Gilbert Keith Chesterton

(29 May 1874 – 14 June 1936 / London, England)

Gilbert Keith Chesterton Quotes

  • ''A puritan is a person who pours righteous indignation into the wrong things.''
    Gilbert Keith Chesterton (1874-1936), British author. New York Times (Nov. 21, 1930).
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  • ''There is nothing the matter with Americans except their ideals. The real American is all right; it is the ideal American who is all wrong.''
    Gilbert Keith Chesterton (1874-1936), British author. New York Times (Feb. 1, 1931).
  • ''Democracy means government by the uneducated, while aristocracy means government by the badly educated.''
    Gilbert Keith Chesterton (1874-1936), British author. New York Times (Feb. 1, 1931).
  • ''We are justified in enforcing good morals, for they belong to all mankind; but we are not justified in enforcing good manners, for good manners always mean our own manners.''
    Gilbert Keith Chesterton (1874-1936), British author. "Limericks and Counsels of Perfection," All Things Considered (1908).
  • ''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).
  • ''Compromise used to mean that half a loaf was better than no bread. Among modern statesmen it really seems to mean that half a loaf is better than a whole loaf.''
    Gilbert Keith Chesterton (1874-1936), British author. What's Wrong with the World, ch. 3 (1910).
  • ''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).
  • ''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).
  • ''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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Best Poem of Gilbert Keith Chesterton

The Donkey

When fishes flew and forests walked
And figs grew upon thorn,
Some moment when the moon was blood,
Then surely I was born;

With monstrous head and sickening cry
And ears like errant wings,
The devil's walking parody
On all four-footed things.

The tattered outlaw of the earth,
Of ancient crooked will;
Starve, scourge, deride me: I am dumb,
I keep my secret still.

Fools! For I also had my hour;
One far fierce hour and sweet:
There was a shout about my ears,
And palms before my feet.

Read the full of The Donkey

The New Omar

A Book of verses underneath the bough,
Provided that the verses do not scan,
A loaf of bread, a jug of wine and Thou,
Short-haired, all angles, looking like a man.

But let the wine be unfermented, Pale,
Of chemicals compounded, God knows how--
This were indeed the Prophet's Paradise,
O Paradise were Wilderness enow.

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