Inspiration and wisdom from divine felines

776 Inspiring Quotes by Samuel Johnson

  • Last updated Jul 26 2021

Welcome to our collection of quotes by Samuel Johnson.

Wikipedia Summary for Samuel Johnson

Samuel Johnson (18 September 1709 [OS 7 September] – 13 December 1784), often referred to as Dr Johnson, was an English writer who made lasting contributions to English literature as a poet, playwright, essayist, moralist, literary critic, biographer, editor, and lexicographer. Religiously, he was a devout Anglican, and politically a committed Tory. The Oxford Dictionary of National Biography describes Johnson as "arguably the most distinguished man of letters in English history". He is the subject of James Boswell's The Life of Samuel Johnson, described by Walter Jackson Bate as "the most famous single work of biographical art in the whole of literature".

Born in Lichfield, Staffordshire, Johnson attended Pembroke College, Oxford, for just over a year, but a lack of funds forced him to leave. After working as a teacher, he moved to London, where he began to write for The Gentleman's Magazine. His early works include the biography Life of Mr Richard Savage, the poems London and The Vanity of Human Wishes, and the play Irene.

After nine years of work, Johnson's A Dictionary of the English Language was published in 1755. It had a far-reaching effect on Modern English and has been acclaimed as "one of the greatest single achievements of scholarship". This work brought Johnson popularity and success. Until the completion of the Oxford English Dictionary 150 years later, Johnson's was the pre-eminent English dictionary. His later works included essays, an influential annotated edition of The Plays of William Shakespeare, and the widely read tale The History of Rasselas, Prince of Abissinia. In 1763, he befriended James Boswell, with whom he later travelled to Scotland; Johnson described their travels in A Journey to the Western Islands of Scotland. Towards the end of his life, he produced the massive and influential Lives of the Most Eminent English Poets, a collection of biographies and evaluations of 17th- and 18th-century poets.

Johnson was a tall and robust man. His odd gestures and tics were disconcerting to some on first meeting him. Boswell's Life, along with other biographies, documented Johnson's behaviour and mannerisms in such detail that they have informed the posthumous diagnosis of Tourette syndrome, a condition not defined or diagnosed in the 18th century. After a series of illnesses, he died on the evening of 13 December 1784, and was buried in Westminster Abbey. In the years following his death, Johnson began to be recognised as having had a lasting effect on literary criticism, and he was claimed by some to be the only truly great critic of English literature.

boy and cat in front of moon

Men are like stone jugs -- you may lug them where you like by the ears.

--Samuel Johnson

yellow flower field under clear sky

Oratory is the power of beating down your adversary's arguments and putting better in their place.

--Samuel Johnson

man and woman kissing under blue sky during daytime

There is nothing, Sir, too little for so little a creature as man. It is by studying little things that we attain the great art of having as little misery and as much happiness as possible.

--Samuel Johnson

silhouette of person wearing cowboy hat during sunset

The equity of Providence has balanced peculiar sufferings with peculiar enjoyments.

--Samuel Johnson

man in black shirt wearing cowboy hat

The expense is damnable, the position is ridiculous, and the pleasure fleeting.

--Samuel Johnson

time lapse photography of fire

I am a great friend to public amusements; for they keep people from vice.

--Samuel Johnson

bird's eye view photography of trees and body of water

No place affords a more striking conviction of the vanity of human hopes than a public library.

--Samuel Johnson

sunset

The use of traveling is to regulate imagination with reality, and instead of thinking of how things may be, see them as they are.

--Samuel Johnson

man in white and black button up shirt holding lighted candle

Love is the wisdom of the fool, and the folly of the wise.

--Samuel Johnson


pink flower

Such seems to be the disposition of man, that whatever makes a distinction produces rivalry.

--Samuel Johnson

raging waves through shores

To excite opposition and inflame malevolence is the unhappy privilege of courage made arrogant by consciousness of strength.

--Samuel Johnson

black fishes

Discord generally operates in little things; it is inflamed ... by contrariety of taste oftener than principles.

--Samuel Johnson


None

A man with a good coat upon his back meets with a better reception than he who has a bad one.

--Samuel Johnson

gray concrete road between trees

It is our first duty to serve society.

--Samuel Johnson

shallow focus photography of snowflake

No man can fall into contempt but those who deserve it.

--Samuel Johnson

blue and white abstract painting

Every state of society is as luxurious as it can be. Men always take the best they can get.

--Samuel Johnson

red textile in close up photography

That observation which is called knowledge of the world will be found much more frequently to make men cunning than good.

--Samuel Johnson

orange moon during nighttime

What we hope ever to do with ease, we must first learn to do with diligence.

--Samuel Johnson

dome tent with galaxy with stars

Of all noises, I think music is the least disagreeable.

--Samuel Johnson

flowers beside yellow wall

There ambush here relentless ruffians lay, And here the fell attorney prowls for prey.

--Samuel Johnson

black pug puppy lying on gray bed

Slavery is now nowhere more patiently endured, than in countries once inhabited by the zealots of liberty.

--Samuel Johnson

aerial photography of forest

I inherited a vile melancholy from my father, which has made me mad all my life, at least not sober.

--Samuel Johnson

Arizona landscape

To go and see one druidical temple is only to see that it is nothing, for there is neither art nor power in it; and seeing one is quite enough.

--Samuel Johnson

A stack of thick folders on a white surface

A writer only begins a book. A reader finishes it.

--Samuel Johnson

black wooden louver door window

The love of life is necessary to the vigorous prosecution of any undertaking.

--Samuel Johnson

None

He that reads and grows no wiser seldom suspects his own deficiency, but complains of hard words and obscure sentences, and asks why books are written which cannot be understood.

--Samuel Johnson

purple and blue light illustration

Among the lower classes of mankind there will be found very little desire of any other knowledge than what may contribute immediately to the relief of some pressing uneasiness, or the attainment of some near advantage.

--Samuel Johnson

sunset

The habit of looking on the bright side of every event is worth more than a thousand pounds a year.

--Samuel Johnson

silhouette of man standing on hill during starry night

All censure of a man's self is oblique praise. It is in order to show how much he can spare.

--Samuel Johnson


silhouette of man and woman during sunset

Every other enjoyment malice may destroy; every other panegyric envy may withhold; but no human power can deprive the boaster of his own encomiums.

--Samuel Johnson


tree frog

Claret is the liquor for boys; port, for men; but he who aspires to be a hero must drink brandy.

--Samuel Johnson

None

Self-love is often rather arrogant than blind; it does not hide our faults from ourselves, but persuades us that they escape the notice of others.

--Samuel Johnson

mountains covered with fog

Wherever I turned my view, there was perplexity to be disentangled, and confusion to be regulated.

--Samuel Johnson

stars across the sky view at the desert

A Poet, Naturalist, and Historian, Who left scarcely any style of writing untouched, And touched nothing that he did not adorn.

--Samuel Johnson

red and blue light digital wallpaper

Credulity is the common failing of inexperienced virtue; and he who is spontaneously suspicious may justly be charged with radical corruption.

--Samuel Johnson

group of camels walking on desert lake at daytime

Fly-fishing may be a very pleasant amusement; but angling or float fishing I can only compare to a stick and a string, with a worm at one end and a fool at the other.

--Samuel Johnson

tilt shift lens pink fetal flowers

Every man wishes to be wise, and they who cannot be wise are almost always cunning.

--Samuel Johnson

brown wooden board

Foppery is never cured; it is the bad stamina of the mind, which, like those of the body, are never rectified; once a coxcomb always a coxcomb.

--Samuel Johnson

black and white abstract illustration

It seems to be remarkable that death increases our veneration for the good, and extenuates our hatred for the bad.

--Samuel Johnson


gray elephant

Nothing will ever be attempted if all possible objections must first be overcome.

--Samuel Johnson

white brick wall

I never desire to converse with a man who has written more than he has read.

--Samuel Johnson

water droplets on green leaf

Great works are performed not by strength but by perseverance.

--Samuel Johnson

Arizona landscape

In the bottle discontent seeks for comfort, cowardice for courage, and bashfulness for confidence.

--Samuel Johnson

sunset

Allow children to be happy in their own way, for what better way will they find?

--Samuel Johnson

pink cherry blossom tree under blue sky during daytime

Whatever withdraws us from the power of our senses; whatever makes the past, the distant, or the future predominate over the present, advances us in the dignity of thinking beings.

--Samuel Johnson

black dragonfly perched on green grass in close up photography during daytime

You can't be in politics unless you can walk in a room and know in a minute who's for you and who's against you.

--Samuel Johnson

person holding white book

We suffer equal pain from the pertinacious adhesion of unwelcome images, as from the evanescence of those which are pleasing and useful.

--Samuel Johnson


pink flower

The wise man applauds he who he thinks most virtuous; the rest of the world applauds the wealthy.

--Samuel Johnson

white sand under white sky

The true effect of genuine politeness seems to be rather ease than pleasure.

--Samuel Johnson

calm body of water near alp mountains during nighttime

Conjecture as to things useful, is good; but conjecture as to what it would be useless to know, is very idle.

--Samuel Johnson

blue sky and white clouds

Their origin is commonly unknown; for the practice often continues when the cause has ceased, and concerning superstitious ceremonies it is in vain to conjecture; for what reason did not dictate, reason cannot explain.

--Samuel Johnson

orange smoke on blue background

No government power can be abused long. Mankind will not bear it.

--Samuel Johnson

purple and blue light illustration

There is nothing more dreadful to an author than neglect; compared with which reproach, hatred, and opposition are names of happiness; yet this worst, this meanest fate, every one who dares to write has reason to fear.

--Samuel Johnson

empty brown concrete stairs beside green grass under starry sky long-exposure photography

A family ... is a little kingdom, torn with factions and exposed to revolutions.

--Samuel Johnson


round black vinyl disc on vinyl player

Come, let me know what it is that makes a Scotch man happy!

--Samuel Johnson

selective focus photography of woman taking selfie

Good-humor is a state between gayety and unconcern, -- the act or emanation of a mind at leisure to regard the gratification of another.

--Samuel Johnson

white stars cutout on black surface with red string

Rash oaths, whether kept or broken, frequently produce guilt.

--Samuel Johnson

white sand

There are minds so impatient of inferiority that their gratitude is a species of revenge, and they return benefits, not because recompense is a pleasure, but because obligation is a pain.

--Samuel Johnson

pair of white lace-up shoes

Contempt is a kind of gangrene which, if it seizes one part of a character, corrupts all the rest by degrees.

--Samuel Johnson


landscape photography of forest

Age is rarely despised but when it is, contemptible.

--Samuel Johnson

photo of clear sky full of stars

Human benevolence is mingled with vanity, interest, or some other motive.

--Samuel Johnson

aerial shot of road surrounded by green trees

A man of genius has been seldom ruined but by himself.

--Samuel Johnson

white and blue building under clear sky

The Supreme end of education is expert discernment in all things -- the power to tell the good from the bad, the genuine from the counterfeit, and to prefer the good and the genuine to the bad and the counterfeit.

--Samuel Johnson

white textile in close up photography

A certain amount of distrust is wholesome, but not so much of others as of ourselves; neither vanity not conceit can exist in the same atmosphere with it.

--Samuel Johnson

forest trees

Life cannot subsist in society but by reciprocal concessions.

--Samuel Johnson

leafless tree under gray sky

The mind is refrigerated by interruption; the thoughts are diverted from the principle subject; the reader is weary, he suspects not why; and at last throws away the book, which he has too diligently studied.

--Samuel Johnson

white textile on brown wooden table

I look upon this as I did upon the Dictionary: it is all work, and my inducement to it is not love or desire of fame, but the want of money, which is the only motive to writing that I know of.

--Samuel Johnson

None

One of the amusements of idleness is reading without fatigue of close attention; and the world, therefore, swarms with writers whose wish is not to be studied, but to be read.

--Samuel Johnson

pink-petaled rose flower

A cow is a very good animal in the field; but we turn her out of a garden.

--Samuel Johnson

pink and white abstract painting

He said that few people had intellectual resources sufficient to forgo the pleasures of wine. They could not otherwise contrive how to fill the interval between dinner and supper.

--Samuel Johnson

woman standing on sunflower field

Prosperity's right hand is industry and her left hand is frugality.

--Samuel Johnson

mountains covered with fog

This man Chesterfield, I thought, had been a Lord among wits; but I find he is only a wit among Lords.

--Samuel Johnson

concert photos

Smoking is a shocking thing -- blowing smoke out of our mouths into other people's mouths, eyes, and noses, and having the same thing done to us.

--Samuel Johnson

silhouette of stones during golden hour

Friends are often chosen for similitude of manners, and therefore each palliates the other's failings because they are his own.

--Samuel Johnson

person wearing black leather shoe

A decent provision for the poor is the true test of civilisation.

--Samuel Johnson

yellow and white abstract painting

Present opportunities are neglected, and attainable good is slighted, by minds busied in extensive ranges and intent upon future advantages.

--Samuel Johnson

coconut tree near body of water

The longer we live the more we think and the higher the value we put on friendship and tenderness towards parents and friends.

--Samuel Johnson

green trees in between gray concrete road

The superiority of some men is merely local. They are great because their associates are little.

--Samuel Johnson

blue sky with white clouds

Pride is a vice, which pride itself inclines every man to find in others, and to overlook in himself.

--Samuel Johnson

yellow and black striped background

There are few things that we so unwillingly give up, even in advanced age, as the supposition that we still have the power of ingratiating ourselves with the fair sex.

--Samuel Johnson

black mountain under blue sky during night time

The natural progress of the works of men is from rudeness to convenience, from convenience to elegance, and from elegance to nicety.

--Samuel Johnson


snow covered mountain under blue sky during daytime

Turn on the prudent
Ant, thy heedful eyes,
Observe her labours,
Sluggard, and be wise.

--Samuel Johnson

yellow background

We are all prompted by the same motives, all deceived by the same fallacies, all animated by hope, obstructed by danger, entangled by desire, and seduced by pleasure.

--Samuel Johnson

empty gray carpet

It is good sense applied with diligence to what was at first a mere accident, and which by great application grew to be called, by the generality of mankind, a particular genius.

--Samuel Johnson

white desk lamp beside green plant

Such is the uncertainty of human affairs, that security and despair are equal follies; and as it is presumption and arrogance to anticipate triumphs, it is weakness and cowardice to prog-nosticate miscarriages.

--Samuel Johnson

multicolored heart LED light on wall

An age that melts in unperceiv'd decay, And glides in modest innocence away.

--Samuel Johnson


selective photography of green leaf plant

When a man is tired of London, he is tired of life; for there is in London all that life can afford.

--Samuel Johnson

man on running field

Almost every man wastes part of his life attempting to display qualities which he does not possess.

--Samuel Johnson

palm tree under orange sky

No member of a society has a right to teach any doctrine contrary to what the society holds to be true.

--Samuel Johnson

Arizona landscape

Gloomy calm of idle vacancy.

--Samuel Johnson

brown trees on brown field during daytime

A man, sir, should keep his friendship in a constant repair.

--Samuel Johnson

pink and white abstract painting

A quibble is to Shakespeare what luminous vapours are to the traveller: he follows it at all adventures; it is sure to lead him out of his way and sure to engulf him in the mire.

--Samuel Johnson

green leafed plants on forest

There is less flogging in our great schools than formerly-but then less is learned there; so what the boys get at one end they lose at the other.

--Samuel Johnson

toddlers standing outdoors

In my early years I read very hard. It is a sad reflection, but a true one, that I knew almost as much at eighteen as I do now.

--Samuel Johnson

blue sky with stars during night time

Let him go abroad to a distant country; let him go to some place where he is not known. Don't let him go to the devil, where he is known.

--Samuel Johnson

white brick wall planning

The excellence of aphorisms consists not so much in the expression of some rare or abstruse sentiment, as in the comprehension of some useful truth in a few words.

--Samuel Johnson

leafless tree under gray sky

The supreme end of education is expert discernment in all things-the power to tell the good from the bad, the genuine from the counterfeit, and to prefer the good and the genuine to the bad and the counterfeit.

--Samuel Johnson

black and white bird on seashore

I will take no more physick, not even my opiates; for I have prayed that I may render up my soul to God unclouded.

--Samuel Johnson

leafless tree under gray sky

Every man speaks and writes with intent to be understood; and it can seldom happen but he that understands himself might convey his notions to another, if, content to be understood, he did not seek to be admired.

--Samuel Johnson

man riding on white horse on the hill

It is the care of a very great part of mankind to conceal their indigence from the rest. They support themselves by temporary expedients, and every day is lost in contriving for to-morrow.

--Samuel Johnson

jellyfish under water photo

So scanty is our present allowance of happiness that in many situations life could scarcely be supported if hope were not allowed to relieve the present hour by pleasures borrowed from the future.

--Samuel Johnson


brown textile in close up image

Depend upon it that if a man talks of his misfortunes there is something in them that is not disagreeable to him; for where there is nothing but pure misery there never is any recourse to the mention of it.

--Samuel Johnson

shoreline during golden hour

Life is barren enough surely with all her trappings; let us be therefore cautious of how we strip her.

--Samuel Johnson

woman in white and multicolored floral shirt standing and smiling on yellow sunflower field

Avarice is always poor.

--Samuel Johnson

pink and blue sky with moon

Pendantry is the unseasonable ostentation of learning. It may be discovered either in the choice of a subject or in the manner d treating it.

--Samuel Johnson


dew drops on glass panel

The arguments for purity of life fail of their due influence, not because they have been considered and confuted, but because they have been passed over without consideration.

--Samuel Johnson

sunset

I am very fond of the company of ladies. I like their beauty, I like their delicacy, I like their vivacity, and I like their silence.

--Samuel Johnson

woman in white dress holding hands with girl in white dress

When a Man is tried of London, he is tired of life.

--Samuel Johnson

gray cactus plant on white pot

I also admit, that there are some sluggish men who are improved by drinking; as there are fruits which are not good till they are rotten.

--Samuel Johnson

None

Riches are of no value in themselves; their use is discovered only in that which they procure.

--Samuel Johnson

person on road at sunset

Excellence in any department can be attained only by the labor of a lifetime; it is not to be purchased at a lesser price.

--Samuel Johnson

white wooden hut during daytime

Faction seldom leaves a man honest, however it might find him.

--Samuel Johnson

castle surrounded fog

To read, write, and converse in due proportions, is, therefore, the business of a man of letters.

--Samuel Johnson


couple sitting near trees during golden hour

No mind is much employed upon the present; recollection and anticipation fill up all our moments.

--Samuel Johnson

white wall paint with black line

But, perhaps, the flatterer is not often detected; for an honest mind is not apt to suspect, and no one exerts the power of discernment with much vigour when selflove favors the deceit.

--Samuel Johnson

band performing on stage in front of people

Good breeding consists in having no particular mark of any profession, but a general elegance of manners.

--Samuel Johnson

green mountains beside lake under blue sky during daytime

Truth allows no choice.

--Samuel Johnson


man in cowboy hat

He who does not mind his belly, will hardly mind anything else.

--Samuel Johnson

red flame

Much mischief is done in the world with very little interest or design.

--Samuel Johnson

red textile

There are goods so opposed that we cannot seize both, but, by too much prudence, may pass between them at too great a distance to reach either.

--Samuel Johnson

silhouette of person wearing cowboy hat during sunset

It is a maxim that no man was ever enslaved by influence while he was fit to be free.

--Samuel Johnson

silhouette of man standing on rock while looking in sky

Men who cannot deceive others are very often successful at deceiving themselves.

--Samuel Johnson

shooting star in night sky

A man who has not been in Italy, is always conscious of an inferiority.

--Samuel Johnson

man smiling while facing other person

Judgment is forced upon us by experience.

--Samuel Johnson

man in gray sweater carrying woman in black jacket

Towering is the confidence of twenty-one.

--Samuel Johnson

green mountain ]

In all pointed sentences, some degree of accuracy must be sacrificed to conciseness.

--Samuel Johnson

pink-petaled rose flower

Attack is the reaction. I never think I have hit hard unless it rebounds.

--Samuel Johnson

boy and cat in front of moon

Falsehood always endeavors to copy the mien and attitude of truth.

--Samuel Johnson

silhouette photography of person in gray sailing boat in the middle of body of water

No man was more foolish when he had not a pen in his hand, or more wise when he had.

--Samuel Johnson

birds flying under cloudy sky during daytime

Every man that has felt pain knows how little all other comforts can gladden him to whom health is denied. Yet who is there does not sometimes hazard it for the enjoyment of an hour?

--Samuel Johnson

yellow flower field near mountain during daytime

Friendship may well deserve the sacrifice of pleasure, though not of conscience.

--Samuel Johnson


sunset

Instead of rating the man by his performances, we rate too frequently the performances by the man.

--Samuel Johnson

person cooking on seashore

Indolence is the devil's cushion.

--Samuel Johnson

snowy mountain

The imitator treads a beaten walk, and with all his diligence can only find a few flowers or branches untouched by his predecessor, the refuse of contempt, or the omissions of negligence.

--Samuel Johnson

brown and gray mountains during daytime

He is no wise man who will quit a certainty for an uncertainty.

--Samuel Johnson

silver round analog wall clock

You cannot give me an instance of any man who is permitted to lay out his own time contriving not to have tedious hours.

--Samuel Johnson

eyeglasses in bokeh photography

Self-confidence is the first requisite to great undertakings.

--Samuel Johnson

tilt shift lens pink fetal flowers

It is in refinement and elegance that the civilized man differs from the savage.

--Samuel Johnson

A white stripe pattern made up of concrete facade ribs

The use of travelling is to regulate imagination by reality, and instead of thinking how things may be, to see them as they are.

--Samuel Johnson

sunset forest

The road to hell is paved with good intentions.

--Samuel Johnson

body of water during daytime

Sir, as a man advances in life, he gets what is better than admiration, -- judgement, to estimate things at their true value.

--Samuel Johnson

closeup photo of violin on brown surface

Life protracted is protracted woe.

--Samuel Johnson

None

London! the needy villain's general home, The common sewer of Paris and of Rome! With eager thirst, by folly or by fate, Sucks in the dregs of each corrupted state.

--Samuel Johnson

green mountain ]

He that will enjoy the brightness of sunshine, must quit the coolness of the shade.

--Samuel Johnson

two person standing while watching sky

The next best thing to knowing something is knowing where to find it.

--Samuel Johnson

white brick wall

If one was to think constantly of death, the business of life would stand still.

--Samuel Johnson

road between yellow leaf trees at daytime

Mutual complacency is the atmosphere of conjugal love.

--Samuel Johnson

sunset

In misery's darkest cavern known, His useful care was ever nigh Where hopeless anguish pour'd his groan, And lonely want retir'd to die.

--Samuel Johnson

silhouette of man standing on hill during starry night

I do not care to speak ill of a man behind his back, but I believe he is an attorney.

--Samuel Johnson

sunset

Inquiries into the heart are not for man.

--Samuel Johnson

brown wooden bridge beside green leafed trees during daytime

Being in a ship is being in a jail, with the chance of being drowned.

--Samuel Johnson

forest trees photograph

To prevent evil is the great end of government, the end for which vigilance and severity are properly employed.

--Samuel Johnson

silhouette of pine trees photo

No one will persist long in helping someone who will not help themselves.

--Samuel Johnson

grayscale photo of elephant on grass field

Poetry is the art of uniting pleasure with truth.

--Samuel Johnson

wormeye view photo of milky way

We are perpetually moralists, but we are geometricians only by chance. Our intercourse with intellectual nature is necessary; our speculations upon matter are voluntary, and at leisure.

--Samuel Johnson

green leafed plant

To be prejudiced is always to be weak; yet there are prejudices so near to laudable that they have been often praised and are always pardoned.

--Samuel Johnson

white concrete building

He that embarks on the voyage of life will always wish to advance rather by the impulse of the wind than the strokes of the oar; and many fold in their passage; while they lie waiting for the gale.

--Samuel Johnson

white and pink plastic bottles

Of the blessings set before you make your choice, and be content.

--Samuel Johnson

None

That friendship may be at once fond and lasting, there must not only be equal virtue on each part, but virtue of the same kind; not only the same end must be proposed, but the same means must be approved by both.

--Samuel Johnson

round black vinyl disc on vinyl player

If pleasure was not followed by pain, who would forbear it?

--Samuel Johnson

man with LED headlight looking upward

Everybody knows worse of himself than he knows of other men.

--Samuel Johnson

yellow and white abstract painting

It is more reasonable to wish for reputation while it may be enjoyed, as Anacreon calls upon his companions to give him for present use the wine and garlands which they propose to bestow upon his tomb.

--Samuel Johnson

green trees on brown dried leaves during daytime

The true measure of a man is how he treats someone who can do him absolutely no good.

--Samuel Johnson

person holding white ceramic cup with liquid

When any anxiety or gloom of the mind takes hold of you, make it a rule not to publish it by complaining; but exert yourselves to hide it, and by endeavoring to hide it you drive it away.

--Samuel Johnson


bare tree on mountain during sunset

This merriment of parsons is mighty offensive.

--Samuel Johnson

white and blue ice in water

I had done all that I could, and no Man is well pleased to have his all neglected, be it ever so little.

--Samuel Johnson

yellow and white color illustration

We are long before we are convinced that happiness is never to be found, and each believes it possessed by others, to keep alive the hope of obtaining it for himself.

--Samuel Johnson

Arizona landscape

All envy would be extinguished, if it were universally known that there are none to be envied.

--Samuel Johnson


four men sitting beside table

Cunning differs from wisdom as twilight from open day.

--Samuel Johnson

yellow and black striped background

All travel has its advantages. If the passenger visits better countries, he may learn to improve his own, and if fortune carries him to worse, he may learn to enjoy it.

--Samuel Johnson

saguaro

Self-confidence is the first requisite to undertakings.

--Samuel Johnson

silhouette photo of mountain during night time

Marriages would be as happy if they were made by the Lord Chancellor without the parties having any choice in the matter.

--Samuel Johnson

aerial photography of mountain range covered with snow under white and blue sky at daytime

I am not so lost in lexicography as to forget that words are the daughters of earth, and that things are the sons of heaven.

--Samuel Johnson

blue sky with white clouds

The advice that is wanted is commonly not welcome and that which is not wanted, evidently an effrontery.

--Samuel Johnson

forest trees photograph

Integrity without knowledge is weak and useless, and knowledge without integrity is dangerous and dreadful.

--Samuel Johnson

person holding white and yellow flower painting

You can never be wise unless you love reading.

--Samuel Johnson

silhouette photography of trees and sky

Of all the grief's that harass the distressed; sure the most bitter is a scornful jest.

--Samuel Johnson

focus photography of chick on gray ground

Hypocrisy is the necessary burden of villainy.

--Samuel Johnson

desert grassland

We may take Fancy for a companion, but must follow Reason as our guide.

--Samuel Johnson

photo of gray elephant on grass

He who waits to do a great deal of good at once, will never do anything.

--Samuel Johnson

blue sky with white clouds

Power is gradually stealing away from the many to the few, because the few are more vigilant and consistent.

--Samuel Johnson

aerial photography of forest

Frugality may be termed the daughter of Prudence, the sister of Temperance, and the parent of Liberty.

--Samuel Johnson

rainbow

Human life is everywhere a state in which much is to be endured, and little to be enjoyed.

--Samuel Johnson

withered tree surrounded with snow during daytime

He is not only dull himself, but the cause of dulness in others.

--Samuel Johnson

shade under a green-leafed tree

Studious to please, yet not ashamed to fail.

--Samuel Johnson

horse

Gratitude is a fruit of great cultivation; you do not find it among gross people.

--Samuel Johnson

black mountain under blue sky during night time

The great end of prudence is to give cheerfulness to those hours which splendor cannot gild, and acclamation cannot exhilarate.

--Samuel Johnson

None

The balls of sight are so formed, that one man's eyes are spectacles to another, to read his heart with.

--Samuel Johnson

gray leaves

It may be observed in general that the future is purchased by the present. It is not possible to secure distant or permanent happiness but by the forbearance of some immediate gratification.

--Samuel Johnson

None

Subordination tends greatly to human happiness. Were we all upon an equality, we should have no other enjoyment than mere animal pleasure.

--Samuel Johnson

clear wine glass with red wine

Every desire is a viper in the bosom, who while he was chill was harmless; but when warmth gave him strength, exerted it in poison.

--Samuel Johnson

None

He that hopes to look back hereafter with satisfaction upon past years must learn to know the present value of single minutes, and endeavour to let no particle of time fall useless to the ground.

--Samuel Johnson

Light blue to dark blue gradient

To let friendship die away by negligence and silence is certainly not wise. It is voluntarily to throw away one of the greatest comforts of the weary pilgrimage.

--Samuel Johnson


purple petaled flower with vase selective focus photography

Language is the dress of thought.

--Samuel Johnson

Arizona landscape pines

By those who look close to the ground dirt will be seen. I hope I see things from a greater distance.

--Samuel Johnson

close-up photography of heart shaped fairy lite on brown sand

The only end of writing is to enable readers better to enjoy life or better to endue it.

--Samuel Johnson

man and woman in cowboy hat

It is better a man should be abused than forgotten.

--Samuel Johnson

close-up photography of heart shaped fairy lite on brown sand

Curiosity is one of the permanent and certain characteristics of a vigorous intellect.

--Samuel Johnson

black bird flying on white background

By forbearing to do what may innocently be done, we may add hourly new vigor to resolution.

--Samuel Johnson

person on road at sunset

He that pines with hunger, is in little care how others shall be fed. The poor man is seldom studious to make his grandson rich.

--Samuel Johnson

four men sitting beside table

Books have always a secret influence on the understanding.

--Samuel Johnson

purple flowers

Our aspirations are our possibilities.

--Samuel Johnson

woman standing on cliff

I look upon every day to be lost in which I do not make a new acquaintance.

--Samuel Johnson

brown, black, and white butterfly on purple petaled flower photo

Thought is always troublesome to him who lives without his own approbation.

--Samuel Johnson

boy standing on grass and facing fence during daytime

The natural flights of the human mind are not from pleasure to pleasure, but from hope to hope.

--Samuel Johnson

black fishes

Admiration and love are like being intoxicated with champagne; judgment and friendship are like being enlivened.

--Samuel Johnson

closeup photography of brown and gray concrete bricks

It is scarcely credible to what degree discernment may be dazzled by the mist of pride, and wisdom infatuated by the intoxication of flattery.

--Samuel Johnson


blue and white water surface

Surely a long life must be somewhat tedious, since we are forced to call in so many trifling things to help rid us of our time, which will never return.

--Samuel Johnson


tree frog

Distance either of time or place is sufficient to reconcile weak minds to wonderful relations.

--Samuel Johnson

lion on green grass during golden hour

Most minds are the slaves of external circumstances, and conform to any hand that undertakes to mould them.

--Samuel Johnson

rainbow desert

Criticism, as it was first instituted by Aristotle, was meant as a standard of judging well.

--Samuel Johnson

silhouette of mountain

Agriculture not only gives riches to a nation, but the only riches she can call her own.

--Samuel Johnson

coconut tree near body of water

Few faults of style, whether real or imaginary, excite the malignity of a more numerous class of readers, than the use of hard words.

--Samuel Johnson

silhouette of woman during sunset

I have two very cogent reasons for not printing any list of subscribers; one, that I have lost all the names, the other, that I have spent all the money.

--Samuel Johnson

Arizona landscape

Prejudice, not being founded on reason, cannot be removed by argument.

--Samuel Johnson

blue sky and white clouds

Few enterprises of great labor or hazard would be undertaken if we had not the power of magnifying the advantages we expect from them.

--Samuel Johnson

purple and white clouds during night time

Depend upon it, sir, when a man knows he is to be hanged in a fortnight, it concentrates his mind wonderfully.

--Samuel Johnson

black mountain under blue sky during night time

The return of my birthday, if I remember it, fills me with thoughts which it seems to be the general care of humanity to escape.

--Samuel Johnson

brown tree on surrounded by brown grass during golden hour

Life has no pleasure higher or nobler than that of friendship.

--Samuel Johnson

birds flying under cloudy sky during daytime

All truth is valuable, and satirical criticism may be considered as useful when it rectifies error and improves judgment; he that refines the public taste is a public benefactor.

--Samuel Johnson

multicolored heart LED light on wall

To keep your secret is wisdom, but to expect others to keep it is folly.

--Samuel Johnson

None

It is not true that people are naturally equal for no two people can be together for even a half an hour without one acquiring an evident superiority over the other.

--Samuel Johnson

selective focus photography of woman taking selfie

Life must be filled up, and the man who is not capable of intellectual pleasures must content himself with such as his senses can afford.

--Samuel Johnson


sunset

One of the disadvantages of wine is that it makes a man mistake words for thoughts.

--Samuel Johnson

photography of white wall lot

Friendship, compounded of esteem and love, derives from one its tenderness and its permanence from the other.

--Samuel Johnson

assorted books on wooden table

Life is a pill which none of us can bear to swallow without gilding.

--Samuel Johnson

brown and white butterfly on purple petaled flower

Much mischief is done in the world with very little interest or design.

--Samuel Johnson

purple flowered hedge plants

As to precedents, to be sure they will increase in course of time; but the more precedents there are, the less occasion is there for law; that is to say, the less occasion is there for investigating principles.

--Samuel Johnson

pink dahlia in bloom

Money confounds subordination.

--Samuel Johnson

couple sitting near trees during golden hour

Were it not for imagination a man would be as happy in the arms of a chambermaid as of a duchess.

--Samuel Johnson


sealion surrounded by rocks during daytime

Memory is like all other human powers, with which no man can be satisfied who measures them by what he can conceive, or by what he can desire.

--Samuel Johnson


silhouette photo of mountain during night time

Poverty has, in large cities, very different appearances; it is often concealed in splendour, and often in extravagance.

--Samuel Johnson

blue and white abstract painting

He that is already corrupt is naturally suspicious, and he that becomes suspicious will quickly become corrupt.

--Samuel Johnson

brown leaf on asphalt road

No man was ever great by imitation.

--Samuel Johnson

three boys running on field

Ladies, stock and tend your hive,
Trifle not at thirty-five;
For, howe'er we boast and strive,
Life declines from thirty-five;
He that ever hopes to thrive
Must begin by thirty-five.

--Samuel Johnson

white flowers

Nature makes us poor only when we want necessaries, but custom gives the name of poverty to the want of superfluities.

--Samuel Johnson

woman standing on beachfront

It is better that some should be unhappy rather than that none should be happy, which would be the case in a general state of equality.

--Samuel Johnson


white wall paint with black shadow

Nothing is more common than to find men, whose works are now totally neglected, mentioned with praises by their contemporaries as the oracles of their age, and the legislators of science.

--Samuel Johnson

green trees in between gray concrete road

What is good only because it pleases cannot be pronounced good till it has been found to please.

--Samuel Johnson

sunset

All envy is proportionate to desire; we are uneasy at the attainments of another, according as we think our own happiness would be advanced by the addition of that which he withholds from us.

--Samuel Johnson


forest trees photograph

Milton, Madam, was a genius that could cut a Colossus from a rock; but could not carve heads upon cherry-stones.

--Samuel Johnson

mountains covered with fog

His scorn of the great is repeated too often to be real; no man thinks much of that which he despises.

--Samuel Johnson


rocky mountain

Men are generally idle, and ready to satisfy themselves, and intimidate the industry of others, by calling that impossible which is only difficult.

--Samuel Johnson

orange and blue abstract painting

Let him that desires to see others happy, make haste to give while his gift can be enjoyed, and remember that every moment of delay takes away something from the value of his benefaction.

--Samuel Johnson

None

Depend upon it, sir, it is when you come close to a man in conservation that you discover what his real abilities are; to make a speech in a public assembly is a knack.

--Samuel Johnson

women's black and pink monokini

Of all the griefs that harass the distrest, Sure the most bitter is a scornful jest.

--Samuel Johnson

cluster of stars in the sky

Get together a hundred or two men, however sensible they may be, and you are very likely to have a mob.

--Samuel Johnson

coconut tree near body of water

To neglect at any time preparation for death is to sleep on our post at a siege; to omit it in old age is to sleep at an attack.

--Samuel Johnson

sunset woman at beach

There are charms made only for distance admiration.

--Samuel Johnson

person holding hands

Words are but the signs of ideas.

--Samuel Johnson

brown and white butterfly on purple petaled flower

He who makes a beast of himself gets rid of the pain of being a man.

--Samuel Johnson

grassland landscape

The insolence of wealth will creep out.

--Samuel Johnson

aerial photography of pine trees with mist

Tea's proper use is to amuse the idle, relax the studious, and dilute the full meals of those who cannot use exercise, and will not use abstinence.

--Samuel Johnson

yellow textile

Shakespeare opens a mine which contains gold and diamonds in unexhaustible plenty, though clouded by incrustations, debased by impurities, and mingled with a mass of meaner minerales.

--Samuel Johnson

Texas buildings

He left the name at which the world grew pale, To point a moral, or adorn a tale.

--Samuel Johnson

flat lay photography teacup on top of saucer

Greece appears to be the fountain of knowledge; Rome of elegance.

--Samuel Johnson


pink petaled flowers under trees at daytime

Ah! Sir, a boy's being flogged is not so severe as a man's having the hiss of the world against him.

--Samuel Johnson


None

Such is the state of life, that none are happy but by the anticipation of change, the change itself is nothing when we have made it, the next wish is to change again.

--Samuel Johnson

white wooden dock on white sand

Nothing has tended more to retard the advancement of science than the disposition in vulgar minds to vilify what they cannot comprehend.

--Samuel Johnson


silhouette of people riding bicycle

Life is surely given us for higher purposes than to gather what our ancestors have wisely thrown away, and to learn what is of no value but because it has been forgotten.

--Samuel Johnson


white brick wall

The chains of habit are too weak to be felt until they are too strong to be broken.

--Samuel Johnson


white and blue ice on water

One cause, which is not always observed, of the insufficiency of riches, is that they very seldom make their owner rich.

--Samuel Johnson

None

You are much surer that you are doing good when you pay money to those who work, as the recompense of their labor, than when you give money merely in charity.

--Samuel Johnson

rock formation under starry skies

No, Sir, you will have much more influence by giving or lending money where it is wanted, than by hospitality.

--Samuel Johnson

man skiing on land

Languages are the pedigree of nations.

--Samuel Johnson

purple lavender flower

Vulgar and inactive minds confound familiarity with knowledge, and conceive themselves informed of the whole nature of things, when they are shown their form or told their use.

--Samuel Johnson

pair of white lace-up shoes

In order that all men may be taught to speak truth, it is necessary that all likewise should learn to hear it.

--Samuel Johnson


gray and white bird on red and yellow leaves

The future is purchased by the present.

--Samuel Johnson

None

No man reads a book of science from pure inclination. The books that we do read with pleasure are light compositions, which contain a quick succession of events.

--Samuel Johnson

pink flowers in tilt shift lens

In lapidary inscriptions a man is not upon oath.

--Samuel Johnson

brown brick wall photography

Deviation from Nature is deviation from happiness.

--Samuel Johnson

green background

Disease generally begins that equality which death completes.

--Samuel Johnson

tree and ranchhouse

We often need reminding even if we do not often need educating.

--Samuel Johnson

yellow and black striped background

New arts are long in the world before poets describe them; for they borrow everything from their predecessors, and commonly derive very little from nature or from life.

--Samuel Johnson

pink flower

Advertisements are now so numerous that they are very negligently perused.

--Samuel Johnson

body of water during daytime

In bed we laugh, in bed we cry, and born in bed, in bed we die; the near approach a bed may show of human bliss to human woe.

--Samuel Johnson

gray hummingbird

There are occasions on which all apology is rudeness.

--Samuel Johnson


empty gray carpet

When first the college rolls receive his name,
The young enthusiast quilts his ease for fame;
Through all his veins the fever of renown
Burns from the strong contagion of the gown.

--Samuel Johnson

brown and white abstract painting

More is learned in a public than in a private school, from emulation. There is the collision of mind with mind, or the radiation of many minds pointing to one center.

--Samuel Johnson

Arizona landscape

The noblest prospect which a Scotchman ever sees is the high road that leads him to England.

--Samuel Johnson

green mountain ]

To a people warlike and indigent, an incursion into a rich country is never hurtful.

--Samuel Johnson

gray concrete surface

Presumption will be easily corrected; but timidity is a disease of the mind more obstinate and fatal.

--Samuel Johnson

forest with tall and green trees during daytime

An author places himself uncalled before the tribunal of criticism and solicits fame at the hazard of disgrace.

--Samuel Johnson

leafless tree on snow covered ground

Pain and disease awaken us to convictions which are necessary to our moral condition.

--Samuel Johnson

man riding horse

A man used to vicissitudes is not easily dejected.

--Samuel Johnson

panoramic photography of mountains

Money and time are the heaviest burdens of life, and... the unhappiest of all mortals are those who have more of either than they know how to use.

--Samuel Johnson

blue, yellow, and purple starry sky during nighttime

Poor Sober! I have often teased him with reproof, and lie has often promised reformation: for no man is so much open to conviction as the idler, but there is none on whom it operates so little.

--Samuel Johnson

close up shot of white flower

Few moments are more pleasing than those in which the mind is concerting measures for a new undertaking.

--Samuel Johnson

man riding on white horse on the hill

No money is better spent than what is laid out for domestic satisfaction. A man is pleased that his wife is dressed as well as other people, and the wife is pleased that she is dressed.

--Samuel Johnson


sunset

I believe it will be found that those who marry late are best pleased with their children; and those who marry early, with their partners.

--Samuel Johnson

four coffee cups on floor

Fears of the brave and follies of the wise.

--Samuel Johnson

Texas buildings

It is generally agreed, that few men are made better by affluence or exaltation.

--Samuel Johnson

silhouette of man standing on hill during starry night

When a man knows he is to be hanged in a fortnight, it concentrates his mind wonderfully.

--Samuel Johnson

None

Whoever wishes to attain an English style, familiar but not coarse, and elegant but not ostentatious, must give his days and nights to the volumes of Addison.

--Samuel Johnson


photo of mountains

It is however, reasonable, to have perfection in our eye; that we may always advance towards it, though we know it never can be reached.

--Samuel Johnson

white wall paint with black shadow

It is necessary to the success of flattery, that it be accommodated to particular circumstances or characters, and enter the heart on that side where the passions are ready to receive it.

--Samuel Johnson


photography of white wall lot

Some desire is necessary to keep life in motion, and he whose real wants are supplied must admit those of fancy.

--Samuel Johnson

couple sitting near trees during golden hour

Don't tell me of deception; a lie is a lie, whether it be a lie to the eye or a lie to the ear.

--Samuel Johnson

aerial's photo of metropolitan during night time\

Guilt once harbored in the conscious breast, intimidates the brave, degrades the great.

--Samuel Johnson

water on seashore

Sir, what is poetry? Why, Sir, it is much easier to say what it is not. We all know what light is; but it is not easy to tell what it is.

--Samuel Johnson

white Starbuck plastic cup on brown fabric armchair

Large offers and sturdy rejections are among the most common topics of falsehood.

--Samuel Johnson

aerial photography of forest

He that overvalues himself will undervalue others, and he that undervalues others will oppress them.

--Samuel Johnson

black pug puppy lying on gray bed

If we estimate dignity by immediate usefulness, agriculture is undoubtedly the first and noblest science.

--Samuel Johnson

rainbow

The happiest part of a man's life is what he passes lying awake in bed in the morning.

--Samuel Johnson

None

A good wife is like the ivy which beautifies the building to which it clings, twining its tendrils more lovingly as time converts the ancient edifice into a ruin.

--Samuel Johnson

long exposure photography of lights

Hypocrisy is the necessary burden of villainy, affectation part of the chosen trappings of folly; the one completes a villain, the other only finishes a fop.

--Samuel Johnson



white sand

When we see our enemies and friends gliding away before us, let us not forget that we are subject to the general law of mortality, and shall soon be where our doom will be fixed forever.

--Samuel Johnson

brown rock formation

This is one of the disadvantages of wine: it makes a man mistake words for thought.

--Samuel Johnson

silhouette of mountain during golden hour

Solitude is dangerous to reason, without being favourable to virtue. Remember that the solitary mortal is certainly luxurious, probably superstitious, and possibly mad.

--Samuel Johnson

three person looking stars and milky way

God Himself, sir, does not propose to judge a man until his life is over. Why should you and I?

--Samuel Johnson

black wooden louver door window

Those authors are to be read at schools that supply most axioms of prudence.

--Samuel Johnson

pink flower

A fishing rod is a stick with a hook at one end and a fool at the other.

--Samuel Johnson

close up shot of white flower

Knowledge is of two kinds. We know a subject ourselves, or we know where we can find information upon it.

--Samuel Johnson

Dark purple to red to orange gradient

Wickedness is always easier than virtue; for it takes the short cut to everything. It is much easier to steal one hundred pounds than to get it by labour or any other way.

--Samuel Johnson

green lizard

And panting Time toil'd after him in vain.

--Samuel Johnson

white wooden hut during daytime

He was so generally civil, that nobody thanked him for it.

--Samuel Johnson

two person standing while watching sky

This is my history; like all other histories, a narrative of misery.

--Samuel Johnson

man and woman kissing under blue sky during daytime

Whatever advantage we snatch beyond a certain portion allotted us by at nature, is like money spent before it is due, which, at the time of regular payment, will be missed and regretted.

--Samuel Johnson


white clouds and blue sky during daytime

I do not know, sir, that the fellow is an infidel; but if he be an infidel, he is an infidel as a dog is an infidel; that is to say, he has never thought upon the subject.

--Samuel Johnson

purple and black skies

Spite and ill-nature are among the most expensive luxuries in life.

--Samuel Johnson

photo of clear sky full of stars

A cow is a very good animal in the field, but we turn her out of a garden.

--Samuel Johnson


purple textile in close up photography

He who has so little knowledge of human nature as to seek happiness by changing anything but his own disposition will waste his life in fruitless efforts.

--Samuel Johnson

multicolored abstract painting

It is not from reason and prudence that people marry, but from inclination.

--Samuel Johnson

woman standing on sunflower field

When men come to like a sea-life, they are not fit to live on land.

--Samuel Johnson

yellow and green forest during daytime

A man who is good enough to go to heaven is good enough to be a clergyman.

--Samuel Johnson

library shelf near black wooden ladder

Where grief is fresh, any attempt to divert it only irritates.

--Samuel Johnson

aerial photography of forest

Merriment is always the effect of a sudden impression. The jest which is expected is already destroyed.

--Samuel Johnson

gray cactus plant on white pot

Pointed axioms and acute replies fly loose about the world, and are assigned successively to those whom it may be the fashion to celebrate.

--Samuel Johnson

aerial photography of forest

With what hope can we endeavor to persuade the ladies that the time spent at the toilet is lost in vanity.

--Samuel Johnson

None

Pleasure is very seldom found where it is sought. Our brightest blazes are commonly kindled by unexpected sparks.

--Samuel Johnson

assorted books on wooden table

Courtesy and good humor are often found with little real worth.

--Samuel Johnson

brown sand under blue sky during daytime

The peculiar doctrine of Christianity is that of a universal sacrifice and perpetual propitiation.

--Samuel Johnson

horse

Each change of many-colour'd life he drew, Exhausted worlds, and then imagin'd new.

--Samuel Johnson

snow covered mountain under blue sky during daytime

Every man prefers virtue, when there is not some strong incitement to transgress its precepts.

--Samuel Johnson

iceberg near mountain during day

Just praise is only a debt, but flattery is a present.

--Samuel Johnson

None

If your determination is fixed, I do not counsel you to despair. Few things are impossible to diligence and skill. Great works are performed not by strength, but perseverance.

--Samuel Johnson

black textile on white textile

Whoever commits a fraud is guilty not only of the particular injury to him who he deceives, but of the diminution of that confidence which constitutes not only the ease but the existence of society.

--Samuel Johnson

yellow and white color illustration

Whatever professes to benefit by pleasing must please at once. The pleasures of the mind imply something sudden and unexpected; that which elevates must always surprise.

--Samuel Johnson

brown butterfly perched on flower

I am a great friend of public amusements, they keep people from vice.

--Samuel Johnson

white board beside pencil and tape

My dear friend, clear your mind of can't.

--Samuel Johnson

brown sands

In order that all men may be taught to speak the truth, it is necessary that all likewise should learn to hear it.

--Samuel Johnson

aerial photography of forest

A am a great friend of public amusements, they keep people from vice.

--Samuel Johnson

blue sky and white clouds

He that accepts protection, stipulates obedience. We have always protected the Americans; we may therefore subject them to government.

--Samuel Johnson

white and purple flower in macro shot

Worth seeing? Yes; but not worth going to see.

--Samuel Johnson

white flowers

Read over your compositions and whenever you meet with a passage which you think is particularly fine, strike it out.

--Samuel Johnson

mountains covered with fog

The gloomy and the resentful are always found among those who have nothing to do or who do nothing.

--Samuel Johnson

brown and gray floral textile

Much is due to those who first broke the way to knowledge, and left only to their successors the task of smoothing it.

--Samuel Johnson

silhouette of flying bird

The number of such as live without the ardour of inquiry is very small, though many content themselves with cheap amusements, and waste their lives in researches of no importance.

--Samuel Johnson

green, red, and white abstract painting

A book should teach us to enjoy life, or to endure it.

--Samuel Johnson

None

I remember a passage in Goldsmith's "Vicar of Wakefield," which he was afterwards fool enough to expunge: "I do not love a man who is zealous for nothing.

--Samuel Johnson

old cowboy boots

He who has provoked the shaft of wit, cannot complain that he smarts from it.

--Samuel Johnson

shorebird on pier

The first years of man must make provision for the last.

--Samuel Johnson

white flowers

Be not too hasty to trust or to admire the teachers of morality; they discourse like angels, but they live like men.

--Samuel Johnson

adult Cavalier King Charles Spaniel dog

Whoever envies another confesses his superiority.

--Samuel Johnson

brown wooden dockside beside sea

A man will turn over half a library to make one book.

--Samuel Johnson

brown mountain

Every quotation contributes something to the stability or enlargement of language.

--Samuel Johnson

silhouette of people riding bicycle

No government power can be abused long. Mankind will not bear it.... There is a remedy in human nature against tyranny, that will keep us safe under every form of government.

--Samuel Johnson

white snow mountain

Treating your adversary with respect is striking soft in battle.

--Samuel Johnson

person in black top carrying brown wicker basket

An infallible characteristic of meanness is cruelty. Men who have practiced tortures on animals without pity, relating them without shame, how can they still hold their heads among human beings?

--Samuel Johnson

fawn pug standing on textile

Revenge is the act of passion, vengeance is an act of justice.

--Samuel Johnson

None

It is dangerous for mortal beauty, or terrestrial virtue, to be examined by too strong a light. The torch of Truth shows much that we cannot, and all that we would not, see.

--Samuel Johnson

white and black satellite dish on brown field during night time

Wine makes a man more pleased with himself; I do not say it makes him more pleasing to others.

--Samuel Johnson


milky way above body of water

Leave to Heaven the measure and the choice.

--Samuel Johnson

time lapse photography body of water

When a man marries a widow his jealousies revert to the past: no man is as good as his wife says her first husband was.

--Samuel Johnson

Arizona landscape

He that voluntarily continues in ignorance, is guilty of all the crimes which ignorance produces.

--Samuel Johnson

road in the middle of grass covered field during day

The pleasure of expecting enjoyment is often greater than that of obtaining it, and the completion of almost every wish is found a disappointment.

--Samuel Johnson

Arizona landscape

No man tells his opinion so freely as when he imagines it received with implicit veneration.

--Samuel Johnson

silhouette photography of wavy ocean

You find no man, at all intellectual, who is willing to leave London. No, Sir, when a man is tired of London, he is tired of life; for there is in London all that life can afford.

--Samuel Johnson

white clouds and blue sky

Leisure and curiosity might soon make great advances in useful knowledge, were they not diverted by minute emulation and laborious trifles.

--Samuel Johnson

pink flower

No man is obliged to do as much as he can do. A man is to have part of his life to himself.

--Samuel Johnson

person holding cup of coffee

When making your choice in life, do not neglect to live.

--Samuel Johnson

sunset

The relief of enemies has a tendency to unite mankind in fraternal affection.

--Samuel Johnson


fawn pug lying on gray blanket

Curiosity is the thirst of the soul.

--Samuel Johnson

silhouette of man standing on rock while looking in sky

A man seldom thinks with more earnestness of anything than he does of his dinner.

--Samuel Johnson

iceberg near mountain during day

Nothing is more hopeless than a scheme of merriment.

--Samuel Johnson

white and blue ice on water

The misery of man proceeds not from any single crush of overwhelming evil, but from small vexations continually repeated.

--Samuel Johnson

pink and white tulips on white surface

We are inclined to believe those whom we do not know because they have never deceived us.

--Samuel Johnson

yellow and white abstract painting

No man will be found in whose mind airy notions do not sometimes tyrannize, and force him to hope or fear beyond the limits of sober probability.

--Samuel Johnson

blue painted wall with white paint

Let observation with extensive view, Survey mankind from China to Peru; Remark each anxious toil, each eager strife, And watch the busy scenes of crowded life.

--Samuel Johnson


None

Wine gives a man nothing. It neither gives him knowledge nor wit; it only animates a man, and enables him to bring out what a dread of the company has repressed. It only puts in motion what had been locked up in frost.

--Samuel Johnson

green trees in between gray concrete road

Authors and lovers always suffer some infatuation, from which only absence can set them free.

--Samuel Johnson


sunset forest

Each person's work is always a portrait of himself.

--Samuel Johnson

green leafed plant

His virtues walked their narrow round,
Nor made a pause, nor left a void;
And sure the Eternal Master found
The single talent well employed.

--Samuel Johnson

black pug puppy lying on gray bed

To me -- the choice of life is become less important; I hope hereafter to think only on the choice of eternity.

--Samuel Johnson

2 people riding on boat during sunset

Resentment is a union of sorrow with malignity; a combination of a passion which all endeavor to avoid with a passion which all concur to detest.

--Samuel Johnson


lights pattern swirls

To strive with difficulties, and to conquer them, is the highest human felicity.

--Samuel Johnson

toddler hugging siberian husky

No one ever became great by imitation.

--Samuel Johnson

silhouette photography of person in gray sailing boat in the middle of body of water

Wit will never make a man rich, but there are places where riches will always make a wit.

--Samuel Johnson

pink tree

My nights are flatulent and unquiet.

--Samuel Johnson

tilt shift lens pink fetal flowers

The true measure of a man is how he treats someone who does him absolutely no good.

--Samuel Johnson

water droplets on green leaf

Words are daughters of earth but ideas are sons of heaven.

--Samuel Johnson

sunset

A married man has many cares, but a bachelor no pleasures.

--Samuel Johnson

clear blue sea under blue sky

The most Heterogeneous ideas are yoked by violence together.

--Samuel Johnson

brown and grey trees and rock formation painting

Bashfulness may sometimes exclude pleasure, but seldom opens any avenue to sorrow or remorse.

--Samuel Johnson

body of water under blue sky during sunset

It is wonderful to think how men of very large estates not only spend their yearly income but are often actually in want of money. It is clear, they have not valued for what they spend.

--Samuel Johnson


empty concrete road covered surrounded by tall tress with sun rays

Prudence keeps life safe, but it does not often make it happy.

--Samuel Johnson

silhouette of stones during golden hour

Economy is the parent of integrity, of liberty, and of ease, and the beauteous sister of temperance, of cheerfulness and health.

--Samuel Johnson

sunset

Dishonor waits on perfidy. A man should blush to think a falsehood; it is the crime of cowards.

--Samuel Johnson

calm ocean

Every government is perpetually degenerating towards corruption, from which it must be rescued at certain periods by the resuscitation of its first principles, and the re-establishment of its original constitution.

--Samuel Johnson

white flowers

Silence propagates itself, and the longer talk has been suspended, the more difficult it is to find anything to say.

--Samuel Johnson

gray cactus plant on white pot

Every man has a right to utter what he thinks truth, and every other man has a right to knock him down for it. Martyrdom is the test.

--Samuel Johnson

brown grass field near gray rocky mountain during daytime

Admiration must be continued by that novelty which first produces it; and how much soever is given, there must always be reason to imagine that more remains.

--Samuel Johnson


red moon at night

If a man does not make new acquaintances as he advances through life, he will soon find himself left alone. A man, sir, should keep his friendship in a constant repair.

--Samuel Johnson

closeup photography of wall

A contempt of the monuments and the wisdom of the past, may be justly reckoned one of the reigning follies of these days, to which pride and idleness have equally contributed.

--Samuel Johnson

black and white photo of a black

Genius now and then produces a lucky trifle. We still read the Dove of Anacreon, and Sparrow of Catullus; and a writer naturally pleases himself with a performance which owes nothing to the subject.

--Samuel Johnson

None

Liberty is the parent of truth, but truth and decency are sometimes at variance. All men and all propositions are to be treated here as they deserve, and there are many who have no claim either to respect or decency.

--Samuel Johnson

photo of pine trees

Ease, a neutral state between pain and pleasure ... if it is not rising into pleasure will be falling towards pain.

--Samuel Johnson

rainbow desert

Prepare for death, if here at night you roam, and sign your will before you sup from home.

--Samuel Johnson


rock formation above water

A decent provision for the poor is the true test of civilization.

--Samuel Johnson

low angle photography of green and brown tree

An exotic and irrational entertainment.

--Samuel Johnson

grayscale photo of elephant on grass field

Whatever enlarges hope will also exalt courage.

--Samuel Johnson

brown sands

These papers of the day have uses more adequate to the purposes of common life than more pompous and durable volumes.

--Samuel Johnson

person standing on top of mountain

Must helpless man, in ignorance sedate, roll darkly down the torrent of his fate.

--Samuel Johnson

sunset hgihway

The vicious count their years; virtuous, their acts.

--Samuel Johnson

aerial photography of pine trees

Apologies are seldom of any use.

--Samuel Johnson

mountains under white clouds at daytime

The triumph of hope over experience.

--Samuel Johnson

silhouette of stones during golden hour

Superfluous lags the veteran on the stage,
Till pitying Nature signs the last release,
And bids afflicted worth retire to peace.

--Samuel Johnson

blue flower in close up photography

Who drives fat oxen should himself be fat.

--Samuel Johnson

closeup photo of bird beside purple petal flowers

Truth, Sir, is a cow which will yield such people no more milk, and so they are gone to milk the bull.

--Samuel Johnson

None

Where necessity ends, desire and curiosity begin; and no sooner are we supplied with everything nature can demand than we sit down to contrive artificial appetites.

--Samuel Johnson

dew drops on glass panel

As any action or posture, long continued, will distort and disfigure the limbs, so the mind likewise is crippled and contracted by perpetual application to the same set of ideas.

--Samuel Johnson

lightning strike at night

He that teaches us anything which we knew not before is undoubtedly to be reverenced as a master.

--Samuel Johnson

rock formation surrounding by body of water

There are few ways in which a man can be more innocently employed than in getting money.

--Samuel Johnson

photo of gray moon

More knowledge may be gained of a man's real character by a short conversation with one of his servants than from a formal and studied narrative, begun with his pedigree and ended with his funeral.

--Samuel Johnson

blue sky and white clouds

It is commonly observed, that when two Englishmen meet, their first talk is of the weather; they are in haste to tell each other, what each must already know, that it is hot or cold, bright or cloudy, windy or calm.

--Samuel Johnson


blue and white light digital wallpaper

The really happy woman is the one who can enjoy the scenery when she has to take a detour. Happiness is not a state to arrive at, but rather a manner of traveling.

--Samuel Johnson

yellow and green forest during daytime

It is very common for us to desire most what we are least qualified to obtain.

--Samuel Johnson

forest near mountain alps

Bachelors have consciences, married men have wives.

--Samuel Johnson

low angle view of blue clouds

The usual fortune of complaint is to excite contempt more than pity.

--Samuel Johnson

purple flower on purple textile

To revenge reasonable incredulity by refusing evidence, is a degree of insolence with which the world is not yet acquainted; and stubborn audacity is the last refuge of guilt.

--Samuel Johnson

blue sky with stars during night time

A gentleman who had been very unhappy in marriage, married immediately after his wife died; it was the triumph of hope over experience.

--Samuel Johnson

mountains under white mist at daytime

The Irish are a fair people: They never speak well of one another.

--Samuel Johnson

brown and gray brick wall

Such is the pleasure of projecting that many content themselves with a succession of visionary schemes, and wear out their allotted time in the calm amusement of contriving what they never attempt or hope to execute.

--Samuel Johnson

black and gray floral textile

Dictionaries are like watches; the worst is better than none, and the best cannot be expected to go quite true.

--Samuel Johnson

sunset

There are some sluggish men who are improved by drinking; as there are fruits that are not good until they are rotten.

--Samuel Johnson



aerial photography of forest

Adversity has ever been considered the state in which a man most easily becomes acquainted with himself.

--Samuel Johnson

black and white bird on seashore

It is more from carelessness about truth than from intentionally lying that there is so much falsehood in the world.

--Samuel Johnson

selective focus photography of black and white bird on stem

It is wonderful to think how men of very large estates not only spend their yearly income, but are often actually in want of money. It is clear, they have not value for what they spend.

--Samuel Johnson

yellow flower

Was ever poet so trusted before?

--Samuel Johnson

silhouette of grass under moonlight

Novel: A small tale, generally of love.

--Samuel Johnson

green leaf tree on shore

The trappings of a monarchy would set up an ordinary commonwealth.

--Samuel Johnson

raging waves through shores

Those who attempt nothing themselves think every thing easily performed, and consider the unsuccessful always as criminal.

--Samuel Johnson


None

He who fails to please in his salutation and address is at once rejected, and never obtains an opportunity of showing his latest excellences or essential qualities.

--Samuel Johnson

brown and white abstract painting

Pride is seldom delicate, it will please itself with very mean advantages; and envy feels not its own happiness, but when it may be compared with the misery of others.

--Samuel Johnson

silhouette of trees during nighttime

If I have said something to hurt a man once, I shall not get the better of this by saying many things to please him.

--Samuel Johnson

green trees near lake under cloudy sky during daytime

In Shakespeare's plays, the mourner hastening to bury his friend is all the time colliding with the reveller hastening to his wine.

--Samuel Johnson

silhouette of person standing beside bare tree under stary sky

The natural flights of the human mind are not from pleasure to pleasure but from hope to hope.

--Samuel Johnson

silhouette of mountain under blue sky during daytime

The gratification of curiosity rather frees us from uneasiness, than confers pleasure. We are more pained by ignorance, than delighted by instruction. Curiosity is the thirst of the soul.

--Samuel Johnson

snow covered mountain under blue sky

Perhaps man is the only being that can properly be called idle.

--Samuel Johnson

flat lay photography teacup on top of saucer

Man alone is born crying, lives complaining, and dies disappointed.

--Samuel Johnson

wide lake over sunset view

Classical quotation is the parole of literary men all over the world.

--Samuel Johnson

brown houses in front of hill under starry night

Praise, like gold and diamonds, owes its value only to its scarcity.

--Samuel Johnson

green and white bird on black wire during daytime

No man is much pleased with a companion who does not increase, in some respect, his fondness of himself.

--Samuel Johnson

women's black and pink monokini

Nature has given women so much power that the law has very wisely given them little.

--Samuel Johnson

None

Revenge is an act of passion; vengeance of justice. Injuries are revenged; crimes are avenged.

--Samuel Johnson

green trees under white sky during daytime

Let us be quick to repent of injuries while repentance may not be a barren anguish.

--Samuel Johnson


yellow and red color textile

On Sir Joshua Reynolds's observing that the real character of a man was found out by his amusements. Yes, Sir, no man is a hypocrite in his pleasures.

--Samuel Johnson

person on road at sunset

Those who attain any excellence commonly spend life in one pursuit; for excellence is not often granted upon easier terms.

--Samuel Johnson

brown textile in close up image

There is certainly no greater happiness than to be able to look back on a life usefully and virtuously employed, to trace our own progress in existence, by such tokens as excite neither shame nor sorrow.

--Samuel Johnson

man in blue jacket and blue pants carrying black and red backpack standing on snow covered

Go into the street, and give one man a lecture on morality, and another a shilling, and see which will respect you most.

--Samuel Johnson


fawn pug in close up photography

Sir, there is no end of negative criticism.

--Samuel Johnson

None

Such is the state of life, that none are happy but by the anticipation of change: the change itself is nothing; when we have made it, the next wish is to change again.

--Samuel Johnson

yellow flower field under clear sky

Friendship, like love, is destroyed by long absence, though it may be increased by short intermissions.

--Samuel Johnson

blue sky with stars during night time

It is wonderful when a calculation is made, how little the mind is actually employed in the discharge of any profession.

--Samuel Johnson


yellow textile

Combinations of wickedness would overwhelm the world, by the advantage which licentious principles afford, did not those who have long practised perfidy grow faithless to each other.

--Samuel Johnson

white wall paint beside white wall

It is a hopeless endeavour to unite the contrarieties of spring and winter; it is unjust to claim the privileges of age, and retain the play-things of childhood.

--Samuel Johnson

rainbow desert

Sleep undisturbed within this peaceful shrine,
Till angels wake thee with a note like thine.

--Samuel Johnson

None

Cunning has effect from the credulity of others, rather than from the abilities of those who are cunning. It requires no extraordinary talents to lie and deceive.

--Samuel Johnson

black Corona typewriter on brown wood planks

Sir, a man who cannot get to heaven in a green coat, will not find his way thither the sooner in a grey one.

--Samuel Johnson

brown desert under sunny sky

The coquette has companions, indeed, but no lovers, -- for love is respectful and timorous; and where among her followers will she find a husband?

--Samuel Johnson

green leaf

Scarcely any degree of judgment is sufficient to restrain the imagination from magnifying that on which it is long detained.

--Samuel Johnson

red and black floral textile

Vanity is so frequently the apparent motive of advice, that we, for the most part, summon our powers to oppose it without any very accurate inquiry whether it is right.

--Samuel Johnson

red white and black butterfly on green leaf

It is not the desire of new acquisitions, but the glory of conquests, that fires the soldier's breast; as indeed the town is seldom worth much, when it has suffered the devastations of a siege.

--Samuel Johnson

person on road at sunset

The truth is, that no mind is much employed upon the present recollection and anticipation fill up almost all our moments.

--Samuel Johnson

silhouette photo of mountain during night time

The feeling of friendship is like that of being comfortably filled with roast beef; love, like being enlivened with champagne.

--Samuel Johnson

grey sand wave

Parents and children seldom act in concert: each child endeavors to appropriate the esteem or fondness of the parents, and the parents, with yet less temptation, betray each other to their children.

--Samuel Johnson

pink and yellow flower painting

Books that you carry to the fire, and hold readily in your hand, are most useful after all.

--Samuel Johnson

None

Too much nicety of detail disgusts the greatest part of readers, and to throw a multitude of particulars under general heads, and lay down rules of extensive comprehension, is to common understandings of little use.

--Samuel Johnson

A white stripe pattern made up of concrete facade ribs

Most vices may be committed very genteelly: a man may debauch his friend's wife genteelly: he may cheat at cards genteelly.

--Samuel Johnson

purple petaled flower on gray surface

I deny the lawfulness of telling a lie to a sick man for fear of alarming him; you have no business with consequences, you are to tell the truth.

--Samuel Johnson

green background

Life will not bear refinement. You must do as other people do.

--Samuel Johnson

rainbow

To have gold is to be in fear, and to want it to be sorrow.

--Samuel Johnson

tree and pink sky painting

You may abuse a tragedy, though you cannot write one. You may scold a carpenter who has made you a bad table, though you cannot make a table. It is not your trade to make tables.

--Samuel Johnson

shallow focus photography of condenser microphone

It generally happens that assurance keeps an even pace with ability.

--Samuel Johnson

green trees beside body of water during daytime

The truly strong and sound mind is the mind that can embrace equally great things and small.

--Samuel Johnson

mixed paints in a plate

Questioning is not the mode of conversation among gentlemen.

--Samuel Johnson

brown rocky mountain under blue sky during daytime

The reciprocal civility of authors is one of the most risible scenes in the farce of life.

--Samuel Johnson

body of water

We may have uneasy feelings for seeing a creature in distress without pity; for we have not pity unless we wish to relieve them.

--Samuel Johnson

silhouette of person standing beside bare tree under stary sky

There seems to be a strange affectation in authors of appearing to have done everything by chance.

--Samuel Johnson

blue and white abstract painting

The mischief of flattery is, not that it persuades any man that he is what he is not, but that it suppresses the influence of honest ambition, by raising an opinion that honour may be gained without the toil of merit.

--Samuel Johnson

sunset

Prudence is an attitude that keeps life safe, but does not often make it happy.

--Samuel Johnson

woman wearing black top standing near yellow wall

By taking a second wife he pays the highest compliment to the first, by showing that she made him so happy as a married man, that he wishes to be so a second time.

--Samuel Johnson

man in black pants sitting on chair

The desires of man increase with his acquisitions.

--Samuel Johnson

A view of the night showing stars

It is one of the maxims of the civil law, that definitions are hazardous.

--Samuel Johnson

bird on pier

Life, to be worthy of a rational being, must be always in progression; we must always purpose to do more or better than in time past.

--Samuel Johnson

rainbow

He that is much flattered soon learns to flatter himself.

--Samuel Johnson

sunset woman at beach

You despise a man for avarice; but you do not hate him.

--Samuel Johnson

time lapse photography body of water

We are not here to sell a parcel of boilers and vats, but the potentiality of growing rich beyond the dreams of avarice.

--Samuel Johnson

empty brown concrete stairs beside green grass under starry sky long-exposure photography

The world is like a grand staircase, some are going up and some are going down.

--Samuel Johnson


woman in white and black stripe long sleeve shirt standing beside brown concrete building during daytime

New things are made familiar, and familiar things are made new.

--Samuel Johnson

silhouette of person's hands forming heart

Every man has a lurking wish to appear considerable in his native place.

--Samuel Johnson

None

He that is pushing his predecessors into the gulf of obscurity, cannot but sometimes suspect, that he must himself sink in like manner, and, as he stands upon the same precipice, be swept away with the same violence.

--Samuel Johnson

purple flowered hedge plants

A man who writes a book, thinks himself wiser or wittier than the rest of mankind; he supposes that he can instruct or amuse them, and the publick to whom he appeals, must, after all, be the judges of his pretensions.

--Samuel Johnson

None

Praise, like gold and diamonds, owes its value only to its scarcity. It becomes cheap as it becomes vulgar, and will no longer raise expectation or animate enterprise.

--Samuel Johnson

None

What we read with inclination makes a much stronger impression. If we read without inclination, half the mind is employed in fixing the attention; so there is but one half to be employed on what we read.

--Samuel Johnson

flat lay photography teacup on top of saucer

Sir, you have but two topics, yourself and me. I am sick of both.

--Samuel Johnson

yellow painted wall

Criticism, though dignified from the earliest ages by the labours of men eminent for knowledge and sagacity, has not yet attained the certainty and stability of science.

--Samuel Johnson

black mountain under blue sky during night time

The difference between coarse and refined abuse is the difference between being bruised by a club and wounded by a poisoned arrow.

--Samuel Johnson

boat docked near house

Hope is itself a species of happiness.

--Samuel Johnson

cluster of stars in the sky

A man would rather have a hundred lies told of him than one truth which he does not wish should be known.

--Samuel Johnson

white wall paint with black line

There lurks, perhaps, in every human heart a desire of distinction, which inclines every man first to hope, and then to believe, that Nature has given him something peculiar to himself.

--Samuel Johnson


black and white butterfly on green leaf

Pain is less subject than pleasure to careless expression.

--Samuel Johnson

bird's eye view of desert

Hope itself is a species of happiness, and, perhaps, the chief happiness which this world affords; but, like all other pleasures immoderately enjoyed, the excesses of hope must be expiated by pain.

--Samuel Johnson

brown wooden bridge beside green leafed trees during daytime

Courtesy and good-humour are often found with little real worth.

--Samuel Johnson

wormeye view photo of milky way

History can be formed from permanent monuments and records; but lives can only be written from personal knowledge, which is growing every day less, and in a short time is lost forever.

--Samuel Johnson

closeup photo of violin on brown surface

Grief is a species of idleness.

--Samuel Johnson

green mountain ]

Pity is not natural to man. Children always are cruel. Savages are always cruel.

--Samuel Johnson

time lapse photography body of water

Little would be wanting to the happiness of life, if every man could conform to the right as soon as he was shown it.

--Samuel Johnson


selective focus photography of stones on sand

The synonyme of usury is ruin.

--Samuel Johnson

Arizona landscape

As pride sometimes is hid under humility, idleness if often covered by turbulence and hurry.

--Samuel Johnson


brown wooden board

To get a name can happen but to few; it is one of the few things that cannot be brought. It is the free gift of mankind, which must be deserved before it will be granted, and is at last unwillingly bestowed.

--Samuel Johnson

person wearing black top

The hopes of zeal are not wholly groundless.

--Samuel Johnson

green trees in between gray concrete road

Curiosity is one of the most permanent and certain characteristics of a vigorous intellect.

--Samuel Johnson

man in black shirt wearing cowboy hat

In traveling, a man must carry knowledge with him, if he would bring home knowledge.

--Samuel Johnson

silhouette of mountain

Nay, Madam, when you are declaiming, declaim; and when you are calculating, calculate.

--Samuel Johnson

lighted candle in dark room

The life of a solitary man will be certainly miserable, but not certainly devout.

--Samuel Johnson

pink flower

Domestic discord is not inevitably and fatally necessary; but yet it is not easy to avoid.

--Samuel Johnson

yellow bee beside purple petaled flower during daytime

Most men think indistinctly, and therefore cannot speak with exactness.

--Samuel Johnson


flat lay photography teacup on top of saucer

By seeing London, I have seen as much of life as the world can show.

--Samuel Johnson

orange and white floor tiles

The commodiousness of money is indeed great; but there are some advantages which money cannot buy, and which therefore no wise man will by the love of money be tempted to forego.

--Samuel Johnson

green lizard

Employment and hardships prevent melancholy.

--Samuel Johnson

silhouette of people riding bicycle

Small debts are like small shot; they are rattling on every side, and can scarcely be escaped without a wound: great debts are like cannon; of loud noise, but little danger.

--Samuel Johnson

None

Tea's proper use is to amuse the idle, and relax the studious, and dilute the full meals of those who cannot use exercise, and will not use abstinence.

--Samuel Johnson

woman in black shirt walking on sidewalk near brown concrete wall partition

A man should be careful never to tell tales of himself to his own disadvantage. People may be amused at the time, but they will be remembered, and brought out against him upon some subsequent occasion.

--Samuel Johnson

silhouette of stones during golden hour

Friendship, peculiar boon of Heaven, The noble mind's delight and pride, To men and angels only given, To all the lower world denied.

--Samuel Johnson

person in blue denim jeans and brown leather boots

It matters not how a man dies, but how he lives. The act of dying is not of importance, it lasts so short a time.

--Samuel Johnson

stars across the sky view at the desert

Pleasure is very seldom found where it is sought; our brightest blazes of gladness are commonly kindled by unexpected sparks.

--Samuel Johnson

black Corona typewriter on brown wood planks

There is nothing which has yet been contrived by man, by which so much happiness is produced as by a good tavern.

--Samuel Johnson

boy standing on grass and facing fence during daytime

The drama's laws the drama's patrons give.

For we that live to please must please to live.

--Samuel Johnson


sunset and agave stalk

Whisky making is the art of making poison pleasant.

--Samuel Johnson

selective-focus photograph of gray bird on tree branch

Love is the wisdom of the fool and the folly of the wise.

--Samuel Johnson

purple flowers under sunny sky

If I had no duties, and no reference to futurity, I would spend my life in driving briskly in a post-chaise with a pretty woman.

--Samuel Johnson

person sitting on black surface looking to sky

Shame arises from the fear of men, conscience from the fear of God.

--Samuel Johnson

two women sitting on wooden dock over body of water

He endearing elegance of female friendship.

--Samuel Johnson


green pine tree on mountain

The joy of life is variety.

--Samuel Johnson

landscape photography of horizon

There are few minds to which tyranny is not delightful.

--Samuel Johnson

sunset over hill

There are charms made only for distant admiration.

--Samuel Johnson

Arizona landscape snow

All imposture weakens confidence and chills benevolence.

--Samuel Johnson

rock formation under starry skies

No mind is much employed upon the present; recollection and anticipation fill up almost all our moments.

--Samuel Johnson

brown and white butterfly on purple petaled flower

All theory is against freedom of the will; all experience for it.

--Samuel Johnson

aerial photography of mountain range covered with snow under white and blue sky at daytime

The history of mankind is little else than a narrative of designs which have failed and hopes that have been disappointed.

--Samuel Johnson

shallow focus photography of snowflake

People in distress never think that you feel enough.

--Samuel Johnson

man standing on cliff under white sky

Those whose abilities or knowledge incline them most to deviate from the general round of life are recalled from eccentricity by the laws of their existence.

--Samuel Johnson

white and blue ice in water

He that fails in his endeavors after wealth or power will not long retain either honesty or courage.

--Samuel Johnson

black Sony point-and-shoot camera on yellow surface

Mankind have a great aversion to intellectual labor; but even supposing knowledge to be easily attainable, more people would be content to be ignorant than would take even a little trouble to acquire it.

--Samuel Johnson

flock of birds flying under blue sky during daytime

The two offices of memory are collection and distribution.

--Samuel Johnson

blue and white abstract painting

I have all my life long been lying in bed till noon; yet I tell all young men, and tell them with great sincerity, that nobody who does not rise early will ever do any good.

--Samuel Johnson

None

I hope I shall never be deterred from detecting what I think a cheat, by the menaces of a ruffian.

--Samuel Johnson

rock formation above water

Games are good or bad as to their nature; all may be perverted.

--Samuel Johnson

white and blue ice on water

A man, doubtful of his dinner, or trembling at a creditor, is not much disposed to abstracted meditation, or remote enquiries.

--Samuel Johnson

photo of mountains

He that has once concluded it lawful to resist power, when it wants merit, will soon find a want of merit, to justify his resistance to power.

--Samuel Johnson

pink tree

Ignorance, madam, pure ignorance.

--Samuel Johnson

group of elephant on brown field under white clouds during daytime

Of all the griefs that harass the distress'd, Sure the most bitter is a scornful jest; Fate never wounds more deep the generous heart, Than when a blockhead's insult points the dart.

--Samuel Johnson

black textile on white textile

No wonder, Sir, that he is vain; a man who is perpetually flattered in every mode that can be conceived. So many bellows have blown the fire, that one wonders he is not by this time become a cinder.

--Samuel Johnson

silhouette photo of mountain during night time

You teach your daughters the diameters of the planets and wonder when you are done that they do not delight in your company.

--Samuel Johnson

selective focus photography of woman taking selfie

A wise man will make haste to forgive, because he knows the true value of time, and will not suffer it to pass away in unnecessary pain.

--Samuel Johnson

milky way wallpaper

An epithet or metaphor drawn from nature ennobles art; an epithet or metaphor drawn from art degrades nature.

--Samuel Johnson

black textile in close up photography

Politeness is one of those advantages which we never estimate rightly but by the inconvenience of its loss.

--Samuel Johnson

purple flowered hedge plants

It is not uncommon to charge the difference between promise and performance, between profession and reality, upon deep design and studied deceit; but the truth is, that there is very little hypocrisy in the world.

--Samuel Johnson

sunset

I never take a nap after dinner
but when I have had a bad night,
and then the nap takes me.

--Samuel Johnson

pink cherry blossom tree under blue sky during daytime

If a man begins to read in the middle of a book, and feels an inclination to go on, let him not quit it to go to the beginning. He may perhaps not feel again the inclination.

--Samuel Johnson



macro photography water drops

He that pursues fame with just claims, trusts his happiness to the winds; but he that endeavors after it by false merit, has to fear, not only the violence of the storm, but the leaks of his vessel.

--Samuel Johnson

woman snorkeling

The real satisfaction which praise can afford, is when what is repeated aloud agrees with the whispers of conscience, by showing us that we have not endeavored to deserve well in vain.

--Samuel Johnson

pink umbrella

You cannot, by all the lecturing in the world, enable a man to make a shoe.

--Samuel Johnson

bonfire in forest

The equity of providence has balanced peculiar sufferings with peculiar enjoyments.

--Samuel Johnson

bird's eye view photography of trees and body of water

Do not accustom yourself to consider debt only as an inconvenience; you will find it a calamity.

--Samuel Johnson

green leafed vegetable on brown wooden surface

A short letter to a distant friend is, in my opinion, an insult like that of a slight bow or cursory salutation -- a proof of unwillingness to do much, even where there is a necessity of doing something.

--Samuel Johnson

green and white abstract painting

There is a frightful interval between the seed and the timber.

--Samuel Johnson

blue sky and white clouds

The botanist looks upon the astronomer as a being unworthy of his regard; and he that is glowing great and happy by electrifying a bottle wonders how the world can be engaged by trifling prattle about war and peace.

--Samuel Johnson

aerial view of green lake surrounded by green trees during daytime

Great works are performed, not by strength, but by perseverance. Those that walk with vigor, three hours a day, will pass in seven years a space equal to the circumference of the globe.

--Samuel Johnson

leafless tree on body of water during daytime

No man can taste the fruits of autumn while he is delighting his scent with the flowers of spring.

--Samuel Johnson

aerial photography of mountain range covered with snow under white and blue sky at daytime

Imitations produce pain or pleasure, not because they are mistaken for realities, but because they bring realities to mind.

--Samuel Johnson

purple and white clouds during night time

Modern writers are the moons of literature; they shine with reflected light, with light borrowed from the ancients.

--Samuel Johnson

coconut tree near body of water

Your manuscript is both good and original; but the part that is good is not original, and the part that is original is not good.

--Samuel Johnson

selective photography of green leaf plant

His most frequent ailment was the headache which he used to relieve by inhaling the steam of coffee.

--Samuel Johnson

man in black jacket and pants jumping on white rock

Of all noises, I think music is the least disagreeable.

--Samuel Johnson

None

Repentance, however difficult to be practiced, is, if it be explained without superstition, easily understood. Repentance is the relinquishment of any practice from the conviction that it has offended God.

--Samuel Johnson

mountains covered with fog

I know not, Madam, that you have a right, upon moral principles, to make your readers suffer so much.

--Samuel Johnson

cluster of stars in the sky

A man is in general better pleased when he has a good dinner upon his table, than when his wife talks Greek.

--Samuel Johnson

brown sand under blue sky during daytime

Norway, too, has noble wild prospects; and Lapland is remarkable for prodigious noble wild prospects.

--Samuel Johnson

brown and white abstract painting

Of the present state, whatever it be, we feel and are forced to confess the misery; yet when the same state is again at a distance, imagination paints it as desirable.

--Samuel Johnson


calm body of water near alp mountains during nighttime

Sir, when a man is tired of London, he is tired of life; for there is in London all that life can afford.

--Samuel Johnson

person wearing red running shoe

This is one of the disadvantages of wine; it makes a man mistake words for thoughts.

--Samuel Johnson


black, purple, and orange basketball court beside concrete buildings at daytime

Pride is seldom delicate: it will please itself with very mean advantages.

--Samuel Johnson

gray cactus plant on white pot

Exert your talents, and distinguish yourself, and don't think of retiring from the world, until the world will be sorry that you retire.

--Samuel Johnson

man running on seashore

Whoever thinks of going to bed before twelve o'clock is a scoundrel.

--Samuel Johnson

rock formation above water

You raise your voice when you should reinforce your argument.

--Samuel Johnson

landscape photography of green tree

All wonder is the effect of novelty on ignorance.

--Samuel Johnson

black mountain under blue sky during night time

A small country town is not the place in which one would choose to quarrel with a wife; every human being in such places is a spy.

--Samuel Johnson

yellow flower field near bare trees during daytime

Our minds should not be empty because if they are not preoccupied by good, evil will break in upon them.

--Samuel Johnson

green trees beside body of water during daytime

Few men survey themselves with so much severity as not to admit prejudices in their own favor.

--Samuel Johnson

black textile in close up photography

In life's last scene what prodigies surprise,

Fears of the brave, and follies of the wise!

From Marlborough's eyes the streams of dotage flow,

And Swift expires a driveller and a show.

--Samuel Johnson

woman singing on stage

Confidence is a plant of slow growth; especially in an aged bosom.

--Samuel Johnson

mountain summit during sunset

The poor and the busy have no leisure for sentimental sorrow.

--Samuel Johnson

purple petaled flower on gray surface

When the eye or the imagination is struck with an uncommon work, the next transition of an active mind is to the means by which it was performed.

--Samuel Johnson

moon near mountain ridge

A man is very apt to complain of the ingratitude of those who have risen far above him.

--Samuel Johnson

green plant in tilt shift lens

Abstinence is as easy to me as temperance would be difficult.

--Samuel Johnson

green lizard

Few things are impossible to diligence and skill.

--Samuel Johnson

white clouds and blue sky

If he does really think that there is no distinction between virtue and vice, why, sir, when he leaves our houses let us count our spoons.

--Samuel Johnson

feet in stream

The chief glory of every people arises from its authors.

--Samuel Johnson

pink and yellow flower painting

The joy of life is variety; the tenderest love requires to be rekindled by intervals of absence.

--Samuel Johnson

long exposure photography of lights

Though the discoveries or acquisitions of man are not always adequate to the expectations of his pride, they are at least sufficient to animate his industry.

--Samuel Johnson

library shelf near black wooden ladder

Unless a woman has an amorous heart, she is a dull companion.

--Samuel Johnson

time lapse photography body of water

Dogs have not the power of comparing. A dog will take a small piece of meat as readily as a large, when both are before him.

--Samuel Johnson

purple lavender flower

He is a benefactor of mankind who contracts the great rules of life into the short sentences, that may be easily impressed on the memory, and so recur habitually to the mind.

--Samuel Johnson

castle surrounded fog

Life is not long, and too much of it must not pass in idle deliberation how it shall be spent.

--Samuel Johnson

None

The blaze of reputation cannot be blown out, but it often dies in the socket; a very few names may be considered as perpetual lamps that shine unconsumed.

--Samuel Johnson

blue sky and white clouds

Advertisements are now so numerous that they are very negligently perused, and it is therefore become necessary to gain attention by magnificence of promises, and by eloquence sometimes sublime and sometimes pathetic.

--Samuel Johnson

white and blue ice on water

Stand Firm for your country, and become a man Honour'd and lov'd: It were a noble life, To be found dead, embracing her.

--Samuel Johnson

two gray pencils on yellow surface

Life admits not of delays; when pleasure can be had, it is fit to catch it: every hour takes away part of the things that please us, and perhaps part of our disposition to be pleased.

--Samuel Johnson

time lapse photography body of water

Those who attain any excellence, commonly spend life in one pursuit; for excellence is not often gained upon easier terms.

--Samuel Johnson

dome tent with galaxy with stars

Those who do not feel pain seldom think that it is felt.

--Samuel Johnson

green ceramic mug beside book

Dictionaries are like watches, the worst is better than none and the best cannot be expected to go quite true.

--Samuel Johnson

green leaf

Gayety is to good-humor as perfumes to vegetable fragrance: the one overpowers weak spirits; the other recreates and revives them.

--Samuel Johnson

stainless steel key on brown rod

It requires but little acquaintance with the heart to know that woman's first wish is to be handsome; and that, consequently, the readiest method of obtaining her kindness is to praise her beauty.

--Samuel Johnson

time lapse photography of lightning during storm

Read over your compositions, and when you meet a passage which you think is particularly fine, strike it out.

--Samuel Johnson

coffee mug on top of tablecloth beside ashtray

Surely, it is much easier to respect a man who has always had respect, than to respect a man who we know was last year no better than ourselves, and will be no better next year.

--Samuel Johnson

Bryce Canyon National Park Sunrise Point at Utah

City of God, how broad and far Outspread thy walls sublime! The true thy chartered freemen are, Of every age and clime.

--Samuel Johnson

black dog photography

No man is a hypocrite in his pleasures.

--Samuel Johnson

person standing on rock beside body of water between green trees

When any calamity has been suffered the first thing to be remembered is, how much has been escaped.

--Samuel Johnson

silhouette photo of mountain during night time

Patron: One who countenances, supports or protects. Commonly a wretch who supports with insolence, and is repaid in flattery.

--Samuel Johnson

lightning strike at night

The law is the last result of human wisdom acting upon human experience for the benefit of the public.

--Samuel Johnson


time lapse photography of lightning during storm

Those who marry late are best pleased with their children; and those who marry early, with their partners.

--Samuel Johnson

brown and gray brick wall

Guilt has always its horrors and solicitudes; and, to make it yet more shameful and detestable, it is doomed often to stand in awe of those to whom nothing could give influence or weight but their power of betraying.

--Samuel Johnson

Bryce Canyon National Park Sunrise Point at Utah

The use of traveling is to regulate imagination by reality, and instead of thinking how things may be, to see them as they really are.

--Samuel Johnson

low angle view of blue clouds

No money is better spent than what is laid out for domestic satisfaction.

--Samuel Johnson

body of water surrounded with plants under cloudy sky

An old friend never can be found, and nature has provided that he cannot easily be lost.

--Samuel Johnson

Arizona landscape

Marriage has many pains, but celibacy has no pleasures.

--Samuel Johnson

green grass field with smoke

When emulation leads us to strive for self-elevation by merit alone, and not by belittling another, then it is one of the grandest possible incentives to action.

--Samuel Johnson

horse

Adversity leads us to think properly of our state, and so is most beneficial to us.

--Samuel Johnson

sunset forest

Bravery has no place where it can avail nothing.

--Samuel Johnson

Light blue to dark blue gradient

Pension: An allowance made to anyone without an equivalent. In England it is generally understood to mean pay given to a state hireling for treason to his country.

--Samuel Johnson

blue painted concrete wall during daytime

Among many parallels which men of imagination have drawn between the natural and moral state of the world, it has been observed that happiness as well as virtue consists in mediocrity.

--Samuel Johnson

white rock formation on sea during daytime

If in an actor there appears an utter vacancy of meaning, a frigid equality, a stupid languor, a torpid apathy, the greatest kindness that can be shown him is a speedy sentence of expulsion.

--Samuel Johnson

black bird flying on white background

Our supple tribes repress their patriot throats, And ask no questions but the price of votes.

--Samuel Johnson

silver round analog wall clock

That observation which is called knowledge of the world will be found much more frequently to make men cunning than good.

--Samuel Johnson

blue and white painted wall

Differences, we know, are never so effectually laid asleep as by some common calamity; an enemy unites all to whom he threatens danger.

--Samuel Johnson

brown sands

Be not too hasty to trust or to admire the teachers of morality; they discourse like angels, but they live like men.

--Samuel Johnson

yellow green leaf

There is, indeed, nothing that so much seduces reason from vigilance, as the thought of passing life with an amiable woman.

--Samuel Johnson


blue and white painted wall

I have always considered it as treason against the great republic of human nature, to make any man's virtues the means of deceiving him.

--Samuel Johnson

white wall paint with white wall paint

Vulgar and inactive minds confound familiarity with knowledge, and conceive themselves informed of the whole nature of things, when they are shown their form or told their use.

--Samuel Johnson

person wearing black leather shoe

Wasting a fortune is evaporation by a thousand imperceptible means.

--Samuel Johnson

black fawn pug playing with plush toy

A man in a jail has more room, better food, and commonly better company.

--Samuel Johnson

red textile on brown wooden table

But grant, the virtues of a temp'rate prime
Bless with an age exempt from scorn or crime;
An age that melts with unperceived decay,
And glides in modest Innocence away.

--Samuel Johnson




red rose

Sir, I do not call a gamester a dishonest man; but I call him an unsociable man, an unprofitable man. Gaming is a mode of transferring property without producing any intermediate good.

--Samuel Johnson

white clouds and blue sky

There are few so free from vanity as not to dictate to those who will hear their instructions with a visible sense of their own beneficence.

--Samuel Johnson

pink and teal striped textile

Excise: A hateful tax levied upon commodities, and adjudged not by the common judges of property, but wretches hired by those to whom excise is paid.

--Samuel Johnson

coconut tree near body of water

Sir, he throws away his money without thought and without merit. I do not call a tree generous that sheds its fruit at every breeze.

--Samuel Johnson


None

Few things are so liberally bestowed, or squandered with so little effect, as good advice.

--Samuel Johnson

shallow focus photography of adult fawn pug

Quotation is the highest compliment you can pay an author.

--Samuel Johnson

wide lake over sunset view

Prejudice not being funded on reason cannot be removed by argument.

--Samuel Johnson

white and blue ice on water

As all error is meanness, it is incumbent on every man who consults his own dignity, to retract it as soon as he discovers it.

--Samuel Johnson

brown sand under blue sky during daytime

I do not much wish well to discoveries, for I am always afraid they will end in conquest and robbery.

--Samuel Johnson

green leafed plant on clear glass vase filled with water

I fly from pleasure," said the prince, "because pleasure has ceased to please; I am lonely because I am miserable, and am unwilling to cloud with my presence the happiness of others.

--Samuel Johnson

red flame

To keep your secret is wisdom; but to expect others to keep it is folly.

--Samuel Johnson

brown rocky mountain under blue sky during daytime

A country governed by a despot is an inverted cone.

--Samuel Johnson

mountains under white mist at daytime

A man may be so much of everything that he is nothing of anything.

--Samuel Johnson

person holding brown leaf

Officious, innocent, sincere, Of every friendless name the friend.

--Samuel Johnson

forest trees photograph

None can be pleased without praise, and few can be praised without falsehood.

--Samuel Johnson

sand

There is a certain degree of temptation which will overcome any virtue. Now, in so far as you approach temptation to a man, you do him an injury; and, if he is overcome, you share his guilt.

--Samuel Johnson

person holding hands

Round numbers are always false.

--Samuel Johnson



close up photography of moon

My dear friend, clear your mind of cant.

--Samuel Johnson

snow covered mountain under blue sky during daytime

Club: An assembly of good fellows, meeting under certain conditions.

--Samuel Johnson

photo of outer space

Had I learned to fiddle, I should have done nothing else.

--Samuel Johnson

blue wall during daytime

The vicious count their years; virtuous, their acts.

--Samuel Johnson

grey sand wave

The mental disease of the present generation is impatience of study, contempt of the great masters of ancient wisdom, and a disposition to rely wholly upon unassisted genius and natural sagacity.

--Samuel Johnson

bare tree on mountain during sunset

No man sympathizes with the sorrows of vanity.

--Samuel Johnson


silhouette photography of trees and sky

Those authors who would find many readers, must endeavour to please while they instruct.

--Samuel Johnson

None

The most useful truths are always universal, and unconnected with accidents and customs.

--Samuel Johnson

aerial photography of beach

No man likes to live under the eye of perpetual disapprobation.

--Samuel Johnson

moon near mountain ridge

Every man is rich or poor according to the proportion between his desires and his enjoyments.

--Samuel Johnson

None

Such is the emptiness of human enjoyment that we are always impatient of the present. Attainment is followed by neglect, and possession by disgust.

--Samuel Johnson

Arizona landscape

That kind of life is most happy which affords us most opportunities of gaining our own esteem.

--Samuel Johnson

high-angle photography of mountain at sunset

Sorrow is the mere rust of the soul. Activity will cleanse and brighten it.

--Samuel Johnson

fine trees waving

Let us be quick to repent of injuries while repentance may not be a barren anguish.

--Samuel Johnson

red and yellow abstract painting

Bounty always receives part of its value from the manner in which it is bestowed.

--Samuel Johnson

man and woman in cowboy hat

When there is no hope, there can be no endeavor.

--Samuel Johnson


blue sky with stars during night time

When speculation has done its worst, two and two still make four.

--Samuel Johnson

aerial photography of forest

Diligence in employments of less consequence is the most successful introduction to greater enterprises.

--Samuel Johnson

brown, black, and white butterfly on purple petaled flower photo

Sir, there is no settling the point of precedency between a louse and a flea.

--Samuel Johnson


woman looking up to the sky while standing on white sand

Human life is everywhere a state in which much is to be endured and little to be enjoyed.

--Samuel Johnson

silhouette of mountain

This is one of the disadvantages of wine, it makes a man mistake words for thoughts.

--Samuel Johnson

close up photography of moon

The worst evils are those that never arrive.

--Samuel Johnson

withered tree surrounded with snow during daytime

A lexicographer, a writer of dictionaries, a harmless drudge.

--Samuel Johnson

man in blue jacket and blue pants carrying black and red backpack standing on snow covered

A merchant may, perhaps, be a man of an enlarged mind, but there is nothing in trade connected with an enlarged mind.

--Samuel Johnson

moon near mountain ridge

Knowledge is more than equivalent to force. The master of mechanics laughs at strength.

--Samuel Johnson

rock formation surrounding by body of water

Almost all absurdity of conduct arises from the imitation of those who we cannot resemble.

--Samuel Johnson


pink and yellow flower painting

There are people whom one should like very well to drop, but would not wish to be dropped by.

--Samuel Johnson

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