August 28

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Quotes of the day from previous years:

Certain old men prefer to rise at dawn, taking a cold bath and a long walk with an empty stomach and otherwise mortifying the flesh. They then point with pride to these practices as the cause of their sturdy health and ripe years; the truth being that they are hearty and old, not because of their habits, but in spite of them. The reason we find only robust persons doing this thing is that it has killed all the others who have tried it. ~ The Devil's Dictionary by Ambrose Bierce
It is better for a leader to make a mistake in forgiving than to make a mistake in punishing. ~ Muhammad
I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave owners will be able to sit down together at the table of brotherhood... I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character. I have a dream today... ~ Martin Luther King, Jr.
  • proposed by MosheZadka, expanded from the first Wikiquote Quote of the Day, selected by Nanobug.
Who is the happiest of men? He who values the merits of others, and in their pleasure takes joy, even as though 'twere his own. ~ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
Moderation, the Golden Mean, the Aristonmetron, is the secret of wisdom and of happiness. But it does not mean embracing an unadventurous mediocrity: rather it is an elaborate balancing-act, a feat of intellectual skill demanding constant vigilance. Its aim is a reconciliation of opposites. ~ Robertson Davies
To which of the warring serpents should I turn with the problem that now faces me?
It is easy, and tempting, to choose the god of Science. Now I would not for a moment have you suppose that I am one of those idiots who scorns Science, merely because it is always twisting and turning, and sometimes shedding its skin, like the serpent that is its symbol. It is a powerful god indeed but it is what the students of ancient gods called a shape-shifter, and sometimes a trickster. ~ Robertson Davies
What is the use of being wise if we are not sometimes merry? The merriment of wise men is not the uninformed, gross fun of ignorant men, but it has more kinship with that than the pinched, frightened fun of those who are neither learned nor ignorant, gentle nor simple, bound nor free. The idea that a wise man must be solemn is bred and preserved among people who have no idea what wisdom is, and can only respect whatever makes them feel inferior. ~ Robertson Davies
The ironist is not bitter, he does not seek to undercut everything that seems worthy or serious, he scorns the cheap scoring-off of the wisecracker. He stands, so to speak, somewhat at one side, observes and speaks with a moderation which is occasionally embellished with a flash of controlled exaggeration. He speaks from a certain depth, and thus he is not of the same nature as the wit, who so often speaks from the tongue and no deeper. The wit's desire is to be funny; the ironist is only funny as a secondary achievement. ~ Robertson Davies
Love does not dominate, it cultivates. And that is more. ~ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
The best among our writers are doing their accustomed work of mirroring what is deep in the spirit of our time; if chaos appears in those mirrors, we must have faith that in the future, as always in the past, that chaos will slowly reveal itself as a new aspect of order.
~ Robertson Davies ~
To be apt in quotation is a splendid and dangerous gift. Splendid, because it ornaments a man's speech with other men's jewels; dangerous, for the same reason.
~ Robertson Davies ~
I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: "We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal." I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave-owners will be able to sit down together at a table of brotherhood. I have a dream that one day even the state of Mississippi, a state, sweltering with the heat of injustice, sweltering with the heat of oppression, will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice.  I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character. I have a dream today.
~ Martin Luther King, Jr. ~

My name is Harrison Bergeron. I am a fugitive, and a public threat. I am an abomination of the able. I am an exception to the accepted. I am the greatest man you have never known. And for the last six years, I have been held prisoner by the state — sentenced, without trial, to torture without end.
They… had hoped to destroy in me any trace of the extraordinary … but the extraordinary, it seems, was simply out of their reach.
So now I stand before you today, beaten, hobbled, and sickened … but, sadly, not broken. And I say to you, that if it is greatness we must destroy, then let us drag our enemy out of the darkness, where it has been hiding. Let us shine a light so, at last, all the world can see!
~ 2081 ~
Let us not seek to satisfy our thirst for freedom by drinking from the cup of bitterness and hatred. We must forever conduct our struggle on the high plane of dignity and discipline. We must not allow our creative protest to degenerate into physical violence. Again and again we must rise to the majestic heights of meeting physical force with soul force.
~ Martin Luther King, Jr. ~
None are more hopelessly enslaved than those who falsely believe they are free.
~ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe ~
Everyone thinks they can write a play; you just write down what happened to you. But the art of it is drawing from all the moments of your life.
~ Neil Simon ~
  • proposed by Kalki, in regard to his recent death.
What dazzles, for the Moment spends its spirit:
What's genuine, shall Posterity inherit.
~ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe ~
~ Faust ~
I have joined the political arena so that the powerful can no longer beat up on people that cannot defend themselves.
Nobody knows the system better than me, which is why I alone can fix it.
~ Donald Trump ~
  • proposed by Kalki, in regard of abiding assertions regarding his role as President of the United States of America.
One ought, every day at least, to hear a little song, read a good poem, see a fine picture, and, if it were possible, to speak a few reasonable words.
~ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe ~
Behaviour is a mirror in which everyone shows his image.
~ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe ~
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It is mankind's discovery of language which more than any other single thing has separated him from the animal creation. Without language, what concept have we of past or future as separated from the immediate present? Without language, how can we tell anyone what we feel, or what we think? It might be said that until he developed language, man had no soul, for without language how could he reach deep inside himself and discover the truths that are hidden there, or find out what emotions he shared, or did not share, with his fellow men and women. ~ Robertson Davies

  • 3 InvisibleSun 10:24, 23 August 2007 (UTC)
  • 3 Kalki 23:07, 25 August 2007 (UTC) with a strong lean toward 4.
  • 1 Zarbon 16:20, 24 April 2008 (UTC)
  • 2.5 //Gbern3 (talk) 01:55, 15 August 2013 (UTC)
  • 3 allixpeeke (talk) 08:58, 25 August 2014 (UTC)

When young, one is confident to be able to build palaces for mankind, but when the time comes one has one's hands full just to be able to remove their trash. ~ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (dob)

  • 3 bystander (talk) 16:33, 26 August 2012 (UTC)
  • 2 //Gbern3 (talk) 01:55, 15 August 2013 (UTC)
  • 3 (leaning toward 2 because of the poor grammar; "one" is singular while "their" is plural) allixpeeke (talk) 08:58, 25 August 2014 (UTC)

I had much rather be myself the slave,
And wear the bonds, than fasten them on him.
We have no slaves at home–Then why abroad?
And they themselves once ferried o'er the wave
That parts us are emancipate and loosed.
Slaves cannot breathe in England; if their lungs
Receive our air, that moment they are free.
They touch our country, and their shackles fall.
That's noble, and bespeaks a nation proud
And jealous of the blessing.  Spread it then,
And let it circulate through every vein
Of all your empire; that, where Britain's power
Is felt, mankind may feel her mercy too.
~ William Cowper ~

Note: According to this page, "The Slavery Abolition Act 1833 receives Royal Assent, abolishing slavery through most the British Empire" on 28 August 1833.

When the architects of our republic wrote the magnificent words of the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence, they were signing a promissory note to which every American was to fall heir.  This note was a promise that all men, yes black men as well as white men, would be guaranteed the inalienable rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.
~ Martin Luther King, Jr. ~

Note: King's "I Have a Dream" speech was delivered on 28 August 1963.  This quote is from said speech.

Racism is the lowest, most crudely primitive form of collectivism.  It is the notion of ascribing moral, social or political significance to a man's genetic lineage—the notion that a man's intellectual and characterological traits are produced and transmitted by his internal body chemistry.  Which means, in practice, that a man is to be judged, not by his own character and actions, but by the characters and actions of a collective of ancestors.

Racism claims that the content of a man's mind (not his cognitive apparatus, but its content) is inherited; that a man's convictions, values and character are determined before he is born, by physical forces beyond his control.  This is the caveman's version of the doctrine of innate ideas—or of inherited knowledge—which has been thoroughly refuted by philosophy and science.  Racism is a doctrine of, by and for brutes.

~ Ayn Rand ~

Note: King's "I Have a Dream" speech was delivered on 28 August 1963.  This quote was written around the same time as King's speech.

  • 3 (very strongly leaning toward 4) allixpeeke (talk) 10:05, 25 August 2014 (UTC)
  • 3, but tenuously; I like the quote, but the link to the date seems tenuous. ~ ♌︎Kalki ⚓︎ 13:29, 25 August 2014 (UTC)

I'm fairly certain YOLO is Carpe Diem for stupid people.
~ Jack Black ~

Note: Jack Black was born 28 August 1969.

First you have to know—not fear, know—that, someday, you're gonna die.
~ Tyler Durden in Fight Club ~

Note: The film Fight Club was directed by David Fincher who, in turn, was born 28 August 1962.

The first and last thing demanded of genius is love of truth.
~ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe ~

You ask which form of government is the best? Whichever teaches us to govern ourselves.
~ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe ~

Piety is not an end but a means to attain by the greatest peace of mind the highest degree of culture.
This is why we may say that those who parade piety as a purpose and an aim mostly turn into hypocrites.
~ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe ~

A noble person attracts noble people, and knows how to hold on to them.
~ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe ~

Investigate what is, and not what pleases.
~ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe ~

The greatest happiness for the thinking man is to have fathomed the fathomable, and to quietly revere the unfathomable.
~ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe ~

Age does not make us childish, as they say.
It only finds us true children still.
~ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe ~

There are occasions ... when all consolation is base and it is a duty to despair.
~ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe ~

A world without love would be no world.
~ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe ~

The deed is everything, the glory nothing.
~ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe ~

Nothing is more frightful than to see ignorance in action.
~ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe ~

All perishable is but an allegory.
~ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe ~

All poetry is supposed to be instructive but in an unnoticeable manner; it is supposed to make us aware of what it would be valuable to instruct ourselves in; we must deduce the lesson on our own, just as with life.
~ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe ~

One must be something in order to do something.
~ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe ~

The man who, solely from regard to the opinion of others, and without any wish or necessity of his own, toils after gold, honour, or any other phantom, is no better than a fool.
~ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe ~
~ The Sorrows of Young Werther ~

One never goes so far as when one doesn't know where one is going.
~ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe ~

Life teaches us to be less harsh with ourselves and with others.
~ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe ~

One lives but once in the world.
~ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe ~

All that must disappear
Is but a parable;
What lay beyond us, here
All is made visible;
Here deeds have understood
Words they were darkened by;
The Eternal Feminine
Draws us on high.
~ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe ~
~ Goethe's Faust ~

There is strong shadow where there is much light.
~ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe ~

"Hughie, get your tanks off my lawn."" -- Harold Wilson