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


The pen became a clarion.


Pens carry further than rifled cannon.

Bayard Taylor.

The pen is the lever that moves the world.


The pen is the tongue of the mind.


The chisel is the pen of the sculptor.

Pius IX.

  • Take away the sword;
  • States can be saved without it; bring the pen.
  • Bulwer-Lytton.

  • I’ll make thee famous by my pen,
  • And glorious by my sword.
  • Montrose.

    I had rather stand the shock of a basilisk than the fury of a merciless pen.

    Sir T. Browne.

  • In days of yore, the poet’s pen
  • From wing of bird was plunder’d,
  • Perhaps of goose, but now and then,
  • From Jove’s own eagle sunder’d.
  • But now, metallic pens disclose
  • Alone the poet’s numbers;
  • In iron inspiration glows,
  • Or with the poet slumbers.
  • John Quincy Adams.

  • Oh! nature’s noblest gift—my grey goose quill:
  • Slave of my thoughts, obedient to my will,
  • Torn from thy parent bird to form a pen,
  • That mighty instrument of little men!
  • Byron.

  • Beneath the rule of men entirely great,
  • The pen is mightier than the sword. Behold
  • The arch enchanter’s wand! itself a nothing!
  • But taking sorcery from the master hand,
  • To paralyze the Cæsars, and to strike
  • The loud earth breathless!
  • Bulwer-Lytton.

    No man was more foolish when he had not a pen in his hand (than Goldsmith), or more wise when he had.

    Dr. Johnson.

    The strokes of the pen need deliberation as much as those of the sword need swiftness.

    Julia Ward Howe.

    The pen has shaken nations.


  • The poet’s pen is the true divining rod
  • Which trembles towards the inner founts of feeling;
  • Bringing to light and use, else hid from all,
  • The many sweet clear sources which we have
  • Of good and beauty in our own deep bosoms;
  • And marks the variations of all mind
  • As does the needle.
  • Bailey.

    The pen is a formidable weapon; but a man can kill himself with it a great deal more easily than he can other people.

    G. D. Prentice.