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Thomas Hobbes Quotes and Sayings (Author of Leviathan) - Splendid Quotes

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Thomas Hobbes Quotes and Sayings (Author of Leviathan)

“Curiosity is the lust of the mind.”




“The law is the public conscience.”




“Hell is Truth Seen Too Late.”




“Life in the state of nature is solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short.”




“When a man tells me God hath spoken in a dream, I know he dreamt that God spoke to him.”




“Leisure is the Mother of Philosophy.”




“It is not wisdom but Authority that makes a law.”




“Prudence is a presumption of the future, contracted from the experience of time past.”




“The first and fundamental law of Nature, which is, to seek peace and follow it.”




“I am about to take my last voyage, a great leap in the dark.”




“Covenants without swords are but words.”




“When all the world is overcharged with inhabitants, then the last remedy of all is war, which provideth for every man, by victory or death.”




“Unnecessary laws are not good laws, but traps for money.”




“If men are naturally in a state of war, why do they always carry arms and why do they have keys to lock their doors”




“During the time men live without a common power to keep them all in awe, they are in that conditions called war; and such a war, as if of every man, against every man.”




“Ambition, and Covetousnesse are Passions that are perpetually incumbent, and pressing.”




“The object of man’s desire is not to enjoy once only, and for one instant of time; but to assure for ever, the way of his future desires.”




“There is no such thing as perpetual tranquillity of mind while we live here; because life itself is but motion, and can never be without desire, nor without fear, no more than without sense.”




“A free man is he that, in those things which by his strength and wit he is able to do, is not hindered to do what he has a will to.”




“I put for the general inclination of all mankind, a perpetual and restless desire of power after power, that ceaseth only in death.”




“Force and fraud are in war the two cardinal virtues.”




“A Covenant not to defend my selfe from force, by force, is always voyd.”




“The passions of men are commonly more potent than their reason.”




“A democracy is no more than an aristocracy of orators. The people are so readily moved by demagogues that control must be exercised by the government over speech and press.”




“It’s my turn, to take a leap into the darkness!”




“Where there is no common power, there is no law.”




“The secret thoughts of a man run over all things, holy, profane, clean, obscene, grave, and light, without shame or blame.”




“Silence is sometimes an argument of Consent.”




“Corporations are may lesser commonwealths in the bowels of a greater, like worms in the entrails of a natural man.”




“Desire to know why, and how curiosity, which is a lust of the mind, that a perseverance of delight in the continued and indefatigable generation of knowledge exceedeth the short vehemence of any carnal pleasure.”




“Reason is the Soul of the Law.”




“Wisdom, properly so called, is nothing else but this the perfect knowledge of the truth in all matters whatsoever.”




“Obligation is thraldom, and thraldom is hateful.”




“Curiosity draws a man from consideration of the effect, to seek the cause.”




“For it is not the shape, but their use, that makes them angels.”




“The “value” or “worth” of a man is, as of all other things, his price; that is to say, so much as would be given for the use of his power.”




“The science which teacheth arts and handicrafts is merely science for the gaining of a living; but the science which teacheth deliverance from worldly existence, is not that the true science”




“In a Democracy, look how many Demagogs that is how many powerful Orators there are with the people.”




“Competition of praise inclineth to a reverence of antiquity. For men contend with the living, not with the dead.”




“Humans are driven by a perpetual and restless desire of power.”




“Words are wise men’s counters, they do but reckon by them but they are the money of fools, that value them by the authority of an Aristotle, a Cicero, or a Thomas, or any other doctor whatsoever, if but a man.”




“Laughter is nothing else but sudden glory arising from some sudden conception of some eminency in ourselves, by comparison with the infirmity of others, or with our own formerly.”




“Leisure is the mother of philosophy; and commonwealth, the mother of peace and leisure.”




“Thoughts are to the Desires as Scouts and Spies, to range abroad, and find the way to the things Desired.”




“For it can never be that war shall preserve life, and peace destroy it.”




“There are very few so foolish that they had not rather govern themselves than be governed by others.”




“If I read as many books as most men do, I would be as dull-witted as they are.”




“Felicity is a continual progress of the desire from one object to another, the attaining of the former being still but the way to the latter.”




“Words are the counters of wise men, and the money of fools.”




“Corporations are “worms in the body politic””




“For as to the strength of body, the weakest has strength enough to kill the strongest, either by secret machination or by confederacy with others that are in the same danger with himself.”




“There is no such thing as perpetual tranquility of mind while we live here.”




“The Present only has a being in Nature; things Past have a being in the Memory only, but things to come have no being at all; the Future but a fiction of the mind.”




“True and False are attributes of speech, not of things. And where speech is not, there is neither Truth nor Falsehood.”




“The power of a man is his present means to obtain some future apparent good.”




“It is fairer to tax people on what they extract from the economy, as roughly measured by their consumption, than to tax them on what they produce for the economy, as roughly measured by their income.”




“Passions unguided are for the most part mere madness.”




“Sudden glory is the passion which maketh those grimaces called laughter.”




“Fear of things invisible is the natural seed of that which everyone in himself calleth religion.”




“A man cannot lay down the right of resisting them that assault him by force, to take away his life.”




“This is that law of the Gospel; whatsoever you require that others should do to you, that do ye to them.”




“To speak impartially, both sayings are very true that man to man is a kind of God; and that man to man is an arrant wolf. The first is true, if we compare citizens amongst themselves; and the second, if we compare cities.”




“The privilege of absurdity; to which no living creature is subject, but man only.”




“For to accuse requires less eloquence, such is man’s nature, than to excuse; and condemnation, than absolution, more resembles justice.”




“The Interpretation of the Laws of Nature in a Common-wealth, dependeth not on the books of Moral Philosophy.




The Authority of writers, without the Authority of the Commonwealth, maketh not their opinions Law, be they never so true.”




“Opinion of ghosts, ignorance of second causes, devotion to what men fear, and talking of things casual for prognostics, consisteth the natural seeds of religion.”




“Those men that are so remissly governed that they dare take up arms to defend or introduce an opinion, are still in war, and their condition not peace, but only a cessation of arms for fear of one another, and they live as it were in the precincts of battle continually.”




“The first author of speech was God himself, that instructed Adam how to name such creatures as He presented to his sight...”




“A man’s conscience and his judgment is the same thing; and as the judgment, so also the conscience, may be erroneous.”




“From whence it follows, that were the publique and private interest are most closely united, there is the publique most advanced.”




“Geometry is the only science that it hath pleased God hitherto to bestow on mankind.”




“If any two men desire the same thing, which nevertheless they cannot both enjoy, they become enemies.”




“To say that God is an incorporeal substance, is to say in effect there is no God at all. What alleges he against it, but the School-divinity which I have already answered Scripture he can bring none, because the word incorporeal is not found in Scripture.”




“The disembodied spirit is immortal; there is nothing of it that can grow old or die. But the embodied spirit sees death on the horizon as soon as its day dawns.”




“It is many times with a fraudulent Design that men stick their corrupt Doctrine with the Cloves of other mens Wit.”




“I mean by the universe, the aggregate of all things that have being in themselves; and so do all men else. And because God has a being, it follows that he is either the whole universe, or part of it. Nor does his Lordship go about to disprove it, but only seems to wonder at it.”




“Faith is a gift of God, which man can neither give nor take away by promise of rewards or menace of torture.”




“Man is distinguished not only by his reason, but also by this singular passion, from all other animals.”




“If this superstitious fear of Spirits were taken away, and with it, Prognostiques from Dreams, false Prophecies, and many other things depending thereon, by which, crafty ambitious persons abuse the simple people, men would be much more fitted then they are for civill Obedience.”




“To be seduced by Orators, as a Monarch by Flatterers.”




“Science is the knowledge of consequences, and dependence of one fact upon another.”




“Such truth, as opposeth no man’s profit, nor pleasure, is to all men welcome.”




“The oath adds nothing to the obligation. For a covenant, if lawful, binds in the sight of God, without the oath, as much as with it; if unlawful, bindeth not at all, though it be confirmed with an oath.”




“Prudence is but experience, which equal time equally bestows on all men in those things they equally apply themselves unto.”




“The Papacy is not other than the Ghost of the deceased Roman Empire, sitting crowned upon the grave thereof.”




“Intemperance is naturally punished with diseases; rashness, with mischance; injustice; with violence of enemies; pride, with ruin; cowardice, with oppression; and rebellion, with slaughter.”




“The praise of ancient authors proceeds not from the reverence of the dead, but from the competition and mutual envy of the living.”




“No man can be judge to his own cause.”




“The original of all great and lasting societies consisted not in the mutual good will men had toward each other, but in the mutual fear they had of each other.”




“Fear of power invisible, feigned by the mind or imagined from tales publicly allowed, is religion; not allowed, superstition.”




“Because silver and gold have their value from the matter itself, they have first this privilege, that the value of them cannot be altered by the power of one, nor of a few commonwealths, as being a common measure of the commodities of all places. But base money may easily be enhanced or abased.”




“Baptism is the sacrament of allegiance of them that are to be received into the Kingdom of God, that is to say, into Eternal life, that is to say, to Remission of Sin. For as Eternal life was lost by the committing, so it is recovered by the remitting of men’s sins.”




“Men looke not at the greatnesse of the evill past, but the greatnesse of the good to follow.”




“And seeing every man is presumed to do all things in order to his own benefit, no man is a fit Arbitrator in his own cause.”




“I shall be glad then to find a hole to creep out of the world.”




“To say God spake or appeared as he is in his own nature, is to deny his Infiniteness, Invisibility, Incomprehensibility.”




“As a draft-animal is yoked in a wagon, even so the spirit is yoked in this body.”




“And Beasts that have Deliberation, must necessarily also have Will .”




“For naturall Bloud is in like manner made of the fruits of the Earth; and circulating, nourisheth by the way, every Member of the Body of Man.”

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