Voltaire quotes

Born
November 21, 1694, Paris, Kingdom of France.

Died
May 30, 1778.

Occupation
Writer, philosopher, playwright.

Fran├žois-Marie Arouet “Voltaire” was a French Enlightenment writer, historian, and philosopher famous for his wit, his attacks on the established Catholic Church.

The ear is the avenue to the heart.
– Voltaire
It is better to risk saving a guilty man than to condemn an innocent one.
– Voltaire
A witty saying proves nothing.
– Voltaire
Every man is guilty of all the good he did not do.
– Voltaire
Perfection is attained by slow degrees; it requires the hand of time.
– Voltaire
The ancients recommended us to sacrifice to the Graces, but Milton sacrificed to the Devil.
– Voltaire
We have a natural right to make use of our pens as of our tongue, at our peril, risk and hazard.
– Voltaire
Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities.
– Voltaire
It is dangerous to be right in matters on which the established authorities are wrong.
– Voltaire
We cannot always oblige; but we can always speak obligingly.
– Voltaire
The progress of rivers to the ocean is not so rapid as that of man to error.
– Voltaire
To hold a pen is to be at war.
– Voltaire
When it is a question of money, everybody is of the same religion.
– Voltaire
If God did not exist, it would be necessary to invent Him.
– Voltaire
To believe in God is impossible not to believe in Him is absurd.
– Voltaire
The multitude of books is making us ignorant.
– Voltaire
Men hate the individual whom they call avaricious only because nothing can be gained from him.
– Voltaire
The safest course is to do nothing against one’s conscience. With this secret, we can enjoy life and have no fear from death.
– Voltaire
It is difficult to free fools from the chains they revere.
– Voltaire
Prejudices are what fools use for reason.
– Voltaire
Originality is nothing but judicious imitation. The most original writers borrowed one from another.
– Voltaire
History should be written as philosophy.
– Voltaire
He who has not the spirit of this age, has all the misery of it.
– Voltaire
To succeed in the world it is not enough to be stupid, you must also be well-mannered.
– Voltaire
It is not sufficient to see and to know the beauty of a work. We must feel and be affected by it.
– Voltaire
Chance is a word void of sense; nothing can exist without a cause.
– Voltaire
Our country is that spot to which our heart is bound.
– Voltaire
Clever tyrants are never punished.
– Voltaire
In every author let us distinguish the man from his works.
– Voltaire
In general, the art of government consists of taking as much money as possible from one class of citizens to give to another.
– Voltaire
Judge a man by his questions rather than his answers.
– Voltaire
Think for yourselves and let others enjoy the privilege to do so, too.
– Voltaire
Very often, say what you will, a knave is only a fool.
– Voltaire
The public is a ferocious beast; one must either chain it or flee from it.
– Voltaire
He was a great patriot, a humanitarian, a loyal friend; provided, of course, he really is dead.
– Voltaire
The Holy Roman Empire is neither Holy, nor Roman, nor an Empire.
– Voltaire
We are all full of weakness and errors; let us mutually pardon each other our follies – it is the first law of nature.
– Voltaire
It is lamentable, that to be a good patriot one must become the enemy of the rest of mankind.
– Voltaire
Life is thickly sown with thorns, and I know no other remedy than to pass quickly through them. The longer we dwell on our misfortunes, the greater is their power to harm us.
– Voltaire
No problem can withstand the assault of sustained thinking.
– Voltaire
God gave us the gift of life; it is up to us to give ourselves the gift of living well.
– Voltaire
Man is free at the moment he wishes to be.
– Voltaire
Common sense is not so common.
– Voltaire
Better is the enemy of good.
– Voltaire
Illusion is the first of all pleasures.
– Voltaire
The instruction we find in books is like fire. We fetch it from our neighbours, kindle it at home, communicate it to others, and it becomes the property of all.
– Voltaire
It is the flash which appears, the thunderbolt will follow.
– Voltaire
The infinitely little have a pride infinitely great.
– Voltaire
We cannot wish for that we know not.
– Voltaire
To the wicked, everything serves as pretext.
– Voltaire
Friendship is the marriage of the soul, and this marriage is liable to divorce.
– Voltaire
I have never made but one prayer to God, a very short one: ‘O Lord make my enemies ridiculous.’ And God granted it.
– Voltaire
Appreciation is a wonderful thing: It makes what is excellent in others belong to us as well.
– Voltaire
What is tolerance? It is the consequence of humanity. We are all formed of frailty and error; let us pardon reciprocally each other’s folly – that is the first law of nature.
– Voltaire
The best is the enemy of the good.
– Voltaire
It is forbidden to kill; therefore all murderers are punished unless they kill in large numbers and to the sound of trumpets.
– Voltaire
Meditation is the dissolution of thoughts in Eternal awareness or Pure consciousness without objectification, knowing without thinking, merging finitude in infinity.
– Voltaire
The sovereign is called a tyrant who knows no laws but his caprice.
– Voltaire