Tertullian, fully Quintus Septimius Florens Tertullian

Tertullian, fully Quintus Septimius Florens Tertullian
c. 150

Carthaginian Church Father and Ecclesiastical Writer

Author Quotes

There is no public spectacle without violence to the spirit.

What is belief in the resurrection, unless believing it entire? For if the flesh is to be restored from dissolution, much more will it be recalled from discomfort. Greater things prescribe the rule for the lesser. Is not the amputation or the crippling of any member the death of that member? If general death is rescinded by resurrection, what of partial death? If we are changed into glory, how much more into health. The defects that accrue to bodies are an accident: their integrity is a property. In the latter we are born. Even if we are crippled in the womb, this happens to one who is already man: the species is there before the accident. As life is given us by God, so also is it given again: as we were when we received it, so are we also when we receive it back. Our restoration is a gift to nature, not to injury: we live again as what we are born, not as what damage makes us.

There is no spectacle without violent agitation of the soul.

Whatever the sea has washed away, the heaven burned down, the earth undermined, the sword shorn down, reappears at some other time by the turn of compensation.

There is power also in brevity.

When God's Spirit descends, then Patience accompanies Him indivisibly.

There is strife between God's ways and human ways: damned by you, we are absolved by God

When you express approval of a god who is no judge, it is not the God who is a judge whom you express disapproval of: you will be forced, no question of it, to lay accusation against justice itself - for this it is that causes any man to be a judge - classing it as one of the varieties of evil: which means you will have to include injustice among the subheadings of goodness. Justice is an evil thing only if injustice is a good one.

They converse as those who know that God hears.

Who will fear to squander what he has the power of afterwards recovering?

They eagerly seize a name of so great goodness to apply it to foul practices.

Wide are men’s inquiries into uncertainties; wider still are their disputes about conjectures.

Truth does not blush.

Written as with a sunbeam.

The blood of the martyrs is the seed of the church

Truth engenders hatred of truth. As soon as it appears, it is the enemy.

You are the doorway of the devil.

The entire fruit is already present in the seed.

Truth persuades by teaching, but does not teach by persuading.

You can judge the quality of their faith from the way they behave. Discipline is an index to doctrine.

The first reaction to truth is hatred

Two kinds of blindness are easily combined so that those who do not see really appear to see what is not.

You cannot parcel out freedom in pieces because freedom is all or nothing.

The nature of rumor is known to all.

We are but of yesterday, and yet we have filled all the places that belong to you — cities, islands, forts, towns, exchanges; the military camps themselves, tribes, town councils, the palace, the senate, the market-place; we have left you nothing but your temples.

Author Picture
First Name
Tertullian, fully Quintus Septimius Florens Tertullian
Birth Date
c. 150
Death Date

Carthaginian Church Father and Ecclesiastical Writer