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I hate facts.
by Oliver Wendell Holmes

I hate facts.
I always say the chief end of man is to form general propositions -
adding that no general proposition is worth a damn.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

Related topics: Science

The best of a book is not the thought which it contains,
but the thought which it suggests;
just as the charm of music dwells not in the tones
but in the echoes of our hearts.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

Greatness is not in where we stand,
but in what direction we are moving.
We must sail sometimes with the wind
and sometimes against it -
but sail we must,
and not drift, nor lie at anchor.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.

Nothing is so common-place as to wish to be remarkable.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.

 

Man's mind, once stretched by a new idea,
never regains its original dimensions.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.

When in doubt, do it.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.

A mind that is stretched by a new experience
an never go back to its old dimensions.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.

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Apology is only egotism wrong side out.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.

If you don't know what you want, you will probably never get it.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.

It is the province of knowledge to speak,
and it is the privilege of wisdom to listen.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.

Fame is the scentless sunflower, with gaudy crown of gold;
But friendship is the breathing rose, with sweets in every fold.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.

Some people are so heavenly minded
that they are no earthly good.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.

Alas for those that never sing,
But die with all their music in them!
- Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.

But friendship is the breathing rose,
with sweets in every fold.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

Old age is fifteen years older than I am.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.

Life is painting a picture, not doing a sum.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

Where we love is home - home that our feet may leave,
but not our hearts.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

To be seventy years young is sometimes
far more cheerful and hopeful
than to be forty years old.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.

Science is a first-rate piece of furniture for a man's upper chamber,
if he has common sense on the ground floor.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

Without wearing any mask we are conscious of,
we have a special face for each friend.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

The young man knows the rules, but the old man knows the exceptions.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

A mind, once stretched by a new idea,
never regains its original dimensions.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.

The main part of intellectual education is not the
acquisition of facts but learning how to make facts live.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

The sound of a kiss is not so loud as that of a cannon,
but its echo lasts a great deal longer.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

Every real thought on every real subject knocks the
wind out of somebody or other.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

Fame usually comes to those who are thinking about something else.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

Insanity is often the logic of an accurate mind overtasked.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

A man may fulfill the object of his existence by asking
a question he cannot answer,
and attempting a task he cannot achieve.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

I won't accept anything less than the best a player's capable of doing...
and he has the right to expect the best that I can do for him and the team!
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

Pretty much all the honest truth-telling there is in
the world is done by children.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

A few can touch the magic string, and noisy fame is proud to win them:
Alas for those that never sing,
but die with all their music in them!
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

Language is the blood of the soul into which thoughts
run and out of which they grow.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

The world is always ready to receive talent with open arms.
Very often it does not know what to do with genius.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

People who honestly mean to be true really contradict
themselves much more rarely than those who try to be 'consistent'.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

We do not quit playing because we grow old,
we grow old because we quit playing.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

Rough work, iconoclasm, but the only way to get at truth.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

A new untruth is better than an old truth.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

If there is any principle of the Constitution that
more imperatively calls for attachment than any other
it is the principle of free thought,
not free thought for those who agree with us but freedom
for the thought that we hate.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

This is a court of law, young man, not a court of justice.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

Except in cases of necessity, which are rare,
leave your friend to learn
unpleasant things from his enemies;
they are ready enough to tell them.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.

Don't you stay at home of evenings? Don't you love
a cushioned seat in a corner,
by the fireside, with your slippers on your feet?
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

Memories, imagination, old sentiments,
and associations are more readily reached through the
sense of smell than through any other channel.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

A person is always startled when he hears himself called old for the first time.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

Don't be "consistent" but be simple true.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

The very aim and end of our institutions is just this:
that we may think what we like and say what we think.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

Do not be bullied out of your common sense by the specialist;
two to one,
he is a pedant.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

Controversy equalizes fools and wise men -
and the fools know it.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

A great calamity is as old as the trilobites an hour after it has happened.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

Nature, when she invented, manufactured,
and patented her authors, contrived to make critics
out of the chips that were left.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

To be civilized is to be potentially master of all possible ideas,
and that means that one has got beyond being shocked,
although one preserves one's own moral aesthetic preferences.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

Our brains are seventy-year clocks.
The Angel of Life winds them up once for all,
then closes the case, and gives the key into the hand
of the Angel of the Resurrection.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

Every calling is great when greatly pursued.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

Sweet is the scene where genial friendship plays the
pleasing game of interchanging praise.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

Most people are willing to take the Sermon on the Mount as a flag to sail under,
but few will use it as a rudder by which to steer.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

Love is the master key that opens the gates of happiness.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

It is very lonely sometimes, trying to play God.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

Through our great good fortune, in our youth our hearts were touched with fire.
It was given to us to learn at the outset that life
is a profound and passionate thing.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

Many people die with their music still in them.
Why is this so? Too often it is because they are always getting ready to live.
Before they know it, time runs out.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

Love prefers twilight to daylight.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

The real religion of the world comes from women much more than from men -
from mothers most of all,
who carry the key of our souls in their bosoms.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

Speak clearly, if you speak at all; carve every word before you let it fall.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

A goose flies by a chart which the Royal Geographical Society could not mend.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

Grow we must, if we outgrow all that loves us.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

To reach a port we must sail, sometimes with the wind,
and sometimes against it.
But we must not drift or lie at anchor.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

The advice of the elders to young men is very apt to
be as unreal as a list of the hundred best books.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

Put not your trust in money, but put your money in trust.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

Even for practical purposes theory generally turns
out the most important thing in the end.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

Don't flatter yourself that friendship authorizes you
to say disagreeable things to your intimates.
The nearer you come into relation with a person,
the more necessary do tact and courtesy become.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

A thought is often original, though you have uttered it a hundred times.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

Every idea is an incitement...
Eloquence may set fire to reason.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

Knowledge like timber shouldn't be mush use till they are seasoned.
- Oliver Wendell Holmes


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