French Satirist, Essayist, Dramatist, Philosopher and Historian
"Atheist: A name given by theologians to whoever differs from them in their ideas concerning the divinity, or who refuses to believe in it in the form of which, in the emptiness of their infallible pates, they have resolved to present it to him. As a rule an Atheist is any or every man who does not believe in the God of the Priest."
"Auto de Fe: An act of faith. A dainty feast offered to the Divinity from time to time, and which consisted of roasting, in great pomp, the bodies of Jews or heretics for the salvation of their souls and the edification of the lookers-on."
"But nothing is more estimable than a physician who, having studied nature from his youth, knows the properties of the human body, the diseases which assail it, the remedies which will benefit it, exercises his art with caution, and pays equal attention to the rich and the poor."
"But in this country it is necessary, now and then, to put one admiral to death in order to inspire the others to fight."
"But that a camel-merchant should stir up insurrection in his village; that in league with some miserable followers he persuades them that he talks with the angel Gabriel; that he boasts of having been carried to heaven, where he received in part this unintelligible book, each page of which makes common sense shudder; that, to pay homage to this book, he delivers his country to iron and flame; that he cuts the throats of fathers and kidnaps daughters; that he gives to the defeated the choice of his religion or death: this is assuredly nothing any man can excuse, at least if he was not born a Turk, or if superstition has not extinguished all natural light in him."
"Candide said: I also know that he must cultivate our garden. Banglos said: You're right: that when a man in the Garden of Eden, it works... Which proves that man was not born to rest. Martin said: Let us work without thinking: this is the only way to make life unbearable."
"Candide, that tender lover, seeing his fair Cunégonde sunburned, blear-eyed, flat-breasted, with wrinkles around her eyes and red, chapped arms, recoiled three paces in horror, and then advanced from mere politeness."
"Candide, who had been taught never to judge everything for himself, was greatly surprised by what he heard."
"Clearly, I said, we should choose not to have good sense, if that good sense contributes to our misery."
"Complacency is a coin by the aid of which all the world can, for want of essential means, pay its club bill in society. - It is necessary, however, that it may lose nothing of its merits, to associate judgment and prudence with it."
"Christianity is the most ridiculous, the most absurd, and bloody religion that has ever infected the world"
"Christianity: A religious system attributed to Jesus Christ, but really invented by Plato, improved by St. Paul, and finally revised and corrected by the Fathers, the councils, and other interpreters of the Church. Since the foundation of this sublime creed, mankind has become better, wiser, and happier than before. From that blessed epoch the world was forever freed from all strife, dissensions, troubles, vices, and evils of every kind; an invincible proof that Christianity is divine, and that it is to be possessed of the very devil himself to dare to commit such a creed or doubt its origin."
"Devil: The black sheep of the heavenly host, and the main prop of the Church....Without the devil God would cut but a sorry figure at best. The love of God is frequently but the fear of the devil."
"Do not most of us resemble that old general of ninety who, having come upon some young officers debauching some girls, said to them angrily: Gentlemen, is that the example I give you?"
"Despite the enormous quantity of books, how few people read! And if one reads profitably, one would realize how much stupid stuff the vulgar herd is content to swallow every day."
"Divorce is probably of nearly the same age as marriage. I believe, however, that marriage is some weeks the more ancient."
"Do you believe,' said Candide, 'that men have always massacred each other as they do to-day, that they have always been liars, cheats, traitors, ingrates, brigands, idiots, thieves, scoundrels, gluttons, drunkards, misers, envious, ambitious, bloody-minded, calumniators, debauchees, fanatics, hypocrites, and fools?'"
"Doctors put drugs of which they know little into bodies of which they know less for diseases of which they know nothing at all."
"Do you think... that men have always massacred each other, as they do today? Have they always been liars, cheats, traitors, brigands, weak, flighty, cowardly, envious, gluttonous, drunken, grasping, and vicious, bloody, backbiting, debauched, fanatical, hypocritical, and silly?"