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William Ralph Inge Quotes

A man may build himself a throne of bayonets, but he can't sit on it.

A nation is a society united by a delusion about its ancestry and by common hatred of its neighbours.

Consciousness is a phase of mental life which arises in connection with the formation of new habits. When habit is formed, consciousness only interferes to spoil our performance.

Events in the past may be roughly divided into those which probably never happened and those which do not matter.

Every institution not only carries within it the seeds of its own dissolution, but prepares the way for its most hated rival.

I have never understood why it should be considered derogatory to the Creator to suppose that he has a sense of humour.

I think middle-age is the best time, if we can escape the fatty degeneration of the conscience which often sets in at about fifty.

In dealing with Englishmen you can be sure of one thing only, that the logical solution will not be adopted.

It is astonishing with how little wisdom mankind can be governed, when that little wisdom is its own.

It is useless for the sheep to pass resolutions in favor of vegetarianism, while the wolf remains of a different opinion.

Literature flourishes best when it is half a trade and half an art.

Many people believe that they are attracted by God, or by Nature, when they are only repelled by man.

No Christian can be a pessimist, for Christianity is a system of radical optimism.

Nobody is bored when he is trying to make something that is beautiful or to discover something that is true.

Originality is undetected plagiarism.

Prayer gives a man the opportunity of getting to know a gentleman he hardly ever meets. I do not mean his maker, but himself.

Public opinion, a vulgar, impertinent, anonymous tyrant who deliberately makes life unpleasant for anyone who is not content to the average person.

The aim of education is the knowledge not of facts but of values.

The enemies of freedom do not argue; they shout and they shoot.

The happiest people seem to be those who have no particular cause for being happy except that they are so.