Famous Quotes &
Just what is it about certain famous quotes from great poetry that leads
people to celebrate them?
We all know that some eminently quotable quotes somehow gain
the status of joining the accepted body of familiar quotations
but, as well as being capable of moving the human soul,
have such profoundly intriguing quotes a basis in an "inborn
nature" that all human beings may be held to substantially have in common?
Some famous and familiar quotations that may even qualify as being " Central Poetry Insights " are set out here:-
- A Disdain for Materialism
Poor and content is rich, and rich enough.
- A Distrust of Intellect
- The intellectual power, through words and things,
Went sounding on, a dim and perilous way!
- Poetical Insights are possible!
- God guard me from those thoughts men think
In the mind alone;
He that sings a lasting song
Thinks in a marrow-bone;
- That best portion of a good man's life,
His little, nameless, unremembered acts
Of kindness and of love.
- Purity of Heart
- A peace above all earthly dignities,
A still and quiet conscience.
- The best of men
That e'er wore earth about him, was a sufferer,
A soft, meek, patient, humble, tranquil spirit,
The first true gentleman that ever breathed.
- Since my dear soul was mistress of her choice,
And could of men distinguish her election,
Sh'hath sealed thee for herself, for thou hast been
As one in suff'ring all that suffers nothing,
A man that Fortune's buffets and rewards
Hast ta'en with equal thanks; and blest are those
Whose blood and judgement are so well co-medled,
That they are not a pipe for Fortune's finger
To sound what stop she please: give me that man
That is not passion's slave, and I will wear him
In my heart's core, ay in my heart of heart,
As I do thee.
William Wordsworth, John Keats and others have left us much
food for thought in some of the things they assert about the
insights of Poets:-
I think continually of those who were truly great.
Who from the womb, remembered the soul's history
Through corridors of light.
Sir Stephen Spender
Whose sudden visitations daze the world,
Vanish like lightning, but they leave behind
A voice that in the distance far away
Wakens the slumbering ages.
Heard melodies are sweet, but those unheard
Are sweeter; therefore, ye soft pipes, play on;
Not to the sensual ear, but, more endear'd
Pipe to the spirit ditties of no tone.
Felt in the blood, and felt along the heart.
Wisdom married to immortal verse.
Choice word and measured phrase above the reach
Of ordinary men.
Poetry is the breath and finer spirit of all knowledge.
Poets utter great and wise things which they do not
Poetry is more philosophical and of higher value than history; for poetry tends to express the universal, history the particular.
The true philosopher and the true poet are one,
and a beauty, which is truth, and a truth, which
is beauty, is the aim of both.
Ralph Waldo Emerson
One demands two things of a poem. Firstly, it must be a well-made
verbal object that does honor to the language in which it is written.
Secondly, it must say something significant about a reality common
to us all, but perceived from a unique perspective. What the poet
says has never been said before, but, once he has said it, his
readers recognize its validity for themselves.
W. H. Auden
We have assembled an hopefully definitive collection of the
insights of the Mystics and Poets. Due to our respect for the
profundity of these insights we collectively refer to their
authors as - The Sage.
The name of our Web site "Age-of-the-Sage" indicates that we
consider that the guidance provided by the wisdoms of the Mystics
and Poets should be taken very seriously indeed.
We hope to persuade you that thanks to the QUITE
AWESOME insights of - The Sage - innate human nature can
actually be explored, and mapped, in efforts to better comprehend
Human Spirituality and Being!!!
We have identified a range of KEY quotations that "Somehow Encapsulate"
Enlightenments, Wisdoms and Spiritual Insights about these "deep things", and also about
another highly significant area of agreement between world
faiths that is to do with the relationship between "Spirituality
and the wider world".
Many of our visitors seem to find the content of one of our pages -
Which is about Human Nature, (and 'Very Possibly' related matters)
- to be particularly fascinating!!!
There's neither honesty, manhood, nor good fellowship in thee.
"…can we possibly refuse to admit that there exist in each
of us the same generic parts and characteristics as are found in
the state? For I presume the state has not received them from any
other source. It would be ridiculous to imagine that the presence
of the spirited element in cities is not to be traced to
individuals, wherever this character is imputed to the people, as
it is to the natives of Thrace, and Scythia, and generally
speaking, of the northern countries; or the love of knowledge,
which would be chiefly attributed to our own country; or the love
of riches, which people would especially connect with the
Phoenicians and the Egyptians."
From Plato's most famous work ~ The Republic ~ detailing conversations entered into by his friend, and teacher, Socrates
Pythagoras was a prominent figure in the intellectual life of the Greek world of the sixth century B.C.
Alongside his genuine contributions to mathematics and geometry Pythogoras is also considered to have recognised that there was
evidently a "Tripartite" complexity to Human Nature:-
Pythagoras who, according to Heraclides of Pontus, the pupil of Plato and a learned man
of the first rank, came, the story goes, to Philus and with a wealth of learning and words
discussed certain subjects with Leon the ruler of the Philasians. And Leon after wondering
at his talent and eloquence asked him to name the art in which he put most reliance. But
Pythagoras said that for his part he had no acquaintance with any art, but was a philosopher.
Leon was astonished at the novelty of the term and asked who philosophers were and in what
they differed from the rest of the world.
Pythagoras, the story continues, replied that the life of man seemed to him to resemble
the festival which was celebrated with most magnificent games before a concourse collected
from the whole of Greece. For at this festival some men whose bodies had been trained sought
to win the glorious distinction of a crown, others were attracted by the prospect of making
gains by buying or selling, whilst there was on the other hand a certain class, and that quite
the best class of free-born men, who looked neither for applause no gain, but came for the sake
of the spectacle and closely watched what was done and how it was done: So also we, as though
we had come from some city to a kind of crowded festival, leaving in like fashion another life
and nature of being, entered upon this life, and some were slaves of ambition, some of money;
there were a special few who, counting all else as nothing, ardently contemplated the nature
of things. These men he would call "lovers of wisdom" (for that is the meaning of the word
In all districts of all lands, in all the classes of communities thousands of minds are intently occupied, the merchant in his compting house, the mechanist over his plans, the statesman
at his map, his treaty, & his tariff, the scholar in the skilful history & eloquence of antiquity, each stung to the quick with the desire of exalting himself to a hasty & yet unfound
height above the level of his peers. Each is absorbed in the prospect of good accruing to himself but each is no less contributing to the utmost of his ability to fix & adorn human
In William H. Gilman (ed.) The Journals and Miscellaneous Notebooks of Ralph Waldo Emerson, vol II, 1822-1826, 305
In what is perhaps Ralph Waldo Emerson's most famous essay - 'History' - we read such things as:-
… There is one mind common to all individual men. Every man is
an inlet to the same and to all of the same. He that is once
admitted to the right of reason is made a freeman of the whole
estate. What Plato has thought, he may think; what a saint has
felt, he may feel; what at any time has be-fallen any man, he can
understand. Who hath access to this universal mind is a party to
all that is or can be done, for this is the only and sovereign
Of the works of this mind history is the record. Its genius is
illustrated by the entire series of days. Man is explicable by
nothing less than all his history. Without hurry, without rest,
the human spirit goes forth from the beginning to embody every
faculty, every thought, every emotion, which belongs to it in
appropriate events. But the thought is always prior to the fact;
all the facts of history preexist in the mind as laws. Each law
in turn is made by circumstances predominant, and the limits of
nature give power to but one at a time. …
We are always coming up with the emphatic facts of history in
our private experience, and verifying them here. All history
becomes subjective; in other words, there is properly no history;
only biography. Every mind must know the whole lesson for itself,
-- must go over the whole ground. What it does not see, what it
does not live, it will not know.
In old Rome the public roads beginning at the Forum
proceeded north, south, east, west, to the centre of every
province of the empire, making each market-town of Persia, Spain,
and Britain pervious to the soldiers of the capital: so out of
the human heart go, as it were, highways to the heart of every
object in nature, to reduce it under the dominion of man. A man
is a bundle of relations, a knot of roots, whose flower and
fruitage is the world. His faculties refer to natures out of him,
and predict the world he is to inhabit, as the fins of the fish
foreshow that water exists, or the wings of an eagle in the egg
presuppose air. He cannot live without a world.
"History is for human self-knowledge ... the only clue to what man can do is what man has done.
The value of history, then, is that it teaches us what man has done and thus what man is."
R. G. Collingwood
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