Karl Wilhelm von Humboldt


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Friedrich Wilhelm Christian Karl Ferdinand von Humboldt (22 June 1767 – 8 April 1835) was a Prussian philosopher, government functionary, diplomat, and founder of the University of Berlin, which was named after him (and his brother, naturalist Alexander von Humboldt) in 1949. He is especially remembered as a linguist who made important contributions to the philosophy of language and to the theory ... more »

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  • Freedom is but the possibility of a various and indefinite activity; while government, or the exercise of dominion, is a single, yet real activity. The longing for freedom, therefore, is at first only...
    Karl Wilhelm Von Humboldt (1767-1835), German statesman, philologist. repr. 1854, ed. and trans. by J.W. Burrow (1969). "Introduction," Limits of Stat...
  • If it were not somewhat fanciful to suppose that every human excellence is presented, as it were, in one kind of being, we might believe that the whole treasure of morality and order is enshrined in t...
    Karl Wilhelm Von Humboldt (1767-1835), German statesman, philologist. repr. (1854), trans. and ed. J.W. Burrow (1969). Limits of State Action, ch. 3 (...
  • ''War seems to be one of the most salutary phenomena for the culture of human nature; and it is not without regret that I see it disappearing more and more from the scene.''
    Karl Wilhelm Von Humboldt (1767-1835), German statesman, philologist. repr. (1854), trans. and ed. J.W. Burrow (1969). Limits of State Action, ch. 5 (...
  • ''Wherever the citizen becomes indifferent to his fellows, so will the husband be to his wife, and the father of a family toward the members of his household.''
    Karl Wilhelm Von Humboldt (1767-1835), German statesman, philologist. Trans. and ed. by J.W. Burrow (1969). Limits of State Action, ch. 3 (1792, repr....
  • Whatever does not spring from a man's free choice, or is only the result of instruction and guidance, does not enter into his very being, but still remains alien to his true nature; he does not perfor...
    Karl Wilhelm Von Humboldt (1767-1835), German statesman, philologist. Limits of State Action, ch. 3 (1792, repr. 1854), trans. and ed. by J.W. Burrow ...
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