Great Throughts Treasury

A database of quotes

Cicero, fully Marcus Tullius Cicero, anglicized as Tully NULL

Roman Philosopher, Statesman, Lawyer, Political Theorist, and Roman Constitutionalist, considered one of Rome's greatest Orators and Prose Stylists

"Every one is least known to himself, and it is very difficult for a man to know himself."

"Fear is not a lasting teacher of duty."

"Extreme justice is extreme injustice."

"Fewer possess virtue than those who wish us to believe that they possess it."

"Freedom suppressed and again regained bites with keener fangs than freedom never endangered."

"Friendship makes prosperity more brilliant, and lightens adversity by dividing and sharing it."

"Genius is fostered by industry."

"I do not understand what the man who is happy wants in order to be happier."

"I have learned from philosophers that among evils one ought not only to choose the least, but also to extract even from these any of good that they may contain."

"I care more for that long age which I shall never see than for my own small share of time."

"I prefer the most unfair peace to the most righteous war."

"Guilt is the only evil; but no guilt accrues when the issue is one against which there are no guarantees."

"It is better to receive than to do an injury."

"I prefer tongue-tied knowledge to ignorant loquacity."

"It is very difficult for a man to know himself."

"It is difficult to set bounds to the price unless you first set bounds to the wish."

"If we have God in all things while they are ours, we shall have all things in God when they are taken away."

"Laws are silent in times of war (in midst of arms)."

"Let war be so carried on that no other object may seem to be sought but the acquisition of peace."

"Let the punishment fit the offence."

"Man is his own worst enemy."

"Most people believe the achievements of war more important than those of peace, but this is a mistake."

"Man's life is ruled by fortune, not by wisdom."

"Man was born for two things - thinking and acting."

"Memory is the treasury of all things and their guardian."

"No grief is so acute but time ameliorates it."

"Nature has given us no knowledge of the end of things."

"No power is strong enough to be lasting if it labors under the weight of fear."

"No liberal man (philosopher) would impute a charge of unsteadiness to another for having changed his opinion."

"Nobody can give you wiser advice than yourself."

"Nothing maintains its bloom forever; age succeeds to age."

"Once is enough."

"One must move with the times."

"Peace is liberty in tranquillity."

"Personal health is preserved by learning about one’s own constitution, by finding out what is good or bad for oneself, by continual self-control in eating habits and comforts (but just to the extent needed for self-preservation), by forgoing sensual pleasures, and lastly, by the professional skill of those to whose science these matters belong."

"Philosophy, if rightly defined, is naught but the love of wisdom."

"Philosophy, if rightly defined, is nothing but the love of wisdom."

"Reason is the mistress and queen of all things."

"Private ownership does not derive from nature."

"Rashness is a quality of the budding-time of youth, prudence of the harvest-time of old age."

"Superstition consists in a senseless fear of the gods, religion in the pious worship of them."

"Reason should direct and appetite obey."

"The beginnings of all things are small."

"The best orator is the one who address instructs, delights, and moves the minds of the hearers. The orator is obliged to instruct, while pleasure is gratuity granted to the audience. But to stir the emotions is indispensable."

"Religion is not removed by removing superstition."

"Should this my firm persuasion of the soul's immortality prove to be a mere delusion, it is at least a pleasing delusion, and I will cherish it to my last breath."

"Scurrility has no object in view but incivility; if it is uttered from feelings of petulance, it is mere abuse; if it is spoken in a joking manner, it may be considered raillery."

"The cultivation of the mind is a kind of good supplied for the soul of man."

"The diseases of the mind are more and more destructive than those of the body."

"The fact is that old age is respectable just as long as it asserts itself, maintains its proper rights, and is not enslaved to any one. For as I admire a young man who has something of the old man in him, so do I an old one who has something of a young man. The man who aims at this may possibly become old in body - in mind he never will."