Literary Quotations
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QUOTES ON WISDOM


A fool sees not the same tree that a wise man sees.

WILLIAM BLAKE, Proverbs of Hell

Memory is the mother of all wisdom.

AESCHYLUS, Prometheus Bound

How prone to doubt, how cautious are the wise!
Who, versed in fortune, fear the flattering show,
And taste not half the bliss the gods bestow.

HOMER, The Odyssey

The hours of folly are measured by the clock, but of wisdom no clock can measure.

WILLIAM BLAKE, Proverbs of Hell

Wisdom comes through suffering.
Trouble, with its memories of pain,
Drips in our hearts as we try to sleep,
So men against their will
Learn to practice moderation.
Favours come to us from gods.

AESCHYLUS, Agamemnon

Wisdom is not finally tested in schools,
Wisdom cannot be pass'd from one having it to another not having it,
Wisdom is of the soul, is not susceptible of proof, is its own proof,
Applies to all stages and objects and qualities and is content,
Is the certainty of the reality and immortality of things, and the excellence of things;
Something there is in the float of the sight of things that provokes it out of the soul.

WALT WHITMAN, Leaves of Grass

A wise man has much to learn without a loss of dignity.

SOPHOCLES, Antigone

The brash unbridled tongue, the lawless folly of fools, will end in pain. But the life of wise content is blest with quietness, escapes the storm and keeps its house secure.

EURIPIDES, The Bacchae

Wisdom outweighs any wealth.

SOPHOCLES, Antigone

If the fool would persist in his folly he would become wise.

WILLIAM BLAKE, Proverbs of Hell

Wisdom is not communicable. The wisdom which a wise man tries to communicate always sounds foolish.... Knowledge can be communicated, but not wisdom. One can find it, live it, do wonders through it, but one cannot communicate and teach it.

HERMANN HESSE, Siddhartha

Cleverness is not wisdom.

EURIPIDES, The Bacchae

There is no happiness where there is no wisdom;
No wisdom but in submission to the gods.

SOPHOCLES, Antigone

Wisdom and goodness to the vile seem vile:
Filths savour but themselves.

WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE, King Lear

Be wise by instinct when you can. But when this fails, be wise by good advice.

SOPHOCLES, Antigone

Why should I waste wisdom on a river-turtle?

RUDYARD KIPLING, The Jungle Book

Goodness without wisdom invariably accomplishes evil.

ROBERT A. HEINLEIN, Stranger in a Strange Land

Wisdom comes to us when it can no longer do any good.

GABRIEL GARCÍA MÁRQUEZ, Love in the Time of Cholera