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James Wood, comp. Dictionary of Quotations. 1899.


Catholicism commonly softens, while Protestantism strengthens, the character; but the softness of the one often degenerates into weakness, and the strength of the other into hardness.

Nothing can be more fatal in politics than a preponderance of the philosophical, or in philosophy than a preponderance of the political, spirit.

Physical science has taught us to associate Deity with the normal rather than with the abnormal.

That vice has often proved an emancipator of the mind is one of the most humiliating, but also one of the most unquestionable, facts in history.

The essence of an aristocracy is to transfer the source of honour from the living to the dead, to make the merits of living men depend not so much upon their own character and actions as upon the actions and position of their ancestors.

The mind of man is no inert receptacle of knowledge, but absorbs and incorporates into its own constitution the ideas which it receives.

The object of the politician is expediency, and his duty is to adapt his measures to the often crude, undeveloped, and vacillating conception of the nation. The object, on the other hand, of the philosopher is truth, and his duty is to push every principle which he believes to be true to its legitimate consequences, regardless of the results that may follow.

The sense of human dignity was the chief moral agent of antiquity, and the sense of sin of mediævalism.