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Jean-Jacques Rousseau (1712 – 1778)


Franco-Swiss philosopher of Enlightenment whose political ideas influenced the French Revolution, the development of socialist theory, and the growth of nationalism.
Jean-Jacques Rousseau
Our will is always for our own good, but we do not always see what that is.
Rousseau quotes
Reading, solitude, idleness, a soft and sedentary life, intercourse with women and young people, these are perilous paths for a young man, and these lead him constantly into danger.
Rousseau
Gratitude is a duty which ought to be paid, but which none have a right to expect.




Rousseau Jean-Jacques quotes
Happiness: a good bank account, a good cook and a good digestion.
Rousseau Jean-Jacques
When a man dies he clutches in his hands only that which he has given away during his lifetime.
Jean-Jacques Rousseau quotes
We are born weak, we need strength; helpless, we need aid; foolish, we need reason. All that we lack at birth, all that we need when we come to man's estate, is the gift of education.
Jean-Jacques Rousseau
Good laws lead to the making of better ones; bad ones bring about worse.
Rousseau Jean-Jacques quotes
Our affections as well as our bodies are in perpetual flux.
Rousseau
I hate books; they only teach us to talk about things we know nothing about.
Rousseau Jean-Jacques
Leonidas died for his country before Socrates declared that patriotism was a virtue; Sparta was sober before Socrates extolled sobriety; there were plenty of virtuous men in Greece before he defined virtue. But among the men of his own time where did Jesus find that pure and lofty morality of which he is both the teacher and pattern? The voice of loftiest wisdom arose among the fiercest fanaticism, the simplicity of the most heroic virtues did honour to the most degraded of nations.
Jean-Jacques Rousseau
We should not teach children the sciences; but give them a taste for them.




Jean-Jacques Rousseau quotes
I feel an indescribable ecstasy and delirium in melting, as it were, into the system of beings, in identifying myself with the whole of nature.
Jean-Jacques Rousseau
The mechanism she employs is much more powerful than ours, for all her levers move the human heart.
Rousseau quotes
Those that are most slow in making a promise are the most faithful in the performance of it.
Rousseau Jean-Jacques
Absolute silence leads to sadness. It is the image of death.
Rousseau Jean-Jacques quotes
There are two things to be considered with regard to any scheme. In the first place, Is it good in itself? In the second, Can it be easily put into practice?
Jean-Jacques Rousseau
At Genoa, the word Liberty may be read over the front of the prisons and on the chains of the galley-slaves. This application of the device is good and just. It is indeed only malefactors of all estates who prevent the citizen from being free. In the country in which all such men were in the galleys, the most perfect liberty would be enjoyed.
Jean-Jacques Rousseau quotes
Il n’y a point de folie dont on ne puisse guérir un homme qui n’est pas fou, hors la vanité.
Jean-Jacques Rousseau
I know that [civilized men] do nothing but boast incessantly of the peace and repose they enjoy in their chains.... But when I see [barbarous man] sacrifice pleasures, repose, wealth, power, and life itself for the preservation of this sole good which is so disdained by those who have lost it; when I see animals born free and despising captivity break their heads against the bars of their prison; when I see multitudes of entirely naked savages scorn European voluptuousness and endure hunger, fire, the sword, and death to preserve only their independence, I feel it does not behoove slaves to reason about freedom.
Rousseau Jean-Jacques
He thinks like a philosopher, but governs like a king.


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