The Quote Garden
 “I dig old books.”
 Est. 1998

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Quotations about Wisdom

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NOTE:  Some of the quotes on this page were submitted to me by visitors, and not all have been verified for original source or wording. I'm working hard to confirm everything, but in the meantime please be aware of the possibility for errors.   —ღ Terri, March 2021

The beginning of our destruction started the day we began destroying ancient wisdom. ~Mike Dolan, @HawaiianLife, tweet, 2015

Every man is a damn fool for at least five minutes every day; wisdom consists in not exceeding the limit. ~Elbert Hubbard

Experience is the father, and memory the mother of wisdom. ~Proverb

We can be Knowledgeable with other men's knowledge, but we cannot be wise with other men's wisdom. ~Michel de Montaigne

Wisdom begins at the end. ~Daniel Webster

Wisdom is not what you know but how quickly you adjust when the opposite proves true. ~Robert Brault,

Patience is the companion of wisdom. ~St. Augustine

Wisdom is the reward you get for a lifetime of listening when you'd have preferred to talk. ~Doug Larson

Wisdom is the most beautiful ornament of the human race. ~Annæ Mariæ à Schurman, 1638  [Sapientia est generis humani ornamentum pulcherrimum. I've paraphrased this from her letter to Patri Andreas Rivetus. —tεᖇᖇ¡·g]

Wisdom is knowing what to do next; virtue is doing it. ~David Star Jordan, The Philosophy of Despair

He who devotes sixteen hours a day to hard study may become at sixty as wise as he thought himself at twenty. ~Mary Wilson Little

One does not grow wiser by knowing more but by becoming less certain. ~Robert Brault, 2017,

Wisdom doesn't necessarily come with age. Sometimes age just shows up all by itself. ~Tom Wilson

Some wise men would do well to exchange a portion of their weighty wisdom for the lighter burden of their neighbors' innocent folly. ~James Lendall Basford (1845–1915), Sparks from the Philosopher's Stone, 1882

How can you be a sage if you're pretty? You can't get your wizard papers without wrinkles. ~Bill Veeck

The years teach much which the days never knew. ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

When I can look Life in the eyes,
Grown calm and very coldly wise,
Life will have given me the Truth,
And taken in exchange — my youth.
~Sara Teasdale

The saddest aspect of life right now is that science gathers knowledge faster than society gathers wisdom. ~Isaac Asimov

Never does nature say one thing and wisdom another. ~Juvenal, Satires

A wise man can see more from the bottom of a well than a fool can from a mountain top. ~Author Unknown

I believe that all wisdom consists in caring immensely for a few right things, and not caring a straw about the rest. ~John Buchan

It is easier to find a score of men wise enough to discover the truth than to find one intrepid enough, in the face of opposition, to stand up for it. ~A.A. Hodge

A child can ask questions that a wise man cannot answer. ~Author Unknown

A single conversation with a wise man during the eating of a meal, is better than ten years' mere study of books. ~Chinese Proverb  [Quoted in Justus Doolittle, A Vocabulary and Hand-Book of the Chinese Language, Romanized in the Mandarin Dialect, "Metaphorical and Proverbial Sentences," 1872. —tεᖇᖇ¡·g]

This would be a great time in the world for some man to come along that knew something. ~Will Rogers

Wisdom consists of the anticipation of consequences. ~Norman Cousins

He dares to be a fool, and that is the first step in the direction of wisdom. ~James Gibbons Huneker

For each generation must find the wisdom of the ages in the form of its own wisdom. ~Erik H. Erikson, "Human Strength and the Cycle of Generations," Insight and Responsibility, 1964

Wisdom comes by disillusionment. ~George Santayana

Wisdom is the quality that keeps you from getting into situations where you need it. ~Doug Larson

Some folks are wise and some are otherwise. ~Tobias Smollett

Wisdom is digested experience... ~Janesville Daily Gazette (Janesville, Wisconsin), 1917 March 29th

Wisdom is ofttimes nearer when we stoop than when we soar. ~William Wordsworth

The young man knows the rules, but the old man knows the exceptions. ~Oliver Wendell Holmes Sr.

Knowledge is proud that he has learn'd so much;
Wisdom is humble that he knows no more.
~William Cowper, "The Winter Walk at Noon"

Knowledge comes, but wisdom lingers. ~Alfred Lord Tennyson

Wisdom outweighs any wealth. ~Sophocles

If wisdom and diamonds grew on the same tree we could soon tell how much men loved wisdom. ~Lemuel K. Washburn, Is The Bible Worth Reading And Other Essays, 1911

The toughest test of good judgment is to know when to withhold your better judgment. ~Robert Brault,

Wisdom is like a baobab tree; no one individual can embrace it. ~East African Proverb

Why, thou say'st well. I do now remember a saying: "The fool doth think he is wise, but the wise man knows himself to be a fool." ~William Shakespeare, As You Like It, c.1599  [V, 1, Audrey]

One must spend time in gathering knowledge to give it out richly. ~Edward C. Steadman

To be ultimately wise is to know everything, none of it for sure. ~Robert Brault,

The art of being wise is the art of knowing what to overlook. ~William James

It is more easy to be wise for others than for ourselves. ~François VI de la Rochefoucault

Mixing one's wines may be a mistake, but old and new wisdom mix admirably. ~Bertolt Brecht

      Mothers, teach your children this. Teach your children that Wisdom is everywhere. In pieces. Some of the Wisdom is in the trees, some of the Wisdom is with the animals. Some of the Wisdom is with the planets and the stars and the moons and the sun. Some of the Wisdom flows with the waters. Some of the Wisdom was with our ancestors. Some of the Wisdom is in our minds. All of the Wisdom is from the Spirit of God. ~Esther Davis-Thompson, MotherLove: Re-Inventing a Good and Blessed Future for Our Children, "Spiritual Nourishment," 1999
      [I cannot believe this isn't quoted anywhere else online, it is so beautiful. If you want a piece of your heart to be tattooed forever by a few words, I suggest getting yourself a copy of this book and reading the dedication / opening poem before the Preface. I can't quote it because it is three amazingly poetic pages that cannot be broken up, but I wept. I wept, in such a joyous and terrible way, and if you are a woman or a mother or have ever known pain in your life, I think you might too. —tεᖇᖇ¡·g]

Knowledge is learning something every day. Wisdom is letting go of something every day. ~Zen Proverb

We give advice, but we cannot give the wisdom to profit by it. ~François VI de la Rochefoucault

Age is the price of wisdom. ~Proverb

Learning sleeps and snores in libraries, but wisdom is everywhere, wide awake, on tiptoe. ~Josh Billings

There are subjects in which I wish to become knowledgeable, and subjects in which I wish to remain wise. ~Robert Brault,

The prince who would know all, must ignore much. ~Domitius Afer, translated from Latin

When the wisdom speaks, be silent. Do not waste your candle when the sun is there. ~Mehmet Murat ildan

Silence is wisdom's sentinel. ~James Lendall Basford (1845–1915), Sparks from the Philosopher's Stone, 1882

The child, offered the mother's breast,
Will not in the beginning grab it;
But soon it clings to it with zest.
And thus at wisdom's copious breasts
You'll drink each day with greater zest.
~Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Every wise man lives in an observatory. ~Augustus William Hare and Julius Charles Hare, Guesses at Truth, by Two Brothers, 1827

You must be very wise if you know what you mean. ~John Kendrick Bangs, "Jimmieboy's Valentine," Bikey the Skicycle, 1902

Knowledge is a process of piling up facts; wisdom lies in their simplification. ~Martin H. Fischer (1879–1962)

A man begins cutting his wisdom teeth the first time he bites off more than he can chew. ~Herb Caen

I've only yet to see the apparition of enlightenment, and it always slips past in my periphery. ~Terri Guillemets, "Mist," 2002

Mr. Copperfield... told her, when she doubted herself, that a loving heart was better and stronger than wisdom... ~Charles Dickens, The Personal History, Adventures, Experience, and Observation of David Copperfield the Younger, of Blunderstone Rookery (Which He Never Meant To Be Published On Any Account), "Chapter IX: I have a memorable birthday," 1849  [This is often quoted as: "A loving heart is the truest wisdom." —tεᖇᖇ¡·g]

"Some persons hold," he pursued, still hesitating, "that there is a wisdom of the Head, and that there is a wisdom of the Heart..." ~Charles Dickens, Hard Times, 1854

Common-sense in an uncommon degree is what the world calls wisdom. ~Samuel Taylor Coleridge

No man was ever wise by chance. ~Seneca

Life is one long experiment in learning. Who can be perfect all the time? Sometimes I feel half-wise, sometimes half-stupid. ~Terri Guillemets

We are made wise not by the recollection of our past, but by the responsibility for our future. ~George Bernard Shaw

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Last saved 2021 Jun 04 Fri 10:47 PDT

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