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Thomas Babington Macaulay (1800 – 1859)


Nineteenth century British poet, historian and Whig politician.
Thomas Babington Macaulay
Nothing is so galling to a people not broken in from the birth as a paternal, or, in other words, a meddling government, a government which tells them what to read, and say, and eat, and drink and wear.
Macaulay quotes
What a singular destiny has been that of this remarkable man!—To be regarded in his own age as a classic, and in ours as a companion! To receive from his contemporaries that full homage which men of genius have in general received only from posterity; to be more intimately known to posterity than other men are known to their contemporaries!
Macaulay
"It would be, on the most selfish view of the case, far better for us that the people of India were well governed and independent of us, than ill governed and subject to us; that they were ruled by their own kings, but wearing our broadcloth, and working with our cutlery, than that they were performing their salams to English collectors and English magistrates, but were too ignorant to value, or too poor to buy, English manufactures. To trade with civilised men is infinitely more profitable than to govern savages."




Nobles by the right of an earlier creation, and priests by the imposition of a mightier hand.
Macaulay Thomas Babington
I would rather be a poor man in a garret with plenty of books than a king who did not love reading.
Perhaps no person can be a poet, or even enjoy poetry, without a certain unsoundness of mind.
Thomas Babington Macaulay
The gallery in which the reporters sit has become a fourth estate of the realm.
I shall cheerfully bear the reproach of having descended below the dignity of history if I can succeed in placing before the English of the nineteenth century a true picture of the life of their ancestors.
Macaulay
There is only one cure for the evils which newly acquired freedom produces, and that cure is freedom.
Macaulay Thomas Babington
Free trade, one of the greatest blessings which a government can confer on a people, is in almost every country unpopular.
Thomas Babington Macaulay
Wherever literature consoles sorrow or assuages pain; wherever it brings gladness to eyes which fail with wakefulness and tears, and ache for the dark house and the long sleep,—there is exhibited in its noblest form the immortal influence of Athens.




Your Constitution is all sail and no anchor.
Thomas Babington Macaulay
The man is a humbug — a vulgar, shallow, self-satisfied mind, absolutely inaccessible to the complexities and delicacies of the real world. He has the journalist's air of being a specialist in everything, of taking in all points of view and being always on the side of the angels: he merely annoys a reader who has the least experience of knowing things, of what knowing is like. There is not two pence worth of real thought or real nobility in him. But he isn't dull…
Macaulay quotes
Thus, then, stands the case. It is good, that authors should be remunerated; and the least exceptionable way of remunerating them is by a monopoly. Yet monopoly is an evil. For the sake of the good we must submit to the evil; but the evil ought not to last a day longer than is necessary for the purpose of securing the good.
Macaulay Thomas Babington
The sweeter sound of woman’s praise.
I have not the Chancellor’s encyclopedic mind. He is indeed a kind of semi-Solomon. He half knows everything, from the cedar to the hyssop.
Thomas Babington Macaulay
People crushed by law have no hopes but from power. If laws are their enemies, they will be enemies to laws.
She [the Catholic Church] thoroughly understands what no other Church has ever understood, how to deal with enthusiasts.
Thomas Babington Macaulay
An acre in Middlesex is better than a principality in Utopia.
Macaulay Thomas Babington
The dust and silence of the upper shelf.


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