the things we have not known are better than the things we have known. - Samuel Johnson quote.
What a strange narrowness of mind now is that, to think the things we have not known are better than the things we have known.
— Samuel Johnson

experiences

He throws away his money without thought and without merit.  I do not call a tree generous that sheds its fruit at every breeze. - Samuel Johnson quote.
He throws away his money without thought and without merit.  I do not call a tree generous that sheds its fruit at every breeze.

generosity

Your manuscript is both good and original; but the part that is good is not original, and the part that is original is not good. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Your manuscript is both good and original; but the part that is good is not original, and the part that is original is not good.
— Samuel Johnson

critics

The use of travelling is to regulate imagination by reality, and instead of thinking how things may be, to see them as they are. - Samuel Johnson quote.
The use of travelling is to regulate imagination by reality, and instead of thinking how things may be, to see them as they are.
— Samuel Johnson

Travel imagination

I am not yet so lost in lexicography as to forget that words are the daughters of earth, and that things are the sons of heaven. - Samuel Johnson quote.
I am not yet so lost in lexicography as to forget that words are the daughters of earth, and that things are the sons of heaven.
— Samuel Johnson Dictionary of the English Language

lexicography

All the performances of human art, at which we look with praise or wonder, are instances of the resistless force of perseverance. - Samuel Johnson quote.
All the performances of human art, at which we look with praise or wonder, are instances of the resistless force of perseverance.
— Samuel Johnson

perseverance

It is very strange, and very melancholy, that the paucity of human pleasures should persuade us ever to call hunting one of them. - Samuel Johnson quote.
It is very strange, and very melancholy, that the paucity of human pleasures should persuade us ever to call hunting one of them.
— Samuel Johnson Anecdotes of Samuel Johnson, LL.D.

hunting

As I know more of mankind, I expect less of them, and am ready now to call a man a good man upon easier terms that I was formerly. - Samuel Johnson quote.
As I know more of mankind, I expect less of them, and am ready now to call a man a good man upon easier terms that I was formerly.

Goodness

Courage is the greatest of all the virtues. Because if you haven't courage, you may not have an opportunity to use any of the others. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Courage is the greatest of all the virtues. Because if you haven't courage, you may not have an opportunity to use any of the others.
— Samuel Johnson
A wise man is cured of ambition by ambition itself; his aim is so exalted that riches, office, fortune and favour cannot satisfy him. - Samuel Johnson quote.
A wise man is cured of ambition by ambition itself; his aim is so exalted that riches, office, fortune and favour cannot satisfy him.
— Samuel Johnson

ambition

Hope is necessary in every condition.  The miseries of poverty, sickness, of captivity, would, without this comfort, be unsupportable. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Hope is necessary in every condition.  The miseries of poverty, sickness, of captivity, would, without this comfort, be unsupportable.

hope

The difference between coarse and refined abuse is as the difference between being bruised by a club, and wounded by a poisoned arrow. - Samuel Johnson quote.
The difference between coarse and refined abuse is as the difference between being bruised by a club, and wounded by a poisoned arrow.
— Samuel Johnson Life of Dr. Samuel Johnson

abuse

It is better that some should be unhappy rather than that none should be happy, which would be the case in a general state of equality. - Samuel Johnson quote.
It is better that some should be unhappy rather than that none should be happy, which would be the case in a general state of equality.
— Samuel Johnson

equality

Nothing has tended more to retard the advancement of science than the disposition in vulgar minds to vilify what they cannot comprehend. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Nothing has tended more to retard the advancement of science than the disposition in vulgar minds to vilify what they cannot comprehend.
— Samuel Johnson

science

It is, however, reasonable to have perfection in our eye; that we may always advance towards it, though we know it never can be reached. - Samuel Johnson quote.
It is, however, reasonable to have perfection in our eye; that we may always advance towards it, though we know it never can be reached.
— Samuel Johnson The Adventurer

perfection

The love of retirement has, in all ages, adhered closely to those minds which have been most enlarged by knowledge, or elevated by genius. - Samuel Johnson quote.
The love of retirement has, in all ages, adhered closely to those minds which have been most enlarged by knowledge, or elevated by genius.
— Samuel Johnson Life of Dr. Samuel Johnson

retirement

When I was as you are now, towering in [the] confidence of twenty-one, little did I suspect that I should be at forty-nine, what I now am. - Samuel Johnson quote.
When I was as you are now, towering in [the] confidence of twenty-one, little did I suspect that I should be at forty-nine, what I now am.

age

To preserve health is a moral and religious duty, for health is the basis of all social virtues. We can no longer be useful when not well. - Samuel Johnson quote.
To preserve health is a moral and religious duty, for health is the basis of all social virtues. We can no longer be useful when not well.
— Samuel Johnson
Friendship is seldom lasting but between equals, or where the superiority on one side is reduced by some equivalent advantage on the other. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Friendship is seldom lasting but between equals, or where the superiority on one side is reduced by some equivalent advantage on the other.
— Samuel Johnson

friendship

It would add much to human happiness, if an art could be taught of forgetting all of which the remembrance is at once useless and afflictive. - Samuel Johnson quote.
It would add much to human happiness, if an art could be taught of forgetting all of which the remembrance is at once useless and afflictive.
— Samuel Johnson The Idler

forgetting

Avarice is generally the last passion of those lives of which the first part has been squandered in pleasure, and the second devoted to ambition. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Avarice is generally the last passion of those lives of which the first part has been squandered in pleasure, and the second devoted to ambition.

avarice

A Frenchman must be always talking, whether he knows anything of the matter or not; an Englishman is content to say nothing when he has nothing to say. - Samuel Johnson quote.
A Frenchman must be always talking, whether he knows anything of the matter or not; an Englishman is content to say nothing when he has nothing to say.
— Samuel Johnson

France

He who has so little knowledge of human nature as to seek happiness by changing anything but his own disposition will waste his life in fruitless efforts. - Samuel Johnson quote.
He who has so little knowledge of human nature as to seek happiness by changing anything but his own disposition will waste his life in fruitless efforts.
— Samuel Johnson

attitude

While grief is fresh, every attempt to divert it only irritates.  You must wait till grief be digested, and then amusement will dissipate the remains of it. - Samuel Johnson quote.
While grief is fresh, every attempt to divert it only irritates.  You must wait till grief be digested, and then amusement will dissipate the remains of it.

sorrow

Nobody has a right to put another under such difficulty that he must either hurt the person by telling the truth, or hurt himself by telling what is not true. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Nobody has a right to put another under such difficulty that he must either hurt the person by telling the truth, or hurt himself by telling what is not true.
— Samuel Johnson

truth

Job. A low word now much in use, of which I cannot tell the etymology. (1) A low, mean lucrative busy affair. (2) Petty, piddling work: a piece of chance work. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Job. A low word now much in use, of which I cannot tell the etymology. (1) A low, mean lucrative busy affair. (2) Petty, piddling work: a piece of chance work.
— Samuel Johnson

work

Like all other pleasures immoderately enjoyed, the excesses of hope must be expiated by pain; and expectation improperly indulged in must end in disappointment. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Like all other pleasures immoderately enjoyed, the excesses of hope must be expiated by pain; and expectation improperly indulged in must end in disappointment.

disappointment

Curiosity is the thirst of the soul; it inflames and torments us, and makes us taste every thing with joy, however otherwise insipid, by which it may be quenched. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Curiosity is the thirst of the soul; it inflames and torments us, and makes us taste every thing with joy, however otherwise insipid, by which it may be quenched.

curiosity

To let friendship die away by negligence and silence is certainly not wise.  It is voluntarily to throw away one of the greatest comforts of this weary pilgrimage. - Samuel Johnson quote.
To let friendship die away by negligence and silence is certainly not wise.  It is voluntarily to throw away one of the greatest comforts of this weary pilgrimage.
— Samuel Johnson

friendship

We are long before we are convinced that happiness is never to be found, and each believes it possessed by others, to keep alive the hope of obtaining it for himself. - Samuel Johnson quote.
We are long before we are convinced that happiness is never to be found, and each believes it possessed by others, to keep alive the hope of obtaining it for himself.
— Samuel Johnson

hope

If a man does not make new acquaintances as he advances through life, he will soon find himself left alone.  A man, Sir, should keep his friendship in constant repair. - Samuel Johnson quote.
If a man does not make new acquaintances as he advances through life, he will soon find himself left alone.  A man, Sir, should keep his friendship in constant repair.

friendship

All travel has its advantages. If the passenger visits better countries, he may learn to improve his own. And if fortune carries him to worse, he may learn to enjoy it. - Samuel Johnson quote.
All travel has its advantages. If the passenger visits better countries, he may learn to improve his own. And if fortune carries him to worse, he may learn to enjoy it.
— Samuel Johnson

Travel

An old tutor of a college said to one of his pupils: "Read over your compositions and where ever you meet with a passage which you think is particularly fine, strike it out." - Samuel Johnson quote.
An old tutor of a college said to one of his pupils: "Read over your compositions and where ever you meet with a passage which you think is particularly fine, strike it out."

writing advice

You may abuse a tragedy, though you cannot write one. You may scold a carpenter who has made you a bad table, though you cannot make a table. It is not your trade to make tables. - Samuel Johnson quote.
You may abuse a tragedy, though you cannot write one. You may scold a carpenter who has made you a bad table, though you cannot make a table. It is not your trade to make tables.

critics

Let him that desires to see others happy, make haste to give while his gift can be enjoyed, and remember that every moment of delay takes away something from the value of his benefaction. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Let him that desires to see others happy, make haste to give while his gift can be enjoyed, and remember that every moment of delay takes away something from the value of his benefaction.
— Samuel Johnson The Idler

gift

In families where there is or is not poverty, there is commonly discord: if a kingdom be...a great family, a family likewise is a little kingdom, torn with factions and exposed to revolutions. - Samuel Johnson quote.
In families where there is or is not poverty, there is commonly discord: if a kingdom be...a great family, a family likewise is a little kingdom, torn with factions and exposed to revolutions.
— Samuel Johnson The History of Rasselas

family

So different are the colors of life, as we look forward to the future, or backward to the past . . . that the conversation of the old and young ends generally with contempt or pity on either side. - Samuel Johnson quote.
So different are the colors of life, as we look forward to the future, or backward to the past . . . that the conversation of the old and young ends generally with contempt or pity on either side.

youth & age

If a sovereign oppresses his people to a great degree, they will rise and cut off his head. There is a remedy in human nature against tyranny, that will keep us safe under every form of government. - Samuel Johnson quote.
If a sovereign oppresses his people to a great degree, they will rise and cut off his head. There is a remedy in human nature against tyranny, that will keep us safe under every form of government.

tyranny

What is read with delight is commonly retained, because pleasure always secures attention; but the books which are consulted by occasional necessity, and perused with impatience, seldom leave any traces on the mind. - Samuel Johnson quote.
What is read with delight is commonly retained, because pleasure always secures attention; but the books which are consulted by occasional necessity, and perused with impatience, seldom leave any traces on the mind.
— Samuel Johnson The Idler

reading

A man finds in the productions of nature an inexhaustible stock of material on which he can employ himself, without any temptations to envy or malevolence, and has always a certain prospect of discovering new reasons for adoring the sovereign author of the universe. - Samuel Johnson quote.
A man finds in the productions of nature an inexhaustible stock of material on which he can employ himself, without any temptations to envy or malevolence, and has always a certain prospect of discovering new reasons for adoring the sovereign author of the universe.
— Samuel Johnson

nature

The mind is never satisfied with the objects immediately before it, but is always breaking away from the present moment, and losing itself in schemes of future felicity ...The natural flights of the human mind are not from pleasure to pleasure, but from hope to hope. - Samuel Johnson quote.
The mind is never satisfied with the objects immediately before it, but is always breaking away from the present moment, and losing itself in schemes of future felicity ...The natural flights of the human mind are not from pleasure to pleasure, but from hope to hope.
— Samuel Johnson

hope mind

A hardened and shameless tea-drinker, who has for twenty years diluted his meals with only the infusion of this fascinating plant, whose kettle has scarcely time to cool; who with tea amuses the evening, with tea solaces the midnight, and with tea welcomes the morning. - Samuel Johnson quote.
A hardened and shameless tea-drinker, who has for twenty years diluted his meals with only the infusion of this fascinating plant, whose kettle has scarcely time to cool; who with tea amuses the evening, with tea solaces the midnight, and with tea welcomes the morning.
— Samuel Johnson The Literary Magazine

tea

Advertisements are now so numerous that they are very negligently perused, and it is therefore become necessary to gain attention by magnificence of promises, and by eloquence sometimes sublime and sometimes pathetic. Promise, large Promise, is the soul of an Advertisement. - Samuel Johnson quote.
Advertisements are now so numerous that they are very negligently perused, and it is therefore become necessary to gain attention by magnificence of promises, and by eloquence sometimes sublime and sometimes pathetic. Promise, large Promise, is the soul of an Advertisement.
— Samuel Johnson

advertising

That fortitude which has encountered no dangers, that prudence which has surmounted no difficulties, that integrity which has been attacked by no temptation, can at best be considered but as gold not yet brought to the test, of which therefore the true value cannot be assigned. - Samuel Johnson quote.
That fortitude which has encountered no dangers, that prudence which has surmounted no difficulties, that integrity which has been attacked by no temptation, can at best be considered but as gold not yet brought to the test, of which therefore the true value cannot be assigned.

danger temptation difficulties

It is no matter what you teach them first, any more than what leg you shall put into your breeches first. Sir, you may stand disputing which is best to put in first, but in the meantime your breech is bare. Sir, while you are considering which of two things you should teach your child first, another boy has learnt them both. - Samuel Johnson quote.
It is no matter what you teach them first, any more than what leg you shall put into your breeches first. Sir, you may stand disputing which is best to put in first, but in the meantime your breech is bare. Sir, while you are considering which of two things you should teach your child first, another boy has learnt them both.
— Samuel Johnson

education

It is the fate of those who toil at the lower employments of life, to be rather driven by the fear of evil, than attracted by the prospect of good; to be exposed to censure, without hope of praise; to be disgraced by miscarriage, or punished for neglect, where success would have been without applause, and diligence without reward. Among these unhappy mortals is the writer of dictionaries. - Samuel Johnson quote.
It is the fate of those who toil at the lower employments of life, to be rather driven by the fear of evil, than attracted by the prospect of good; to be exposed to censure, without hope of praise; to be disgraced by miscarriage, or punished for neglect, where success would have been without applause, and diligence without reward. Among these unhappy mortals is the writer of dictionaries.
— Samuel Johnson Dictionary of the English Language

dictionary

Where there is no hope, there can be no endeavor.

hopelessness hope

Great works are performed not by strength but by perseverance.
— Samuel Johnson

perseverance determination

The applause of a single human being is of a great consequence.

praise applause

Praise, like gold and diamonds, owes its value only to its scarcity.

praise

In all pointed sentences, some degree of accuracy must be sacrificed to conciseness.
— Samuel Johnson The British Magazine

accuracy conciseness

We are inclined to believe those whom we do not know, because they have never deceived us.
— Samuel Johnson The Idler

deceit

Almost all absurdity of conduct arises from the imitation of those whom we cannot resemble.
The natural flights of the human mind are not from pleasure to pleasure but from hope to hope.
— Samuel Johnson

hope

Pleasure is very seldom found where it is sought.  Our brightest blazes of gladness are commonly kindled by unexpected sparks.
— Samuel Johnson The Idler

pleasure

A wise man is cured of ambition by ambition itself; his aim is so exalted that riches, office, fortune, and favour cannot satisfy him.
— Samuel Johnson

wisdom