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A collection of quotes and sayings by Ben Jonson on virtue, literary, advice, hell, genius, adversity, strength, work, fear, art and poetry.

23 Great Quotes By Ben Jonson, The Author Of The Alchemist

Quick Facts

Famous As: Dramatist, Poet & Actor

Born On: June 11, 1572

Died On: August 6, 1637

Born In: Westminster, London, England

Died At Age: 65

Benjamin Jonson, popularly known as Ben Jonson, was a 17th century English literary critic, playwright, poet and actor. It is believed that he had a profound influence on the evolution of comedies and poetry in his country. He studied at Westminster School and could have studied at University of Cambridge, but he had to take up a bricklaying apprenticeship with his step-father. After serving the English Army at Flanders, he embarked on a literary career and started off by writing plays for the troupe company Admiral’s Men. Some of his most well-known works include ‘Bartholomew Fair’, ‘Volpone, or The Fox’, ‘Every Man in His Humour’ and ‘The Alchemist’ among other. Jonson became an extremely popular playwright in England and also earned the patronage of King James I of England, which further boosted his popularity. He was a contemporary of the great William Shakespeare and it is claimed that Jonson was second only to Shakespeare in terms of popularity. Needless to say, Jonson was truly one of the leading lights of his times. We bring to you a treasure trove of quotes that have been excerpted from his novels, books, poems and writings. Read on to explore a compilation of some of the best known quotations by Ben Jonson.
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Drink today, and drown all sorrow; You shall perhaps not do it tomorrow; Best, while you have it, use your breath; There is no drinking after death.

Ben Jonson

True happiness Consists not in the multitude of friends, But in the worth and choice.

Ben Jonson

Language most shows a man; speak that I may see thee

Ben Jonson

There was never a great genius without a touch of madness.

Ben Jonson

The road to Hell is paved with good intentions.

Ben Jonson

Memory, of all the powers of the mind, is the most delicate and frail.

Ben Jonson

He knows not his own strength that hath not met adversity.

Ben Jonson

In small proportions we just beauties see; And in short measures, life may perfect be.

Ben Jonson

Good men are the stars, the planets of the ages wherein they live, and illustrate the times

Ben Jonson

Indeed there's a woundy luck in names.

Ben Jonson

Mischiefs feed / Like beasts, till they be fat, and then they bleed.

Ben Jonson

He was not of an age, but for all time!

Ben Jonson

Words borrowed of antiquity do lend a kind of majesty to style, and are not without their delight sometimes.

Ben Jonson

Language most shews a man: Speak, that I may see thee.

Ben Jonson

He wil sooner lose his best friend, then his least jest.

Ben Jonson

Soul of the age! The applause! delight! The wonder of our stage!

Ben Jonson

Many might go to heaven with half the labor they go to hell.

Ben Jonson

Riches, the dumb god that giv'st all men tongues, / That canst do nought, and yet mak'st men do all things; / The price of souls; even hell, with thee to boot, / Is made worth heaven!

Ben Jonson

For this I find, where jealousy is fed, Horns in the mind are worse than on the head.

Ben Jonson

SIR P: Sir, calumnies are answer'd best with silence.

Ben Jonson

To speak and to speak well, are two things. A fool may talk, but a wise man speaks.

Ben Jonson

AMBITION MAKES MORE TRUSTY SLAVES THAN NEED

Ben Jonson

Riches are in fortune A greater good than wisdom is in nature.

Ben Jonson