Quotes of the day from previous years:

2003
I found one day in school a boy of medium size ill-treating a smaller boy. I expostulated, but he replied: 'The bigs hit me, so I hit the babies; that's fair.' In these words he epitomized the history of the human race. ~ Education and the Social Order by Bertrand Russell
2004
We come nearest to the great when we are great in humility. ~ Rabindranath Tagore
2005
That's one small step for a man, one giant leap for mankind. ~ Neil Armstrong on first stepping onto the surface of the moon, 20th July 1969.
2006
You don’t have to be a fantastic hero to do certain things — to compete. You can be just an ordinary chap, sufficiently motivated. ~ Edmund Hillary (born 20 July 1919)
2007
People do not decide to become extraordinary. They decide to accomplish extraordinary things. ~ Edmund Hillary (this attribution may be erroneous)
2008
Sameness is the mother of disgust, variety the cure. ~ Petrarch
2009
Houston: Tranquility Base here. The Eagle has landed. ~ Neil Armstrong (first words of a human on the moon)
2010
Hitherto your eyes have been darkened and you have looked too much, yes, far too much, upon the things of earth. If these so much delight you what shall be your rapture when you lift your gaze to things eternal! ~ Petrarch
2011
Books have led some to learning and others to madness, when they swallow more than they can digest. ~ Petrarch
2012
Love is the crowning grace of humanity, the holiest right of the soul, the golden link which binds us to duty and truth, the redeeming principle that chiefly reconciles the heart to life, and is prophetic of eternal good.
~ Petrarch ~
2013
To be able to say how much you love is to love but little.
~ Petrarch ~
2014
Five enemies of peace inhabit with us — avarice, ambition, envy, anger, and pride; if these were to be banished, we should infallibly enjoy perpetual peace.
~ Petrarch ~
2015
Continued work and application form my soul's nourishment. So soon as I commenced to rest and relax I should cease to live. … There is no lighter burden, nor more agreeable, than a pen. Other pleasures fail us or wound us while they charm, but the pen we take up rejoicing and lay down with satisfaction, for it has the power to advantage not only its lord and master, but many others as well, even though they be far away — sometimes, indeed, though they be not born for thousands of years to come.
~ Petrarch ~
2016
Nobody climbs mountains for scientific reasons. Science is used to raise money for the expeditions, but you really climb for the hell of it.
~ Edmund Hillary ~
2017
I had rather excel others in the knowledge of what is excellent, than in the extent of my power and dominion.
~ Alexander the Great ~
2018
Are you still to learn that the end and perfection of our victories is to avoid the vices and infirmities of those whom we subdue?
~ Alexander the Great ~
2019
HERE MEN FROM THE PLANET EARTH
FIRST SET FOOT UPON THE MOON
JULY 1969, A.D.
WE CAME IN PEACE FOR ALL MANKIND.
~ NASA ~
2020
Some years ago, I was lucky enough invited to a gathering of great and good people: artists and scientists, writers and discoverers of things. And I felt that at any moment they would realise that I didn’t qualify to be there, among these people who had really done things. On my second or third night there, I was standing at the back of the hall, while a musical entertainment happened, and I started talking to a very nice, polite, elderly gentleman about several things, including our shared first name. And then he pointed to the hall of people, and said words to the effect of, "I just look at all these people, and I think, what the heck am I doing here? They’ve made amazing things. I just went where I was sent." And I said, "Yes. But you were the first man on the moon. I think that counts for something." And I felt a bit better. Because if Neil Armstrong felt like an imposter, maybe everyone did.
~ Neil Gaiman ~
2021
The people we lost in Aurora loved, and were loved. They were mothers and fathers; husbands and wives; sisters and brothers; sons and daughters; friends and neighbors. They had hopes for the future and dreams that were not yet fulfilled. And if there's anything to take away from this tragedy, it's a reminder that life is fragile. Our time here is limited and it is precious. And what matters in the end are not the small and trivial things which often consume our lives. It's how we choose to treat one another, and love one another. It's what we do on a daily basis to give our lives meaning and to give our lives purpose. That's what matters. That's why we're here.
~ Barack Obama ~
2022
I cannot seek paths so harsh or so savage that Love does not always come along discoursing with me and I with him.
~ Petrarch ~
2023
The stories gets passed on and the truth gets passed over. As the sayin goes. Which I reckon some would take as meanin that the truth cant compete. But I dont believe that. I think that when the lies are all told and forgot the truth will be there yet. It dont move about from place to place and it dont change from time to time. You cant corrupt it any more than you can salt salt. You cant corrupt it because that's what it is. It's the thing you're talkin about.
~ Cormac McCarthy ~
in
~ No Country for Old Men ~
2024
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Rarely do great beauty and great virtue dwell together. ~ Petrarch


A good death does honor to a whole life. ~ Petrarch

  • 4 Zarbon 19:16, 21 May 2008 (UTC)
  • 1 ♌︎Kalki ⚓︎ 23:40, 16 July 2014 (UTC) 2 Kalki 22:22, 19 July 2008 (UTC) this is true, but there are more important things to note than something which can be misconstrued as a glorification of honored deaths rather than honorable lives.
  • 2 InvisibleSun 21:08, 19 July 2009 (UTC)
  • 3 //Gbern3 (talk) 13:05, 14 July 2013 (UTC)

It is better to will the good than to know the truth. ~ Petrarch

  • 3 Zarbon 19:16, 21 May 2008 (UTC)
  • 2 Kalki 22:22, 19 July 2008 (UTC) with a lean toward 3.
  • 3 InvisibleSun 21:08, 19 July 2009 (UTC)
  • 2 //Gbern3 (talk) 13:05, 14 July 2013 (UTC)

The powers, aspirations, and mission of man are such as to raise the study of his origin and nature, inevitably and by the very necessity of the case, from the mere physiological to the psychological stage of scientific operations. ~ Richard Owen


Manifold subsequent experience has led to a truer appreciation and a more moderate estimate of the importance of the dependence of one living being upon another. ~ Richard Owen


[L]ife itself sends its own stories across billions of years. It's a message that every one of us carries inside, inscribed in all the cells of our bodies, in a language that all life on Earth can read. ~ In commemoration of the 20 July 1822 birth of Gregor Mendel, from the eleventh episode of the science documentary television series Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey (2014).

  • 4 Pithy Francoln (talk) 22:04, 11 October 2016 (UTC)
  • 1 ♌︎Kalki ⚓︎ 09:00, 18 July 2017 (UTC) with a lean toward 2, but would probably prefer an actual quote by Mendel, rather than a quote about the subject of genetic heredity which he pioneered.

What an excellent horse do they lose, for want of address and boldness to manage him! … I could manage this horse better than others do.
~ Alexander the Great ~

There's no such thing as life without bloodshed. I think the notion that the species can be improved in some way, that everyone could live in harmony, is a really dangerous idea. Those who are afflicted with this notion are the first ones to give up their souls, their freedom. Your desire that it be that way will enslave you and make your life vacuous.
~ Cormac McCarthy ~

And as he lay there a far crack of lightning went bluely down the sky and bequeathed him in an embryonic bird's first fissured vision of the world and transpiring instant and outrageous from dark to dark a final view of the grotto and the shapeless white plasm struggling upon the rich and incunabular moss like a lank swamp hare.
~ Cormac McCarthy ~

She waited again at the front door with it open, poised between the maw of the dead and loveless house and the outer dark like a frail thief.
~ Cormac McCarthy ~

What discordant vespers do the tinker's goods chime through the long twilight and over the brindled forest road, him stooped and hounded through the windy recrements of the day like those old exiles who divorced of corporeality and enjoined ingress of heaven or hell wander forever the middle warrens spoorless increate and anathema.
~ Cormac McCarthy ~

In the spring or warmer weather when the snow thaws in the woods the tracks of winter reappear on slender pedestals and the snow reveals in palimpsest old buried wanderings, struggles, scenes of death. Tales of winter brought to light again like time turned back upon itself.
~ Cormac McCarthy ~

He could not swim, but how would you drown him? His wrath seemed to buoy him up. Some halt in the way of things seems to work here. See him. You could say that he is sustained by his fellow men, like you. Has peopled the shore with them calling to him. A race that gives suck to the maimed and the crazed, that wants their blood in history and will have it. But they want this man's life. He has heard them in the night seeking him with lanterns and cries of execration. How then is he borne up? Or rather, why will not these waters take him?
~ Cormac McCarthy ~

He dreamt that night that he rode through the woods on a low ridge. Below him he could see deer in a meadow where the sun fell on the grass. The grass was still wet and the deer stood in it to their elbows. He could feel the spine of the mule rolling under him and he gripped the mule's barrel with his legs. Each leaf that brushed his face deepened his sadness and dread. Each leaf he passed, he'd never pass again. They rode over his face like veils, already some yellow, their veins slender like bones where the sun shone through them. He had resolved himself to ride on for he could not turn back and the world that day was as lovely as any day ever was and he was riding to his death.
~ Cormac McCarthy ~

If you could breathe a breath so strong you could blow out the wolf. Like you blow out the copo. Like you blow out the fire from the candela. The wolf is made the way the world is made. You cannot touch the world. You cannot hold it in your hand for it is made of breath only.
~ Cormac McCarthy ~

The martyr who longs for the flames can be no right candidate for them.
~ Cormac McCarthy ~

Our waking life's desire to shape the world to our convenience invites all manner of paradox and difficulty.
~ Cormac McCarthy ~

You give up the world line by line. Stoically. And then one day you realize that your courage is farcical. It doesnt mean anything. You've become an accomplice in your own annihilation and there is nothing you can do about it. Everything you do closes a door somewhere ahead of you. And finally there is only one door left.
~ Cormac McCarthy ~

Anything can be an instrument, Chigurh said. Small things. Things you wouldnt even notice. They pass from hand to hand. People dont pay attention. And then one day there's an accounting. And after that nothing is the same.
~ Cormac McCarthy ~
in
~ No Country for Old Men ~

I guess in all honesty I would have to say that I never knew nor did I ever hear of anybody that money didnt change.
~ Cormac McCarthy ~
in
~ No Country for Old Men ~

Getting hurt changed me, he said. Changed my perspective. I've moved on, in a way. Some things have fallen into place that were not there before. I thought they were, but they werent. The best way I can put it is that I've sort of caught up with myself. That's not a bad thing. It was overdue.
~ Cormac McCarthy ~
in
~ No Country for Old Men ~

Somewhere in the world is the most invincible man. Just as somewhere is the most vulnerable.
~ Cormac McCarthy ~
in
~ No Country for Old Men ~

The prospect of outsized profits leads people to exaggerate their own capabilities. In their minds. They pretend to themselves that they are in control of events where perhaps they are not. And it is always one's stance upon uncertain ground that invites the attentions of one's enemies. Or discourages it.
~ Cormac McCarthy ~
in
~ No Country for Old Men ~

You never know what worse luck your bad luck has saved you from.
~ Cormac McCarthy ~
in
~ No Country for Old Men ~

It takes very little to govern good people. Very little. And bad people cant be governed at all. Or if they could I never heard of it.
~ Cormac McCarthy ~
in
~ No Country for Old Men ~

Every moment in your life is a turning and every one a choosing. Somewhere you made a choice. All followed to this. The accounting is scrupulous. The shape is drawn. No line can be erased. I had no belief in your ability to move a coin to your bidding. How could you? A person's path through the world seldom changes and even more seldom will it change abruptly. And the shape of your path was visible from the beginning.
~ Cormac McCarthy ~
in
~ No Country for Old Men ~

The road has its own reasons and no two travelers will have the same understanding of those reasons. If indeed they come to an understanding of them at all.
~ Cormac McCarthy ~

We think we are the victims of time. In reality, the way of the world isn't fixed anywhere. How could that be possible? We are our own journey. And therefore we are time as well. We are the same. Fugitive. Inscrutable. Ruthless.
~ Cormac McCarthy ~

Your brother is still young enough to believe that the past still exists, he said. That the injustices within it await his remedy.
~ Cormac McCarthy ~

You do not know what things you set in motion, he said. No man can know. No prophet foresee. The consequences of an act are often quite different from what one would guess. You must be sure that the intention in your heart is large enough to contain all wrong turnings, all disappointments. Do you see? Not everything has such value.
~ Cormac McCarthy ~

The world has no name, he said. The names of the cerros and the sierras and the deserts exist only on maps. We name them so that we do not lose our way. Yet it was because the way was lost to us already that we have made those names. The world cannot be lost. We are the ones. And it is because these names and these coordinates are our own naming that they cannot save us. That they cannot find for us the way again.
~ Cormac McCarthy ~

I've seen the meanness of humans till I dont know why God aint put out the sun and gone away.
~ Cormac McCarthy ~