45+ Henry B. Adams Quotes


Henry B. Adams quotes
Biography Author’s Book
Name: Henry B. AdamsFind on Amazon India: Link
Find on Amazon: Link
Profession: Historian
Born: 16-Feb-1838 
Death: 27-Mar-1918

The difference is slight, to the influence of an author, whether he is read by five hundred readers, or by five hundred thousand; if he can select the five hundred, he reaches the five hundred thousand.

Young men have a passion for regarding their elders as senile.

Only on the edge of the grave can man conclude anything.

We combat obstacles in order to get repose, and when got, the repose is insupportable.

Politics are a very unsatisfactory game.

Politics, as a practice, whatever its professions, has always been the systematic organization of hatreds.

Power is poison. Its effect on Presidents had always been tragic.

Power when wielded by abnormal energy is the most serious of facts.

Practical politics consists in ignoring facts.

Simplicity is the most deceitful mistress that ever betrayed man.

The American President resembles the commander of a ship at sea. He must have a helm to grasp, a course to steer, a port to seek.

The effect of power and publicity on all men is the aggravation of self, a sort of tumor that ends by killing the victim’s sympathies.

The press is the hired agent of a monied system, and set up for no other purpose than to tell lies where their interests are involved. One can trust nobody and nothing.

The progress of evolution from President Washington to President Grant was alone evidence to upset Darwin.

The proper study of mankind is woman.

The woman who is known only through a man is known wrong.

There is no such thing as an underestimate of average intelligence.

They know enough who know how to learn.

One friend in a lifetime is much, two are many, three are hardly possible. Friendship needs a certain parallelism of life, a community of thought, a rivalry of aim.

Nothing in education is so astonishing as the amount of ignorance it accumulates in the form of inert facts.

Susceptibility to the highest forces is the highest genius.

Chaos often breeds life, when order breeds habit.

No man, however strong, can serve ten years as schoolmaster, priest, or Senator, and remain fit for anything else.

A friend in power is a friend lost.

A teacher affects eternity he can never tell, where his influence stops.

Absolute liberty is absence of restraint; responsibility is restraint; therefore, the ideally free individual is responsible to himself.

Accident counts for as much in companionship as in marriage.

All experience is an arch, to build upon.

Philosophy: Unintelligible answers to insoluble problems.

At best, the renewal of broken relations is a nervous matter.

Chaos was the law of nature; Order was the dream of man.

Knowledge of human nature is the beginning and end of political education.

No man means all he says, and yet very few say all they mean, for words are slippery and thought is viscous.

American society is a sort of flat, fresh-water pond which absorbs silently, without reaction, anything which is thrown into it.

Morality is a private and costly luxury.

Everyone carries his own inch rule of taste, and amuses himself by applying it, triumphantly, wherever he travels.

It is impossible to underrate human intelligence – beginning with one’s own.

It is always good men who do the most harm in the world.

Intimates are predestined.

He too serves a certain purpose who only stands and cheers.

Friends are born, not made.

No man likes to have his intelligence or good faith questioned, especially if he has doubts about it himself.

Every man who has at last succeeded, after long effort, in calling up the divinity which lies hidden in a woman’s heart, is startled to find that he must obey the God he summoned.

Thank God, I never was cheerful. I come from the happy stock of the Mathers, who, as you remember, passed sweet mornings reflecting on the goodness of God and the damnation of infants.

Someday science may have the existence of mankind in power, and the human race can commit suicide by blowing up the world.

Politics… have always been the systematic organization of hatreds.

Politics, as a practise, whatever its professions, has always been the systematic organization of hatreds.

One friend in a lifetime is much; two are many; three hardly possible.

A teacher affects eternity; he can never tell, where his influence stops.

A man must now swallow more belief than he can digest.

I am an anarchist in politics and an impressionist in art as well as a symbolist in literature. Not that I understand what these terms mean, but I take them to be all merely synonyms of pessimist.

I tell you the solemn truth, that the doctrine of the Trinity is not so difficult to accept for a working proposition as any one of the axioms of physics.


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