Plato quotes

Born
428/427 or 424/423 BC Athens, Greece.

Died
348/347 BC Athens, Greece.

Occupation
Philosopher.

Plato was a philosopher in Classical Greece and the founder of the Academy in Athens, the first institution of higher learning in the Western world.

Knowledge without justice ought to be called cunning rather than wisdom.
– Plato
The greatest wealth is to live content with little.
– Plato
Arguments derived from probabilities are idle.
– Plato
I have hardly ever known a mathematician who was capable of reasoning.
– Plato
The mere athlete becomes too much of a savage.
– Plato
Nothing in the affairs of men is worthy of great anxiety.
– Plato
This City is what it is because our citizens are what they are.
– Plato
When men speak ill of thee, live so as nobody may believe them.
– Plato
We can easily forgive a child who is afraid of the dark; the real tragedy of life is when men are afraid of the light.
– Plato
They do certainly give very strange, and newfangled, names to diseases.
– Plato
Truth is the beginning of every good thing, both in heaven and on earth; and he who would be blessed and happy should be from the first a partaker of truth, for then he can be trusted.
– Plato
At the touch of love, everyone becomes a poet.
– Plato
Wealth and poverty: the one is the parent of luxury and indolence, and the other of meanness and viciousness, and both of discontent.
– Plato
People are like dirt. They can either nourish you and help you grow as a person or they can stunt your growth and make you wilt and die.
– Plato
Good people do not need laws to tell them to act responsibly, while bad people will find a way around the laws.
– Plato
Music is a moral law. It gives soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination, and charm and gaiety to life and to everything.
– Plato
The direction in which education starts a man will determine his future in life.
– Plato
Serious things cannot be understood without laughable things, or opposites at all without opposites.
– Plato
As empty vessels make the loudest sound, so they that have the least wit are the greatest blabbers.
– Plato
The highest form of pure thought is in mathematics.
– Plato
To be curious about that which is not one’s concern while still in ignorance of oneself is ridiculous.
– Plato
A good education is another name for happiness.
– Plato
Self conquest is the greatest of victories.
– Plato
Oh! may each youthful bosom, catch the sacred fire.
– Plato
Poetry is nearer to vital truth than history.
– Plato
The plight of apathy towards public affairs is to be ruled by evil man.
– Plato
Philosophy is the highest music.
– Plato
For a man to conquer himself is the first and noblest of all victories.
– Plato
Those who intend on becoming great should love neither themselves nor their own things, but only what is just, whether it happens to be done by themselves or others.
– Plato
There are two things a person should never be angry at, what they can help, and what they cannot.
– Plato
Honesty is for the most part less profitable than dishonesty.
– Plato
The true creator is necessity, who is the mother of our invention.
– Plato
What a poor appearance the tales of poets make when stripped of the colors which music puts upon them, and recited in simple prose.
– Plato
There are few people so stubborn in their atheism who when danger is pressing in will not acknowledge the divine power.
– Plato
If one has made a mistake, and fails to correct it, one has made a greater mistake.
– Plato
When there is an income tax, the just man will pay more and the unjust less on the same amount of income.
– Plato
You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation.
– Plato
They see only their own shadows or the shadows of one another, which the fire throws on the opposite wall of the cave.
– Plato
A hero is born among a hundred, a wise man is found among a thousand, but an accomplished one might not be found even among a hundred thousand men.
– Plato
The rulers of the State are the only ones who should have the privilege of lying, whether at home or abroad; they may be allowed to lie for the good of the State.
– Plato
The wisest have the most authority.
– Plato
No law or ordinance is mightier than understanding.
– Plato
Do not train a child to learn by force or harshness; but direct them to it by what amuses their minds, so that you may be better able to discover with accuracy the peculiar bent of the genius of each.
– Plato
Whenever a person strives, by the help of dialectic, to start in pursuit of every reality by a simple process of reason, independent of all sensuous information / never flinching, until by an act of the pure intelligence he has grasped the real nature of good / he arrives at the very end of the intellectual world.
– Plato
The punishment which the wise suffer, who refuse to take part in government, is to live under the government of worse men.
– Plato
A man left gold; another took it; left a noose, So the first hanged himself; having but life to lose.
– Plato
Apply yourself both now and in the next life. Without effort, you cannot be prosperous. Though the land be good, You cannot have an abundant crop without cultivation.
– Plato
All things will be produced in superior quantity and quality, and with greater ease, when each man works at a single occupation, in accordance with his natural gifts, and at the right moment, without meddling with anything else.
– Plato
When the tyrant has disposed of foreign enemies by conquest or treaty and there is nothing to fear from them, then he is always stirring up some war or other, in order that the people may require a leader.
– Plato
I think a man’s duty is to find out where the truth is, or if he cannot, at least to take the best possible human doctrine and the hardest to disprove, and to ride on this like a raft over the waters of life.
– Plato
Every heart sings a song, incomplete, until another heart whispers back. Those who wish to sing always find a song. At the touch of a lover, everyone becomes a poet.
– Plato
In politics we presume that everyone who knows how to get votes knows how to administer a city or a state. When we are ill… we do not ask for the handsomest physician, or the most eloquent one.
– Plato
Ignorance of all things is an evil neither terrible nor excessive, nor yet the greatest of all; but great cleverness and much learning, if they be accompanied by a bad training, are a much greater misfortune.
– Plato
Human behavior flows from three main sources: desire, emotion, and knowledge.
– Plato
Conversion is not implanting eyes, for they exist already; but giving them a right direction, which they have not.
– Plato
He whom love touches not walks in darkness.
– Plato
Perfect wisdom has four parts, viz., wisdom, the principle of doing things aright; justice, the principle of doing things equally in public and private; fortitude, the principle of not flying danger, but meeting it; and temperance, the principle of subduing desires and living moderately.
– Plato
There are three classes of men – lovers of wisdom, lovers of honor, lovers of gain.
– Plato
In particular I may mention Sophocles the poet, who was once asked in my presence, ”How do you feel about love, Sophocles? are you still capable of it?” to which he replied, ”Hush! if you please: to my great delight I have escaped from it, and feel as if I had escaped from a frantic and savage master.” I thought then, as I do now, that he spoke wisely. For unquestionably old age brings us profound repose and freedom from this and other passions.
– Plato
The excessive increase of anything causes a reaction in the opposite direction.
– Plato
Time is the moving image of Eternity.
– Plato
Pleasure is the bait of sin.
– Plato
Dictatorship naturally arises out of democracy, and the most aggravated form of tyranny and slavery out of the most extreme liberty.
– Plato
He who commits injustice is ever made more wretched than he who suffers it.
– Plato
Attention to health is life’s greatest hindrance.
– Plato
By education I mean that training in excellence from youth upward which makes a man passionately desire to be a perfect citizen, and teaches him to rule, and to obey, with justice. This is the only education which deserves the name.
– Plato
Homosexuality, is regarded as shameful by barbarians and by those who live under despotic governments just as philosophy is regarded as shameful by them, because it is apparently not in the interest of such rulers to have great ideas engendered in their subjects, or powerful friendships or passionate love-all of which homosexuality is particularly apt to produce.
– Plato
Someday, in the distant future, our grandchildren’s grandchildren will develop a new equivalent of our classrooms. They will spend many hours in front of boxes with fires glowing within. May they have the wisdom to know the difference between light and knowledge.
– Plato
I exhort you also to take part in the great combat, which is the combat of life, and greater than every other earthly conflict.
– Plato
One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors.
– Plato
Wise men speak because they have something to say; Fools because they have to say something.
– Plato
How can you prove whether at this moment we are sleeping, and all our thoughts are a dream; or whether we are awake, and talking to one another in the waking state?
– Plato
Excess generally causes reaction, and produces a change in the opposite direction, whether it be in the seasons, or in individuals, or in governments.
– Plato
Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a harder battle.
– Plato
Those who seek power are not worthy of that power.
– Plato
There must always remain something that is antagonistic to good.
– Plato
There is no such thing as a lover’s oath.
– Plato
Every king springs from a race of slaves, and every slave had kings among his ancestors.
– Plato
Is it not also true that no physician, in so far as he is a physician, considers or enjoins what is for the physician’s interest, but that all seek the good of their patients? For we have agreed that a physician strictly so called, is a ruler of bodies, and not a maker of money, have we not?
– Plato
Abstinence is the surety of temperance.
– Plato
Astronomy compels the soul to look upwards and leads us from this world to another.
– Plato