Here Are 40 Of Aristotle’s Most Important Quotes That Everyone Needs To Read

Aristotle was a Greek philosopher and scientist born in the Macedonian city of Stagira, Chalkidice, on the northern periphery of Classical Greece. At eighteen, he joined Plato’s Academy in Athens and remained there until the age of thirty-seven (c. 347 BC). His writings cover many subjects – including physics, biology, zoology, metaphysics, logic, ethics, aesthetics, poetry, theater, music, rhetoric, linguistics, politics and government – and constitute the first comprehensive system of Western philosophy. Shortly after Plato died, Aristotle left Athens and, at the request of Philip of Macedon, tutored Alexander the Great starting from 343 BC.

Teaching Alexander the Great gave Aristotle many opportunities and an abundance of supplies. He established a library in the Lyceum which aided in the production of many of his hundreds of books. The fact that Aristotle was a pupil of Plato contributed to his former views of Platonism, but, following Plato’s death, Aristotle immersed himself in empirical studies and shifted from Platonism to empiricism. He believed all peoples’ concepts and all of their knowledge was ultimately based on perception. Aristotle’s views on natural sciences represent the groundwork underlying many of his works.

His ethics, though always influential, gained renewed interest with the modern advent of virtue ethics. All aspects of Aristotle’s philosophy continue to be the object of active academic study today. Though Aristotle wrote many elegant treatises and dialogues – Cicero described his literary style as “a river of gold”

Here are 40 of Aristotle’s most renowned quotes that can make you think and can help change your life for the better:

1) “Knowing yourself is the beginning of all wisdom.”

2) “It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it.”

3) “I have gained this by philosophy … I do without being ordered what some are constrained to do by their fear of the law.”

4) “Educating the mind without educating the heart is no education at all.”

5) “Excellence is never an accident. It is always the result of high intention, sincere effort, and intelligent execution; it represents the wise choice of many alternatives – choice, not chance, determines your destiny.”

6) “To avoid criticism say nothing, do nothing, be nothing.”

7) “Hope is a waking dream.”

8) “Pleasure in the job puts perfection in the work.”

9) “No great mind has ever existed without a touch of madness.”

10) “To write well, express yourself like the common people, but think like a wise man.”

11) “What is a friend? A single soul dwelling in two bodies.”

12) “It is not enough to win a war; it is more important to organize the peace.”

13) “Happiness depends upon ourselves.”

14) “Happiness is the meaning and the purpose of life, the whole aim and end of human existence.”

15) “Anybody can become angry — that is easy, but to be angry with the right person and to the right degree and at the right time and for the right purpose, and in the right way — that is not within everybody’s power and is not easy.”

16) “A friend to all is a friend to none.”

17) “Those who educate children well are more to be honored than they who produce them; for these only gave them life, those the art of living well.”

18) “The educated differ from the uneducated as much as the living differ from the dead.”

19) “He who has overcome his fears will truly be free.”

20) “Those who know, do. Those that understand, teach.”

21) “I count him braver who overcomes his desires than him who conquers his enemies, for the hardest victory is over self.”

22) “The antidote for fifty enemies is one friend.”

23) “Poverty is the parent of revolution and crime.”

24) “The high-minded man must care more for the truth than for what people think.”

25) “All human actions have one or more of these seven causes: chance, nature, compulsion, habit, reason, passion, and desire.”

26) “It is not always the same thing to be a good man and a good citizen.”

27) “It is during our darkest moments that we must focus to see the light.”

28) “The energy of the mind is the essence of life.”

29) “For the things we have to learn before we can do them, we learn by doing them.”

30) “He who cannot be a good follower cannot be a good leader.”

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31) “Man is by nature a social animal; an individual who is unsocial naturally and not accidentally is either beneath our notice or more than human. Society is something that precedes the individual. Anyone who either cannot lead the common life or is so self-sufficient as not to need to, and therefore does not partake of society, is either a beast or a god.”

32) “All men by nature desire knowledge.”

33) “The more you know, the more you know you don’t know.”

34) “All persons ought to endeavor to follow what is right, and not what is established.”

35) “Nature does nothing uselessly.”

36) “In all things of nature there is something of the marvelous.”

37) “Wise men speak when they have something to say, fools speak because they have to say something”

38) “One swallow does not make a summer, neither does one fine day; similarly one day or brief time of happiness does not make a person entirely happy.”

39) “The roots of education are bitter, but the fruit is sweet.”

40) “The only stable state is the one in which all men are equal before the law.”