Hoyt & Roberts, comps. Hoyt’s New Cyclopedia of Practical Quotations. 1922.


We must not contradict, but instruct him that contradicts us; for a madman is not cured by another running mad also.

What’s a’ your jargon o’ your schools,
Your Latin names for horns and stools;
If honest nature made you fools.
Burns—Epistle to J. L.——k.

O ye! who teach the ingenious youth of nations,
Holland, France, England, Germany or Spain,
I pray ye flog them upon all occasions,
It mends their morals, never mind the pain.
Byron—Don Juan. Canto II. St. 1.

’Tis pleasing to be school’d in a strange tongue
By female lips and eyes—that is, I mean,
When both the teacher and the taught are young,
As was the case, at least, where I have been;
They smile so when one’s right; and when one’s wrong
They smile still more.
Byron—Don Juan. Canto II. St. 164.

He is wise who can instruct us and assist us in the business of daily virtuous living.
Carlyle—Essays. Schiller.

You cannot teach old dogs new tricks.
Quoted by Jos. Chamberlain, at Greenock, Oct., 1903.

Seek to delight, that they may mend mankind,
And, while they captivate, inform the mind.
Cowper—Hope. L. 770.

The sounding jargon of the schools.
Cowper—Truth. L. 367.

The twig is so easily bended
I have banished the rule and the rod:
I have taught them the goodness of knowledge,
They have taught me the goodness of God;
My heart is the dungeon of darkness,
Where I shut them for breaking a rule;
My frown is sufficient correction;
My love is the law of the school.
Charles M. Dickinson—The Children.

There is no teaching until the pupil is brought into the same state or principle in which you are; a transfusion takes place; he is you, and you are he; there is a teaching; and by no unfriendly chance or bad company can he ever quite lose the benefit.
Emerson—Essays. Of Spiritual Laws.

Instruction does not prevent waste of time or mistakes; and mistakes themselves are often the best teachers of all.
Froude—Short Studies on Great Subjects. Education.

A boy is better unborn than untaught.

Full well they laughed, with counterfeited glee,
At all his jokes, for many a joke had he:
Full well the busy whisper, circling round,
Convey’d the dismal tidings when he frown’d.
Goldsmith—Deserted Village. L. 201.

Grave is the Master’s look; his forehead wears
Thick rows of wrinkles, prints of worrying cares:
Uneasy lies the heads of all that rule,
His worst of all whose kingdom is a school.
Supreme he sits; before the awful frown
That binds his brows the boldest eye goes down;
Not more submissive Israel heard and saw
At Sinai’s foot the Giver of the Law.
Holmes—The School Boy.

Doctrina sed vim promovet insitam.
Instruction enlarges the natural powers of the mind.
Horace—Carmina. IV. 4. 33.

Fingit equum tenera docilem cervice magister
Ire viam qua monstret eques.
The trainer trains the docile horse to turn, with his sensitive neck, whichever way the rider indicates.
Horace—Epistles. Bk. I. 2. 64. (“Quam” for “qua in some texts.)

If you be a lover of instruction, you will be well instructed.
Isocrates—Ad Dæmonicum. Inscribed in golden letters over his school, according to Roger Ascham, in his Schoolmaster.

Speak to the earth, and it shall teach thee.
Job. XII. 8.

Whilst that the childe is young, let him be instructed in vertue and lytterature.
Lyly—Euphues. The Anatomy of Wit. Of the Education of Youth.

Adde, quod ingenuas didicisse fideliter artes
Emollit mores, nec sinit esse fervos.
To be instructed in the arts, softens the manners and makes men gentle.
Ovid—Epistolæ Ex Ponto. II. 9. 47.

Fas est ab hoste doceri.
It is lawful to be taught by an enemy.
Ovid—Metamorphoses. IV. 428.

What’s all the noisy jargon of the schools?
Pomfret—Reason. L. 57. (1700).

Men must be taught as if you taught them not,
And things unknown propos’d as things forgot.
Pope—Essay on Criticism. Pt. III. L. 15.

To dazzle let the vain design,
To raise the thought and touch the heart, be thine!
Pope—Moral Essays. Ep. II. L. 249.

All jargon of the schools.
Prior—An Ode on Exodus III. 14. “I am that I am.”

When I am forgotten, as I shall be,
And sleep in dull cold marble,
Say, I taught thee.
Henry VIII. Act III. Sc. 2. L. 433.

We’ll set thee to school to an ant, to teach thee there’s no labouring i’ the winter.
King Lear. Act II. Sc. 4. L. 67.

Schoolmasters will I keep within my house,
Fit to instruct her youth.***
***To cunning men
I will be very kind, and liberal
To mine own children in good bringing up.
Taming of the Shrew. Act I. Sc. 1. L. 94.

I do present you with a man of mine,
Cunning in music and the mathematics,
To instruct her fully in those sciences.
Taming of the Shrew. Act II. Sc. 1. L. 55.

I am not a teacher: only a fellow-traveller of whom you asked the way. I pointed ahead—ahead of myself as well as of you.
Shaw—Getting Married.

A little bench of heedless bishops here,
And there a chancellor in embryo.
Shenstone—The School Mistress. St. 28.

Whoe’er excels in what we prize,
Appears a hero in our eyes;
Each girl, when pleased with what is taught,
Will have the teacher in her thought.
A blockhead with melodious voice,
In boarding-schools may have his choice.
Swift—Cadenus and Vanessa. L. 733.

Better fed than taught.
John Taylor—Jack a Lent.

Domi habuit unde disceret.
He need not go away from home for instruction.
Terence—Adelphi. III. 3. 60.

Delightful task! to rear the tender Thought,
To teach the young Idea how to shoot,
To pour the fresh Instruction o’er the Mind,
To breathe the enlivening Spirit, and to fix
The generous Purpose in the glowing breast.
Thomson—The Seasons. Spring. L. 1,150.