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Quotations From GILBERT KEITH CHESTERTON

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  • Nothing is poetical if plain daylight is not poetical; and no monster should amaze us if the normal man does not amaze.
    Gilbert Keith Chesterton (1874-1936), British author. "On Experience," All Is Grist (1931).
  • Man does not live by soap alone; and hygiene, or even health, is not much good unless you can take a healthy view of it—or, better still, feel a healthy indifference to it.
    Gilbert Keith Chesterton (1874-1936), British author. "On St. George Revivified," All I Survey (1933).

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  • What affects men sharply about a foreign nation is not so much finding or not finding familiar things; it is rather not finding them in the familiar place.
    Gilbert Keith Chesterton (1874-1936), British author. "On Flags," Generally Speaking (1928).
  • A radical generally meant a man who thought he could somehow pull up the root without affecting the flower. A conservative generally meant a man who wanted to conserve everything except his own reason for conserving anything.
    Gilbert Keith Chesterton (1874-1936), British author. Quoted in Illustrated London News (July 3, 1920).

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  • If you do not understand a man you cannot crush him. And if you do understand him, very probably you will not.
    Gilbert Keith Chesterton (1874-1936), British author. "Humanitarianism and Strength," Intimate Journals (1908).
  • If prosperity is regarded as the reward of virtue it will be regarded as the symptom of virtue.
    Gilbert Keith Chesterton (1874-1936), British author. "The Book of Job," G.K.C. as M.C. (1929).
  • Science in the modern world has many uses; its chief use, however, is to provide long words to cover the errors of the rich.
    Gilbert Keith Chesterton (1874-1936), British author. "Celts and Celtophiles," Heretics (1905).

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  • The Christian ideal has not been tried and found wanting. It has been found difficult; and left untried.
    Gilbert Keith Chesterton (1874-1936), British author. What's Wrong With the World, pt. 1, ch. 5 (1910).
  • The honest poor can sometimes forget poverty. The honest rich can never forget it.
    Gilbert Keith Chesterton (1874-1936), British author. "Cockneys and Their Jokes," All Things Considered (1908).

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  • If a thing is worth doing, it is worth doing badly.
    Gilbert Keith Chesterton (1874-1936), British author. What's Wrong With the World, pt. 4, ch. 14 (1910).
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