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


Sir, I would rather be right than be president.

Henry Clay.

There is a higher law than the constitution.

W. H. Seward.

Heaven itself has ordained the right.


Right is the eternal sun; the world cannot delay its coming.

Wendell Phillips.

Hooking both right and wrong to the appetite, to follow as it draws.


Woman already controls by not seeming to do so. Talk no more of her rights.


Reparation for our rights at home, and security against the like future violations.

William Pitt.

Let us have faith that right makes might, and in that faith let us dare to do our duty as we understand it.


The proof of a thing’s being right is that it has power over the heart; that it excites us, wins us, or helps us.


So I like life and I like righteousness; if I cannot keep the two together, I will let life go and choose righteousness.


Right is more beautiful than private affection, and is compatible with universal wisdom.


The glittering and sounding generalities of natural right which make up the declaration of independence.

Rufus Choate.

The Saviour comes in the strength of righteousness. Righteousness is at the bottom of all things. Righteousness is thorough; it is the very spirit of unsparing truth.

Phillips Brooks.

Of all “rights” which command attention at the present time among us, woman’s rights seem to take precedence.

Horace Mann.

No man’s conscience can tell him the rights of another man; they must be known by rational investigation or historical inquiry.


If men would only take the chances of doing right because it is right, instead of the immediate certainty of the advantage of doing wrong, how much happier would their lives be.

B. R. Haydon.

For the ultimate notion of right is that which tends to the universal good; and when one’s acting in a certain manner has this tendency he has a right thus to act.

Francis Hutcheson.

  • For right is right, since God is God,
  • And right the day must win;
  • To doubt would be disloyalty,
  • To falter would be sin.
  • F. W. Faber.

    Rightness expresses of actions what straightness does of lines; and there can no more be two kinds of right action than there can be two kinds of straight lines.

    Herbert Spencer.

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

    Thomas Jefferson.

    Woman’s rights should come by evolution, and not by revolution. I want a little woman’s right tried first, and then, if the experience is bad, we can go back on our track; if good, forward.

    Joseph Cook.

    Among the natural rights of the colonists are these: First, a right to life, secondly to liberty, thirdly to property; together with the right to defend them in the best manner they can.

    Samuel Adams.

    I believe in the admission of women to the full rights of citizenship and share in government, on the express grounds that few women keep house so badly or with such wastefulness as chancellors of the exchequer keep the state.

    Theodore Parker.

    If on one day we find the fast-spreading recognition of popular rights accompanied by a silent, growing perception of the rights of women, we also find it accompanied by a tendency towards a system of non-coercive education—that is, towards a practical illustration of the rights of children.

    Herbert Spencer.

    We hear in these days a great deal respecting rights—the rights of private judgment, the rights of labor, the rights of property, and the rights of man. Rights are grand things, divine things in this world of God’s; but the way in which we expound these rights, alas! seems to me to be the very incarnation of selfishness. I can see nothing very noble in a man who is forever going about calling for his own rights. Alas! alas! for the man who feels nothing more grand in this wondrous, divine world than his own rights.

    Frederick W. Robertson.