James Anthony Froude

James Anthony Froude
James Anthony Froude
  • Born: April 23, 1818
  • Died: October 20, 1894
  • Nationality: English
  • Profession: Historian









James Anthony Froude FRSE was an English historian, novelist, biographer, and editor of Fraser's Magazine. From his upbringing amidst the Anglo-Catholic Oxford Movement, Froude intended to become a clergyman, but doubts about the doctrines of the Anglican church, published in his scandalous 1849 novel The Nemesis of Faith, drove him to abandon his religious career. Froude turned to writing history, becoming one of the best known historians of his time for his History of England from the Fall of Wolsey to the Defeat of the Spanish Armada. Inspired by Thomas Carlyle, Froude's historical writings were often fiercely polemical, earning him a number of outspoken opponents. Froude continued to be controversial up until his death for his Life of Carlyle, which he published along with personal writings of Thomas and Jane Welsh Carlyle. These publications illuminated Carlyle's often selfish personality, and led to persistent gossip and discussion of the couple's marital problems.

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… two men may be as sincere, as earnest, as faithful, as uncompromising, and yet hold opinions far asunder as the poles Human Nature
Change is strong, but habit is strong too; and you cannot change the old for new, like a garment. Reform, Change, Transformation & Reformers
Charity is from person to person; and it loses half, far more than half, its moral value when the giver is not brought into personal relation with those to whom he gives. Religion & God
Experience teaches slowly and at the cost of mistakes. Education, Learning, Knowledge & Training
Experience teaches slowly, and at the cost of mistakes. Education, Learning, Knowledge & Training
Happily I had very early learned the fallacy of building much on logic and verbal argument. Single sets of truths I knew to be as little conclusive in theology as in physics; and, in one as in the other, no theory to be worth anything, however plausibly backed up with Scripture texts or facts, which was not gathered bona fide from the analysis of all the attainable phenomena, and verified wherever possible by experiment. Politics, Politicians & Political Campaigning & Fund Raising ;Philosophy
In all the world there is not, perhaps, now concentrated in any single spot so much swindling and villainy, so much foul disease, such a hideous dung-heap of moral and physical abomination as in the scene of this far-famed undertaking of nineteenth-century engineering Public Works & Natural Resources
Life is change, to cease to change is to cease to live; yet if you may shed a tear beside the death-bed of an old friend, let not your heart be silent on the dissolving of a faith. Reform, Change, Transformation & Reformers
Men are made by nature unequal. It is vain, therefore, to treat them as if they were equal. Equality & Equal Opportunity
Opinions alter, manners change, creeds rise and fall, but the moral law is written on the tablets of eternity. Morality, Ethics & Conflict of Interest
Our instinct has outrun our theory in this matter; for while we still insist upon free will and sin, we make allowance for individuals who have gone wrong, on the very ground of provocation, of temptation, of bad education, of infirm character. Politics, Politicians & Political Campaigning & Fund Raising
Show me if I am wrong. It is easy to be mistaken. But do not tell me it is wicked of me to have thought all this, for it is not — I am certain it is not Morality, Ethics & Conflict of Interest
The first duty of an historian is to be on his guard against his own sympathies; but he cannot wholly escape their influence. History
The landlord may become a direct oppressor. He may care nothing for the people, and have no object but to squeeze the most that he can out of them fairly or unfairly. … In Ireland landlordism was tempered by assassination. Unfortunately the wrong man was generally assassinated. The true criminal was an absentee, and his agent was shot instead of him Miscellaneous
The Moslems say their Koran was written by God. The Hindus say the Vedas were; we say the Bible was, and we are but interested witnesses in deciding absolutely and exclusively for ourselves Religion & God
The only stable bond of union is goodwill. States. Nations & Nationhood
The superstition of science scoffs at the superstition of faith. Science, Mathematics, Engineering & Technology
To be enthusiastic about doing much with human nature is a foolish business indeed Reform, Change, Transformation & Reformers
To tell a man it is his duty to submit his judgment to the judgment of the church, is like telling a wife it is her duty to love her husband — a thing easy to say, but meaning simply nothing. Affection must be won, not commanded. Morality, Ethics & Conflict of Interest
Whatever the cause, the Calvinists were the only fighting Protestants. It was they whose faith gave them the courage to stand up for the Reformation, and but for them, the Reformation would have been lost.. Religion & God
Why is it thought so very wicked to be an unbeliever? Rather, why is it assumed that no one can have difficulties unless he be wicked? …. Genuine belief ended with persecution. As soon as it was felt that to punish a man for maintaining an independent opinion was shocking and unjust, so soon a doubt had entered whether the faith established was unquestionably true. Morality, Ethics & Conflict of Interest
Wild animals never kill for sport. Man is the only one to whom the torture and death of his fellow creatures is amusing in itself. Sports & Athletics ;Death ;Humor ;Human Nature ;Animals
A person possessed with an idea cannot be reasoned with.
Age does not make us childish, as some say; it finds us true children.
As we advance in life, we learn the limits of our abilities. Life
Fear is the parent of cruelty.
Human improvement is from within outward.
In everyday things the law of sacrifice takes the form of positive duty.
Instruction does not prevent wasted time or mistakes; and mistakes themselves are often the best teachers of all. Time
No person is ever good for much, that hasn't been swept off their feet by enthusiasm between ages twenty and thirty.
Philosophy goes no further than probabilities, and in every assertion keeps a doubt in reserve.
Science rests on reason and experiment, and can meet an opponent with calmness; but a belief is always sensitive. Science, Mathematics, Engineering & Technology
Superior strength is found in the long run to lie with those who had right on their side.
The better one is morally the less aware they are of their virtue.
The endurance of the inequalities of life by the poor is the marvel of human society. Society ;Life
The essence of greatness is neglect of the self.
The first duty of an historian is to be on guard against his own sympathies.
The practical effect of a belief is the real test of its soundness.
The secret of a person's nature lies in their religion and what they really believes about the world and their place in it. Nature ;Religion & God
To deny the freedom of the will is to make morality impossible. Freedom & Liberty
We enter the world alone, we leave the world alone.
You cannot dream yourself into a character; you must hammer and forge yourself one.