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


Systems exercise the mind, but faith enlightens and guides it.


The mind is the eyesight of the soul.


The mind is the atmosphere of the soul.


Mind moves matter.


It is the mind that makes the body rich.


The mind is the proper judge of the man.


Mind unemployed is mind unenjoyed.


The forehead is the gate of the mind.


The garden of the mind.


Few minds wear out; more rust out.


We disjoint the mind like the body.


My mind to me an empire is.


A narrow mind begets obstinacy.


Stern men with empires in their brains.


The march of the human mind is slow.


The pen is the tongue of the mind.


Each mind has its own method.


The mind alone can not be exiled.


The sick mind can not bear anything harsh.


The diseases of the mind are more and more destructive than those of the body.


The common mind is the true Parian marble, fit to be wrought into likeness to a God.

George Bancroft.

’Tis but a base ignoble mind that mounts no higher than a bird can soar.


The mind doth shape itself to its own wants, and can bear all things.

Joanna Baillie.

Minds that have nothing to confer find little to perceive.


A mind once cultivated will not lie fallow for half an hour.


How many minds—almost all the great ones—were formed in secrecy and solitude!

Matthew Arnold.

  • The mind is its own place, and in itself
  • Can make a heaven of hell, a hell of heaven.
  • Milton.

    Minds of moderate calibre ordinarily condemn everything which is beyond their range.

    La Rochefoucauld.

  • It is the mind that maketh good or ill,
  • That maketh wretch or happy, rich or poor.
  • Spenser.

    The mind grows narrow in proportion as the soul grows corrupt.


    Guard well thy thoughts: our thoughts are heard in heaven.


    We plainly perceive that the mind strengthens and decays with the body.


    The brain is the citadel of the senses: this guides the principle of thought.

    Pliny the Elder.

    What is this little, agile, precious fire, this fluttering motion which we call the mind?


    Cultivation is as necessary to the mind as food is to the body.


    We measure minds by their stature; it would be better to esteem them by their beauty.


    Babylon in all its desolation is a sight not so awful as that of the human mind in ruins.

    Scrope Davies.

    A well-balanced mind is the best remedy against affliction.


  • The first sure symptom of a mind in health,
  • Is rest of heart, and pleasure felt at home.
  • Young.

    Great minds lower, instead of elevate, those who do not know how to support them.

    La Rochefoucauld.

    The mind wears the colors of the soul, as a valet those of his master.

    Madame Swetchine.

    Minds which never rest are subject to many digressions.


    Do not overwork the mind any more than the body; do everything with moderation.


    As sight is in the eye, so is the mind in the soul!


    The more accurately we search into the human mind, the stronger traces we everywhere find of His wisdom who made it.


    The mind of man is ignorant of fate and future destiny, and can not keep within due bounds when elated by prosperity.


    The mind wishes for what it has missed, and occupies itself with retrospective contemplation.

    Petronius Arbiter.

    The mind, like all other things, will become impaired, the sciences are its food,—they nourish, but at the same time they consume it.

    La Bruyère.

    The mind does not know what diet it can feed on until it has been brought to the starvation point.


    Different minds incline to different objects; one pursues the vast alone, the wonderful, the wild; another sighs for harmony and grace, and gentlest beauty.


    It is ordained in the eternal constitution of things, that men of intemperate minds cannot be free: their passions forge their letters.


    As the soil, however rich it may be, cannot be productive without culture, so the mind without cultivation can never produce good fruit.


    The very might of the human intellect reveals its limits.

    Madame Swetchine.

    As the mind must govern the hands, so in every society the man of intelligence must direct the man of labor.

    Dr. Johnson.

    Mind is the great leveller of all things; human thought is the process by which human ends are alternately answered.

    Daniel Webster.

    The mind is the master over every kind of fortune: itself acts in both ways, being the cause of its own happiness and misery.


    The true, strong, and sound mind is the mind that can embrace equally great things and small.

    Sam’l Johnson.

    Our minds are like our stomachs; they are whetted by the change of food, variety supplies both with fresh appetite.


    A weak mind is like a microscope, which magnifies trifling things, but cannot receive great ones.


    Every mind was made for growth, for knowledge; and its nature is sinned against when it is doomed to ignorance.


  • Were I so tall to reach the pole,
  • Or grasp the ocean with my span,
  • I must be measur’d by my soul:
  • The mind’s the standard of the man.
  • Watts.

    It is the mind that makes us rich and happy, in what condition soever we are, and money signifies no more to it than it does to the gods.


    The mind has its arrangement; it proceeds from principles to demonstrations. The heart has a different mode of proceeding.


    The great business of a man is to improve his mind and govern his manners; all other projects and pursuits, whether in our power to compass or not, are only amusements.


    Nothing can be so quick and sudden as the operations of the mind, especially when hope, or fear, or jealousy, to which the other two are but journeymen, set it to work.


    A well-cultivated mind is, so to speak, made up of all the minds of preceding ages; it is only one single mind which has been educated during all this time.


    The mind is but a barren soil; a soil which is soon exhausted, and will produce no crop, or only one, unless it be continually fertilized and enriched with foreign matter.

    Sir J. Reynolds.

    I had rather believe all the fables in the Legends and the Talmud and the Alcoran, than that this universal frame is without a mind.


    There are some cloudy days for the mind as well as for the world; and the man who has the most genius is twenty times a day in the clouds.


    Every great mind seeks to labor for eternity. All men are captivated by immediate advantages; great minds alone are excited by the prospect of distant good.


    Our minds are like certain vehicles,—when they have little to carry they make much noise about it, but when heavily loaded they run quietly.

    Elihu Burritt.

    The intellectual faculty is a goodly field, capable of great improvement; and it is the worst husbandry in the world to sow it with trifles and impertinences.

    Sir M. Hale.

    The shadows of the mind are like those of the body. In the morning of life they all lie behind us; at noon we trample them under foot; and in the evening they stretch long, broad, and deepening, before us.


    The mind is like a sheet of white paper in this, that the impressions it receives the oftenest, and retains the longest, are black ones.

    J. C. and A. W. Hare.

  • How fleet is a glance of the mind!
  • Compared with the speed of its flight,
  • The tempest itself lags behind,
  • And the swift-winged arrows of light.
  • Cowper.

    The mind has a certain vegetative power, which cannot be wholly idle. If it is not laid out and cultivated into a beautiful garden, it will of itself shoot up in weeds or flowers of a wild growth.


    There is nothing so elastic as the human mind. Like imprisoned steam, the more it is pressed the more it rises to resist the pressure. The more we are obliged to do, the more we are able to accomplish.

    T. Edwards.

    If the minds of men were laid open, we should see but little difference between them and that of the fool; there are infinite reveries and numberless extravagancies pass through both.


    Sublime is the dominion of the mind over the body, that for a time, can make flesh and nerve impregnable, and string the sinews like steel, so that the weak become so mighty.

    Mrs. Stowe.

    No barriers, no masses of matter, however enormous, can withstand the powers of the mind; the remotest corners yield to them; all things succumb, the very heaven itself is laid open.


  • Canst thou not minster to a mind diseased;
  • Pluck from the memory a rooted sorrow;
  • Raze out the written troubles of the brain;
  • And, with some sweet oblivious antidote,
  • Cleanse the foul bosom of that perilous stuff,
  • Which weighs upon the heart?
  • Shakespeare.

    We ought, in humanity, no more to despise a man for the misfortunes of the mind than for those of the body, when they are such as he cannot help; were this thoroughly considered we should mo more laugh at a man for having his brains cracked than for having his head broke.


    He that has no resources of mind, is more to be pitied than he who is in want of necessaries for the body; and to be obliged to beg our daily happiness from others, bespeaks a more lamentable poverty than that of him who begs his daily bread.


  • My mind to me a kingdom is;
  • Such perfect joy therein I find,
  • That it excels all other bliss
  • That God or Nature hath assign’d,
  • Though much I want that most would have,
  • Yet still my mind forbids to crave.
  • Wm. Byrd.

    The failure of his mind in old age is often less the result of natural decay than of disuse. Ambition has ceased to operate; contentment brings indolence; indolence, decay of mental power, ennui, and sometimes death. Men have been known to die, literally speaking, of disease induced by intellectual vacancy.

    Sir Benjamin Brodie.

    The sovereign good of man is a mind that subjects all things to itself and is itself subject to nothing; such a man’s pleasures are modest and reserved, and it may be a question whether he goes to heaven, or heaven comes to him; for a good man is influenced by God Himself, and has a kind of divinity within him.


  • The immortal mind, superior to his fate,
  • Amid the outrage of external things,
  • Firm as the solid base of this great world,
  • Rests on his own foundation. Blow, ye winds!
  • Ye waves! ye thunders! roll your tempests on!
  • Shake, ye old pillars of the marble sky!
  • Till at its orbs and all its worlds of fire
  • Be loosen’d from their seats; yet still serene,
  • The unconquer’d mind looks down upon the wreck;
  • And ever stronger as the storms advance,
  • Firm through the closing ruin holds his way,
  • When nature calls him to the destin’d goal.
  • Akenside.

    A lofty mind always thinks nobly, it easily creates vivid, agreeable, and natural fancies, places them in their best light, clothes them with all appropriate adornments, studies others’ tastes, and clears away from its own thoughts all that is useless and disagreeable.

    La Rochefoucauld.

    Mankind are in the end always governed by superiority of intellectual faculties, and none are more sensible of this than the military profession. When, on my return from Italy, I assumed the dress of the Institute, and associated with men of science, I knew what I was doing: I was sure of not being misunderstood by the lowest drummer boy in the army.

    Napoleon I.