Quotes Categories

John Ruskin Quotes

(1819-1900), British Critic, Social Theorist

To make your children capable of honesty is the beginning of education.

Category: Honesty

Man's only true happiness is to live in hope of something to be won by him. Reverence something to be worshipped by him, and love something to be cherished by him, forever.

Category: Humankind

The first test of a truly great man is his humility. By humility I don't mean doubt of his powers or hesitation in speaking his opinion, but merely an understanding of the relationship of what he can say and what he can do.

Category: Humility

An unimaginative person can neither be reverent or kind.

Category: Imagination

Imaginary evils soon become real one by indulging our reflections on them.

Category: Imagination

It is eminently a weariable faculty, eminently delicate, and incapable of bearing fatigue; so that if we give it too many objects at a time to employ itself upon, or very grand ones for a long time together, it fails under the effort, becomes jaded, exactly as the limbs do by bodily fatigue, and incapable of answering any farther appeal till it has had rest.

Category: Imagination

The imagination is never governed, it is always the ruling and divine power.

Category: Imagination

Your labor only may be sold, your soul must not.

Category: Individuality

The great cry that rises from all our manufacturing cities, louder than the furnace blast, is all in very deed for this -- that we manufacture everything there except men.

Category: Industry

An infinitude of tenderness is the chief gift and inheritance of all truly great men.

Category: Inheritance

Once thoroughly our own knowledge ceases to give us pleasure.

Category: Knowledge

It is not, truly speaking, the labor that is divided; but the men: divided into mere segments of men --broken into small fragments and crumbs of life, so that all the little piece of intelligence that is left in a man is not enough to make a pin, or a nail, but exhausts itself in making the point of a pin or the head of a nail.

Category: Labor

The secret of language is the secret of sympathy and its full charm is possible only to the gentle.

Category: Language

It takes a great deal of living to get a little deal of learning.

Category: Learning

How false is the conception, how frantic the pursuit, of that treacherous phantom which men call Liberty: most treacherous, indeed, of all phantoms; for the feeblest ray of reason might surely show us, that not only its attainment, but its being, was impossible. There is no such thing in the universe. There can never be. The stars have it not; the earth has it not; the sea has it not; and we men have the mockery and semblance of it only for our heaviest punishment.

Category: Liberty