Title: A Treasury of Great American Quotations
Editor: Charles Hurd
Star Rating: ★★★
Hi there! As of October 2013, I have upgraded to a new site – The Blithering Bookster – where I have posted all of my old reviews and continue to post new ones. Hoist yourself over to join the fun!
By definition, a treasury is a collection of the best material available in a particular genre. Whatever is the ‘best’ in a field will be determined by the worldview of the editor. While wise Christian leaders were included in this treasury, a noticeable emphasis was placed on humanistic philosophers.
I have done my best glean the wheat from the chaff.
The Serious and Instructive.
“Resolved, never to do anything which I should be afraid to do if it were the last hour of my life.” – Jonathan Edwards
“It is easier to suppress the first desire than to satisfy all that follow it.” – Benjamin Franklin
“Liberty exists in proportion to wholesome restraint.” – Daniel Webster
“A slender acquaintance with the world must convince every man that actions, not words, are the true criterion of the attachment of friends; and that the most liberal professions of good-will are very far from being the surest marks of it.” – George Washington
“Let thy child’s first lesson be obedience, and the second will be what thou wilt.” – Benjamin Franklin
“True repentance always involves reform.” – Hosea Ballou
“If you would not be forgotten as soon as you are dead, either write things worth reading or do things worth writing.” – Benjamin Franklin
“Little minds are tamed and subdued by misfortune; but great minds rise above it.” – Washington Irving
“Pray as if everything depended on God, and work as if everything depended upon man.” – Francis Cardinal Spellman
“Experience alone cannot deliver to us necessary truths; truths completely demonstrated by reason. Its conclusions are particular, not universal.” – John Dewey
“Do not pray for easy lives. Pray to be stronger men! Do not pray for tasks equal to your powers. Pray for powers equal to your tasks.” – Phillips Brooks
“The bravest battle that ever was fought;
Shall I tell you where and when?
On the maps of the world you will find it not;
It was fought by the mothers of men.”
– Cincinnatus Hiner
“We judge ourselves by what we feel capable of doing, while others judge us by what we have already done.” – Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
“One cool judgment is worth a dozen hasty councils. The thing to do is to supply light and not heat.” – Woodrow Wilson
“As unto the bow the cord is,
So unto the man is woman,
Though she bends him, she obeys him,
Though she draws him, yet she follows;
Useless each without the other!”
– Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
“Ideas are booming through the world louder than cannon. Thoughts are mightier than armies. Principles have achieved more victories than horsemen and chariots.” – W. M. Paxton
“Conversation is the laboratory and workshop of the student.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson
“I know of no way of judging of the future but by the past.” – Patrick Henry
“The harder the conflict the more glorious the triumph.” – Thomas Paine
“If, on a full and final review, my life and practice shall be found unworthy of my principles, let due infamy be heaped on my memory; but let none be led thereby to distrust the principles to which I proved recreant, nor yet the ability of some to adorn them by a suitable life and conversation. To unerring time be all this committed.” – Horace Greeley
“Let me make the newspapers, and I care not what is preached in the pulpit or what is enacted in Congress.” – Wendell Phillips
“He that does good for good’s sake seeks neither praise nor reward, though sure of both at the last.” – William Penn
“My paramount object in this struggle is to save the Union, and is not either to save or destroy slavery. If I could save the Union without freeing any slave, I would do it; and if I could do it by freeing all the slaves, I would do it; and if I could save it by freeing some and leaving others alone, I would also do that.” – Abraham Lincoln
“Stay, stay at home, my heart, and rest;
Home-keeping harts are happiest,
For those that wander they know not where
Are full of trouble and full of care;
To stay at home is best.”
– Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
The Incisive and Humorous.
“Common sense is very uncommon.” – Horace Greeley
“Steam is no stronger now than it was a hundred years ago, but it is put to better use.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson
“Compromise makes a good umbrella, but a poor roof; it is a temporary expedient, often wise in party politics, almost sure to be unwise in statesmanship.” – James Russell Lowell
“At the devil’s booth are all things sold,
Each ounce of dross costs its ounce of gold;”
– James Russell Lowell
“Lost, yesterday, somewhere between sunrise and sunset, two golden hours, each set with sixty diamond minutes. No reward is offered, for they are gone forever.” – Horace Mann. I was greatly surprised that at his death Horace Mann was a teacher of theology at Antioch College.
“An Idea isn’t responsible for the people who believe in it.” – Don Marquis
“The cynic puts all human actions into two classes – openly bad and secretly bad.” – Henry Ward Beecher.
“Advertisements contain the only truth to be relied on in a newspaper.” – Thomas Jefferson (Sadly, even advertisements are deceptive now!)
“We must indeed all hang together, or most assuredly we shall all hang separately.” – Benjamin Franklin at the signing of the Declaration of Independence
“It a man empties his purse into his head, no one can take it from him.” – Benjamin Franklin
“It were endless to dispute upon everything that is disputable.” – William Penn
He that falls in love with himself will have no rivals.” – Benjamin Franklin
“Next to being a great poet is the power of understanding one.” – Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
“I firmly believe that if the whole material medica as now used could be sunk to the bottom of the sea, it would be all the better for mankind – and all the worse for the fishes.” – Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr.
“All one has to do to gather a large crowd in New York is to stand on the curb a few minutes and gaze intently at the sky.” George Jean Nathan
I have included all of the quotes which I felt were noteworthy, even when I did not agree with the teachings of their author.