January 23

day of the year

Quotes of the day from previous years:

All the ill that is in us comes from fear, and all the good from love. ~ Eleanor Farjeon
So long as there is death there will be sorrow, and so long as there is sorrow it can be no part of the duty of human beings to increase its amount, in spite of the fact that a few rare spirits know how to transmute it. ~ Bertrand Russell
To minimize suffering and to maximize security were natural and proper ends of society and Caesar. But then they became the only ends, somehow, and the only basis of law — a perversion. Inevitably, then, in seeking only them, we found only their opposites: maximum suffering and minimum security. ~ Walter M. Miller, Jr. (born 23 January 1923)
Necessity is the plea for every infringement of human freedom. It is the argument of tyrants; it is the creed of slaves. ~ William Pitt the Younger (anniversary of death)
Almost all our misfortunes in life come from the wrong notions we have about the things that happen to us. To know men thoroughly, to judge events sanely is, therefore, a great step towards happiness. ~ Stendhal
One can acquire everything in solitude — except character. ~ Stendhal
Love has always been the most important business in my life, I should say the only one. ~ Stendhal
There is no such thing as natural law, the expression is nothing more than a silly anachronism … There is no such thing as right, except when there is a law to forbid a certain thing under pain of punishment. Before law existed, the only natural thing was the strength of the lion, or the need of a creature who was cold or hungry, to put it in one word, need. ~ Stendhal
  • first proposed by InvisibleSun in a more abbreviated form of a different translation: "There is no such thing as "natural law": this expression is nothing but old nonsense. Prior to laws, what is natural is only the strength of the lion, or the need of the creature suffering from hunger or cold, in short, need."
O to be a dragon,
a symbol of the power of Heaven — of silkworm
size or immense; at times invisible.
Felicitous phenomenon!

~ Marianne Moore ~
I no longer find such pleasure in that preeminently good society, of which I was once so fond. It seems to me that beneath a cloak of clever talk it proscribes all energy, all originality. If you are not a copy, people accuse you of being ill-mannered. And besides, good society usurps its privileges. It had in the past the privilege of judging what was proper, but now that it supposes itself to be attacked, it condemns not what is coarse and disagreeable without compensation, but what it thinks harmful to its interest.
~ Stendhal ~
A cultural inheritance may be acquired between dusk and dawn, and many have been so acquired. But the new "culture" was an inheritance of darkness, wherein "simpleton" meant the same thing as "citizen" meant the same thing as "slave." The monks waited. It mattered not at all to them that the knowledge they saved was useless, that much of it was not really knowledge now… empty of content, its subject matter long since gone. Still, such knowledge had a symbolic structure that was peculiar to itself, and at least the symbol-interplay could be observed. To observe the way a knowledge-system is knit together is to learn at least a minimum knowledge-of-knowledge, until someday — someday, or some century — an Integrator would come, and things would be fitted together again. So time mattered not at all. The Memorabilia was there, and it was given to them by duty to preserve, and preserve it they would if the darkness in the world lasted ten more centuries, or even ten thousand years...
~ Walter M. Miller, Jr. ~
Insofar as thought could be governed at all, it could only be commanded to follow what reason affirmed anyhow; command it otherwise, and it would not obey.
~ Walter M. Miller, Jr. ~
I see but one rule: to be clear. If I am not clear, all my world crumbles to nothing.
~ Stendhal ~
Ignorance is king. Many would not profit by his abdication. Many enrich themselves by means of his dark monarchy. They are his Court, and in his name they defraud and govern, enrich themselves and perpetuate their power. Even literacy they fear, for the written word is another channel of communication that might cause their enemies to become united. Their weapons are keen-honed, and they use them with skill. They will press the battle upon the world when their interests are threatened, and the violence which follows will last until the structure of society as it now exists is leveled to rubble, and a new society emerges. I am sorry: But that is how I see it.
~ Walter M. Miller, Jr. ~
He had never seen a "Fallout," and he hoped he'd never see one. A consistent description of the monster had not survived, but Francis had heard the legends. … Brother Francis visualized a Fallout as half-salamander, because, according to tradition, the thing was born in the Flame Deluge, and as half-incubus who despoiled virgins in their sleep, for, were not the monsters of the world still called "children of the Fallout"? That the demon was capable of inflicting all the woes which descended upon Job was recorded fact, if not an article of creed.
~ Walter M. Miller, Jr. ~
We are finite creatures. Our lives are small and can only scientifically consider a small part of reality. What's common for us is just a sliver of what's available. We can only see so much of the electromagnetic spectrum. We can only delve so deep into extensions of space. Common sense applies to that which we can access. But common sense is just that. Common. If total sense is what we want, we should be prepared to accept that we shouldn't call infinity weird or strange. The results we've arrived at by accepting it are valid, true within the system we use to understand, measure, predict and order the universe. Perhaps the system still needs perfecting, but at the end of day, history continues to show us that the universe isn't strange. We are.
~ Michael Stevens ~
Perhaps you and I were born too late to explore the world and too early in history to explore the stars, but we were born at just the right time, which is pretty much all times ever — to explore language — to explore what can be said. What should be said? What should we send out to space? What, that can be said, will you be the first to say?
~ Michael Stevens ~
The way I see it, it's a great thing to be the man who hit the most home runs, but it's a greater thing to be the man who did the most with the home runs he hit. So as long as there's a chance that maybe I can hammer out a little justice now and then, or a little opportunity here and there, I intend to do as I always have — keep swinging.
~ Hank Aaron ~
  • proposed by Kalki, in regard to his recent death.
Beauty is nothing other than the promise of happiness.
~ Stendhal ~
Encounters between strangers in the desert, while rare, were occasions of mutual suspicion, and masked by initial preparations on both sides for an incident that might prove either cordial or warlike.
~ Walter M. Miller, Jr. ~
Despise the glare of wealth. That people who pay greater respect to a wealthy villain than to an honest, upright man in poverty, almost deserve to be enslaved; they plainly show that wealth, however it may be acquired, is, in their esteem, to be preferred to virtue.
~ John Hancock ~
Rank or add further suggestions…

The Quote of the Day (QOTD) is a prominent feature of the Wikiquote Main Page. Thank you for submitting, reviewing, and ranking suggestions!

Ranking system
4 : Excellent – should definitely be used. (This is the utmost ranking and should be used by any editor for only one quote at a time for each date.)
3 : Very Good – strong desire to see it used.
2 : Good – some desire to see it used.
1 : Acceptable – but with no particular desire to see it used.
0 : Not acceptable – not appropriate for use as a quote of the day.
An averaging of the rankings provided to each suggestion produces it’s general ranking in considerations for selection of Quote of the Day. The selections made are usually chosen from the top ranked options existing on the page, but the provision of highly ranked late additions, especially in regard to special events (most commonly in regard to the deaths of famous people, or other major social or physical occurrences), always remain an option for final selections.
Thank you for participating!

Suggestions edit

I return you many thanks for the honour you have done me; but Europe is not to be saved by any single man. England has saved herself by her exertions, and will, as I trust, save Europe by her example. ~ William Pitt the Younger (anniversary of death). This was Pitt's last speech in public.

  • 4 Tamino 20:09, 17 January 2007 (UTC) A classic, and in a way appropriate given that it was his last public speech.
  • 3 InvisibleSun 05:40, 22 January 2007 (UTC)
  • 1 Kalki (talk · contributions) 23:59, 15 January 2011 (UTC) * 2 Kalki 20:37, 22 January 2007 (UTC) Out of the context of his times and circumstances (responding to a toast to him as "Savior of Europe") this can (somewhat ironically) seem a bit chauvinistic, but if this were to be used, I think it should begin at "Europe is not to be saved by any single man..."
  • 1 Zarbon 18:37, 22 April 2008 (UTC)

In matters of sentiment, the public has very crude ideas; and the most shocking fault of women is that they make the public the supreme judge of their lives. ~ Stendhal

Prudery is a kind of avarice, the worst of all. ~ Stendhal

A wise woman never yields by appointment. It should always be an unforeseen happiness. ~ Stendhal

I call "crystallization" that action of the mind that discovers fresh perfections in its beloved at every turn of events. ~ Stendhal

Ignorance has been our king. Since the death of empire, he sits unchallenged on the throne of Man. His dynasty is age-old. His right to rule is now considered legitimate. Past sages have affirmed it. They did nothing to unseat him.
Tomorrow, a new prince shall rule. Men of understanding, men of science shall stand behind his throne, and the universe will come to know his might. His name is Truth. His empire shall encompass the Earth.
~ Walter M. Miller, Jr. ~

You don't have a soul, Doctor. You are a soul. You have a body, temporarily.
~ Walter M. Miller, Jr. ~

What is really beautiful must always be true.
~ Stendhal ~