Samuel Smiles

Samuel
Smiles
1812
1904

Engish Biographer, Author and Reformer

Author Quotes

Success treads on the heels of every right effort; and though it is possible to overestimate success to the extent of almost deifying it, as is sometimes done, still in any worthy pursuit it is meritorious.

The life of a good man is at the same time the most eloquent lesson of virtue and the most severe reproof of vice.

What a solemn and striking admonition to youth is that inscribed on the dial at All Souls, Oxford, - periunt et imputantur, - the hours perish, and are laid to our charge; for time, like life, can never be recalled.

Charles II hearing Vossius; a free­thinker, repeating some incredible stories of the Chinese, turned to those about him and said, "This learned divine is a very strange man; he believes everything but the Bible."

I would not have any one here think that, because I have mentioned individuals who have raised themselves by self-education from poverty to social eminence, and even wealth, these are the chief marks to be aimed at. That would be a great fallacy. Knowledge is of itself one of the highest enjoyments. The ignorant man passes through the world dead to all pleasures, save those of the senses...Every human being has a great mission to perform, noble faculties to cultivate, a vast destiny to accomplish. He should have the means of education, and of exerting freely all the powers of his godlike nature.

Men who are resolved to find a way for themselves will always find opportunities enough; and if they do not find them, they will make them.

The apprenticeship of difficulty is one which the greatest of men have had to serve.

The most influential of all the virtues are those which are the most in request for daily use. They wear the best, and last the longest.

What we are accustomed to decry as great social evils, will, for the most part, be found to be only the out-growth of our own perverted life; and though we may endeavor to cut them down and extirpate them by means of law, they will only spring up again with fresh luxuriance in some other form, unless the conditions of human life and character are radically improved.

Commit a child to the care of a worthless, ignorant woman, and no culture in after-life will remedy the evil you have done.

If character be irrecoverably lost, then indeed there will be nothing left worth saving.

Mere political reform will not cure the manifold evils which now afflict society. There requires a social reform, a domestic reform, an individual reform.

The battle of life is, in most cases, fought uphill; and to win it without a struggle were perhaps to win it without honor. If there were no difficulties there would be no success; if there were nothing to struggle for, there would be nothing to be achieved.

The principal industrial excellence of the English people lay in their capacity of present exertion for a distant object.

When typhus or cholera breaks out, they tell us that Nobody is to blame. That terrible Nobody! How much he has to answer for. More mischief is done by Nobody than by all the world besides.

England was nothing, compared to continental nations until she had become commercial…until about the middle of the last century, when a number of ingenious and inventive men, without apparent relation to each other, arose in various parts of the kingdom, succeeded in giving an immense impulse to all the branches of the national industry; the result of which has been a harvest of wealth and prosperity, perhaps without a parallel in the history of the world.

If there were no difficulties there would be no success; if there were nothing to struggle for, there would be nothing to be achieved.

Necessity is always the first stimulus to industry, and those who conduct it with prudence, perseverance, and energy will rarely fail. Viewed in this light, the necessity of labor is not a chastisement, but a blessing, - the very root and spring of all that we call progress in individuals and civilization in nations.

The best school of discipline is home - family life is God's own method of training the young; and homes are very much what women make them.

The Railway [is] now the principal means of communication in all civilized countries. It has enhanced the celerity of time, and imparted a new series of conditions to every rank of life.

'Where there is a will there is a way'.' is an old true saying. He who resolves upon doing a thing, by that very resolution often scales the barriers to it, and secures its achievement. To think we are able, is almost to be so / to determine upon attainment is frequently attainment itself.

It will generally be found that men who are constantly lamenting their ill luck are only reaping the consequences of their own neglect, mismanagement, and improvidence, or want of application

Life will always be to a large extent what we ourselves make it.

The most important results in daily life are to be obtained, not through the exercise of extraordinary powers, such as genius and intellect, but through the energetic use of simple means and ordinary qualities, with which nearly all human individuals have been more or less endowed.

Hope is like the sun, which, as we journey toward it, casts the shadow of our burden behind us.

Author Picture
First Name
Samuel
Last Name
Smiles
Birth Date
1812
Death Date
1904
Bio

Engish Biographer, Author and Reformer