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A good novel tells you the truth about its hero but a bad novel tells you the truth about its author.
A stiff apology is a second insult. The injured party does not want to be compensated because he has been wronged he wants to be healed because he has been hurt.
All architecture is great architecture after sunset perhaps architecture is really a nocturnal art, like the art of fireworks.
Beans beans the magical fruit the more you eat the more you toot the more you eat the better you feel so let's eat beans for every meal.
But there is another strong objection which I, one of the laziest of all the children of Adam, have against the Leisure State. Those who think it could be done argue that a vast machinery using electricity, water-power, petrol, and so on, might reduce the work imposed on each of us to a minimum. It might, but it would also reduce our control to a minimum. We should ourselves become parts of a machine, even if the machine only used those parts once a week. The machine would be our master, for the machine would produce our food, and most of us could have no notion of how it was really being produced.
Courage is almost a contradiction in terms. It means a strong desire to live taking the form of a readiness to die.
Democracy means government by the uneducated, while aristocracy means government by the badly educated.
Education is the period during which you are being instructed by somebody you do not know, about something you do not want to know.
Every man has his own courage, and is betrayed because he seeks in himself the courage of other persons.
Happy is he who still loves something he loved in the nursery He has not been broken in two by time he is not two men, but one, and he has saved not only his soul, but his life.
I do not believe in a fate that falls on men however they act but I do believe in a fate that falls on them unless they act.
I would maintain that thanks are the highest form of thought, and that gratitude is happiness doubled by wonder.
If I can put one touch of rosy sunset into the life of any man or woman, I shall feel that I have worked with God.
It is not funny that anything else should fall down only that a man should fall down. Why do we laugh Because it is a gravely religious matter it is the Fall of Man. Only man can be absurd for only man can be dignified.
Men feel that cruelty to the poor is a kind of cruelty to animals. They never feel that it is an injustice to equals nay it is treachery to comrades.
Merely having an open mind is nothing. The object of opening the mind, as of opening the mouth, is to shut it again on something solid.
People who make history know nothing about history. You can see that in the sort of history they make.
The Christian ideal has not been tried and found wanting. It has been found difficult and left untried.
The only words that ever satisfied me as describing Nature are the terms used in fairy books, charm, spell, enchantment. They express the arbitrariness of the fact and its mystery.
The soul goes round upon a wheel of stars and all things return....Good and evil go round in a wheel that is one thing and not many. Do you not realise in your heart, do you not believe behind all your beliefs, that there is but one reality and we are its shadows and that all things are but aspects of one thing a centre where men melt into Man and Man into God 'No,' said Father Brown.
There is something to be said for every error but, whatever may be said for it, the most important thing to be said about it is that it is erroneous.
Thieves respect property. They merely wish the property to become their property that they may more perfectly respect it.
Truth must necessarily be stranger than fiction for fiction is the creation of the human mind and therefore congenial to it.
When men have come to the edge of a precipice, it is the lover of life who has the spirit to leap backwards, and only the pessimist who continues to believe in progress.
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