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Quotes About Monarchy

Quotes tagged as "monarchy" (showing 1-30 of 55)
Denis Diderot
“Men will never be free until the last king is strangled with the entrails of the last priest.”
Denis Diderot

Voltaire
“I would rather obey a fine lion, much stronger than myself, than two hundred rats of my own species.”
Voltaire

Terry Pratchett
“The only thing known to go faster than ordinary light is monarchy, according to the philosopher Ly Tin Wheedle. He reasoned like this: you can't have more than one king, and tradition demands that there is no gap between kings, so when a king dies the succession must therefore pass to the heir instantaneously. Presumably, he said, there must be some elementary particles -- kingons, or possibly queons -- that do this job, but of course succession sometimes fails if, in mid-flight, they strike an anti-particle, or republicon. His ambitious plans to use his discovery to send messages, involving the careful torturing of a small king in order to modulate the signal, were never fully expanded because, at that point, the bar closed.”
Terry Pratchett, Mort

Graham Chapman
Dennis the Peasant: Listen. Strange women lying in ponds distributing swords is no basis for a system of government. Supreme executive power derives from a mandate from the masses, not from some farcical aquatic ceremony.
Arthur: Be quiet!
Dennis: You can't expect to wield supreme power just 'cause some watery tart threw a sword at you!”
Graham Chapman, Monty Python and the Holy Grail (Book): Mønti Pythøn Ik Den Hølie Gräilen

Kristin Cashore
“For a group of people who claimed to be concerned for her safety, they did seem to have developed rather a habit of encouraging uprisings against monarchs.”
Kristin Cashore, Bitterblue

Christopher Hitchens
“So this is where all the vapid talk about the 'soul' of the universe is actually headed. Once the hard-won principles of reason and science have been discredited, the world will not pass into the hands of credulous herbivores who keep crystals by their sides and swoon over the poems of Khalil Gibran. The 'vacuum' will be invaded instead by determined fundamentalists of every stripe who already know the truth by means of revelation and who actually seek real and serious power in the here and now. One thinks of the painstaking, cloud-dispelling labor of British scientists from Isaac Newton to Joseph Priestley to Charles Darwin to Ernest Rutherford to Alan Turing and Francis Crick, much of it built upon the shoulders of Galileo and Copernicus, only to see it casually slandered by a moral and intellectual weakling from the usurping House of Hanover. An awful embarrassment awaits the British if they do not declare for a republic based on verifiable laws and principles, both political and scientific.”
Christopher Hitchens

Thomas Paine
“One of the strongest natural proofs of the folly of hereditary right in kings, is, that nature disapproves it, otherwise, she would not so frequently turn it into ridicule by giving mankind an ass for a lion.”
Thomas Paine, Common Sense

C.S. Lewis
“I believe in political equality. But there are two opposite reasons for being a democrat. You may think all men so good that they deserve a share in the government of the commonwealth, and so wise that the commonwealth needs their advice. That is, in my opinion, the false, romantic doctrine of democracy. On the other hand, you may believe fallen men to be so wicked that not one of them can be trusted with any irresponsible power over his fellows.
That I believe to be the true ground of democracy. I do not believe that God created an egalitarian world. I believe the authority of parent over child, husband over wife, learned over simple to have been as much a part of the original plan as the authority of man over beast. I believe that if we had not fallen...patriarchal monarchy would be the sole lawful government. But since we have learned sin, we have found, as Lord Acton says, that 'all power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.' The only remedy has been to take away the powers and substitute a legal fiction of equality. The authority of father and husband has been rightly abolished on the legal plane, not because this authority is in itself bad (on the contrary, it is, I hold, divine in origin), but because fathers and husbands are bad. Theocracy has been rightly abolished not because it is bad that learned priests should govern ignorant laymen, but because priests are wicked men like the rest of us. Even the authority of man over beast has had to be interfered with because it is constantly abused.”
C.S. Lewis, The Weight of Glory

Thomas Paine
“Government, like dress, is the badge of lost innocence; the palaces of kings are built on the ruins of the bowers of paradise.”
Thomas Paine, Common Sense

Christopher Hitchens
“The prince's official job description as king will be 'defender of the faith,' which currently means the state-financed absurdity of the Anglican Church, but he has more than once said publicly that he wants to be anointed as defender of all faiths—another indication of the amazing conceit he has developed in six decades of performing the only job allowed him by the hereditary principle: that of waiting for his mother to expire.”
Christopher Hitchens

Francis Bacon
“Atheism leaves a man to sense, to philosophy, to natural piety, to laws, to reputation; all which may be guides to an outward moral virtue, though religion were not; but superstition dismounts all these, and erecteth an absolute monarchy in the minds of men. Therefore atheism did never perturb states; for it makes men wary of themselves, as looking no further: and we see the times inclined to atheism (as the time of Augustus Cæsar) were civil times. But superstition hath been the confusion of many states, and bringeth in a new primum mobile, that ravisheth all the spheres of government. The master of superstition is the people; and in all superstition wise men follow fools; and arguments are fitted to practice, in a reversed order.”
Francis Bacon

Christopher Hitchens
“This is what you get when you found a political system on the family values of Henry VIII. At a point in the not-too-remote future, the stout heart of Queen Elizabeth II will cease to beat. At that precise moment, her firstborn son will become head of state, head of the armed forces, and head of the Church of England. In strict constitutional terms, this ought not to matter much. The English monarchy, as has been said, reigns but does not rule. From the aesthetic point of view it will matter a bit, because the prospect of a morose bat-eared and chinless man, prematurely aged, and with the most abysmal taste in royal consorts, is a distinctly lowering one.”
Christopher Hitchens

Seraphim Rose
“Now a government is secure insofar as it has God for its foundation and His Will for its guide; but this, surely, is not a description of Liberal government. It is, in the Liberal view, the people who rule, and not God; God Himself is a "constitutional monarch" Whose authority has been totally delegated to the people, and Whose function is entirely ceremonial. The Liberal believes in God with the same rhetorical fervor with which he believes in Heaven. The government erected upon such a faith is very little different, in principle, from a government erected upon total disbelief, and whatever its present residue of stability, it is clearly pointed in the direction of Anarchy.”
Seraphim Rose

Sue Townsend
“The monarchy is finished. It was finished a while ago, but they're still making the corpses dance.”
Sue Townsend

Ray Bradbury
“They stood there, King of the Hill, Top of the Heap, Ruler of All They Surveyed, Unimpeachable Monarchs and Presidents, trying to understand what it meant to own a world and how big a world really was.”
Ray Bradbury, The Martian Chronicles

Mark Twain
“It was pitiful for a person born in a wholesome free atmosphere to listen to their humble and hearty outpourings of loyalty toward their king and Church and nobility; as if they had any more occasion to love and honor king and Church and noble than a slave has to love and honor the lash, or a dog has to love and honor the stranger that kicks him! Why, dear me, ANY kind of royalty, howsoever modified, ANY kind of aristocracy, howsoever pruned, is rightly an insult; but if you are born and brought up under that sort of arrangement you probably never find it out for yourself, and don't believe it when somebody else tells you. It is enough to make a body ashamed of his race to think of the sort of froth that has always occupied its thrones without shadow of right or reason, and the seventh-rate people that have always figured as its aristocracies -- a company of monarchs and nobles who, as a rule, would have achieved only poverty and obscurity if left, like their betters, to their own exertions...

The truth was, the nation as a body was in the world for one object, and one only: to grovel before king and Church and noble; to slave for them, sweat blood for them, starve that they might be fed, work that they might play, drink misery to the dregs that they might be happy, go naked that they might wear silks and jewels, pay taxes that they might be spared from paying them, be familiar all their lives with the degrading language and postures of adulation that they might walk in pride and think themselves the gods of this world. And for all this, the thanks they got were cuffs and contempt; and so poor-spirited were they that they took even this sort of attention as an honor.”
Mark Twain

Jefferson Smith
“Your king is SUPPOSED to explode? What kind of government system is that?”
Jefferson Smith, Strange Places

Franny Billingsley
“Our English monarchs are so unimaginative,” said Eldric. “They execute people in such tediously conventional ways.”
Franny Billingsley, Chime

Gregory of Nyssa
“The three most ancient opinions concerning God are Anarchia, Polyarchia, and Monarchia. The first two are the sport of the children of Hellas, and may they continue to be so. For Anarchy is a thing without order; and the Rule of Many is factious, and thus anarchical, and thus disorderly. For both these tend to the same thing, namely disorder; and this to dissolution, for disorder is the first step to dissolution. But Monarchy is what we hold in honor.”
Gregory of Nyssa

Christopher Hitchens
“It comes as no surprise to find [Norman] Mailer embracing [in the book On God] a form of Manicheanism, pitting the forces of light and darkness against each other in a permanent stand-off, with humanity as the battlefield. (When asked if Jesus is part of this battle, he responds rather loftily that he thinks it is a distinct possibility.) But it is at points like this that he talks as if all the late-night undergraduate talk sessions on the question of theism had become rolled into one. 'How can we not face up to the fact that if God is All-Powerful, He cannot be All-Good. Or She cannot be All-Good.'

Mailer says that questions such as this have bedevilled 'theologians', whereas it would be more accurate to say that such questions, posed by philosophers, have attempted to put theologians out of business. A long exchange on the probability of reincarnation (known to Mailer sometimes as “karmic reassignment”) manages to fall slightly below the level of those undergraduate talk sessions. The Manichean stand-off leads Mailer, in closing, to speculate on what God might desire politically and to say: 'In different times, the heavens may have been partial to monarchy, to communism, and certainly the Lord was interested in democracy, in capitalism. (As was the Devil!)'

I think it was at this point that I decided I would rather remember Mailer as the author of Harlot's Ghost and The Armies of the Night.”
Christopher Hitchens

Stacy Schiff
“As Dio observed later, democracy sounded very well and good, “but its results are seen not to agree at all with its title. Monarchy, on the contrary, has an unpleasant sound, but is a most practical form of government to live under. For it is easier to find a single excellent man than many of them.”
Stacy Schiff, Cleopatra: A Life

Christopher Hitchens
“In the controversy that followed the prince's remarks, his most staunch defender was professor John Taylor, a scholar whose work I had last noticed when he gave good reviews to the psychokinetic (or whatever) capacities of the Israeli conjuror and fraud Uri Geller. The heir to the throne seems to possess the ability to surround himself—perhaps by some mysterious ultramagnetic force?—with every moon-faced spoon-bender, shrub-flatterer, and water-diviner within range.”
Christopher Hitchens

“Had I realized while on Earth," he said, "that Hell was such a delightful place, I should have put more faith in the teachings of religion. As it was, I actually doubted its existence. A foolish error, cherie. I am pleased to say that you have converted me completely."

"I, too," observed Mr. Hamilton, helping himself to wine, "was something of an unbeliever in my time, and while never quite an atheist, like my arch-enemy Jefferson, I was still inclined to look upon Satan as merely a myth. Imagine my satisfaction to find him ruling a monarchy! You know I spent the greater part of my earthly existence fighting Mr. Jefferson and his absurd democratic ideas and now look at the damn country! Run by morons!”
Frederic Arnold Kummer, Jr., Ladies in Hades: A Story of Hell's Smart Set & Gentlemen in Hades: The Story of a Damned Debutante

Plutarch
“[It was] better to set up a monarchy themselves than to suffer a sedition to continue that must certainly end in one.”
Plutarch, Lives of the Noble Romans

John Wilmot
“All monarchs I hate, and the thrones they sit on,
From the hector of France to the cully of Britain.”
John Wilmot, The Complete Poems

Graham Greene
“You put the small thief in prison, but the big thief lives in a palace.”
Graham Greene, Orient Express

Johann Hari
“The American head of state grew up with a mother on food stamps. The British head of state grew up with a mother on postage stamps. Is that a contrast that fills you with pride?”
Johann Hari

Alexis de Tocqueville
“In examining the division of powers, as established by the Federal Constitution, remarking on the one hand the portion of sovereignty which has been reserved to the several States, and on the other, the share of power which has been given to the Union, it is evident that the Federal legislators entertained very clear and accurate notions respecting the centralization of government. The United States form not only a republic, but a confederation; yet the national authority is more centralized there than it was in several of the absolute monarchies of Europe....”
Alexis de Tocqueville, Democracy in America

Betty  Smith
“Man hätte meinen können, all die Unwillkommenen würden sich zusammentun und gemeinsam gegen die Macht auftreten, die sie nicht aufkommen lassen wollte. Aber dem war nicht so. Sie hassten einander ebensosehr, wie die Lehrerin sie hasste. Sie imitierten die [...] Lehrerin [...]. Es gab in jeder Klasse einen Unglücklichen, den die Lehrerin zum Sündenbock stempelte. Dieses arme Kind wurde unausgesetzt getadelt und gequält, an ihm reagierte sie ihre Unzufriedenheit mit sich selbst ab. Und kaum hatten die anderen Schüler erkannt, wen sich die Lehrerin zum Opfer gewählt hatte, wandten auch sie sich mit doppelter Grausamkeit und Herzlosigkeit gegen dieses arme Geschöpf. Dafür schmeichelten sie denjenigen, die bei der Lehrerin in Gunst standen. Vielleicht hatten sie irgendwie das Gefühl, dadurch dem Thron näher zu kommen.”
Betty Smith, A Tree Grows in Brooklyn

Joseph P. Farrell
“An error in the doctrine of God will have inevitable consequences in the sphere of action, of moral behaviour, of the polity of the Church, and of basic culture and social organization. A change in the doctrine of the Trinity in either of these directions cannot help but have political consequences.

Farrell, commenting on Nazianzen's connection between Trinity and Holy Monarchy”
Joseph P. Farrell

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