C.N. Douglas, comp. Forty Thousand Quotations: Prose and Poetical. 1917.


Mortals are equal; their mask differs.


We are not all equal, nor can we be so.


Equality is no rule in Love’s grammar.

Beaumont and Fletcher.

Bliss is the same, in subject or in king.


Liberty, equality and fraternity.

The Motto of France.

An equal has no power over an equal.

Law Maxim.

All men are equal before the natural law.

Law Maxim.

The sun shines even on the wicked.


Liberty and equality—lovely and sacred words!


So let them ease their hearts with prate of equal rights, which man never knew.


All men are equal; it is not birth, but virtue alone, that makes the difference.


All things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them.


  • Children of wealth or want, to each is given
  • One spot of green, and all the blue heaven!
  • O. W. Holmes.

    Some must follow, and some command, though all are made of clay!


    Men are made by nature unequal. It is vain, therefore, to treat them as if they were equal.


  • Mean and mighty, rotting
  • Together, have one dust.
  • Shakespeare.

  • She in beauty, education, blood,
  • Holds hand with any princess of the world.
  • Shakespeare.

  • Equality of two domestic powers
  • Breeds scrupulous faction.
  • Shakespeare.

    Golden lads and girls all must, as chimney-sweepers, come to dust.


    In the gates of eternity, the black hand and the white hand hold each other with an equal clasp.

    Mrs. Stowe.

    Man cannot degrade woman without himself falling into degradation; he cannot elevate her without at the same time elevating himself.

    Alexander Walker.

    It is untrue that equality is a law of nature. Nature has no equality; its sovereign law is subordination and dependence.


    The tallest and the smallest among us are so alike diminutive and pitifully base, it is a meanness to calculate the difference.


    Thersites’s body is as good as Ajax’s neither are alive.


    When we leave this world, and are laid in the earth, the prince walks as narrow a path as the day-laborer.


    Spoons and skimmers you can be undistinguishably together; but vases and statues require each a pedestal for itself.


    As if the ray which travels from the sun would reach me sooner than the man who blacks my boots.


    The circle of life is cut up into segments. All lines are equal if they are drawn from the centre and touch the circumference.


    Sir, your levellers wish to level down as far as themselves; but they cannot bear levelling up to themselves.

    Samuel Johnson.

    The foolish and vulgar are always accustomed to value equally the good and the bad.


    Kings and their subjects, masters and slaves, find a common level in two places—at the foot of the cross, and in the grave.


    Who can in reason then or right assume monarchy over such as live by right his equals, if in power or splendor less, in freedom equal?


    Equality is the share of every one at their advent upon earth, and equality is also theirs when placed beneath it.

    Ninon de Lenclos.

    Consider man, weigh well thy frame; the king, the beggar, are the same; dust formed us all.


    The woman’s cause is man’s. They rise or sink together; dwarfed or god-like, bond or free; if she be small, slight-natured, miserable, how shall men grow?


    There are some races more cultured and advanced and ennobled by education than others; but there are no races nobler than others. All are equally destined for freedom.

    Alexander von Humboldt.

    We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal; that they are endowed by their Creator with inalienable rights; that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

    Thomas Jefferson.

    Equality is the life of conversation; and he is as much out who assumes to himself any part above another, as he who considers himself below the rest of the society.


  • My equal he will be again
  • Down in that cold oblivious gloom,
  • Where all the prostrate ranks of men
  • Crowd without fellowship, the tomb.
  • Montgomery.

  • Equal nature fashion’d us
  • All in one mould.***
  • All’s but the outward gloss
  • And politic form that does distinguish us.
  • Massinger.

    All men are by nature equal, made all of the same earth by one Workman; and however we deceive ourselves, as dear unto God is the poor peasant as the mighty prince.


    Whatever difference there may appear to be in men’s fortunes, there is still a certain compensation of good and ill in all, that makes them equal.


    Come forward, some great marshal, and organize equality in society, and your rod shall swallow up all the juggling old court gold-sticks.


    For my part, it is not the mystery of the incarnation which I discover in religion, but the mystery of social order, which associates with heaven that idea of equality which prevents the rich from destroying the poor.

    Napoleon I.

    So far is it from being true that men are naturally equal, that no two people can be half an hour together but one shall acquire an evident superiority over the other.


    A leveller has long ago been set down as a ridiculous and chimerical being, who, if he could finish his work to-day, would have to begin it again to-morrow.


    Your worm is your only emperor for diet: we fat all creatures else to fat us, and we fat ourselves for maggots. Your fat king and your lean beggar is but variable service, two dishes, but to one table: that’s the end.


    The mind of the thinker and the student is driven to admit, though it be awe-struck by apparent injustice, that this inequality is the work of God. Make all men equal to-day, and God has so created them that they shall be all unequal to-morrow.

    Anthony Trollope.

    It is a commonly observed fact that the enslavement of women is invariably associated with a low type of social life, and that, conversely, her elevation towards an equality with man uniformly accompanies progress.

    Herbert Spencer.

    All the religions known in the world are founded, so far as they relate to man or the unity of man, as being all of one degree. Whether in heaven or in hell, or in whatever state man may be supposed to exist hereafter, the good and the bad are the only distinctions.

    Thomas Paine.

  • The trickling rain doth fall
  • Upon us one and all;
  • The south-wind kisses
  • The saucy milk-maid’s cheek,
  • The nun’s, demure and meek,
  • Nor any misses.
  • E. C. Stedman.

    The equal right of all men to the use of land is as clear as their equal right to breathe the air—it is a right proclaimed by the fact of their existence. For we cannot suppose that some men have a right to be in this world, and others no right.

    Henry George.

    Equality is one of the most consummate scoundrels that ever crept from the brain of a political juggler—a fellow who thrusts his hand into the pocket of honest industry or enterprising talent, and squanders their hard-earned profits on profligate idleness or indolent stupidity.


    We are foolish, and without excuse foolish, in speaking of the superiority of one sex to the other, as if they could be compared in similar things! Each has what the other has not; each completes the other; they are in nothing alike; and the happiness and perfection of both depend on each asking and receiving from the other what the other only can give.


    Equality is deemed by many a mere speculative chimera, which can never be reduced to practice. But if the abuse is inevitable, does it follow that we ought not to try at least to mitigate it? It is precisely because the force of things tends always to destroy equality that the force of the legislature must always tend to maintain it.


    The king is but a man, as I am; the violet smells to him as it doth to me; the element shows to him as it doth to me; all his senses have but human conditions; his ceremonies laid by, in his nakedness he appears but a man; and though his affections are higher mounted than ours, yet, when they stoop, they stoop with the like wing.


    As soon the dust of a wretch whom thou wouldest not, as of a prince whom thou couldest not look upon, will trouble thine eyes if the wind blow it thither; and when a whirlwind hath blown the dust of the churchyard into the church, and the man sweeps out the dust of the church into the churchyard, who will undertake to sift those dusts again, and to pronounce, “This is the patrician, this is the noble flower, and this the yeoman, this the plebeian bran?”

    Rev. Dr. Donne.