Quotes about character

A collection of quotes on the topic of character, can, doing, other.

Total 2947 quotes, filter:

Shahrukh Khan photo
Benjamin Disraeli photo
Benjamin Disraeli photo
Benjamin Disraeli photo

„In the great struggle between popular principles and liberal opinions, which is the characteristic of our age, I hope ever to be found on the side of the people, and of the Institutions, of England. It is our Institutions that have made us free, and can alone keep us so; by the bulwark which they offer to the insidious encroachments of a convenient, yet enervating, system of centralisation, which, if left unchecked, will prove fatal to the national character.“

—  Benjamin Disraeli British Conservative politician, writer, aristocrat and Prime Minister 1804 - 1881

Address to the electors of Buckinghamshire (25 May 1847), quoted in William Flavelle Monypenny and George Earle Buckle, The Life of Benjamin Disraeli, Earl of Beaconsfield. Volume I. 1804–1859 (London: John Murray, 1929), p. 837.
1840s

Benjamin Disraeli photo
Benjamin Disraeli photo

„The Tory party is only in its proper position when it represents popular principles. Then it is truly irresistible. Then it can uphold the throne and the altar, the majesty of the empire, the liberty of the nation, and the rights of the multitude. There is nothing mean, petty, or exclusive, about the real character of Toryism. It necessarily depends upon enlarged sympathies and noble aspirations, because it is essentially national.“

—  Benjamin Disraeli British Conservative politician, writer, aristocrat and Prime Minister 1804 - 1881

Source: Speech to a Conservative dinner (26 June 1863), quoted in William Flavelle Monypenny and George Earle Buckle, The Life of Benjamin Disraeli, Earl of Beaconsfield. Volume II. 1860–1881 (London: John Murray, 1929), p. 114

Benjamin Disraeli photo

„I have that confidence in the common sense, I will say the common spirit of our countrymen, that I believe they will not long endure this huckstering tyranny of the Treasury Bench—these political pedlars that bought their party in the cheapest market, and sold us in the dearest. I know, Sir, that there are many who believe that the time is gone by when one can appeal to those high and honest impulses that were once the mainstay and the main element of the English character. I know, Sir, that we appeal to a people debauched by public gambling—stimulated and encouraged by an inefficient and shortsighted Minister. I know that the public mind is polluted with economic fancies; a depraved desire that the rich may become richer without the interference of industry and toil. I know, Sir, that all confidence in public men is lost. But, Sir, I have faith in the primitive and enduring elements of the English character. It may be vain now, in the midnight of their intoxication, to tell them that there will be an awakening of bitterness; it may be idle now, in the spring-tide of their economic frenzy, to warn them that there may be an ebb of trouble. But the dark and inevitable hour will arrive. Then, when their spirit is softened by misfortune, they will recur to those principles that made England great, and which, in our belief, can alone keep England great. Then, too, perchance they may remember, not with unkindness, those who, betrayed and deserted, were neither ashamed nor afraid to struggle for the "good old cause"—the cause with which are associated principles the most popular, sentiments the most entirely national—the cause of labour—the cause of the people—the cause of England.“

—  Benjamin Disraeli British Conservative politician, writer, aristocrat and Prime Minister 1804 - 1881

Speech http://hansard.millbanksystems.com/commons/1846/may/15/corn-importation-bill-adjourned-debate in the House of Commons (15 May 1846).
1840s

Benjamin Disraeli photo

„There is no index of character so sure as the voice.“

—  Benjamin Disraeli British Conservative politician, writer, aristocrat and Prime Minister 1804 - 1881

Bk. II, Ch. 1.
Books, Coningsby (1844), Tancred (1847)

Uri Geller photo

„I'll no longer say that I have supernatural powers. I am an entertainer. I want to do a good show. My entire character has changed.“

—  Uri Geller Israeli illusionist 1946

Interview in Magische Welt, November 2007; cited by James Randi, "Geller Reversal", SWIFT, 18 January 2008 http://www.randi.org/site/index.php/swift-blog/149-swift-january-18-2008.html

Jesmyn Ward photo

„So I kept pulling my punches. And later I realised that was a mistake. Life doesn’t spare the kind of people who I write about, so I felt like it would be dishonest to spare my characters in that way.“

—  Jesmyn Ward American writer 1977

Source: On how she “protected” her characters in her first novel Where the Line Bleeds in “Jesmyn Ward: ‘Black girls are silenced, misunderstood and underestimated'” https://www.theguardian.com/books/2018/may/11/jesmyn-ward-home-mississippi-living-with-addiction-poverty-racism in The Guardian (2018 May 11)

Alexandra Kollontai photo

„I never gave a thought to any kind of danger, being all too engrossed in matters of an utterly different character.“

—  Alexandra Kollontai Soviet diplomat 1872 - 1952

The Autobiography of a Sexually Emancipated Communist Woman (1926)

Katori Hall photo

„My mother said I was a weird child. I had about 15 imaginary friends and talked to myself, a lot. I still do sometimes - I love the power of pretend. Now I channel all those voices into my characters. It's probably a saner outlet.“

—  Katori Hall American playwright 1981

On gravitating towards the dramatic arts even at an early age in “Katori Hall: 'I've had two hours sleep!'” https://www.theguardian.com/stage/2010/mar/23/katori-hall-the-mountaintop-review in The Guardian (2010 Mar 23)

Tom Kenny photo
Carl von Clausewitz photo

„Strength of character does not consist solely in having powerful feelings, but in maintaining one’s balance in spite of them.“

—  Carl von Clausewitz, book On War

Source: On War (1832), Book 1, Chapter 3.
Context: Strength of character does not consist solely in having powerful feelings, but in maintaining one’s balance in spite of them. Even with the violence of emotion, judgment and principle must still function like a ship’s compass, which records the slightest variations however rough the sea.

Tupac Shakur photo
Michael Oakeshott photo
Charles Dickens photo
Muhammad photo
Martin Luther King, Jr. photo

„I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation, where they won´t be judged by the color of their skin, but by the contente of their character.“

—  Martin Luther King, Jr. American clergyman, activist, and leader in the American Civil Rights Movement 1929 - 1968

Variant: I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.

Michael Jackson photo
Arthur Schopenhauer photo

„Compassion for animals is intimately connected with goodness of character, and it may be confidently asserted that he, who is cruel to living creatures, cannot be a good man. Moreover, this compassion manifestly flows from the same source whence arise the virtues of justice and loving-kindness towards men.“

—  Arthur Schopenhauer German philosopher 1788 - 1860

Part III, Ch. VIII, 7, p. 223 https://archive.org/stream/basisofmorality00schoiala#page/223/mode/2up
On the Basis of Morality (1840)
Source: The Basis of Morality

N.T. Wright photo
John C. Maxwell photo

„Talent is a gift, but character is a choice.“

—  John C. Maxwell American author, speaker and pastor 1947

Julius Evola photo
Ernst Cassirer photo
Tamora Pierce photo
Girish Raghunath Karnad photo
Tim Burton photo
Tupac Shakur photo
James Madison photo

„It is due to justice; due to humanity; due to truth; due to the sympathies of our nature; in fine, to our character as a people, both abroad and at home, that they should be considered, as much as possible, in the light of human beings, and not as mere property. As such, they are acted on by our laws, and have an interest in our laws.“

—  James Madison 4th president of the United States (1809 to 1817) 1751 - 1836

They may be considered as making a part, though a degraded part, of the families to which they belong.
Speech in the Virginia State Convention of 1829-1830, on the Question of the Ratio of Representation in the two Branches of the Legislature (2 December 1829) http://econfaculty.gmu.edu/wew/quotes/slavery.html
1820s

Jasper Fforde photo
Charles Alexander Eastman photo
Ned Kelly photo
Carl Linnaeus photo

„I have been not been able to discover any character by which man can be distinguished from the ape“

—  Carl Linnaeus Swedish botanist, physician, and zoologist 1707 - 1778

Fauna Suecica (1746) as quoted by Jeffrey H. Schwartz, Sudden Origins: Fossils, Genes, and the Emergence of Species (1999)
Context: As a natural historian according to the principles of science, up to the present time I have been not been able to discover any character by which man can be distinguished from the ape; for there are somewhere apes which are less hairy than man, erect in position, going just like him on two feet, and recalling the human species by the use they make of their hands and feet, to such an extent, that the less educated travellers have given them out as a kind of man.

Lois McMaster Bujold photo

„I cannot emphasize enough that I do not start with a plan or agenda and mechanically manipulate characters and events to carry it out. I set characters in motion, and let them teach me what the book is.“

—  Lois McMaster Bujold Science Fiction and fantasy author from the USA 1949

"Women’s Hero Journey : An Interview With Lois McMaster Bujold on Paladin of Souls by Alan Oak at WomenWriters.net (June 2009)

Anne Frank photo

„Parents can only give good advice or put them on the right paths, but the final forming of a person's character lies in their own hands.“

—  Anne Frank victim of the Holocaust and author of a diary 1929 - 1945

15 July 1944
(1942 - 1944)
Original: (nl) Ouders kunnen alleen raad of goede aanwijzingen meegeven, de uiteindelijke vorming van iemands karakter ligt in zijn eigen hand.

Whoopi Goldberg photo

„I'm an actor. That's what I do. I'm not a stand-up comic. I do characters. I'm very good. I'll be better. But right now I'm a very good actor.“

—  Whoopi Goldberg American actress 1955

As quoted in "Whoopi Goldberg, A One-Woman Character Parade" https://www.newspapers.com/image/?clipping_id=68252476 by Michael Kuchwara, AP Drama Writer, The Fremont News-Messenger (November 29, 1984), p. 31.

John Wooden photo

„Worry more about your character than your reputation. Character is what you are, reputation merely what others think you are.“

—  John Wooden American basketball coach 1910 - 2010

Variant: Be more concerned with your character than your reputation, because your character is what you really are, while your reputation is merely what others think you are.

Margaret Thatcher photo
Mark Hamill photo
Menachem Mendel Schneerson photo

„We have taller buildings but shorter tempers; wider freeways but narrower viewpoints; we spend more but have less; we buy more but enjoy it less; we have bigger houses and smaller families; more conveniences, yet less time; we have more degrees but less sense; more knowledge but less judgment; more experts, yet more problems; we have more gadgets but less satisfaction; more medicine, yet less wellness; we take more vitamins but see fewer results. We drink too much; smoke too much; spend too recklessly; laugh too little; drive too fast; get too angry; stay up too late; get up too tired; read too seldom; watch TV too much and pray too seldom.
We have multiplied our possessions, but reduced our values; we fly in faster planes to arrive there quicker, to do less and return sooner; we sign more contracts only to realize fewer profits; we talk too much; love too seldom and lie too often. We've learned how to make a living, but not a life; we've added years to life, not life to years. We've been all the way to the moon and back, but have trouble crossing the street to meet the new neighbor. We've conquered outer space, but not inner space; we've done larger things, but not better things; we've cleaned up the air, but polluted the soul; we've split the atom, but not our prejudice; we write more, but learn less; plan more, but accomplish less; we make faster planes, but longer lines; we learned to rush, but not to wait; we have more weapons, but less peace; higher incomes, but lower morals; more parties, but less fun; more food, but less appeasement; more acquaintances, but fewer friends; more effort, but less success. We build more computers to hold more information, to produce more copies than ever, but have less communication; drive smaller cars that have bigger problems; build larger factories that produce less. We've become long on quantity, but short on quality.
These are the times of fast foods and slow digestion; tall men, but short character; steep in profits, but shallow relationships. These are the times of world peace, but domestic warfare; more leisure and less fun; higher postage, but slower mail; more kinds of food, but less nutrition. These are the days of two incomes, but more divorces; these quick trips, disposable diapers, cartridge living, throw-away morality, one-night stands, overweight bodies and pills that do everything from cheer, to prevent, quiet or kill. It is a time when there is much in the show window and nothing in the stock room.“

—  Bob Moorehead

"The Paradox of Our Age"; these statements were used in World Wide Web hoaxes which attributed them to various authors including George Carlin, a teen who had witnessed the Columbine High School massacre, the Dalai Lama and Anonymous; they are quoted in "The Paradox of Our Time" at Snopes.com http://www.snopes.com/politics/soapbox/paradox.asp
Words Aptly Spoken (1995)

Erich Fromm photo

„They are historical, but the product of rational imagination, rooted in an experience of what man is capable of and in a clear insight into the transitory character of previous and existing society.“

—  Erich Fromm German social psychologist and psychoanalyst 1900 - 1980

Human Nature and Social Theory (1969)
Context: What about the utopian thinkers of all ages, from the Prophets who had a vision of eternal peace, on through the Utopians of the Renaissance, etc.? Were they just dreamers? Or were they so deeply aware of new possibilities, of the changeability of social conditions, that they could visualize an entirely new form of social existence even though these new forms, as such, were not even potentially given in their own society? It is true that Marx wrote a great deal against utopian socialism, and so the term has a bad odor for many Marxists. But he is polemical against certain socialist schools which were, indeed, inferior to his system because of their lack of realism. In fact, I would say the less realistic basis for a vision of the uncrippled man and of a free society there is, the more is Utopia the only legitimate form of expressing hope. But they are not trans-historical as, for instance, is the Christian idea of the Last Judgment, etc. They are historical, but the product of rational imagination, rooted in an experience of what man is capable of and in a clear insight into the transitory character of previous and existing society.

Carl Sagan photo

„Consider again that dot. That's here. That's home. That's us. On it everyone you love, everyone you know, everyone you ever heard of, every human being who ever was, lived out their lives. The aggregate of our joy and suffering, thousands of confident religions, ideologies, and economic doctrines, every hunter and forager, every hero and coward, every creator and destroyer of civilization, every king and peasant, every young couple in love, every mother and father, hopeful child, inventor and explorer, every teacher of morals, every corrupt politician, every "superstar", every "supreme leader", every saint and sinner in the history of our species lived there — on a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam.
The Earth is a very small stage in a vast cosmic arena. Think of the rivers of blood spilled by all those generals and emperors so that, in glory and triumph, they could become the momentary masters of a fraction of a dot. Think of the endless cruelties visited by the inhabitants of one corner of this pixel on the scarcely distinguishable inhabitants of some other corner, how frequent their misunderstandings, how eager they are to kill one another, how fervent their hatreds.
Our posturings, our imagined self-importance, the delusion that we have some privileged position in the Universe, are challenged by this point of pale light. Our planet is a lonely speck in the great enveloping cosmic dark. In our obscurity, in all this vastness, there is no hint that help will come from elsewhere to save us from ourselves.
The Earth is the only world known so far to harbor life. There is nowhere else, at least in the near future, to which our species could migrate. Visit, yes. Settle, not yet. Like it or not, for the moment the Earth is where we make our stand.
It has been said that astronomy is a humbling and character-building experience. There is perhaps no better demonstration of the folly of human conceits than this distant image of our tiny world. To me, it underscores our responsibility to deal more kindly with one another, and to preserve and cherish the pale blue dot, the only home we've ever known.“

—  Carl Sagan, book Pale Blue Dot

Source: Pale Blue Dot: A Vision of the Human Future in Space (1994), p. 8, Supplemental image at randi.org http://www.randi.org/images/122801-BlueDot.jpg

Marcus Aurelius photo
John Kricfalusi photo
Kazimir Malevich photo
Theodor W. Adorno photo
Henry Kissinger photo

„This amazing, romantic character suits me precisely because to be alone has always been part of my style or, if you like, my technique.“

—  Henry Kissinger United States Secretary of State 1923

Interview with Oriana Fallaci (November 1972), as quoted in "Oriana Fallaci and the Art of the Interview" in Vanity Fair (December 2006) http://www.vanityfair.com/politics/features/2006/12/hitchens200612; Kissinger, as quoted in "Special Section: Chagrined Cowboy" in TIME magazine (8 October 1979) http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,916877,00.html called this "without doubt the single most disastrous conversation I ever had with any member of the press" and claimed that he had probably been misquoted or quoted out of context, but Fallaci later produced the tapes of the interview.
1970s
Context: I've always acted alone. Americans like that immensely.
Americans like the cowboy who leads the wagon train by riding ahead alone on his horse, the cowboy who rides all alone into the town, the village, with his horse and nothing else. Maybe even without a pistol, since he doesn't shoot. He acts, that's all, by being in the right place at the right time. In short, a Western. … This amazing, romantic character suits me precisely because to be alone has always been part of my style or, if you like, my technique.

Scarlett Johansson photo

„Well you know, I don’t think I have never really seen a film of this genre, where the female characters' sex appeal sort of came second. I mean of course they’re sexy characters.“

—  Scarlett Johansson American actress, model, and singer 1984

Of her role as Black Widow in Iron Man 2, in Teen Hollywood (3 May 2010) http://www.teenhollywood.com/2010/05/03/interview-gwyneth-and-scarlett-iron-mans-ladies
Context: Well you know, I don’t think I have never really seen a film of this genre, where the female characters' sex appeal sort of came second. I mean of course they’re sexy characters. When you have a sexy secretary, or a girl swinging around by her ankles in a cat suit, you know that’s innately sexy, but the fact is that these characters are intelligent. They’re ambitious. They’re motivated and calculated to some degree.

George Jones photo
Bill Skarsgård photo
Karl Marx photo

„Communism differs from all previous movements in that it overturns the basis of all earlier relations of production and intercourse, and for the first time consciously treats all natural premises as the creatures of hitherto existing men, strips them of their natural character and subjugates them to the power of the united individuals.“

—  Karl Marx, book The German Ideology

Vol. I, Part 4.
The German Ideology (1845/46)
Context: Communism differs from all previous movements in that it overturns the basis of all earlier relations of production and intercourse, and for the first time consciously treats all natural premises as the creatures of hitherto existing men, strips them of their natural character and subjugates them to the power of the united individuals. Its organisation is, therefore, essentially economic, the material production of the conditions of this unity; it turns existing conditions into conditions of unity. The reality, which communism is creating, is precisely the true basis for rendering it impossible that anything should exist independently of individuals, insofar as reality is only a product of the preceding intercourse of individuals themselves.

Salman Khan photo
Cate Blanchett photo
Cate Blanchett photo
Albert Camus photo

„O light! This is the cry of all the characters of ancient drama brought face to face with their fate. This last resort was ours, too, and I knew it now. In the middle of winter I at last discovered that there was in me an invincible summer.“

—  Albert Camus French author and journalist 1913 - 1960

Return to Tipasa (1954)
Variant translation: In the depths of winter, I finally learned that within me there lay an invincible summer.
As translated in Lyrical and Critical Essays (1968), p. 169; also in The Unquiet Vision : Mirrors of Man in Existentialism (1969) by Nathan A. Scott, p. 116

Paul of Tarsus photo
Fred Shero photo

„Be more concerned with your character than your reputation. For your character is what you really are, while your reputation is merely what others think you are.“

—  Fred Shero Former ice hockey player and coach 1925 - 1990

Jackson, Jim, Walking Together Forever: The Broad Street Bullies, Then and Now

Samuel Smiles photo

„Sow a thought, and you reap an act;
Sow an act, and you reap a habit;
Sow a habit, and you reap a character;
Sow a character, and you reap a destiny.“

—  Samuel Smiles Scottish author 1812 - 1904

Saying published anonymously in The Dayspring, Vol. 10 (1881) by the Unitarian Sunday-School Society, and quoted in Life and Labor (1887) by Smiles; this is most often attributed to George Dana Boardman, at least as early as 1884, but also sometimes attributed to William Makepeace Thackeray as early as 1891, probably because in in Life and Labor Smiles adds a quote by Thackeray right after this one, to Charles Reade in 1903, and to William James as early as 1906, because it appears in his Principles of Psychology (1890).
Misattributed
Source: Happy Homes and the Hearts That Make Them

Paul Klee photo

„Things appear to assume a broader and more diversified meaning, often seemingly contradicting the rational experience of yesterday. There is a striving to emphasize the essential character of the accidental.“

—  Paul Klee German Swiss painter 1879 - 1940

Section V
1916 - 1920, Creative Credo (1920)
Context: Formerly we used to represent things visible on earth, things we either liked to look at or would have liked to see. Today we reveal the reality that is behind visible things, thus expressing the belief that the visible world is merely an isolated case in relation to the universe and that there are many more other, latent realities. Things appear to assume a broader and more diversified meaning, often seemingly contradicting the rational experience of yesterday. There is a striving to emphasize the essential character of the accidental.

Quentin Tarantino photo

„I think it is dangerous to run away from history. I am much more interested in looking at something difficult and really fraught with a lot of problems and then challenging it from a close perspective, as opposed to just not dealing with it when creating the characters or the story.“

—  Naomi Iizuka American dramatist 1965

On inverting the clichéd romantic plot between a White male and Asian female in “Iizuka's '36 Views'” https://asiasociety.org/iizukas-36-views in Asia Society

Alain de Botton photo
Anne Frank photo
Hayao Miyazaki photo
Gichin Funakoshi photo
Chris Colfer photo
Galén photo
Christopher Lee photo
Tom Robbins photo
Leon Trotsky photo
Mark Twain photo

„It is not worth while to try to keep history from repeating itself, for man's character will always make the preventing of the repetitions impossible.“

—  Mark Twain American author and humorist 1835 - 1910

Mark Twain in Eruption: Hitherto Unpublished Pages About Men and Events (1940) edited by Bernard DeVoto

Johnny Depp photo
Johnny Depp photo

„I despise those prick actors who say, "I was in character," and "I became the character," and all that stuff. It's hideous. It's just masturbation at the highest level.“

—  Johnny Depp American actor, film producer, and musician 1963

Quoted in Chris Heath, "Johnny Depp's Savage Journey," http://www.johnnydeppfan.com/interviews/rs98.htm Rolling Stone (1998-06-11)

Lee Kuan Yew photo
Émile Durkheim photo
Edith Stein photo
Debby Ryan photo

„When you play a character, you learn the inner workings of someone's heart. I've learned something about myself through every character I've played!“

—  Debby Ryan American singer and actress 1993

Debby Ryan's Winter Fashion And Beauty Tips https://www.seventeen.com/celebrity/a19701/debby-ryan-fashion-interview/ (November 8, 2012)

Calum Worthy photo
Karen Blixen photo
Susan Choi photo

„The voice tends to come first and then everything else follows. It’s never worked for me to think, here’s a character and they should have this kind of voice, let me try to force that. If I can’t tap into a character’s voice, I can’t really write the character…“

—  Susan Choi American novelist 1969

On feeling the voice of a character in “Trust, Serendipity, and Consent: An Interview with Trust Exercise Author Susan Choi” https://www.bookish.com/articles/interview-susan-choi-trust-exercise/ in Bookish (2019 Apr 16)

Leonardo DiCaprio photo

„Don't think for a moment that I'm really like any of the characters I play. That's why it's called acting.“

—  Leonardo DiCaprio American actor and film producer 1974

http://www.popmonk.com/actors/leonardo-dicaprio/quotes-leonardo-dicaprio.htm

Jim Gaffigan photo

„Yeah, I am a character actor.“

—  Jim Gaffigan comedian, actor, author 1966

Doug Elfman (November 19, 2006) "Oh, 'Boys': New show centers on a female sportswriter who likes guys and likes to drink. Just don't call her 'hot.'", Chicago Sun-Times, p. D11.

„The final encounter with God, or an encounter with God that would take you beyond doubt, wouldn't have the character of a metaphysical proof.“

—  David Bentley Hart American theologian 1965

David Bentley Hart - Can metaphysics discern God?
16 December 2017
YouTube
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mw_epidqEgI
YouTube

Murasaki Shikibu photo
Charlie Chaplin photo

„A man's true character comes out when he's drunk.“

—  Charlie Chaplin British comic actor and filmmaker 1889 - 1977

Graham Greene photo

„A major character has to come somehow out of the unconscious.“

—  Graham Greene English writer, playwright and literary critic 1904 - 1991

New York Times (October 9, 1985)