Great Throughts Treasury

A database of quotes

Peter Ustinov, fully Sir Peter Alexander Ustinov

English Actor, Writer, Producer, Playwright and Dramatist, Winner of Academy Awards, Emmy Awards, Golden Globes and BAFTA Awards for Acting and Grammy Award for Best Recording for Children

"Comedy is simply a funny way of being serious."

"The point of living and of being an optimist, is to be foolish enough to believe the best is yet to come."

"A diplomat these days is nothing but a head waiter who is allowed to sit down occasionally."

"Courage is often lack of insight, whereas cowardice in many cases is based on good information."

"Contrary to general belief, I do not believe that friends are necessarily the people you like best; they are merely the people who got there first."

"Beliefs are what divide people. Doubt unites them."

"Children are the only form of immortality that we can be sure of."

"Critics search for ages for the wrong word, which, to give them credit, they eventually find."

"If history teaches us one thing, than that history teaches us nothing. "

"Her virtue was that she said what she thought; her vice that what she thought didn't amount to much. "

"I am an optimist, unrepentant and militant. After all, in order not to be a fool an optimist must know how sad a place the world can be. It is only the pessimist who finds this out anew every day."

"I imagine hell like this: Italian punctuality, German humor and English wine. "

"If the world should blow itself up, the last audible voice would be that of an expert saying it can't be done. "

"In America, through pressure of conformity, there is freedom of choice, but nothing to choose from. "

"Men think about women. Women think about what men think about them."

"It is our responsibilities not ourselves that we should take seriously. "

"Intelligent or not, we all make mistakes and perhaps the intelligent mistakes are the worst, because so much careful thought has gone into them."

"Parents are the bones on which children cut their teeth."

"Love is an act of endless forgiveness, a tender look which becomes a habit."

"Since we are destined to live out our lives in the prison of our minds, our one duty is to furnish it well."

"People who reach the top of the tree are only those who haven't got the qualifications to detain them at the bottom."

"Once we are destined to live out our lives in the prison of our mind, our one duty is to furnish it well."

"Sex is a conversation carried out by other means. If you get on well out of bed, half the problems of bed are solved. "

"Terrorism is the war of the poor, and war is the terrorism of the rich."

"That weakness in human nature which goes by the name of strength."

"There are experts in little things but there are no experts in big things. There are experts in this fact and that fact but there are no moral experts. "

"To refuse awards... is another way of accepting them with more noise than is normal."

"The truth is really an ambition which is beyond us."

"Unfortunately, a superabundance of dreams is paid for by a growing potential for nightmares. "

"I am convinced that it is of primordial importance to learn more every year than the year before. After all, what is education but a process by which a person begins to learn how to learn."

"Unfortunately, the balance of nature decrees that a super-abundance of dreams is paid for by a growing potential for nightmares."