"If you are to judge a man, you must know his secret thoughts, sorrows, and feelings; to know merely the outward events of a man's life would only serve to make a chronological table--a fool's notion of history."
"By contrast with history, evolution is an unconscious process. Another, and perhaps a better way of putting it would be to say that evolution is a natural process, history a human one.... Insofar as we treat man as a part of nature--for instance in a biological survey of evolution--we are precisely not treating him as a historical being. As a historically developing being, he is set over against nature, both as a knower and as a doer."
"Woman's success in lifting men out of their way of life nearly resembling that of the beasts--who merely hunted and fished for food, who found shelter where they could in jungles, in trees, and caves--was a civilizing triumph."
"... the history of the race, from infancy through its stages of barbarism, heathenism, civilization, and Christianity, is a process of suffering, as the lower principles of humanity are gradually subjected to the higher."
"Miss C_____'s father," says Betty, "had much better have bred his daughter a housewife, and then, mayhap, she might have got her a husband, which with all her fine learning she has not yet been able to do. And no wonder, for what man would be plagued with a slattern?"
"The female part of the Cry (who had many of them often experienced a joyful self- approbation on being told by their admirers that all their perfection lay in folly and that to prove their wisdom they must shun, as poison, every offered instruction for fear of becoming disagreeable to their lovers) now felt rolling in their bosoms the highest anger and disdain. Not against their adorers for so preposterous a method of flattery, much less against themselves for receiving and being pleased with such absurd adulation: but all their indignation was pointed against Portia for daring to bring into open light the true meaning of such paradoxical stuff."
"Thus the reader who hath most truly considered and digested the sentiments which he reads must be a man of the best taste and must find most pleasure in the perusal of authors worth the reading. It is but to preserve candor enough to keep up an impartial attention and, instead of being actuated by a false shame of ignorance, to know when properly to confess myself a learner, and I have it in my power (as far as my capacity will reach) to command any knowledge that is extant in the whole universe."
"[T]he late Samuel McChord Crothers, genial wit and essayist, ... after listening to the speeches at a certain Harvard Commencement remarked that he gathered that the world had been in great danger, but that all would now be well."
"For more than twenty-five years my mind had been deeply troubled by the fact that these mechanical and scientific achievements of man had outrun his intellectual and spiritual power. ...Throughout the Second World War this terrible problem hung in the back of my mind. As I write these words the problem and the danger are as threatening as ever. We hope our nation will survive, but in its effort to survive will it transform itself intellectually and spiritually into the image of the thing against which we fought?"
"Neither years nor books have yet availed to extirpate a prejudice then rooted in me, that a scholar is the favorite of Heaven and earth, the excellency of his country, the happiest of men. His duties lead him directly into the holy ground where other men's aspirations only point. His successes are occasions of the purest joy to all men. Eyes is he to the blind; feet is he to the lame. His failures, if he is worthy, are inlets to higher advantages."
"But in a hundred high schools and colleges, this warfare against common-sense still goes on. Four, or six, or ten years, the pupil is parsing Greek and Latin, and as soon as he leaves the University, as it is ludicrously called, he shuts those books for the last time. Some thousands of young men are graduated at our colleges in this country every year, and the persons who, at forty years, still read Greek, can all be counted on your hand. I never met with ten. Four or five persons I have seen who read Plato. But is not this absurd, that the whole liberal talent of this country should be directed in its best years on studies which lead to nothing?"