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Denis Diderot Quotes


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People praise virtue, but they hate it, they run away from it. It freezes you to death, and in this world you've got to keep your feet warm.
 

Philosophy is as far separated from impiety as religion is from fanaticism.
[Philosophy]
 

Pithy sentences are like sharp nails which force truth upon our memory.
 

Poetry must have something in it that is barbaric, vast and wild.
 

Power acquired by violence is only a usurpation, and lasts only as long as the force of him who commands prevails over that of those who obey.
 

Sentences are like sharp nails, which force truth upon our memories.
 

Skepticism is the first step on the road to philosophy.
 

The arbitrary rule of a just and enlightened prince is always bad. His virtues are the most dangerous and the surest form of seduction: they lull a people imperceptibly into the habit of loving, respecting, and serving his successor, whoever that successor may be, no matter how wicked or stupid.
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The best doctor is the one you run to and can't find.
[Medicine]
 

The best mannered people make the most absurd lovers.
 

The blood of Jesus Christ can cover a multitude of sins, it seems to me.
 

The decisions of law courts should never be printed: in the long run, they form a counter authority to the law.
 

The first step towards philosophy is incredulity.
 

The general interest of the masses might take the place of the insight of genius if it were allowed freedom of action.
[Action]
 

The God of the Christians is a father who makes much of his apples, and very little of his children.
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The infant runs toward it with its eyes closed, the adult is stationary, the old man approaches it with his back turned.
 

The philosopher has never killed any priests, whereas the priest has killed a great many philosophers.
 

The pit of a theatre is the one place where the tears of virtuous and wicked men alike are mingled.
 

The possibility of divorce renders both marriage partners stricter in their observance of the duties they owe to each other. Divorces help to improve morals and to increase the population.
 

The wisest among us is very lucky never to have met the woman, be she beautiful or ugly, intelligent or stupid, who could drive him crazy enough to be fit to be put into an asylum.
[Women]
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