Home  »  Familiar Quotations  »  Page 411

John Bartlett (1820–1905). Familiar Quotations, 10th ed. 1919.

Page 411

Edmund Burke. (1729–1797) (continued)
    He that wrestles with us strengthens our nerves and sharpens our skill. Our antagonist is our helper.
          Reflections on the Revolution in France. Vol. iii. p. 453.
    To execute laws is a royal office; to execute orders is not to be a king. However, a political executive magistracy, though merely such, is a great trust. 1
          Reflections on the Revolution in France. Vol. iii. p. 497.
    You can never plan the future by the past. 2
          Letter to a Member of the National Assembly. Vol. iv. p. 55.
    The cold neutrality of an impartial judge.
          Preface to Brissot’s Address. Vol. v. p. 67.
    And having looked to Government for bread, on the very first scarcity they will turn and bite the hand that fed them. 3
          Thoughts and Details on Scarcity. Vol. v. p. 156.
    All men that are ruined, are ruined on the side of their natural propensities.
          Letter i. On a Regicide Peace. Vol. v. p. 286.
    All those instances to be found in history, whether real or fabulous, of a doubtful public spirit, at which morality is perplexed, reason is staggered, and from which affrighted Nature recoils, are their chosen and almost sole examples for the instruction of their youth.
          Letter i. On a Regicide Peace. Vol. v. p. 286.
    Example is the school of mankind, and they will learn at no other.
          Letter i. On a Regicide Peace. Vol. v. p. 331.
    Early and provident fear is the mother of safety.
          Speech on the Petition of the Unitarians. Vol. vii. p. 50.
    There never was a bad man that had ability for good service.
          Speech in opening the Impeachment of Warren Hastings, Third Day. Vol. x. p. 54.
    The people never give up their liberties but under some delusion.
          Speech at County Meeting of Bucks, 1784.
Note 1.
See Appendix, Quotation 45. [back]
Note 2.
I know no way of judging of the future but by the past.—Patrick Henry: Speech in the Virginia Convention, March, 1775. [back]
Note 3.
We set ourselves to bite the hand that feeds us.—Cause of the Present Discontents, vol. i. p. 439. [back]