George Santayana Quotes

The Difficult is that which can be done immediately; the Impossible that which takes a little longer.

Parents lend children their experience and a vicarious memory; children endow their parents with a vicarious immortality.

The imagination, therefore, must furnish to religion and to metaphysics those large ideas tinctured with passion, those supersensible forms shrouded with awe, in which alone a mind of great sweep and vitality can find its congenial objects.

There is no dunce like a mature dunce.

The vital straining towards an ideal, definite but latent, when it dominates a whole life, may express that ideal more fully than could the best-chosen word.

It takes a wonderful brain and exquisite senses to produce a few stupid ideas.

For an idea ever to be fashionable is ominous, since it must afterwards be always old fashioned.

The world is a perpetual caricature of itself; at every moment it nevertheless intends all the time to be something different and highly dignified, at the next moment it corrects and checks and tries to cover up the absurd thing it was; so that a conventional world, a world of masks, is superimposed on the […]

History is always written wrong, and so always needs to be rewritten… What is interesting is brought forward as if it had been central and efficacious in the march of events, and harmonies are turned into causes. Kings and generals are endowed with motives appropriate to what the historian values in their actions; plans are […]

Culture is on the horns of this dilemma: if profound and noble it must remain rare, if common it must become mean.