Great Throughts Treasury

A database of quotes

Richard Hooker

English Renaissance Anglican Priest, Philosopher, Theologian and Author

"Death is as the foreshadowing of life. We die that we may die no more."

"Love is represented as the fulfilling of the law, a creature’s perfection. All other graces, all divine dispensations contribute to this, and are lost in it as in a heaven. It expels the dross of our nature; it overcomes sorrow; it is the full joy of our Lord."

"Of law there can be no less acknowledged than that her seat is thy bosom of God, her voice the harmony of the world; all things do her homage, the very least as feeling her care; and the greatest as not exempted from her power; both angels and men, and creatures of what condition soever, though each in different sort and manner, yet all with uniform consent admiring her as the mother of their peace and joy."

"Reason is the director of man's will, discovering in action what is good, for the laws of well-doing are the dictates of right reason."

"The life of a pious minister is visible rhetoric."

"It is of things heavenly and universal declaration, working in them whose hearts God inspireth with the due consideration thereof, and habit or disposition of mind whereby they are made fit vessels both for the receipt and delivery of whatsoever spiritual perfection."

"They that are more frequent to dispute be not always the best able to determine."

"Change is not made without inconvenience, even from worse to better. "

"To live by one man's will becomes the cause of all misery. "

"Even ministers of good things are like torches, a light to others, waste and destruction to themselves."

"Everywhere through all generations and ages of the Christian world, no church ever perceived the Word of God to be against it."

"Evil ministers of good things are as torches,--a light to others, a waste to none but themselves only."

"And because the point about which we strive is the quality of our laws, our first entrance hereinto cannot better be made than with consideration of the nature of law in general ... namely the law whereby the Eternal Himself doth work. Proceeding from hence to the law, first of Nature, then of Scripture, we shall have the easier access unto those things which come after to be debated."

"Although the beauties, riches, honors, sciences, virtues, and perfections of all men living were in the present possession of one, yet somewhat above and beyond all this would still be sought and earnestly thirsted for."

"For whereas god hath left sundry kinds of laws unto men, and by all those laws the actions of men are in some sort directed; they hold that the one only law, the Scripture, must be the rule to direct all things."

"From here it sounds great to say we'll all get together soon, but all I know is this: you can call me fifty days or fifty years from now and I'll be glad to see you."

"He that goeth about to persuade a multitude, that they are not so well governed as they ought to be, shall never want attentive and favorable hearers."

"In matters of fact, they say there is some credit to be given to the testimony of men, but not in matters of judgment."

"Every effect doth, after a sort, contain, or at least resemble, the cause from which it proceedeth."

"Let polity [civil government] acknowledge itself indebted to religion. ... So natural is the union of religion with justice that we may boldly deem there is neither where both are not."

"In moral action divine law helpeth exceedingly the law of reason to guide life, but in the supernatural it alone guideth."

"Not that God doth require nothing unto happiness at the hands of men saving only a naked belief, but that without belief all other things are as nothing."

"He who sees the Infinite in all things, sees God."

"Many never think on God but in extremity of fear; and then, perplexity not suffering them to be idle, they think and do as it were in a frenzy."

"So much of our lives is celestial and divine as we spend in the exercise of prayer."

"Prosperity, in regard of our corrupt inclination to abuse the blessings of Almighty God, doth prove a thing dangerous to the soul of man."

"The reason why the simpler sort are moved by authority is the consciousness of their own ignorance."

"Suspense of judgment and exercise of charity were safer and seemlier for Christian men than the hot pursuit of these controversies."

"So that every man lawfully ordained must bring a bow which hath two strings, a title of present right and another to provide for future possibility or chance."

"What we were interested in as signature events were commissioned works, a legacy that would live on beyond the performance."

"Whatsoever is good; the same is also approved of God."

"Things confirmed by long practice and usage have all the force of law."

"There are men born under that constellation which maketh them, I know not how, as unapt to enrich themselves as they are ready to impoverish others."

"To live by one man's will became the cause of all men's misery."

"Think of your child; then, not as dead, but as living; not as a flower that has withered, but as one that is transplanted, and touched by a divine hand, is blooming in richer colors and sweeter shades than those o"

"What is virtue but a medicine, and vice but a wound?"

"When the best things are not possible, the best may be made of those that are."

"A law there is among the Grecians, whereof Pittacus is author: that he which being overcome with drink did then strike any man should suffer punishment double as much as if he had done the same being sober."

"All kinds of knowledge have their certain bounds; each of them presupposeth many things learned in other sciences and known beforehand."

"A virtuous mind should rather wish to depart this world with a kind of treatable resolution than to be suddenly cut off in a moment; rather to be taken than snatched away from the face of the earth."

"Affections (as joy, grief, fear, and anger, with such like), being, as it were, the sundry fashions and forms of appetite, can neither rise at the conceit of a thing indifferent, nor yet choose but rise at the sight of some things."

"All things religiously taken in hand are prosperously ended; because whether men in the end have that which religion did allow to desire, or that which it teacheth them contentedly to suffer, they are in neither event unfortunate."

"All true virtues are to honor true religion as their parent, and all well-ordered commonwealths to love her as their chiefest stay."

"All those venerable books of Scripture, all those sacred tomes and volumes of holy writ, are with such absolute perfection framed."

"Angels are spirits immaterial and intellectual, the glorious inhabitants of those sacred palaces where there is nothing but light and immortality; no shadow of matter for tears, discontentments, griefs, and uncomfortable passions to work upon; but all joy, tranquillity, and peace, even forever and ever, do dwell."

"All things subject to action the will does so far incline unto as reason judges them more available to our bliss."

"Antiquity, custom, and consent, in the church of God, making with that which law doth establish, are themselves most sufficient reasons to uphold the same, unless some notable public inconvenience enforce the contrary."

"Although we cannot be free from all sin collectively, in such sort that no part thereof shall be found inherent in us; yet distributively at the least, all great and grievous actual offences, as they offer themselves one by one, both may and ought to be by all means avoided."

"As for probabilities, what thing was there ever set down so agreeable with sound reason but some probable show against it might be made?"

"Aristotle speaketh of men whom nature hath framed for the state of servitude, saying, They have reason so far forth as to conceive when others direct them."