Marsilio Ficino

Marsilio
Ficino
1433
1499

Italian Humanist Philosopher, Astrologer, Academic Thinker, Head of Florentine Academy

Author Quotes

Laurel crowns cleave to deserts And power to him who power exerts Hast not thy share On winged feet, Lo it rushes thee to meet ...

Why do we think love is a magician? Because the whole power of magic consists in love. The work of magic is the attraction of one thing by another because of a certain affinity of nature.

Musical consonance occurs in the element which is the mean of all (i.e. air), and reaches the ears through motion, spherical motion: so that it is not surprising that it should be fitting to the soul, which is both the mean of things, and the origin of circular motion. In addition, musical sound, more than anything else perceived by the senses, conveys, as if animated, the emotions and thoughts of the singer's or player's soul to the listeners' souls; thus it preeminently corresponds with the soul. Moreover, as regards sight, although visual impressions are in a way pure, yet they lack the effectiveness of motion, and are usually perceived only as an image, without reality; normally therefore, they move the soul only slightly. Smell, taste, and touch are entirely material, and rather titillate the sense-organs than penetrate the depths of the soul. But musical sound by the movement of the air moves the body: by purified air it excites the aerial spirit which is the bond of body and soul: by emotion it affects the senses, and at the same time the soul: by meaning it works on the mind: finally, by the very movement of the subtle air it penetrates strongly: by its contemperation it flows smoothly: by the conformity of its quality it floods us with a wonderful pleasure: by its nature, both spiritual and material, it at once seizes, and claims as its own, man in his entirety.

You are running to seek your friend. Let your feet run, but your mind need not.

Nature said the sea shall disjoin the people [of England] from others, and knit them to a fierce nationality. It shall give them markets on every side. Long time I will keep them on their feet, by poverty, border-wars? seafaring.

No man can claim to usurp more than a few cubic feet of the audibilities of a public room.

Poetry being an attempt to express, not the common sense, - as the avoirdupois of the hero, or his structure in feet and inches, - but the beauty and soul in his aspect . . . runs into fable, personifies every fact. . . .

Saturn seems to have impressed the seal of melancholy on me from the beginning.

The abstractionist and the materialist thus mutually exasperating each other, and the scoffer expressing the worst of materialism, there arises a third party to occupy the middle ground between these two, the skeptic, namely. He finds both wrong by being in extremes. He labors to plant his feet, to be the beam of the balance.

The civilized man has built a coach, but has lost the use of his feet.

The fate of the poor shepherd, who, blinded and lost in the snow-storm, perishes in a drift within a few feet of his cottage door, is an emblem of the state of man.

The imagination ... inspires an audacious mental habit. We are as elastic as the gas of gunpowder, and ... a word dropped in conversation, sets free our fancy, and instantly our heads are bathed with galaxies, and our feet tread the floor of the Pit.

The poor man, whom the law does not allow to take? a pair of shoes for his freezing feet, is allowed to put his hand into the pocket of the rich, and say, You shall educate me.

There is a moment in the history of every nation, when... the perceptive powers reach their ripeness and have not yet become microscopic so that man, at that instant... with his feet still planted on the immense forces of night, converses by his eyes and brain with solar and stellar creation.

Artists in each of the arts seek after and care for nothing but love.

These old shoes are easy to the feet.

Books that distribute things... with as daring a freedom as we use in dreams, put us on our feet again.

Wealth begins? in giving on all sides by tools and auxiliaries the greatest possible extension to our powers; as if it added feet and hands and eyes and blood.

I seem to hear Montaigne say I ... think an undress and old shoes that do not pinch my feet ... the most suitable.

What is odious but ... people ... who toast their feet on the register....

If writing lift you from your feet with the great voice of eloquence, then the effect is to be wide, slow, permanent, over the minds of men.

Who can wonder at the attractiveness... of the bar, for our ambitious young men, when the highest bribes of society are at the feet of the successful orator?

A lady with whom I was riding in the forest said to me that the woods always seemed to her to wait, as if the genii who inhabit them suspended their deeds until the wayfarer had passed onward; a thought which poetry has celebrated in the dance of the fairies, which breaks off on the approach of human feet.

Poetry being an attempt to express, not the common sense, as the avoirdupois of the hero, or his structure in feet and inches, but the beauty and soul in his aspect ... runs into fable, personifies every fact.

Law it is ... which hears without ears, sees without eyes, moves without feet and seizes without hands.

Author Picture
First Name
Marsilio
Last Name
Ficino
Birth Date
1433
Death Date
1499
Bio

Italian Humanist Philosopher, Astrologer, Academic Thinker, Head of Florentine Academy