Ancient Greece Quotes

Quotes tagged as "ancient-greece" (showing 1-30 of 51)
“ that star of the waning summer who beyond all stars rises bathed in the ocean stream to glitter in brilliance.”
Homer, The Iliad

Roman Payne
“Sexual frenzy is our compensation for the tedious moments we must suffer in the passage of life. 'Nothing in excess,' professed the ancient Greeks. Why if I spend half the month in healthy scholarship and pleasant sleep, shouldn't I be allowed the other half to howl at the moon and pillage the groins of Europe's great beauties?”
Roman Payne

Thomas Henry Huxley
“The science, the art, the jurisprudence, the chief political and social theories, of the modern world have grown out of Greece and Rome—not by favour of, but in the teeth of, the fundamental teachings of early Christianity, to which science, art, and any serious occupation with the things of this world were alike despicable.”
Thomas Henry Huxley, Agnosticism and Christianity and Other Essays

“I declare
That later on,
Even in an age unlike our own,
Someone will remember who we are.”
Sappho, Come Close

Karl Marx
“It is well known how the monks wrote silly lives of Catholic Saints over the manuscripts on which the classical works of ancient heathendom had been written.”
Karl Marx

Christopher Hitchens
“Periclean Greeks employed the term idiotis, without any connotation of stupidity or subnormality, to mean simply 'a person indifferent to public affairs.' Obviously, there is something wanting in the apolitical personality. But we have also come to suspect the idiocy of politicization—of the professional pol and power broker. The two idiocies make a perfect match, with the apathy of the first permitting the depredations of the second.”
Christopher Hitchens, Prepared for the Worst: Selected Essays and Minority Reports

Marguerite Yourcenar
“Il segreto più profondo di Olimpia è racchiuso in quest'unica nota cristallina: lottare è un gioco, vivere è un gioco, morire è un gioco; profitti e perdite non sono che distinzioni passeggere, ma il gioco pretende tutte le nostre forze, e la sorte accetta, come posta, unicamente i nostri cuori.”
Marguerite Yourcenar, Pellegrina e straniera

Ana Claudia Antunes
“I'd rather have a heart of gold
Than all the treasure of the world.”
Ana Claudia Antunes, Memoirs of An Amazon

Alas, how terrible is wisdom when
it brings no profit to the man that's wise!
This I knew well, but had forgotten it,
else I would not have come here.”
Sophocles, The Complete Greek Tragedies

S.F. Chandler
“When you fear nothing, you have nothing to fear”
S.F. Chandler, We The Great Are Misthought

“The sciences were financially supported, honoured everywhere, universally pursued; they were like tall edifices supported by strong foundations. Then the Christian religion appeared in Byzantium and the centres of learning were eliminated, their vestiges effaced and the edifice of Greek learning was obliterated. Everything the ancient Greeks had brought to light vanished, and the discoveries of the ancients were altered out of recognition.”
Al-Mas'udi, From the Meadows of Gold

Ruth Padel
“Tragedy's language stresses that whatever is within us is obscure, many faceted, impossible to see. Performance gave this question of what is within a physical force. The spectators were far away from the performers, on that hill above the theatre. At the centre of their vision was a small hut, into which they could not see. The physical action presented to their attention was violent but mostly unseen. They inferred it, as they inferred inner movement, from words spoken by figures whose entrances and exits into and out of the visible space patterned the play. They saw its results when that facade opened to reveal a dead body. This genre, with its dialectics of seen and unseen, inside and outside, exit and entrance, was a simultaneously internal and external, intellectual and somatic expression of contemporary questions about the inward sources of harm, knowledge, power, and darkness.”
Ruth Padel, In and Out of the Mind: Greek Images of the Tragic Self

Mary Renault
“It is not the bloodletting that calls down power. It is the consenting.”
Mary Renault, The King Must Die

You have your eyes but see not where you are
in sin, nor where you live, nor whom you live with.
Do you know who your parents are? Unknowing
you are enemy to kith and kin
in death, beneath the earth, and in this life.”
Sophocles, The Complete Greek Tragedies

Joseph Reese Strayer
“But no city-state ever solved the problem of incorporating new territories and new populations into its existing structure, or involving really large numbers of people in its political life (p. 11)”
Joseph Reese Strayer, On the Medieval Origins of the Modern State

So clear in this case were the oracles,
so clear and false. Give them no heed, I say;
what God discovers need of, easily
he shows to us himself.”
Sophocles, The Complete Greek Tragedies

O, O, O, they will all come,
all come out clearly! Light of the sun, let me
look upon you no more after today!
I who first saw the light bred of a match
accursed, and accursed in my living
with them I lived with, cursed in my killing.”
Sophocles, The Complete Greek Tragedies

“That is the god's work, spinning threads of death through the lives of mortal men, and all to make a song for those to come...”

Blaise Pascal
“I do not admire the excess of a virtue like courage unless I see at the same time an excess of the opposite virtue, as in Epaminondas, who possessed extreme courage and extreme kindness. We show greatness not by being at one extreme, but by touching both at once and occupying all the space in between.”
Blaise Pascal, Pensées

Nataša Nuit Pantović
“For the philosophers of ancient Babylonia and Greece the sense world was not considered an illusion.
In the search for Divine, they turned towards art, towards symbols and signs within myths and legends. They created such a marvel of art that every detail became an expression of the spiritual. In mysterious ways the wisdom of the initiates poured into poets, artists, and thinkers. They awakened powers of thought and feeling that are not directly stimulated by the spiritual world. Manipulating the elements, they turned towards the Lady Science and carried her principles to the point that we are now able to manipulate the sound, the light, the matter and its manifestation.”
Nataša Nuit Pantović, Spiritual Symbols

“As soon as the constraints of traditional society fell away, the Athenians stopped raising children.”
Daniel P. Goldman

“In ancient Greece, adolescence was a time when young men left their biological families to become the lovers of adult men. Sexuality was but one element of an affectional and educational relationship in which youths learned the ways of manhood”
Barry D. Adam, The Rise of a Gay and Lesbian Movement

Tim Kreider
“It came as a belated epiphany to me when I learned that the Greeks had several different words for the disparate phenomena that in English we indiscriminately lump together under the label love. Our inability to distinguish between, say, eros (sexual love) and storgé (the love that grows out of friendship) leads to more than semantic confusion. Careening through this world with such a crude taxonomical guide to human passion is as foolhardy as piloting a plane ignorant of the difference between stratus and cumulonimbus, knowing only the word cloud.”
Tim Kreider, We Learn Nothing

“The golden section was discovered by the Egyptians, and has been used in art and architecture, most commonly, during the classical ages of Egypt and Greece.”
Steven L. Griffing, The Golden Section:An Ancient Egyptian and Grecian Proportion

Karl Wiggins
“Quotes from Ancient Greece are mostly all bollocks”
Karl Wiggins, Dogshit Saved My Life

“The separation of sexuality from procreation in Greek culture helps explain the terrible demographic decay that Greece would suffer during the fifth and fourth centuries B.C.E.”
Daniel P. Goldman

Nick Harkaway
“The pathways of old Greece were drenched in blood, after all.”
Nick Harkaway, Gnomon

Adrian Goldsworthy
“Greek was her first language, and in Greek literature and architecture she was educated. Although representing on Egyptian temples and some statuary in the traditional headgear and robes of the pharaohs’ wives, it was unlikely she actually dressed this way save perhaps occasionally to perform certain rites. Instead she wore the headband and robes of a Greek monarch. Cleopatra proclaimed herself the ‘New Isis’, and yet her worship of the goddess betrayed a strongly Hellenised version of the cult. She was no more Egyptian culturally or ethnically than most residents of modern day Airzona are Apaches.”
Adrian Goldsworthy, Antony And Cleopatra

Edith Hamilton
“Fairest of the deathless gods.

This idea the Greeks had of him is best summed up not by a poet, but by a philosopher,
Plato: "Love—Eros—makes his home in men's hearts, but not in every heart, for where
there is hardness he departs. His greatest glory is that he cannot do wrong nor allow it;
force never comes near him. For all men serve of him their own free will. And he whom
Love touches not walks in darkness.”
Edith Hamilton, Mythology: Timeless Tales of Gods and Heroes

Edith Hamilton
“Fairest of the deathless gods.

This idea the Greeks had of him is best summed up not by a poet, but by a philosopher, Plato: "Love—Eros—makes his home in men's hearts, but not in every heart, for where there is hardness he departs. His greatest glory is that he cannot do wrong nor allow it; force never comes near him. For all men serve of him their own free will. And he whom Love touches not walks in darkness.”
Edith Hamilton, Mythology: Timeless Tales of Gods and Heroes

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