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Famous quotes by Thomas Carlyle on strength, perseverance, love, business and other things.

98 Famous Quotes By Thomas Carlyle, The Author Of Sartor Resartus

Quick Facts

Famous As: Philosopher

Born On: December 4, 1795

Died On: February 5, 1881

Born In: Ecclefechan, Dumfries and Galloway, Scotland1

Died At Age: 85

Thomas Carlyle was a historian, philosopher, mathematician and writer from Scotland who went on to become one of the most influential thinkers and intellectuals of the 19th century. Carlyle was a noted histo-rian who wrote an authoritative account of the French Revolution in the form of his seminal work ‘The French Revolution: A History’. Some of his other famous works include the novel ‘Sartor Resartus’ and his book of collected lectures titled ‘On Heroes, Hero Worship and The Heroic in History’. Additionally, he wrote plenty of essays, books on philosophy and satirical texts that remain popular to this day. On the other hand, he was also an accomplished mathematician, who is credited with the concept of Carlyle Circle, which is employed in algebra and geometry. Thomas Carlye was also responsible for the setting up of the world famous London Library after he grew unhappy with the facilities at the British National Library. Carlyle was also well-known for his profound thoughts, wit and dry humour; which also gave rise to an enviably large collection of quotes and wisecracks. Here are some of the selected quotes from the man who is credited with terming Economics as ‘the dismal science’.

What we become depends on what we read after all of the professors have finished with us. The greatest university of all is a collection of books.

Thomas Carlyle

If Jesus Christ were to come today, people would not even crucify him. They would ask him to dinner, and hear what he had to say, and make fun of it.

Thomas Carlyle

I've got a great ambition to die of exhaustion rather than boredom.

Thomas Carlyle

All that mankind has done, thought, gained, or been; it is lying as in magic preservation in the pages of books.

Thomas Carlyle

A loving heart is the beginning of all knowledge.

Thomas Carlyle

Go as far as you can see; when you get there, you'll be able to see further.

Thomas Carlyle

My books are friends that never fail me." (Letter to his mother, Margaret A. Carlyle; 17 March 1817)

Thomas Carlyle

Conviction is worthless unless it is converted into conduct.

Thomas Carlyle

Tell a man he is brave, and you help him to become so.

Thomas Carlyle

A good book is the purest essence of a human soul.

Thomas Carlyle

Music is well said to be the speech of angels; in fact, nothing among the utterances allowed to man is felt to be so divine. It brings us near to the infinite.

Thomas Carlyle

The tragedy of life is not so much what men suffer, but rather what they miss.

Thomas Carlyle

No pressure, no diamonds

Thomas Carlyle

Make yourself an honest man, and then you may be sure that there is one less scoundrel in the world.

Thomas Carlyle

A man lives by believing something; not by debating and arguing about many things.

Thomas Carlyle

The lies (Western slander) which well-meaning zeal has heaped round this man (Muhammad) are disgraceful to ourselves only.

Thomas Carlyle

Silence is deep as Eternity, speech is shallow as Time.

Thomas Carlyle

The word of Mohammad is a voice direct from nature's own heart - all else is wind in comparison.

Thomas Carlyle

The best effect of any book is that it excites the reader to self activity.

Thomas Carlyle

Popular opinion is the greatest lie in the world.

Thomas Carlyle

The greatest of faults is to be conscious of none.

Thomas Carlyle

Of all your troubles, great and small, the greatest are the ones that don't happen at all.

Thomas Carlyle

Every man is my superior in that I may learn from him.

Thomas Carlyle

Show me the man you honor, and I will know what kind of man you are

Thomas Carlyle

Our main business is not to see what lies dimly at a distance, but to do what lies clearly at hand.

Thomas Carlyle

The block of granite which was an obstacle in the pathway of the weak becomes a stepping-stone in the pathway of the strong.

Thomas Carlyle

The merit of originality is not novelty; it is sincerity.

Thomas Carlyle

Wondrous is the strength of cheerfulness, and its power of endurance - the cheerful man will do more in the same time, will do it better, will preserve it longer, than the sad or sullen.

Thomas Carlyle

Have a purpose in life, and having it, throw into your work such strength of mind and muscle as God has given you.

Thomas Carlyle

It is the heart always that sees, before the head can see.

Thomas Carlyle

Silence is more eloquent than words.

Thomas Carlyle

In a controversy, the instant we feel anger we have already ceased striving for the truth, and have begun striving for ourselves.

Thomas Carlyle

One life - a little gleam of Time between two Eternities.

Thomas Carlyle

In books lies the soul fo the whole past time.

Thomas Carlyle

When the oak is felled the whole forest echoes with its fall, but a hundred acorns are sown in silence by an unnoticed breeze.

Thomas Carlyle

The true University of these days is a Collection of Books.

Thomas Carlyle

A person usually has two reasons for doing something, a good reason and the real reason.

Thomas Carlyle

Wonder is the basis of worship.

Thomas Carlyle

Every noble work is at first impossible.

Thomas Carlyle

May blessings be upon the head of Cadmus, the Phoenicians, or whoever it was that invented books.

Thomas Carlyle

Love is ever the beginning of knowledge as fire is of light.

Thomas Carlyle

No man lives without jostling and being jostled; in all ways he has to elbow himself through the world, giving and receiving offense.

Thomas Carlyle

Let me have my own way in exactly everything and a sunnier and pleasanter creature does not exist.

Thomas Carlyle

The greatest university of all is a collection of books.

Thomas Carlyle

A great man shows his greatness by the way he treats little men.

Thomas Carlyle

The history of the world is but a biography of great men.

Thomas Carlyle

If time is precious, no book that will not improve by repeated readings deserves to be read at all.

Thomas Carlyle

Fame is no sure test of merit.

Thomas Carlyle

There needs not a great soul to make a hero; there needs a god-created soul which will be true to its origin; that will be a great soul!

Thomas Carlyle

Adversity is the diamond dust Heaven polishes its jewels with

Thomas Carlyle

Bright, heroic, tender, true and noble was that lost treasure of my heart, who faithfully accompanied me in all the rocky ways and climbings; and I am forever poor without her.

Thomas Carlyle

History is the essence of innumerable biographies.

Thomas Carlyle

Literature is the thought of thinking souls.

Thomas Carlyle

If you look deep enough you will see music; the heart of nature being everywhere music.

Thomas Carlyle

Of our thinking it is but the upper surface that we shape into articulate thought; underneath the region of argument and conscious discourse lies the region of meditation.

Thomas Carlyle

The merit of originality is not novelty, it is sincerity. The believing man is the original man.

Thomas Carlyle

Man’s unhappiness, as I construe, comes of his greatness; it is because there is an Infinite in him, which with all his cunning he cannot quite bury under the Finite.

Thomas Carlyle

The crash of the whole solar and stellar systems could only kill you once.

Thomas Carlyle

In every object there is inexhaustible meaning.

Thomas Carlyle

Idleness is worst, Idleness alone is without hope: work earnestly at anything, you will by degrees learn to work at almost all things. There is endless hope in work, were it even work at making money.

Thomas Carlyle

The battle that never ends is the battle of belief against disbelief

Thomas Carlyle

Talk that does not end in any kind of action is better suppressed altogether.

Thomas Carlyle

If you are ever in doubt as to whether or not you should kiss a pretty girl, always give her the benefit of the doubt.

Thomas Carlyle

Under all speech that is good for anything there lies a silence that is better.

Thomas Carlyle

Thirty million, mostly fools. [When asked the population of England]

Thomas Carlyle

Man is a tool using animal. Without tools he is nothing, with tools he is all.

Thomas Carlyle

In books lies the soul of the whole Past Time: the articulate audible voice of the Past, when the body and material substance of it has altogether vanished like a dream.

Thomas Carlyle

(Quoted by Thomas Carlyle) The rude man requires only to see something going on. The man of more refinement must be made to feel. The man of complete refinement must be made to reflect.

Thomas Carlyle

In every object there is inexhaustible meaning; the eye sees in it what the eye brings means of seeing.

Thomas Carlyle

Literature, so far as it is Literature, is an ‘apocalypse of Nature,’ a revealing of the ‘open secret.

Thomas Carlyle

For a hundred that can bear adversity, there is hardly one that can bear prosperity.

Thomas Carlyle

Everywhere the human soul stands between a hemisphere of light and another of darkness; on the confines of two everlasting empires, necessity and free will.

Thomas Carlyle

To reform a world, to reform a nation, no wise man will undertake; and all but foolish men know, that the only solid, though a far slower reformation, is what each begins and perfects on himself.

Thomas Carlyle

Every poet... finds himself born in the midst of prose. He has to struggle from the littleness and obstruction of an actual world into the freedom and infinitude of an ideal.

Thomas Carlyle

Not our logical faculty, but our imaginative one is king over us. I might say, priest and prophet to lead us to heaven-ward, or magician and wizard to lead us hellward.

Thomas Carlyle

Nature alone is antique, and the oldest art a mushroom.

Thomas Carlyle

I do not believe in the collective wisdom of individual ignorance.

Thomas Carlyle

History of the world is the biography of the great man. And I said: The great man always act like a thunder. He storms the skies, while others are waiting to be stormed.

Thomas Carlyle

It is a mathematical fact that the casting of this pebble from my hand alters the centre of gravity of the universe.

Thomas Carlyle

The greatest university is a collection of books.

Thomas Carlyle

Music is well said to be the speech of angels.

Thomas Carlyle

Any the smallest alteration of my silent daily habits produces anarchy in me

Thomas Carlyle

OH, Heaven,it is mysterious,it is awful to consider that we not only carry a future Ghost within us. but are,in very deed, GHOSTS !

Thomas Carlyle

This world, after all our science and sciences, is still a miracle; wonderful, magical and more, to whosoever will think of it.

Thomas Carlyle

A stammering man is never a worthless one. Physiology can tell you why. It is an excess of delicacy, excess of sensibility to the presence of his fellow creature, that makes him stammer.

Thomas Carlyle

Surely of all ‘rights of man’, this right of the ignorant man to be guided by the wiser, to be, gently or forcibly, held in the true course by him, is the indisputablest.

Thomas Carlyle

When new turns of behavior cease to appear in the life of the individual, its behavior ceases to be intelligent.

Thomas Carlyle

Men do less than they ought, unless they do all they can.

Thomas Carlyle

. . . everywhere a good and a bad book

Thomas Carlyle

The whole universe is but a huge Symbol of god".

Thomas Carlyle

Of all the acts of man, repentance is the most divine. The greatest of all faults . . . is to be conscious of none." (Thomas Carlyle)

Thomas Carlyle

If you do not wish a man to do a thing, you had better get him to talk about it; for the more men talk, the more likely they are to do nothing else.

Thomas Carlyle

Wondrous indeed is the virtue of a true Book.

Thomas Carlyle

Imperfection clings to a person, and if they wait till they are brushed off entirely, they would spin for ever on their axis, advancing nowhere.

Thomas Carlyle

Silence is the element in which great things fashion themselves together.

Thomas Carlyle

Happy the people whose annals are blank in history books.

Thomas Carlyle

The barrenest of all mortals is the sentimentalist

Thomas Carlyle