Quotes about children

A collection of quotes on the topic of children.

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Ilya Ehrenburg photo
William Lane Craig photo
Eric Hobsbawm photo
Alice A. Bailey photo
Jacque Fresco photo
Banksy photo

„Some mothers will do anything for their children, except let them be themselves.“

—  Banksy pseudonymous England-based graffiti artist, political activist, and painter

Cut It Out (2004)
Source: Wall and Piece

Gustave Flaubert photo

„Do not read, as children do, to amuse yourself, or like the ambitious, for the purpose of instruction. No, read in order to live.“

—  Gustave Flaubert French writer (1821–1880) 1821 - 1880

Correspondence, Letters to Mademoiselle Leroyer de Chantepie
Variant: Do not read as children do to enjoy themselves, or, as the ambitious do to educate themselves. No, read to live.
Context: Do not read as children do to enjoy themselves, or, as the ambitious do to educate themselves. No, read to live. (June 1857)

Anne Sexton photo
Hermann Hesse photo
Citát „Children have never been very good at listening to their elders, but they have never failed to imitate them.“
James Baldwin photo

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Samael Aun Weor photo
Marva Collins photo
Wilhelm Stekel photo

„In reality, we are still children. We want to find a playmate for our thoughts and feelings.“

—  Wilhelm Stekel Austrian physician and psychologist 1868 - 1940

As quoted in The Book Of Friendship: Making Life Better (2001) by Cyndi Haynes, p. 6

Jean Piaget photo

„If children fail to understand one another, it is because they think they understand one another.“

—  Jean Piaget Swiss psychologist, biologist, logician, philosopher & academic 1896 - 1980

The Language and Thought of the Child (1923) Tr. Marjorie and Ruth Gabain (1926)
Context: If children fail to understand one another, it is because they think they understand one another. The explainer believes from the start that the reproducer will grasp everything, will almost know beforehand all that should be known, and will interpret every subtlety. Children are perpetually surrounded by adults who not only know much more than they do, but who also do everything in their power to understand them, who even anticipate their thoughts and desires. Children, therefore... are perpetually under the impression that people can read their thoughts, and in extreme cases, can steal their thoughts away. It is obviously owing to this mentality that children do not take the trouble to express themselves clearly... This mentality does not contradict ego-centric mentality. Both arise from the belief of the child, the belief that he is the centre of the universe. These habits of thought account... for the remarkable lack of precision in the childish style.

Henry VIII of England photo
Marilyn vos Savant photo
Charles Manson photo
Claude Joseph Rouget de Lisle photo

„Arise, children of the Fatherland,
The day of glory has arrived!
Against us tyranny's
Bloody banner is raised …
Do you hear, in the countryside,
The roar of those ferocious soldiers?
They're coming right into your arms
To slaughter your sons, your companions!! To arms, citizens,
Form your battalions,
Let's march, let's march!
Let an impure blood
Soak our fields!“

—  Claude Joseph Rouget de Lisle French army officer 1760 - 1836

Allons enfants de la Patrie,
Le jour de gloire est arrivé!
Contre nous de la tyrannie,
L'étendard sanglant est levé, (bis)
Entendez-vous dans les campagnes
Mugir ces féroces soldats?
Ils viennent jusque dans vos bras
Égorger vos fils, vos compagnes!</p> <p> Aux armes, citoyens,
Formez vos bataillons,
Marchons, marchons!
Qu'un sang impur
Abreuve nos sillons!

Variant translations:

Ye sons of France, awake to glory!
Hark! hark! what myriads bid you rise!
Your children, wives, and grandsires hoary,
Behold their tears and hear their cries!
La Marseillaise (1792)

Ronald Fisher photo

„In organisms of all kinds the young are launched upon their careers endowed with a certain amount of biological capital derived from their parents. This varies enormously in amount in different species, but, in all, there has been, before the offspring is able to lead an independent existence, a certain expenditure of nutriment in addition, almost universally, to some expenditure of time or activity, which the parents are induced by their instincts to make for the advantage of their young. Let us consider the reproductive value of these offspring at the moment when this parental expenditure on their behalf has just ceased. If we consider the aggregate of an entire generation of such offspring it is clear that the total reproductive value of the males in this group is exactly equal to the total value of all the females, because each sex must supply half the ancestry of all future generations of the species. From this it follows that the sex ratio will so adjust itself, under the influence of Natural Selection, that the total parental expenditure incurred in respect of children of each sex, shall be equal; for if this were not so and the total expenditure incurred in producing males, for instance, were less than the total expenditure incurred in producing females, then since the total reproductive value of the males is equal to that of the females, it would follow that those parents, the innate tendencies of which caused them to produce males in excess, would, for the same expenditure, produce a greater amount of reproductive value; and in consequence would be the progenitors of a larger fraction of future generations than would parents having a congenital bias towards the production of females. Selection would thus raise the sex-ratio until the expenditure upon males became equal to that upon females.“

—  Ronald Fisher, book The Genetical Theory of Natural Selection

On natural selection acting on sex ratio: Fisher's principle, Ch. 6, p. 141.
The Genetical Theory of Natural Selection (1930)

John Wooden photo

„The best thing a father can do for his children is to love their mother.“

—  John Wooden American basketball coach 1910 - 2010

Source: Wooden: A Lifetime of Observations and Reflections On and Off the Court

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