Lord Acton - Quotes

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Power tends to corrupt and absolute power corrupts absolutely.

Power tends to corrupt and absolute power corrupts absolutely.

History is not a burden on the memory but an illumination of the soul.

History is not a burden on the memory but an illumination of the soul.

Learn as much by writing as by reading.

Learn as much by writing as by reading.

I'm not a driven businessman, but a driven artist. I never think about money. Beautiful things make money.

I'm not a driven businessman, but a driven artist. I never think about money. Beautiful things make money.

Liberty is not the power of doing what we like, but the right to do what we ought.

Liberty is not the power of doing what we like, but the right to do what we ought.

The one pervading evil of democracy is the tyranny of the majority, or rather of that party, not always the majority, that succeeds, by force or fraud, in carrying elections. ---->>>

Property is not the sacred right. When a rich man becomes poor it is a misfortune, it is not a moral evil. When a poor man becomes destitute, it is a moral evil, teeming with consequences and injurious to society and morality.

Property is not the sacred right. When a rich man becomes poor it is a misfortune, it is not a moral evil. When a poor man becomes destitute, it is a moral evil, teeming with consequences and injurious to society and morality.

The issue which has swept down the centuries and which will have to be fought sooner or later is the people versus the banks. ---->>>

If some great catastrophe is not announced every morning, we feel a certain void. Nothing in the paper today, we sigh.

If some great catastrophe is not announced every morning, we feel a certain void. Nothing in the paper today, we sigh.

Every thing secret degenerates, even the administration of justice; nothing is safe that does not show how it can bear discussion and publicity. ---->>>

To be able to look back upon one's past life with satisfaction is to live twice.

To be able to look back upon one's past life with satisfaction is to live twice.

And remember, where you have a concentration of power in a few hands, all too frequently men with the mentality of gangsters get control. History has proven that. ---->>>

Socialism means slavery.

Socialism means slavery.

A wise person does at once, what a fool does at last. Both do the same thing; only at different times. ---->>>

The danger is not that a particular class is unfit to govern: every class is unfit to govern.

The danger is not that a particular class is unfit to govern: every class is unfit to govern.

There is no error so monstrous that it fails to find defenders among the ablest men. ---->>>

Opinions alter, manners change, creeds rise and fall, but the moral laws are written on the table of eternity. ---->>>

There are two things which cannot be attacked in front: ignorance and narrow-mindedness. They can only be shaken by the simple development of the contrary qualities. They will not bear discussion. ---->>>

Liberty is not a means to a higher political end. It is itself the highest political end.

Liberty is not a means to a higher political end. It is itself the highest political end.

There is not a soul who does not have to beg alms of another, either a smile, a handshake, or a fond eye.

There is not a soul who does not have to beg alms of another, either a smile, a handshake, or a fond eye.

The long term versus the short term argument is one used by losers. ---->>>

Machiavelli's teaching would hardly have stood the test of Parliamentary government, for public discussion demands at least the profession of good faith.

Machiavelli's teaching would hardly have stood the test of Parliamentary government, for public discussion demands at least the profession of good faith.

Save for the wild force of Nature, nothing moves in this world that is not Greek in its origin. ---->>>

The science of politics is the one science that is deposited by the streams of history, like the grains of gold in the sand of a river; and the knowledge of the past, the record of truths revealed by experience, is eminently practical, as an instrument of action and a power that goes to making the future.

The science of politics is the one science that is deposited by the streams of history, like the grains of gold in the sand of a river; and the knowledge of the past, the record of truths revealed by experience, is eminently practical, as an instrument of action and a power that goes to making the future.

The man who prefers his country before any other duty shows the same spirit as the man who surrenders every right to the state. They both deny that right is superior to authority. ---->>>

Be not content with the best book; seek sidelights from the others; have no favourites. ---->>>

Biography

Nationality: British
Born: January 10, 1834
Birthplace:
Die: 06-19, 1902
Occupation: Historian
Website:

John Emerich Edward Dalberg-Acton, 1st Baron Acton, KCVO DL (10 January 1834 – 19 June 1902)—known as Sir John Dalberg-Acton, 8th Baronet, from 1837 to 1869 and usually referred to simply as Lord Acton—was an English Catholic historian, politician, and writer. He was the only son of Sir Ferdinand Dalberg-Acton, 7th Baronet and a grandson of the Neapolitan admiral Sir John Acton, 6th Baronet (wikipedia)