Gilbert K Chesterton Quotes & Wallpapers

Gilbert K Chesterton
Total Quotes: 1564


With any recovery from morbidity there must go a certain healthy humiliation. Gilbert K Chesterton

The sincere love of books has nothing to do with cleverness or stupidity any more than any other sincere love. It is a quality of character, a freshness, a power of pleasure, a power of faith. A silly person may delight in reading masterpieces just as a silly person may delight in picking flowers. A fool may be in love with a poet as he may be in love with a woman. Gilbert K Chesterton

The new community which the capitalists are now constructing will be a very complete and absolute community; and one which will tolerate nothing really independent of itself. Gilbert K Chesterton

But there is in everything a reasonable division of labour. I have written the book, and nothing on earth would induce me to read it. Gilbert K Chesterton

Is ditchwater dull? Naturalists with microscopes have told me that it teems with quiet fun. Gilbert K Chesterton

Atheism is indeed the most daring of all dogmas . . . for it is the assertion of a universal negative. Gilbert K Chesterton

I believe what really happens in history is this: the old man is always wrong; and the young people are always wrong about what is wrong with him. The practical form it takes is this: that, while the old man may stand by some stupid custom, the young man always attacks it with some theory that turns out to be equally stupid. Gilbert K Chesterton

Comforts that were rare among our forefathers are now multiplied in factories and handed out wholesale; and indeed, nobody nowadays, so long as he is content to go without air, space, quiet, decency and good manners, need be without anything whatever that he wants; or at least a reasonably cheap imitation of it. Gilbert K Chesterton

None of the modern machines, none of the modern paraphernalia. . . have any power except over the people who choose to use them. Gilbert K Chesterton

The past is not what it was. Gilbert K Chesterton

Men are ruled, at this minute by the clock, by liars who refuse them news, and by fools who cannot govern. Gilbert K Chesterton

Over-civilization and barbarism are within an inch of each other. And a mark of both is the power of medicine-men. Gilbert K Chesterton

All men thirst to confess their crimes more than tired beasts thirst for water; but they naturally object to confessing them while other people, who have also committed the same crimes, sit by and laugh at them. Gilbert K Chesterton

Business, especially big business, is now organized like an army. It is, as some would say, a sort of mild militarism without bloodshed; as I say, a militarism without the military virtues. Gilbert K Chesterton

All but the hard hearted man must be torn with pity for this pathetic dilemma of the rich man, who has to keep the poor man just stout enough to do the work and just thin enough to have to do it. Gilbert K Chesterton

...but out of the desert, from the dry places and the dreadful suns, come the cruel children of the lonely God; the real Unitarians who with scimitar in hand have laid waste the world. For it is not well for God to be alone. Gilbert K Chesterton

Religious unity can look like a carnival and religious liberty can look like a funeral. Gilbert K Chesterton

The man of the true religious tradition understands two things: liberty and obedience. The first means knowing what you really want. The second means knowing what you really trust. Gilbert K Chesterton

It is quite an old-fashioned fallacy to suppose that our objection to scepticism is that it removes the discipline from life. Our objection to scepticism is that it removes the motive power. Materialism is not a thing which destroys mere restraint. Materialism itself is the great restraint. Gilbert K Chesterton

If I did not believe in God, I should still want my doctor, my lawyer and my banker to do so. Gilbert K Chesterton

Real development is not leaving things behind, as on a road, but drawing life from them, as from a root. Gilbert K Chesterton

Saint George he was for England, And before he killed the dragon he drank a pint of English ale out of an English flagon. Gilbert K Chesterton

[There is] one distinctly human thing - the story. There can be as good science about a turnip as about a man. ... [Or philosophy, or theology] ...There can be, without any question at all, as good higher mathematics about a turnip as about a man. But I do not think, though I speak in a manner somewhat tentative, that there could be as good a novel written about a turnip as a man. Gilbert K Chesterton

children are simply human beings who are allowed to do what everyone else really desires to do, as for instance, to fly kites, or when seriously wronged to emit prolonged screams for several minutes. Gilbert K Chesterton

Every one of the great revolutionists, from Isaiah to Shelley, have been optimists. They have been indignant, not about the badness of existence, but about the slowness of men in realizing its goodness. Gilbert K Chesterton

It is better to speak wisdom foolishly like the saints than to speak folly wisely like the deans. Gilbert K Chesterton

The reason that angels fly is that they take themselves so lightly. Gilbert K Chesterton

Nine times out of ten it is the coarse word that condemns an evil, and the refined word that excuses it. Gilbert K Chesterton

We all have a little weakness, which is very natural but rather misleading, for supposing that this epoch must be the end of the world because it will be the end of us. How future generations will get on without us is indeed, when we come to think of it, quite a puzzle. But I suppose they will get on somehow, and may possibly venture to revise our judgments as we have revised earlier judgments. Gilbert K Chesterton

If the devil tells you something is too fearful to look at, look at it. If he says something is too terrible to hear, hear it. If you think some truth unbearable, bear it. Gilbert K Chesterton

The test of happiness is gratitude. Gilbert K Chesterton

I am going to hold a pistol to the head of the Modern Man. But I shall not use it to kill him-only to bring him to life. Gilbert K Chesterton

Madness does not come by breaking out, but by giving in; by settling down in some dirty, little, self-repeating circle of ideas; by being tamed. Gilbert K Chesterton

She had never really listened to anyone in her life; which, some said, was why she had survived. Gilbert K Chesterton

I represent the jolly mass of mankind. I am the happy and reckless Christian. Gilbert K Chesterton

If you convey to a woman that something ought to be done, there is always a dreadful danger that she will suddenly do it. Gilbert K Chesterton

Now there is any amount of this nonsense cropping up among American cranks. Anybody may propose to establish coercive Eugenics; or enforce psychoanalysis that is, enforce confession without absolution. Gilbert K Chesterton

The modern world seems to have no notion of preserving different things side by side, of allowing its proper and proportionate place to each, of saving the whole varied heritage of culture. It has no notion except that of simplifying something by destroying nearly everything. Gilbert K Chesterton

To be born into this earth is to be born into uncongenial surroundings, hence to be born into a romance. Gilbert K Chesterton

Comradeship is obvious and universal and open; but it is only one kind of affection; it has characteristics that would destroy any other kind. Anyone who has known true comradeship in a club or in a regiment, knows that it is impersonal. Gilbert K Chesterton

Every remedy is a desperate remedy. Every cure is a miraculous cure. Curing a madman is not arguing with a philosopher; it is casting out a devil. Gilbert K Chesterton

Bowing down in blind credulity, as is my custom, before mere authority and the tradition of the elders, superstitiously swallowing a story I could not test at the time by experiment or private judgment, I am firmly of the opinion that I was born on the 29th of May, 1874, on Campden Hill, Kensington; and baptised according to the formularies of the Church of England in the little church of St. George opposite the large Waterworks Tower that dominated that ridge. Gilbert K Chesterton

We all live in the past, because there is nothing else to live in. To live in the present is like proposing to sit on a pin. It is too minute, it is too slight a support, it is too uncomfortable a posture, and it is of necessity followed immediately by totally different experiences, analogous to those of jumping up with a yell. Gilbert K Chesterton

One must somehow find a way of loving the world without trusting it; somehow one must love the world without being worldly. Gilbert K Chesterton

I still believe in liberalism today as much as I ever did, but, oh, there was a happy time when I believed in liberals... Gilbert K Chesterton

Journalism largely consists of saying "Lord Jones is Dead" to people who never knew that Lord Jones was alive. Gilbert K Chesterton

Poets have been mysteriously silent on the subject of cheese. Gilbert K Chesterton

Each generation is converted by the saint who contradicts it most. Gilbert K Chesterton

But whenever one meets modern thinkers (as one often does) progressing towards a madhouse, one always finds, on inquiry, that they have just had a splendid escape from another madhouse. Thus, hundreds of people become Socialists, not because they have tried Socialism and found it nice, but because they have tried Individualism and found it nasty. Gilbert K Chesterton

The believers in miracles accept them (rightly or wrongly) because they have evidence for them. The disbelievers in miracles deny them (rightly or wrongly) because they have a doctrine against them. Gilbert K Chesterton

When the chord of monotony is stretched to its tightest, it breaks with the sound of a song. Gilbert K Chesterton

humor can get in under the door while seriousness is still fumbling at the handle Gilbert K Chesterton

To downgrade the human mind is bad theology. Gilbert K Chesterton

Such professions as the soldier and the lawyer ... give ample opportunity for crimes but not much for mere illusions. ... If you have lost a battle you cannot believe you have won it; if your client is hanged you cannot pretend that you have gotten him off. Gilbert K Chesterton

Altruists, with thin, weak voices, denounce Christ as an egoist. Egoists (with even thinner and weaker voices) denounce Him as an altruist. Gilbert K Chesterton

Mr. Blatchford says that there was not a Fall but a gradual rise. But the very word "rise" implies that you know toward what you are rising. Unless there is a standard you cannot tell whether you are rising or falling. But the main point is that the Fall like every other large path of Christianity is embodied in the common language talked on the top of an omnibus. Anybody might say, "Very few men are really Manly." Nobody would say, "Very few whales are really whaley." Gilbert K Chesterton

I will not call it my philosophy; for I did not make it. God and humanity made it; and it made me. Gilbert K Chesterton

Paradox - Truth standing on her head to get attention. Gilbert K Chesterton

You may say, if you like, that the man is free to think himself a poached egg. But it is surely a more massive and important fact that if he is a poached egg he is not free to eat, drink, sleep, walk, or smoke a cigarette. Similarly you may say, if you like, that the bold determinist speculator is free to disbelieve in the reality of the will. But it is a much more massive and important fact that he is not free to raise, to curse, to thank, to justify, to urge, to punish, to resist temptations, to incite mobs, to make New Year resolutions, to pardon sinners, to rebuke tyrants, or even to say "thank you" for the mustard. Gilbert K Chesterton

My brain and this world don't fit each other; and there's an end of it. Gilbert K Chesterton

All the controversialists who have become conscious of the real issue are already saying of our ideal exactly what used to be said of the Socialists' ideal. They are saying that private property is too ideal not to be impossible. They are saying that private enterprise is too good to be true. They are saying that the idea of ordinary men owning ordinary possessions is against the laws of political economy and requires an alteration in human nature. Gilbert K Chesterton

The Universe is the most extraordinary masterpiece ever constructed by nobody. Gilbert K Chesterton

Science must not impose any philosophy, any more than the telephone must tell us what to say. Gilbert K Chesterton

There are two ways of dealing with nonsense in this world. One way is to put nonsense in the right place; as when people put nonsense into nursery rhymes. The other is to put nonsense in the wrong place; as when they put it into educational addresses, psychological criticisms, and complaints against nursery rhymes or other normal amusements of mankind. Gilbert K Chesterton

I am a journalist and have no earthly motives except curiosity and personal vanity. Gilbert K Chesterton

A great man knows he is not God, and the greater he is the better he knows it. Gilbert K Chesterton

The woman does not work because the man tells her to work and she obeys. On the contrary, the woman works because she has told the man to work and he hasn't obeyed. Gilbert K Chesterton

What embitters the world is not excess of criticism, but an absence of self-criticism. Gilbert K Chesterton

A man must be prepared not only to be a martyr, but to be a fool. It is absurd to say that a man is ready to toil and die for his convictions if he is not even ready to wear a wreathe around his head for them. Gilbert K Chesterton

There is at the back of every artist's mind something like a pattern and a type of architecture. The original quality in any man of imagination is imagery. It is a thing like the landscape of his dreams; the sort of world he would like to make or in which he would like to wander, the strange flora and fauna, his own secret planet, the sort of thing he likes to think about. This general atmosphere, and pattern or a structure of growth, governs all his creations, however varied. Gilbert K Chesterton



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