Benjamin Franklin

printer whose success as an author led him to take up politics; he helped draw up the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution; he played a major role in the American Revolution and negotiated French support for the colonists; as a scientist he is remembered particularly for his research in electricity (1706-1790)

click to add your vote (53 votes)

Famous quotes by Benjamin Franklin:Sort:PopularA - Z

A countryman between two lawyers is like a fish between two cats.
A democracy is two wolves and a small lamb voting on what to have for dinner. Freedom under a constitutional republic is a well armed lamb contesting the vote.
A good conscience is a continual Christmas.
A life of leisure and a life of laziness are two different things.
A penny saved is a penny earned.
A slip of the foot you may soon recover, but a slip of the tongue you may never get over.
After three days men grow weary of a wench, a guest, and rainy weather.
All cats are gray in the dark.
All human situations have their inconveniences. We feel those of the present but neither see nor feel those of the future; and hence we often make troublesome changes without amendment, and frequently for the worse.
All mankind is divided into three classes: those who are immovable, those who are movable and those who move.
All would live long, but none would be old.
Ambition has its disappointments to sour us...
An investment in knowledge always pays the best interest.
An investment in knowledge pays the best interest.
An investment in knowledge still yields the best returns.
Anger is never without a reason but seldom a good one.
Any fool can criticize, condemn and complain and most fools do.
Any fool can criticize, condemn, and complain, and most fools do.
As we must account for every idle word, so must we account for every idle silence.
At 20 years of age the will reigns, at 30 the wit, at 40 the judgment.
Be civil to all sociable to many familiar with few friend to one enemy to none.
Be civil to all; sociable to many; familiar with few; friend to one; enemy to none.
Be slow in choosing a friend, slower in changing.
Beware of the young doctor and the old barber.
But in this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes.
By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.
By heaven we understand a state of happiness infinite in degree, and endless in duration.
Creditors have better memories than debtors.
Critics are our friends, they tell us our faults.
Diligence is the mother of good luck.
Distrust and caution are the parents of security.
Do good to thy Friend to keep him, to thy enemy to gain him.
Do not anticipate trouble, or worry about what may never happen. Keep in the sunlight.
Dost thou love life Then do not squander time, for that's the stuff life is made of.
Dost thou love life? Than do not squander time, for it is the stuff life is made of.
Dost thou love life? Then do not squander time, for that is the stuff life is made of.
Drive thy business or it will drive thee.
Early morning hath gold in its mouth.
Early to bed and early to rise makes a man healthy, wealthy, and wise.
Early to bed and early to rise, makes a man happy wealthy and wise.
Educate your children to self-control, to the habit of holding passion and prejudice and evil tendencies subject to an upright and reasoning will, and you have done much to abolish misery from their future and crimes from society.
Employ thy time well, if thou meanest to get leisure.
Energy and persistence conquer all thing.
Energy and persistence conquer all things.
Experience is a dear teacher, but fools will learn at no other.
Experience keeps a dear school, but fools will learn in no other.
Fear God, and your enemies will fear you.
Fish and visitors smell in three days.
Five thousand balloons, capable of raising two men each, could not cost more than five ships of the line; and where is the prince who can afford so to cover his country with troops for its defense as that 10,000 men descending from the clouds might not in many places do an infinite deal of mischief before a force could be brought together to repel them?
For the want of a nail, the shoe was lose; for the want of a shoe the horse was lose; and for the want of a horse the rider was lost, being overtaken and slain by the enemy, all for the want of care about a horseshoe nail.
Genius without education is like silver in the mine.
Glass, china and reputation are easily cracked, and never well mended.
God heals, and the doctor takes the fee.
God heals, and the doctor takes the fees.
God helps them that help themselves
Having been poor is no shame, but being ashamed of it, is.
He does not possess wealth it possesses him.
He is a fool that cannot conceal his wisdom.
He is ill clothed that is bare of virtue.
He is ill clothed, who is bare of virtue.
He that blows the coals in quarrels that he has nothing to do with, has no right to complain if the sparks fly in his face
He that can have patience can have what he will.
He that falls in love with himself will have no rivals.
He that has done you a kindness will be more ready to do you another, than he whom you yourself have obliged.
He that is good at making excuses is seldom good at anything else.
He that is good for making excuses is seldom good for anything else.
He that is of the opinion money will do everything may well be suspected of doing everything for money.
He that lies down with dogs, shall rise up with fleas.
He that lives upon hope will die fasting.
He that would live in peace and at ease, must not speak all he knows nor judge all he sees.
He was so learned that he could name a horse in nine languages so ignorant that he bought a cow to ride on.
He who multiplies riches multiplies cares.
He who shall introduce into public affairs the principles of primitive Christianity will change the face of the world.
Hide not your talents, they for use were made. What's a sun-dial in the shade
How many observe Christ's birthday How few, his precepts O 'tis easier to keep holidays than commandments.
I am a strong believer in luck and I find the harder I work the more I have of it.
I am in the prime of senility.
I believe I shall,in some shape or other,always exist; and, with all the inconveniences human life is liable to, I shall not object to a new edition of mine, hoping, however, that the errata of the last may be corrected.
I believe there is one Supreme most perfect being.
I cannot conceive otherwise than that He, the Infinite Father, expects or requires no worship or praise from us, but that He is even infinitely above it.
I know not which lives more unnatural lives, obeying husbands, or commanding wives.
I resolve to speak ill of no man whatever, not even in a matter of truth but rather by some means excuse the faults I hear charged upon others, and upon proper occasions speak all the good I know of everybody.
If a man empties his purse into his head, no man can take it away from him. An investment in knowledge always pays the best interest.
If Jack's in love, he's no judge of Jill's beauty.
If you know how to spend less than you get, you have the philosopher's stone.
If you would be loved, love and be lovable.
If you would be wealthy, think of saving as well as getting.
If you would not be forgotten as soon as you are dead, either write something worth reading or do things worth writing.
If you would not be forgotten as soon as you are dead, either write things worth reading, or do things worth writing.
If you would not be forgotten, as soon as you are rotten,
either write things worth reading or do things worth the writing.
If you would persuade, you must appeal to interest rather than intellect.
If you wouldst live long, live well, for folly and wickedness shorten life.
If your head is wax, don't walk in the sun.
In rivers and bad governments, the lightest things swim at the top.
It is easier to prevent bad habits than to break them.
It is the working man who is the happy man. It is the idle man who is the miserable man.
It isn't what you know that counts, it's what you think of in time.
Keep thy eyes wide open before marriage, and half-shut afterwards.
Kill no more pigeons than you can eat.
Laws too gentle are seldom obeyed; too severe, seldom executed.
Life's Tragedy is that we get old to soon and wise too late.
Little strokes fell great oaks.
Lost time is never found again.
Many complain of their memory, few of their judgment.
Many men die at twenty-five and aren't buried until they are seventy-five.
Marry your son when you will, but you daughter when you can.
Money never made a man happy yet, nor will it. There is nothing in its nature to produce happiness. The more a man has, the more he wants. Instead of its filling a vacuum, it makes one. If it satisfies one want, it doubles and trebles that want another way. That was a true proverb of the wise man, rely upon it; "Better is little with the fear of the Lord, than great treasure, and trouble therewith."
Necessity never made a good bargain.
Never leave that till tomorrow which you can do today.
Never put off until tomorrow what you can do today.
No nation was ever ruined by trade.
Nothing is certain except death and taxes.
Our critics are our friends; they show us our faults.
Pride breakfasted with plenty, dined with poverty, and supped with infamy.
Read much, but not many books.
Remember not only to say the right thing in the right place, but far more difficult still, to leave unsaid the wrong thing at the tempting moment.
Remember that time is money.
Rules too soft are seldomly followed; rules too harsh are seldomly executed.
Search others for their virtues, thyself for thy vices.
Serving God is doing good to man. But praying is thought an easier service and is therefore more generally chosen.
Sin is not hurtful because it is forbidden, but it is forbidden because it's hurtful.
Sloth makes all things difficult, but industry, all things easy. He that rises late must trot all day, and shall scarce overtake his business at night, while laziness travels so slowly that poverty soon overtakes him.
So convenient a thing it is to be a reasonable creature, since it enables one to find or make a reason for everything one has a mind to do.
The absent are never without fault, nor the present without excuse.
The Constitution only guarantees the American people the right to pursue happiness. You have to catch it yourself.
The doors of wisdom are never shut.
The first mistake in public business is the going into it.
The strictest law sometimes becomes the severest injustice.
The way to see by faith is to shut the eye of reason.
There are three great friends an old wife, an old dog, and ready money.
There is no kind of dishonesty into which otherwise good people more easily and frequently fall than that of defrauding the government.
There is no little enemy.
There never was a good war, or a bad peace.
They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.
They that will not be counseled, cannot be helped. If you do not hear reason she will rap you on the knuckles.
They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.
Think of these things, whence you came, where you are going, and to whom you must account.
Think what you do when you run into debt; you give another power over your liberty.
Those disputing, contradicting, and confuting people are generally unfortunate in their affairs. They get victory, sometimes, but they never get good will, which would be of more use to them.
Three can keep a secret, if two of them are dead.
Three may keep a secret, if two of them are dead.
Three people can keep a secret so long as two of them are dead.
Time is money.
To be humble to superiors is duty, to equals courtesy, to inferiors nobleness.
To err is human, to repent divine, to persist devilish.
To follow by faith alone is to follow blindly.
To lengthen thy Life, lessen thy meals
To lengthen thy life, lessen thy meals.
To the generous mind the heaviest debt is that of gratitude, when it is not in our power to repay it.
Use no hurtful deceit think innocently and justly and if you speak, speak accordingly.
We must all hang together, or most assuredly we shall all hang separately.
We must hang together, gentlemen...else, we shall most assuredly hang separately.
We must indeed all hang together, or, most assuredly, we shall hang separately.
Wealth is not his that has it, but his who enjoys it.
Well done is better than well said.
What you seem to be, be really.
Whatever is begun in anger ends in shame.
When the people find that they can vote themselves money, that will herald the end of the republic. Sell not liberty to purchase power.
Where sense is wanting, everything is wanting,
Where there's marriage without love, there will be love without marriage.
Who is rich He that is content. Who is that Nobody.
Who is rich? He that is content. Who is that? Nobody.
Who is rich? He who is content. Who is that? Nobody.
Who is wise He that learns from everyone. Who is powerful He that governs his passions. Who is rich He who is content. Who is that Nobody.
Whoever feels pain in hearing a good character of his neighbor, will feel a pleasure in the reverse. And those who despair to rise in distinction by their virtues, are happy if others can be depressed to a level of themselves.
Whoever would overthrow the liberty of a nation must begin by subduing the freeness of speech.
Wish not so much to live long as to live well.
Without justice courage is weak.
Would you live with ease, do what you ought, and not what you please.
Write injuries in dust, benefits in marble.
You may delay, but time will not.

Share your thoughts on Benjamin Franklin's quotes with the community:

Citation

Use the citation below to add this author page to your bibliography:

Style:MLAChicagoAPA

"Benjamin Franklin Quotes." Quotes.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2014. Web. 2 Sep. 2014. <http://www.quotes.net/authors/Benjamin Franklin>.

Missing a quote of Benjamin Franklin?

Know another good quote of Benjamin Franklin? Don't keep it to yourself!


The Web's Largest Resource for

Famous Quotes & Sayings


A Member Of The STANDS4 Network