Denis Diderot

Denis Diderot
Denis Diderot
  • Born: October 5, 1713
  • Died: July 31, 1784
  • Nationality: French
  • Profession: Editor

81

Quotes

34

Citations

180

Concepts

0

Videos

Quotes
Quote Topics Cited
A deist is someone who has not lived long enough to be an atheist. Religion & God
A nation can only regenerate itself in a bath of blood. Rebellion, Revolution, Insurgency & Resistance
Anyone who takes it upon himself ... to break a bad law, thereby authorizes everyone else to break the good ones. Law, Courts, Jails, Crime & Law Enforcement
Be a hypocrite if you like, but don't talk like one. Public Relations & Image
Every man has his dignity. I'm willing to forget mine, but at my own discretion and not when someone else tells me to. Human Nature
Here [Holland] everyone is his own master, civil liberty places all the inhabitants on an equal footing; the humble cannot be oppressed by the mighty or the poor by the rich. Equality & Equal Opportunity
Here everyone is his own master. Civil liberty places all inhabitants on an equal footing. The humble cannot be oppressed by the mighty, nor the poor by the rich. Freedom & Liberty
If exclusive privileges were not granted, and if the financial system would not tend to concentrate wealth, there would be few great fortunes and no quick wealth. When the means of growing rich is divided between a greater number of citizens, wealth will also be more evenly distributed; extreme poverty and extreme wealth would be also rare. Economics, The Economy & Fiscal Affairs
Ignorance is less remote from the truth than prejudice. Human Nature
In any country where talent and virtue produce no advancement, money will be the national god. Its inhabitants will either have to possess money or make others believe that they do. Wealth will be the highest virtue, poverty the greatest vice. Miscellaneous
In order to shake a hypothesis, it is sometimes not necessary to do anything more than push it as far as it will go. Politics, Politicians & Political Campaigning & Fund Raising
Justice is the first virtue of those who command, and stops the complaints of those who obey. Justice & Injustice
Let us strangle the last king with the guts of the last priest. Religion & God
Morals are in all countries the result of legislation and government. Morality, Ethics & Conflict of Interest
No man has received from nature the right to give orders to others. Leaders & Leadership
one kind of affluence: the outward sign of wealth for a small number, the mask of poverty for the majority, and a source of corruption for all. Politics, Politicians & Political Campaigning & Fund Raising
Patriotism is an ephemeral motive that scarcely ever outlasts the particular threat to society that aroused it. Society ;Nationalism & Treason ;Citizenship & Patriotism
Pithy sentences are like sharp nails which force truth upon our memory. Truth ;Oratory, Discussion & Debate
Power acquired by violence is only a usurpation, and lasts only as long as the force of him who commands prevails over that of those who obey. Power
Skepticism is the first step towards truth. Politics, Politicians & Political Campaigning & Fund Raising
The arbitrary rule of a just and enlightened prince is always bad. His virtues are the most dangerous and the surest form of seduction: they lull a people imperceptibly into the habit of loving, respecting, and serving his successor, whoever that successor may be, no matter how wicked or stupid. Leaders & Leadership
The good of the people must be the great purpose of government. By the laws of nature and of reason, the governors are invested with power to that end. And the greatest good of the people is liberty. Freedom & Liberty
The most dangerous madmen are those created by religion, and ... people whose aim is to disrupt society always know how to make good use of them on occasion. Terrorism
The philosopher has never killed any priests, whereas the priest has killed a great many philosophers. Discrimination & Prejudice ;Politics, Politicians & Political Campaigning & Fund Raising
The possibility of divorce renders both marriage partners stricter in their observance of their duties to each other. Divorces help to improve morals and increase the population. Families, Children & Parenting
There are three principal means of acquiring knowledge available to us: observation of nature, reflection, and experimentation. Observation collects facts; reflection combines them; experimentation verifies the result of that combination. Science, Mathematics, Engineering & Technology
There are times when the greatest change needed is a change of my viewpoint. Reform, Change, Transformation & Reformers
There is no kind of harassment that a man may not inflict on a woman with impunity in civilized societies. Minorities & Women
There is no moral precept that does not have something inconvenient about it. Morality, Ethics & Conflict of Interest
There is not a Musselman [Moslem] alive who would not imagine that he was performing an action pleasing to God and his Holy Prophet by exterminating every Christian on earth, while the Christians are scarcely more tolerant on their side. Religion & God
There is only one step from fanaticism to barbarism. Rebellion, Revolution, Insurgency & Resistance
Watch out for the man who talks of putting things in order. Putting things in order always means getting other people under your control. Law, Courts, Jails, Crime & Law Enforcement
We swallow greedily any lie that flatters us, but we sip only little by little at a truth we find bitter. Truth ;Human Nature
What is this world? A complex whole, subject to endless revolutions. All these revolutions show a continual tendency to destruction; a swift succession of beings who follow one another, press forward, and vanish; a fleeting symmetry; the order of a moment. Rebellion, Revolution, Insurgency & Resistance
All abstract sciences are nothing but the study of relations between signs.
Although a man may wear fine clothing, if he lives peacefully; and is good, self-possessed, has faith and is pure; and if he does not hurt any living being, he is a holy man. Religion & God
Bad company is as instructive as licentiousness. One makes up for the loss of one's innocence with the loss of one's prejudices.
Disturbances in society are never more fearful than when those who are stirring up the trouble can use the pretext of religion to mask their true designs. Society ;Religion & God
Evil always turns up in this world through some genius or other.
From fanaticism to barbarism is only one step.
Gaiety is a quality of ordinary men. Genius always presupposes some disorder in the machine.
Genius is present in every age, but the men carrying it within them remain benumbed unless extraordinary events occur to heat up and melt the mass so that it flows forth.
Good music is very close to primitive language. Music, Chants & Rapps
Gratitude is a burden, and every burden is made to be shaken off.
His hands would plait the priest's guts, if he had no rope, to strangle kings.
If there is one realm in which it is essential to be sublime, it is in wickedness. You spit on a petty thief, but you can't deny a kind of respect for the great criminal. Respect
If you want me to believe in God, you must make me touch him. Religion & God
It is not human nature we should accuse but the despicable conventions that pervert it. Nature
It is said that desire is a product of the will, but the converse is in fact true: will is a product of desire.
It is very important not to mistake hemlock for parsley, but to believe or not believe in God is not important at all. Religion & God
Man will never be free until the last king is strangled with the entrails of the last priest. Freedom & Liberty
Morals are in all countries the result of legislation and government; they are not African or Asian or European: they are good or bad. Government
No man has received from nature the right to command his fellow human beings. Nature
One declaims endlessly against the passions; one imputes all of man's suffering to them. One forgets that they are also the source of all his pleasures.
Only a very bad theologian would confuse the certainty that follows revelation with the truths that are revealed. They are entirely different things.
Only passions, great passions can elevate the soul to great things.
Our observation of nature must be diligent, our reflection profound, and our experiments exact. We rarely see these three means combined; and for this reason, creative geniuses are not common. Nature
People praise virtue, but they hate it, they run away from it. It freezes you to death, and in this world you've got to keep your feet warm. Death
Poetry must have something in it that is barbaric, vast and wild. Literature, Writers & Writing
Skepticism is the first step on the road to philosophy.
The best doctor is the one you run to and can't find. Health, Healthcare & Medicine
The best mannered people make the most absurd lovers.
The blood of Jesus Christ can cover a multitude of sins, it seems to me.
The decisions of law courts should never be printed: in the long run, they form a counter authority to the law.
The first step towards philosophy is incredulity.
The general interest of the masses might take the place of the insight of genius if it were allowed freedom of action. Freedom & Liberty
The God of the Christians is a father who makes much of his apples, and very little of his children. Religion & God
The infant runs toward it with its eyes closed, the adult is stationary, the old man approaches it with his back turned.
The pit of a theatre is the one place where the tears of virtuous and wicked men alike are mingled.
The possibility of divorce renders both marriage partners stricter in their observance of the duties they owe to each other. Divorces help to improve morals and to increase the population. Families, Children & Parenting
There are things I can't force. I must adjust. There are times when the greatest change needed is a change of my viewpoint.
There are three principal means of acquiring knowledge... observation of nature, reflection, and experimentation. Observation collects facts; reflection combines them; experimentation verifies the result of that combination. Education, Learning, Knowledge & Training ;Nature
There is no good father who would want to resemble our Heavenly Father.
There is only one passion, the passion for happiness. Happiness & Unhappiness
To attempt the destruction of our passions is the height of folly. What a noble aim is that of the zealot who tortures himself like a madman in order to desire nothing, love nothing, feel nothing, and who, if he succeeded, would end up a complete monster! Love, Romance, Marriage & Sex
Watch out for the fellow who talks about putting things in order! Putting things in order always means getting other people under your control.
We are all instruments endowed with feeling and memory. Our senses are so many strings that are struck by surrounding objects and that also frequently strike themselves.
We are far more liable to catch the vices than the virtues of our associates.
When science, art, literature, and philosophy are simply the manifestation of personality they are on a level where glorious and dazzling achievements are possible, which can make a man's name live for thousands of years. Science, Mathematics, Engineering & Technology ;Arts, Culture, Entertainment & Lifestyle
When superstition is allowed to perform the task of old age in dulling the human temperament, we can say goodbye to all excellence in poetry, in painting, and in music. Music, Chants & Rapps ;Literature, Writers & Writing
You have to make it happen. Motivation