Oliver Wendell Holmes

A thought is often original, though you have uttered it a hundred times.

When I think of talking, it is of course with a woman. For talking at its best being an inspiration, it wants a corresponding divine quality of receptiveness, and where will you find this but in a woman?

Rough work, iconoclasm, but the only way to get at truth.

Death tugs at my ear and says: "Live, I am coming."

Greatness is not in were we stand, but in what direction we are moving. We must sail sometimes with the wind, and somtimes agaisnt it - but sail we must. And not drift, nor lie at anchor.

Insanity is often the logic of an accurate mind overtaxed.

The great thing in this world is not so much where you stand, as in what direction you are moving.

Take a music bath once or twice a week for a few seasons, and you will find that it is to the soul what the water bath is to the body.

Beat a man with the strength of you argument, not with the strength of your arm.

Speak clearly, if you speak at all; carve every word before you let it fall.

A person is always startled when he hears himself seriously called an old man for the first time.

Man's mind, once stretched by a new idea, never regains its original dimensions.

It is the province of knowledge to speak and it is the privilege of wisdom to listen.

To obtain a man's opinion of you, make him mad.

I find the great thing in this world is not so much where we stand, as in what direction we are moving.

Sin has many tools, but a lie is the handle that fits them all.

Between two groups of men that want to make inconsistent kinds of worlds I see no remedy except force... It seems to me that every society rests on the death of men.

Life is a fatal complaint, and an eminently contagious one.

There's nothing that keeps its youth,So far as I know, but a tree and truth.

Knowledge and timber shouldn't be much used till they are seasoned.

Truth is tough. It will not break, like a bubble, at a touch; nay, you may kick it about all day like a football, and it will be round and full at evening.

Every pursuit is great when greatly pursued.

The life of the law has not been logic but experience.

Even a dog knows the difference between being kicked and being stumbled over.

Civilization is the process of reducing the infinite to the finite.

Man is born a predestined idealist, for he is born to act. To act is to affirm the worth of an end, and to persist in affirming the worth of an end is to make an ideal.

I find the great in this world is not so much where we stand, as in what direction we are moving: To reach the port of heaven, we must sail sometimes with the wind and sometimes against it,-but we must sail, and not drift, nor lie at anchor.

Don't flatter yourself that friendship authorizes you to say disagreeable things to your intimates. The nearer you come into relation with a person, the more necessary do tact and courtesy become. Except in cases of necessity, which are rare, leave your friend to learn unpleasant things from his enemies; they are ready enough to tell them.

There are one-story intellects, two-story intellects, and three-story intellects with skylights. All fact collectors with no aim beyond their facts are one-story men. Two-story men compare reason and generalize, using labors of the fact collectors as well as their own. Three-story men idealize, imagine, and predict. Their best illuminations come from above through the skylight.