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Best civilization quotes

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If a nation expects to be ignorant and free, in a state of civilization, it expects what never was and never will be. Thomas Jefferson, president


It is what you do from now on that will either move our civilization forward a few tiny steps, or else... begin to march us steadily backward. Patrick Stewart, actor


To accept civilization as it is practically means accepting decay. George Orwell, author


Civilization is a limitless multiplication of unnecessary necessities. Mark Twain, author


The degree of civilization in a society can be judged by entering the prisons. Fyodor Dostoyevsky, writer


Hold fast to the Bible. To the influence of this Book we are indebted for all the progress made in true civilization and to this we must look as our guide in the future. Ulysses S. Grant, president


In our rich consumers' civilization we spin cocoons around ourselves and get possessed by our possessions. Max Lerner, journalist


If civilization is to survive, we must cultivate the science of human relationships - the ability of all peoples, of all kinds, to live together, in the same world at peace. Franklin D. Roosevelt, president


The test of civilization is its estimate of women. George William Curtis, author


The first requisite of civilization is that of justice. Sigmund Freud, psychologist


In the highest civilization, the book is still the highest delight. He who has once known its satisfactions is provided with a resource against calamity. Ralph Waldo Emerson, poet


The story of civilization is, in a sense, the story of engineering - that long and arduous struggle to make the forces of nature work for man's good. L. Sprague de Camp, author


Increased means and increased leisure are the two civilizers of man. Benjamin Disraeli, statesman


Civilizations die from suicide, not by murder. Arnold J. Toynbee, historian


Civilization is merely an advance in taste: accepting, all the time, nicer things, and rejecting nasty ones. Katharine Fullerton Gerould, writer


Our civilization is still in a middle stage, scarcely beast, in that it is no longer wholly guided by instinct; scarcely human, in that it is not yet wholly guided by reason. Theodore Dreiser, novelist


The gross heathenism of civilization has generally destroyed nature, and poetry, and all that is spiritual. John Muir, environmentalist


We must plant the sea and herd its animals using the sea as farmers instead of hunters. That is what civilization is all about - farming replacing hunting. Jacques Yves Cousteau, explorer


The new meaning of soul is creativity and mysticism. These will become the foundation of the new psychological type and with him or her will come the new civilization. Otto Rank, psychologist


All civilization has from time to time become a thin crust over a volcano of revolution. Havelock Ellis, psychologist


The ultimate tendency of civilization is towards barbarism. David Hare, playwright


Civilization is the making of civil persons. John Ruskin, writer


A civilization is built on what is required of men, not on that which is provided for them. Antoine De SaintExupery, novelist


The human race has improved everything, but the human race. Adlai Stevenson, politician


To be able to fill leisure intelligently is the last product of civilization. Arnold J. Toynbee, historian


Civilization is a movement and not a condition, a voyage and not a harbor. Arnold J. Toynbee, historian


As civilization advances, poetry almost necessarily declines. Thomas B. Macaulay, historian


Everybody thinks that this civilization has lasted a very long time but it really does take very few grandfathers' granddaughters to take us back to the dark ages. Gertrude Stein, author


A civilization which leaves so large a number of its participants unsatisfied and drives them into revolt neither has nor deserves the prospect of a lasting existence. Sigmund Freud, psychologist


It is impossible to overlook the extent to which civilization is built upon a renunciation of instinct. Sigmund Freud, psychologist


If there hadn't been women we'd still be squatting in a cave eating raw meat, because we made civilization in order to impress our girlfriends. Orson Welles, actor


When humor goes, there goes civilization. Erma Bombeck, journalist


The true civilization is where every man gives to every other every right that he claims for himself. Robert Green Ingersoll, lawyer


Civilization began the first time an angry person cast a word instead of a rock. Sigmund Freud, psychologist


But the guilty person is only one of the targets of punishment. For punishment is directed above all at others, at all the potentially guilty. Michel Foucault, historian


The purpose of a writer is to keep civilization from destroying itself. Albert Camus, philosopher


Civilization is the lamb's skin in which barbarism masquerades. Thomas Bailey Aldrich, poet


The three great elements of modern civilization, Gun powder, Printing, and the Protestant religion. Thomas Carlyle, philosopher


A civilized man is one who will give a serious answer to a serious question. Civilization itself is a certain sane balance of values. Ezra Pound, poet


Civilization is not by any means an easy thing to attain to. There are only two ways by which man can reach it. One is by being cultured, the other by being corrupt. Oscar Wilde, dramatist


The greatest advances of civilization, whether in architecture or painting, in science and literature, in industry or agriculture, have never come from centralized government. Milton Friedman, economist


The exact measure of the progress of civilization is the degree in which the intelligence of the common mind has prevailed over wealth and brute force. George Bancroft, historian


We believe that civilization has been created under the pressure of the exigencies of life at the cost of satisfaction of the instincts. Sigmund Freud, psychologist


Christianity is the very root and foundation of Western civilization. Dinesh D'Souza, author


Terrorism is a horrible thing that is the great threat to civilization on our planet. Walter Isaacson, writer


Civilization had too many rules for me, so I did my best to rewrite them. Bill Cosby, comedian


What do I think of Western civilization? I think it would be a very good idea. Mahatma Gandhi, leader


The last struggle for our rights, the battle for our civilization, is entirely with ourselves. William Wells Brown, activist


There are many humorous things in the world; among them, the white man's notion that he is less savage than the other savages. Mark Twain, author


I am beginning to understand, said the little prince. There is a flower... I think that she has tamed me... Antoine de Saint-Exupery, novelist


I like to pay taxes. With them, I buy civilization. Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr.,


A civilization that only looks inward will stagnate. We have to keep looking outward; we have to keep finding new avenues for human endeavor and human expression. John L. Phillips, astronaut


The age in which we live can only be characterized as one of barbarism. Our civilization is in the process not only of being militarized, but also being brutalized. Alva Myrdal, diplomat


I feel this is very important for us to have serene buildings because our civilization is chaotic as it is, you see; our whole machine age has brought about a chaos that has to be somehow counterbalanced, I think. Minoru Yamasaki, architect


Each new generation is a fresh invasion of savages. Hervey Allen,


The civilized are those who get more out of life than the uncivilized, and for this we are not likely to be forgiven. Cyril Connolly, intellectual


Is civilization only a higher form of idolatry, that man should bow down to a flesh-brush, to flannels, to baths, diet, exercise, and air? Mary Baker Eddy, theologian


Sunday is the core of our civilization, dedicated to thought and reverence. Ralph Waldo Emerson, poet


Civilization today reminds me of an ape with a blowtorch playing in a room full of dynamite. It looks like the monkeys are about to operate the zoo, and the inmates are taking over the asylum. Vance Havner, clergyman


Without winners, there wouldn't even be any civilization. Woody Hayes, coach


The path of civilization is paved with tin cans. Elbert Hubbard, writer


A civilization in which there is not a continuous controversy about important issues is on the way to totalitarianism and death. Robert Maynard Hutchins,


One might enumerate the items of high civilization, as it exists in other countries, which are absent from the texture of American life, until it should become a wonder to know what was left. Henry James, writer


Civilization is just a slow process of learning to be kind. Charles L. Lucas,


Civilization -- a heap of rubble scavenged by scrawny English Lit. vultures. Malcolm Muggeridge, journalist


Civilization must be destroyed. The hairy saints of the North have earned this crumb by their complaints. Wallace Stevens, poet


The civilized savage is the worst of all savages. C. J. Weber,


If Germany, thanks to Hitler and his successors, were to enslave the European nations and destroy most of the treasures of their past, future historians would certainly pronounce that she had civilized Europe. Simone Weil, philosopher


The Bible tells us to be like God, and then on page after page it describes God as a mass murderer. This may be the single most important key to the political behavior of Western Civilization. Robert Anton Wilson, writer


A German immersed in any civilization different from his own loses a weight equivalent in volume to the amount of intelligence he displaces. Jose Bergamin, writer


The fact is we can only love what we know personally. And we cannot know much. In public affairs, in the rebuilding of civilization, something less dramatic and emotional is needed, namely tolerance. E. M. Forster, novelist


God isn't compatible with machinery and scientific medicine and universal happiness. You must make your choice. Our civilization has chosen machinery and medicine and happiness. Aldous Huxley, novelist


Civilization consists in the multiplication and refinement of human wants. Robert Millikan,


George Bush doesn't represent any civilization! George Galloway, politician


Government has never increased the standard of living of one single human being in civilization's history. For some reason that simple truth has evaded everybody. Steve Wynn, businessman


As I have said for many years throughout this land, we're borrowing money from China to buy oil from the Persian Gulf to burn it in ways that destroy the future of human civilization. Every bit of that has to change. Al Gore, vice president


We released 400,000 classified documents, the most extraordinary history of a war to ever have been released in our civilization. Those documents cover 109,000 deaths. That is serious matter. Julian Assange, activist


There is precious little in civilization to appeal to a Yeti. Edmund Hillary, explorer


The Lincoln Memorial is related to the toga and the civilization that wore it. Frank Lloyd Wright, architect


In our civilization, and under our republican form of government, intelligence is so highly honored that it is rewarded by exemption from the cares of office. Ambrose Bierce, journalist


America is the only nation in history which miraculously has gone directly from barbarism to degeneration without the usual interval of civilization. Georges Clemenceau, leader


Art is like a border of flowers along the course of civilization. Lincoln Steffens, journalist


The first human who hurled an insult instead of a stone was the founder of civilization. Sigmund Freud, psychologist


Civilization is what makes you sick. Paul Gauguin, artist


Civilization... wrecks the planet from seafloor to stratosphere. Richard Bach, novelist


Civilization is the distance man has placed between himself and his excreta. Brian Aldiss, writer


Sensible and responsible women do not want to vote. The relative positions to be assumed by man and woman in the working out of our civilization were assigned long ago by a higher intelligence than ours. Grover Cleveland, president


I think God's going to come down and pull civilization over for speeding. Steven Wright, comedian


We've arranged a civilization in which most crucial elements profoundly depend on science and technology. Carl Sagan, scientist


Civilization advances by extending the number of important operations which we can perform without thinking of them. Alfred North Whitehead, mathematician


The market is not an invention of capitalism. It has existed for centuries. It is an invention of civilization. Mikhail Gorbachev, statesman


America may be unique in being a country which has leapt from barbarism to decadence without touching civilization. John O'Hara, writer


You can't say civilization don't advance... in every war they kill you in a new way. Will Rogers, actor


I do not believe that civilizations have to die because civilization is not an organism. It is a product of wills. Arnold J. Toynbee, historian


Books are the carriers of civilization. Without books, history is silent, literature dumb, science crippled, thought and speculation at a standstill. Barbara Tuchman, historian


Civilization is hideously fragile and there's not much between us and the horrors underneath, just about a coat of varnish. Carrie P. Snow,


A nation or civilization that continues to produce soft-minded men purchases its own spiritual death on the installment plan. Martin Luther King, Jr., leader


I have seen the science I worshiped, and the aircraft I loved, destroying the civilization I expected them to serve. Charles Lindbergh, aviator


Let us not forget that the cultivation of the earth is the most important labor of man. When tillage begins, other arts will follow. The farmers, therefore, are the founders of civilization. Daniel Webster, politician


Western civilization, unfortunately, does not link knowledge and morality but rather, it connects knowledge and power and makes them equivalent. Vine Deloria, Jr., author


Science has done more for the development of western civilization in one hundred years than Christianity did in eighteen hundred years. John Burroughs, author


Civilization is a progress from an indefinite, incoherent homogeneity toward a definite, coherent heterogeneity. Herbert Spencer, philosopher


No university in the world has ever risen to greatness without a correspondingly great library... When this is no longer true, then will our civilization have come to an end. Lawrence Clark Powell, critic


The mother art is architecture. Without an architecture of our own we have no soul of our own civilization. Frank Lloyd Wright, architect


I would seriously question whether anybody is really foolish enough to really say what they mean. Sometimes I think that civilization as we know it would kind of break down if we all were completely honest. Elizabeth Hurley, actress


Individual commitment to a group effort - that is what makes a team work, a company work, a society work, a civilization work. Vince Lombardi, coach


We will create a civilization of the Mind in Cyberspace. May it be more humane and fair than the world your governments have made before. John Perry Barlow, writer


Americans' great and secret fear is that America may turn out to be a phenomenon rather than a civilization. Shirley Hazzard, novelist


Education is the transmission of civilization. Will Durant, historian


Imagination has brought mankind through the dark ages to its present state of civilization. Imagination led Columbus to discover America. Imagination led Franklin to discover electricity. L. Frank Baum, author


A great civilization is not conquered from without until it has destroyed itself from within. Ariel Durant, author


For me, politeness is a sine qua non of civilization. Robert A. Heinlein, writer


I do not believe that civilization will be wiped out in a war fought with the atomic bomb. Perhaps two-thirds of the people of the earth will be killed. Albert Einstein, physicist


New York... when civilization falls apart, remember, we were way ahead of you. David Letterman, comedian


The greatest task before civilization at present is to make machines what they ought to be, the slaves, instead of the masters of men. Havelock Ellis, psychologist


Civilization is the limitless multiplication of unnecessary necessities. Mark Twain, author


Civilizations can only be understood by those who are civilized. Alfred North Whitehead, mathematician


If any civilization is to survive, it is the morality of altruism that men have to reject. Ayn Rand, writer


Civilization is the progress toward a society of privacy. The savage's whole existence is public, ruled by the laws of his tribe. Civilization is the process of setting man free from men. Ayn Rand, writer


We are all afraid for our confidence, for the future, for the world. That is the nature of the human imagination. Yet every man, every civilization, has gone forward because of its engagement with what it has set itself to do. Jacob Bronowski, scientist


Culture is the tacit agreement to let the means of subsistence disappear behind the purpose of existence. Civilization is the subordination of the latter to the former. Karl Kraus, writer


It is not possible for civilization to flow backwards while there is youth in the world. Youth may be headstrong, but it will advance it allotted length. Helen Keller, author


It was the Law of the Sea, they said. Civilization ends at the waterline. Beyond that, we all enter the food chain, and not always right at the top. Hunter S. Thompson, journalist


The family is the nucleus of civilization. Will Durant, historian


Iraq is no diversion. It is a place where civilization is taking a decisive stand against chaos and terror, we must not waver. George W. Bush, president


Inventor: A person who makes an ingenious arrangement of wheels, levers and springs, and believes it civilization. Ambrose Bierce, journalist


I had faith in Israel before it was established, I have in it now. I believe it has a glorious future before it - not just another sovereign nation, but as an embodiment of the great ideals of our civilization. Harry S. Truman, president


Yet, history has shown that if material force can defeat some ideologies it can no longer obliterate a civilization without destabilizing the whole planet. Abdelaziz Bouteflika, statesman


Courtesy is a silver lining around the dark clouds of civilization; it is the best part of refinement and in many ways, an art of heroic beauty in the vast gallery of man's cruelty and baseness. Bryant H. McGill, poet


Since the dawn of time, traditional marriage - the union between one man and one woman - has been the building block of civilization, and at no point in our nation's history has that foundation been under more severe attack than now. Jim DeMint, politician


If men do not now succeed in abolishing war, civilization and mankind are doomed. Ludwig von Mises, economist


Peace is the virtue of civilization. War is its crime. Victor Hugo, author


The next war... may well bury Western civilization forever. Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, author


Nations have recently been led to borrow billions for war; no nation has ever borrowed largely for education... no nation is rich enough to pay for both war and civilization. We must make our choice; we cannot have both. Abraham Flexner, educator


Probably, no nation is rich enough to pay for both war and civilization. We must make our choice; we cannot have both. Abraham Flexner, educator


Not a single piece of material culture - not a single object - has been found at Giza that can be interpreted to come from a lost civilization. Zahi Hawass, scientist


To be complex does not mean to be fragmented. This is the paradox and the genius of our Canadian civilization. Adrienne Clarkson, journalist


Civilization is built on a number of ultimate principles... respect for human life, the punishment of crimes against property and persons, the equality of all good citizens before the law... or, in a word justice. Max Nordau, critic


No matter what we call it, poison is still poison, death is still death, and industrial civilization is still causing the greatest mass extinction in the history of the planet. Derrick Jensen, author


Human rights is a universal standard. It is a component of every religion and every civilization. Shirin Ebadi, lawyer


It's just a show. It's not the end of Western Civilization. It's chewing gum. Jerry Springer, celebrity


To one who believes that really good industrial conditions are the hope for a machine civilization, nothing is more heartening than to watch conference methods and education replacing police methods. Frances Perkins, politician


But you have to understand, my beard is so nasty. I mean, it's the only beard in the history of Western civilization that makes Bob Dylan's beard look good. Bill Walton, athlete


I think governments are the cancer of civilization. Chuck D., musician


Equal and united people can above all become a part of the civilization toward which mankind is moving. If we cannot be at the head of the column leading to such a civilization, there is certainly no need for us to be at is tail. Slobodan Milosevic, president


Civilization is not a spontaneous generation with any race or nation known to history, but the torch to be handed down from race to race from age to age. Kelly Millar,


Christianity is the enemy of liberty and civilization. August Bebel, politician


I consider that there are different degrees of civilization and there are many different ways of expressing it. But one is civilized or is not. Flora Lewis, journalist


I would say colonialism is a wonderful thing. It spread civilization to Africa. Before it they had no written language, no wheel as we know it, no schools, no hospitals, not even normal clothing. Ian Smith, politician


I believe with all my heart that civilization has produced nothing finer than a man or woman who thinks and practices true tolerance. Frank Knox, public servant



Famous authors of civilization quotes

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Sigmund Freud quotes 100 civilization quotes
Alfred North Whitehead quotes 50 civilization quotes
Arnold J. Toynbee quotes 24 civilization quotes
L. Sprague de Camp quotes 4 civilization quotes

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