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Edward Gibbon quotes and quotations

Conversation enriches the understanding, but solitude is the school of genius.
Edward Gibbon

The courage of a soldier is found to be the cheapest and most common quality of human nature.
Edward Gibbon

A heart to resolve, a head to contrive, and a hand to execute.
Edward Gibbon

Beauty is an outward gift which is seldom despised, except by those to whom it has been refused.
Edward Gibbon

My early and invincible love of reading I would not exchange for all the riches of India.
Edward Gibbon

Corruption, the most infallible symptom of constitutional liberty.
Edward Gibbon

Every man who rises above the common level has received two educations: the first from his teachers; the second, more personal and important, from himself.
Edward Gibbon

The pathetic almost always consists in the detail of little events.
Edward Gibbon

Fanaticism obliterates the feelings of humanity.
Edward Gibbon

The end comes when we no longer talk with ourselves. It is the end of genuine thinking and the beginning of the final loneliness.
Edward Gibbon

History is indeed little more than the register of the crimes, follies, and misfortunes of mankind.
Edward Gibbon

Books are those faithful mirrors that reflect to our mind the minds of sages and heroes.
Edward Gibbon

The style of an author should be the image of his mind, but the choice and command of language is the fruit of exercise.
Edward Gibbon

Hope, the best comfort of our imperfect condition.
Edward Gibbon

All that is human must retrograde if it does not advance.
Edward Gibbon

I am indeed rich, since my income is superior to my expenses, and my expense is equal to my wishes.
Edward Gibbon

But the power of instruction is seldom of much efficacy, except in those happy dispositions where it is almost superfluous.
Edward Gibbon

I understand by this passion the union of desire, friendship, and tenderness, which is inflamed by a single female, which prefers her to the rest of her sex, and which seeks her possession as the supreme or the sole happiness of our being.
Edward Gibbon

Let us read with method, and propose to ourselves an end to which our studies may point. The use of reading is to aid us in thinking.
Edward Gibbon

My English text is chaste, and all licentious passages are left in the obscurity of a learned language.
Edward Gibbon

I never make the mistake of arguing with people for whose opinions I have no respect.
Edward Gibbon

Of the various forms of government which have prevailed in the world, an hereditary monarchy seems to present the fairest scope for ridicule.
Edward Gibbon

I sighed as a lover, I obeyed as a son.
Edward Gibbon

Our sympathy is cold to the relation of distant misery.
Edward Gibbon

The winds and the waves are always on the side of the ablest navigators.
Edward Gibbon

Our work is the presentation of our capabilities.
Edward Gibbon

The principles of a free constitution are irrecoverably lost, when the legislative power is nominated by the executive.
Edward Gibbon

Revenge is profitable, gratitude is expensive.
Edward Gibbon

Style is the image of character.
Edward Gibbon

The author himself is the best judge of his own performance; none has so deeply meditated on the subject; none is so sincerely interested in the event.
Edward Gibbon

My English text is chaste, and all licentious passages are left in the decent obscurity of a learned language.
Edward Gibbon

The laws of probability, so true in general, so fallacious in particular.
Edward Gibbon

History is little more than the register of the crimes, follies, and misfortunes of mankind.
Edward Gibbon

Their poverty secured their freedom, since our desires and our possessions are the strongest fetters of despotism.
Edward Gibbon

I was never less alone than when by myself.
Edward Gibbon

Unprovided with original learning, unformed in the habits of thinking,unskilled in the arts of composition, I resolved to write a book.
Edward Gibbon

We improve ourselves by victories over ourselves. There must be contest, and we must win.
Edward Gibbon

It has always been my practice to cast a long paragraph in a single mould, to try it by my ear, to deposit it in my memory, but to suspend the action of the pen till I had given the last polish to my work.
Edward Gibbon

Truth, naked, unblushing truth, the first virtue of all serious history, must be the sole recommendation of this personal narrative.
Edward Gibbon