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Denis Diderot – 26 Quotes

 

26 Quotes by Denis Diderot

 

Genius is present in every age, but the men carrying it within them remain benumbed unless extraordinary events occur to heat up and melt the mass so that it flows forth.

– Denis Diderot


When superstition is allowed to perform the task of old age in dulling the human temperament, we can say goodbye to all excellence in poetry, in painting, and in music.

– Denis Diderot


When science, art, literature, and philosophy are simply the manifestation of personality they are on a level where glorious and dazzling achievements are possible, which can make a man’s name live for thousands of years.

– Denis Diderot


The best doctor is the one you run to and can’t find.

– Denis Diderot


There are things I can’t force. I must adjust. There are times when the greatest change needed is a change of my viewpoint.

– Denis Diderot


People praise virtue, but they hate it, they run away from it. It freezes you to death, and in this world you’ve got to keep your feet warm.

– Denis Diderot


Although a man may wear fine clothing, if he lives peacefully and is good, self-possessed, has faith and is pure and if he does not hurt any living being, he is a holy man.

– Denis Diderot


The general interest of the masses might take the place of the insight of genius if it were allowed freedom of action.

– Denis Diderot


Man will never be free until the last king is strangled with the entrails of the last priest.

– Denis Diderot


Morals are in all countries the result of legislation and government they are not African or Asian or European: they are good or bad.

– Denis Diderot


Only passions, great passions can elevate the soul to great things.

– Denis Diderot


The philosopher has never killed any priests, whereas the priest has killed a great many philosophers.

– Denis Diderot


There is only one passion, the passion for happiness.

– Denis Diderot


There are three principal means of acquiring knowledge… observation of nature, reflection, and experimentation. Observation collects facts reflection combines them experimentation verifies the result of that combination.

– Denis Diderot


The possibility of divorce renders both marriage partners stricter in their observance of the duties they owe to each other. Divorces help to improve morals and to increase the population.

– Denis Diderot


Good music is very close to primitive language.

– Denis Diderot


It is not human nature we should accuse but the despicable conventions that pervert it.

– Denis Diderot


No man has received from nature the right to command his fellow human beings.

– Denis Diderot


Our observation of nature must be diligent, our reflection profound, and our experiments exact. We rarely see these three means combined and for this reason, creative geniuses are not common.

– Denis Diderot


Patriotism is an ephemeral motive that scarcely ever outlasts the particular threat to society that aroused it.

– Denis Diderot


Poetry must have something in it that is barbaric, vast and wild.

– Denis Diderot


Power acquired by violence is only a usurpation, and lasts only as long as the force of him who commands prevails over that of those who obey.

– Denis Diderot


Disturbances in society are never more fearful than when those who are stirring up the trouble can use the pretext of religion to mask their true designs.

– Denis Diderot


If there is one realm in which it is essential to be sublime, it is in wickedness. You spit on a petty thief, but you can’t deny a kind of respect for the great criminal.

– Denis Diderot


Pithy sentences are like sharp nails which force truth upon our memory.

– Denis Diderot


We swallow greedily any lie that flatters us, but we sip only little by little at a truth we find bitter.

– Denis Diderot


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