James Russell Lowell

James Russell Lowell
James Russell Lowell
  • Born: February 22, 1819
  • Died: August 12, 1891
  • Nationality: American
  • Profession: Poet









Quote Topics Cited
And I honor the man who is willing to sink Half his present repute for the freedom to think, And, when he has thought, be his cause strong or weak, Will risk t'other half for the freedom to speak. Freedom & Liberty
Before man made us citizens, great Nature made us men. Citizenship & Patriotism
Democracy is nothing more than an experiment in government, more likely to succeed in a new soil, but likely to be tried in all soils, which must stand or fall on its own merits as others have done before it. For there is no trick of perpetual motion in politics any more than in mechanics. Democracies & Republics
Freedom’s Keystone is Slavery. Freedom & Liberty ;Slaves, Slavery & The Slave Trade
I do believe with all my soul In the gret Press's freedom, To pint the people to the goal And in the traces lead ‘em. Freedom & Liberty
In vain we call old notions fudge, And bend our conscience to our dealing; The Ten Commandments will not budge, And stealing will continue stealing. Copyrights, Patents & Intellectual Property
It is by presence of mind in untried emergencies that the native metal of a man is tested. Human Nature
It was in making education not only common to all, but in some sense compulsory on all, that the destiny of the free republics of America was practically settled. Education, Learning, Knowledge & Training
My gran'ther's rule was safer 'n 'tis to crow: Don't never prophesy — onless ye know. Oratory, Discussion & Debate
Puritanism, believing itself quick with the seed of religious liberty, laid, without knowing it, the egg of democracy. Democracies & Republics
The framers of the American Constitution were far from wishing or intending to found a democracy in the strict sense of the word, though, as was inevitable, every expansion of the scheme of government they elaborated has been in a democratical direction. But this has been generally the slow result of growth, and not the sudden innovation of theory… Democracies & Republics
Their problem was how to adapt English principles and precedents to the new conditions of American life. Constitution / Bills & Declaratiobns of Rights
They [the Founding Fathers] recognized fully the value of tradition and habit as the great allies of permanence and stability. Miscellaneous
True freedom is to share All the chains our brothers wear Freedom & Liberty
Truth forever on the scaffold, Wrong forever on the throne,—, Yet that scaffold sways the future, and, behind the dim unknown,, Standeth God within the shadow, keeping watch above his own. Politics, Politicians & Political Campaigning & Fund Raising
We learned once for all [from the Civil War] that compromise makes a good umbrella but a poor roof; that it is a temporary expedient, often wise in party politics, almost sure to be unwise in statesmanship. Politics, Politicians & Political Campaigning & Fund Raising
A great man is made up of qualities that meet or make great occasions.
A weed is no more than a flower in disguise, Which is seen through at once, if love give a man eyes. Love, Romance, Marriage & Sex
All the beautiful sentiments in the world weigh less than a single lovely action. Romantic
An appeal to the reason of the people has never been known to fail in the long run.
And what is so rare as a day in June? Then, if ever, come perfect days.
As life runs on, the road grows strange with faces new - and near the end. The milestones into headstones change, Neath every one a friend. Life
Blessed are they who have nothing to say and who cannot be persuaded to say it.
Books are the bees which carry the quickening pollen from one to another mind.
Children are God's Apostles, sent forth, day by day, to preach of love, and hope, and peace. Love, Romance, Marriage & Sex ;Hope ;Religion & God
Compromise makes a good umbrella, but a poor roof; it is temporary expedient, often wise in party politics, almost sure to be unwise in statesmanship. Politics, Politicians & Political Campaigning & Fund Raising
Creativity is not the finding of a thing, but the making something out of it after it is found.
Death is delightful. Death is dawn, The waking from a weary night Of fevers unto truth and light. Truth ;Death
Democracy gives every man the right to be his own oppressor. Government
Democracy is the form of government that gives every man the right to be his own oppressor. Government
Each day the world is born anew for him who takes it rightly.
Endurance is the crowning quality, And patience all the passion of great hearts. Patience
Every man feels instinctively that all the beautiful sentiments in the world weigh less than a single lovely action.
Every person born into this world their work is born with them. Work, Workers & The Labor Force
Fate loves the fearless.
Folks never understand the folks they hate.
Fortune is the rod of the weak, and the staff of the brave.
Freedom is the only law which genius knows. Freedom & Liberty
Good luck is the willing handmaid of a upright and energetic character, and conscientious observance of duty.
Greatly begin. Though thou have time, but for a line, be that sublime. Not failure, but low aim is crime. Time ;Failure
He who is firmly seated in authority soon learns to think security, and not progress, the highest lesson in statecraft.
I have always been of the mind that in a democracy manners are the only effective weapons against the bowie-knife.
If youth be a defect, it is one that we outgrow only too soon.
In creating, the only hard thing is to begin: a grass blade's no easier to make than an oak.
In the ocean of baseness, the deeper we get, the easier the sinking.
Incredulity robs us of many pleasures, and gives us nothing in return.
It is by presence of mind in untried emergencies that the native metal of man is tested.
It is the privilege of genius that life never grows common place, as it does for the rest of us. Life
Joy comes, grief goes, we know not how. Moving On
Let us be of good cheer, however, remembering that the misfortunes hardest to bear are those which never come.
Light is the symbol of truth. Truth
Mishaps are like knives, that either serve us or cut us, as we grasp them by the blade or the handle.
No man can produce great things who is not thoroughly sincere in dealing with himself.
Not failure, but low aim, is crime. Failure
On one issue at least, men and women agree; they both distrust women. Women
Once to every person and nation come the moment to decide. In the conflict of truth with falsehood, for the good or evil side. Truth
One thorn of experience is worth a whole wilderness of warning.
Poetry is something to make us wiser and better, by continually revealing those types of beauty and truth, which God has set in all men's souls. Truth ;Religion & God
Reputation is only a candle, of wavering and uncertain flame, and easily blown out, but it is the light by which the world looks for and finds merit.
Sincerity is impossible, unless it pervade the whole being, and the pretence of it saps the very foundation of character.
Solitude is as needful to the imagination as society is wholesome for the character. Society
Thank God every morning when you get up that you have something to do that day, which must be done, whether you like it or not. Morning ;Religion & God
The eye is the notebook of the poet.
The foolish and the dead alone never change their opinions.
The greatest homage we can pay to truth, is to use it. Truth
The heart forgets its sorrow and ache. Sympathy
The mind can weave itself warmly in the cocoon of its own thoughts, and dwell a hermit anywhere.
The only faith that wears well and holds its color in all weathers is that which is woven of conviction and set with the sharp mordant of experience. Religion & God
The surest plan to make a man is, think him so.
There are two kinds of weakness, that which breaks and that which bends.
There is no good in arguing with the inevitable. The only argument available with an east wind is to put on your overcoat.
There is nothing so desperately monotonous as the sea, and I no longer wonder at the cruelty of pirates.
To educate the intelligence is to expand the horizon of its wants and desires.
Toward no crimes have men shown themselves so cold- bloodedly cruel as in punishing differences of belief.
True scholarship consists in knowing not what things exist, but what they mean; it is not memory but judgment.
Truth forever on the scaffold, wrong forever on the throne. Truth
Truth, after all, wears a different face to everybody, and it would be too tedious to wait till all were agreed. Truth
Usually when people are sad, they don't do anything. They just cry over their condition. But when they get angry, they bring about a change.
What a sense of security in an old book which time has criticized for us. Time
What men prize most is a privilege, even if it be that of chief mourner at a funeral.
Where one person shapes their life by precept and example, there are a thousand who have shaped it by impulse and circumstances. Life
Who's not sat tense before his own heart's curtain.