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John Locke Quotes


English philosopher and social contract theorist.
(1632 - 1704)

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A miracle I take to be a sensible operation, which being above the comprehension of the spectator, and in his opinion contrary to the established course of nature, is taken by him to be divine.
[Miracles]
 

A sound mind in a sound body, is a short, but full description of a happy state in this World: he that has these two, has little more to wish for; and he that wants either of them, will be little the better for anything else.
[Forgiveness]
 

A taste of every sort of knowledge is necessary to form the mind, and is the only way to give the understanding its due improvement to the full extent of its capacity.
[Knowledge]
 

Affectation in any part of our carriage is but the lighting up of a candle to show our defects, and never fails to make us taken notice of, either as wanting in sense or sincerity.
[Affectation]
 

All mankind... being all equal and independent, no one ought to harm another in his life, health, liberty or possessions.
 

All men are liable to error; and most men are, in many points, by passion or interest, under temptation to it.
 

All the arts of rhetoric, besides order and clearness, are for nothing else but to insinuate wrong ideas, move the passions, and thereby mislead the judgment.
[Rhetoric]
 

All the talk of history is of nothing almost but fighting and killing, and the honor and renown which are bestowed on conquerors, who, for the most part are mere butchers of mankind, mislead growing youth, who, by these means, come to think slaughter the most laudable business of mankind, and the most heroic of virtues.
[War]
 

All wealth is the product of labor.
[Wealth]
 

An excellent man, like precious metal, is in every way invariable; A villain, like the beams of a balance, is always varying, upwards and downwards.
 

An ill argument introduced with deference will procure more credit than the profoundest science with a rough, insolent, and noisy management.
[Argument]
 

Any one reflecting upon the thought he has of the delight, which any present or absent thing is apt to produce in him, has the idea we call love.
 

As people are walking all the time, in the same spot, a path appears.
 

As there is a partiality to opinions, which is apt to mislead the understanding, so there is also a partiality to studies, which is prejudicial to knowledge.
[Study]
 

Children generally hate to be idle.-All the care then should be, that their busy humor should be constantly employed in something that is of use to them.
[Children]
 

Cunning is the ape of wisdom.
[Cunning]
 

Curiosity in children, is but an appetite for knowledge. One great reason why children abandon themselves wholly to silly pursuits and trifle away their time insipidly is, because they find their curiosity balked, and their inquiries neglected.
[Curiosity]
 

Earthly minds, like mud walls, resist the strongest batteries; and though, perhaps, sometimes the force of a clear argument may make some impression, yet they nevertheless stand firm, keep out the enemy, truth, that would captivate or disturb them.
 

Education begins the gentleman, but reading, good company and reflection must finish him.
[Education]
 

Error is not a fault of our knowledge, but a mistake of our judgment giving assent to that which is not true.
[Error]
 


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