Plutarch (c. AD 46, Chaeronea, Boeotia – died after AD 119, Delphi, Phocis) was a Greek Middle Platonist philosopher, historian, biographer, essayist, and priest at the Temple of Apollo in Delphi. He is known primarily for his Bioi parallēloi (Parallel Lives), a series of biographies of illustrious Greeks and Romans, and Moralia, a collection of essays and speeches. Top 10 Famous Plutarch Quotes The mind is not a vessel to be filled, but a fire to be kindled. I don’t need a friend who changes when I change and who nods when I nod; my shadow does that much better. Painting is silent poetry, and poetry is painting that speaks. What we achieve inwardly will change outer reality. An imbalance between rich and poor is the oldest and most fatal ailment of all republics. The Spartans do not ask how many are the enemy but where are they. A few vices are sufficient to darken many virtues. It is the admirer of himself, and not the admirer of virtue, that thinks himself superior to others. The poor go to war, to fight and die for the delights, riches, and superfluities of others. No man ever wetted clay and then left it, as if there would be bricks by chance and fortune. 11 Plutarch Quotes About Life to Inspire You Know how to listen, and you will profit even from those who talk badly. To find fault is easy; to do better may be difficult.
The abuse of buying and selling votes crept in and money began to play an important part in determining elections. Later on, this process of corruption spread to the law courts. And then to the army, and finally the Republic was subjected to the rule of emperors.
Plutarch I would rather excel in the knowledge of what is excellent, than in the extent of my power and possessions. The whole life is but a point of time; let us enjoy it, therefore, while it lasts, and not spend it to no purpose. Prosperity is no just scale; adversity is the only balance to weigh friends. Of all the disorders in the soul, envy is the only one no one confesses to. Nothing is harder to direct than a man in prosperity; nothing more easily managed that one is adversity. Neither blame or praise yourself. Do not speak of your happiness to one less fortunate than yourself. The whole of life is but a moment of time. It is our duty, therefore to use it, not to misuse it. 20 Wise Plutarch Quotes on Success and Philosophy Character is simply habit long continued. For the wise man, every day is a festival. To make no mistakes is not in the power of man; but from their errors and mistakes the wise and good learn wisdom for the future. We ought not to treat living creatures like shoes or household belongings, which when worn with use we throw away. Silence at the proper season is wisdom, and better than any speech. It is indeed a desirable thing to be well-descended, but the glory belongs to our ancestors. Medicine to produce health must examine disease; and music, to create harmony must investigate discord. Evidence of trust begets trust, and love is reciprocated by love. All men whilst they are awake are in one common world: but each of them, when he is asleep, is in a world of his own. Courage stands halfway between cowardice and rashness, one of which is a lack, the other an excess of courage. It were better to have no opinion of God at all than such a one as is unworthy of him; for the one is only belief – the other contempt. To be ignorant of the lives of the most celebrated men of antiquity is to continue in a state of childhood all our days. Those who aim at great deeds must also suffer greatly. The measure of a man is the way he bears up under misfortune. Books delight to the very marrow of one’s bones. They speak to us, consult with us, and join with us in a living and intense intimacy. It does not follow, that because a particular work of art succeeds in charming us, its creator also deserves our admiration. Perseverance is more prevailing than violence; and many things which cannot be overcome when they are together, yield themselves up when taken little by little. Learn to be pleased with everything; with wealth, so far as it makes us beneficial to others; with poverty, for not having much to care for; and with obscurity, for being unenvied. It is part of a good man to do great and noble deeds, though he risk everything. The omission of good is no less reprehensible than the commission of evil.