An aphorism is nothing else but the slightest
form of writing raised to the highest level of expressive communication. Carl William Brown





Opinions alter, manners change, creeds rise and fall, but the moral laws are written on the table of eternity.


Lord Acton (1834-1902, British historian)


Public opinion is a second conscience.


William R. Alger (1822-1905, American writer)


When the habitually even-tempered suddenly fly into a passion, that explosion is apt to be more impressive than the outburst of the most violent amongst us.


Margery Allingham


The man who never alters his opinion is like standing water, and breeds reptiles of the mind.


William Blake (1757-1827, British poet, painter)


Opinion is the main thing which does harm or good in the world. It is our false opinions that ruin us.


Marcus Antonius (c.83-30 BC, Roman triumvir, related to Julius Caesar)


Opinions are formed in a process of open discussion and public debate, and where no opportunity for the forming of opinions exists, there may be moods -- moods of the masses and moods of individuals, the latter no less fickle and unreliable than the former -- but no opinion.


Hannah Arendt (1906-1975, German-born American political philosopher)


There are some people that you cannot change, you must either swallow them whole or leave them alone.


Margot Asquith (1864-1945, British socialite)


How much time he saves who does not look to see what his neighbor says or does or thinks.


Marcus Aurelius (121-12180, Roman emperor, philosopher)


Where an opinion is general, it is usually correct.


Jane Austen (1775-1817, British novelist)


Public opinion is a permeating influence, and it exacts obedience to itself; it requires us to drink other men's thoughts, to speak other men's words, to follow other men's habits.


Walter Bagehot (1826-1977, British economist, critic)


Every man has a right to be wrong in his opinions. But no man has a right to be wrong in his facts.


Bernard M. Baruch (1870-1965, American financier)


I don't have time to be classified as difficult, and I don't have time to care.


Kim Basinger (1953-, American actress)


Opinions that are well rooted should grow and change like a healthy tree.


Irving Batcheller


Private opinion is weak, but public opinion is almost omnipotent.


Henry Ward Beecher (1813-1887, American preacher, orator, writer)


Opinions are a private matter. The public has an interest only in judgments.


Walter Benjamin (1982-1940, German critic, philosopher)


Opinions are to the vast apparatus of social existence what oil is to machines: one does not go up to a turbine and pour machine oil over it; one applies a little to hidden spindles and joints that one has to know.


Walter Benjamin (1982-1940, German critic, philosopher)


We must live for the few who know and appreciate us, who judge and absolve us, and for whom we have the same affection and indulgence. The rest I look upon as a mere crowd, lively or sad, loyal or corrupt, from whom there is nothing to be expected but fleeting emotions, either pleasant or unpleasant, which leave no trace behind them.


Sarah Bernhardt (1844-1923, French actress)


Patterning your life around other's opinions is nothing more than slavery.


Lawana Blackwell


Public opinion is the thermometer a monarch should constantly consult.


Napoleon Bonaparte (1769-1821, French general, emperor)


You've got to ensure that the holders of an opinion, however unpopular, are allowed to put across their points of view


Betty Boothroyd


My play was a complete success. The audience was a failure™.


Ashleigh Brilliant (1933-, British-American humorist)

Author's website:


To be sure of hitting the target, shoot first, and call whatever you hit the target™.


Ashleigh Brilliant (1933-, British-American humorist)

Author's website:


Someone's opinion of you does not have to become your reality.


Les Brown (1945-, American speaker, author, trainer, motivator,)


Men get opinions as boys learn to spell by reiteration chiefly.


Elizabeth Barrett Browning (1806-1861, British poet)


To try and change opinion by law is worse than futile.


George Earle Buckle (1854-1935, British journalist)


A public opinion poll is no substitute for thought.


Warren Buffett (1930-, American investment entrepreneur)


Opinions have vested interests just as men have.


Samuel Butler (1612-1680, British poet, satirist)


The public buys its opinions as it buys its meat, or takes in its milk, on the principle that it is cheaper to do this than to keep a cow. So it is, but the milk is more likely to be watered.


Samuel Butler (1612-1680, British poet, satirist)


The world will only, in the end, follow those who have despised as well as served it.


Samuel Butler (1612-1680, British poet, satirist)


Opinions are made to be changed -- or how is truth to be got at?


Lord Byron (1788-1824, British poet)


There is no such thing as public opinion. There is only published opinion.


Winston Churchill (1874-1965, British statesman, Prime Minister)


What you think of me is none of my business.


Terry Cole-Whittaker (1958-, American author, speaker)


Every new opinion, at its starting, is precisely in a minority of one.


Thomas Carlyle (1795-1881, Scottish philosopher, author)


Wonderful "Force of Public Opinion!" We must act and walk in all points as it prescribes; follow the traffic it bids us, realize the sum of money, the degree of "influence" it expects of us, or we shall be lightly esteemed; certain mouthfuls of articulate wind will be blown at us, and this what mortal courage can front?


Thomas Carlyle (1795-1881, Scottish philosopher, author)


There are certain times when public opinion is the worst of all opinions.


Sebastien-Roch Nicolas De Chamfort (1741-1794, French writer, journalist, playwright)


I want to find someone on the earth so intelligent that he welcomes opinions which he condemns.


John Jay Chapman (1862-1933, American author)


We cling to our own point of view, as though everything depended on it. Yet our opinions have no permanence; like autumn and winter, they gradually pass away.


Chuang Tzu (c 369 BC-286 BC, Chinese philosopher)


No liberal man would impute a charge of unsteadiness to another for having changed his opinion.


Marcus T. Cicero (c. 106-43 BC, Roman orator, politician)


Our quaint metaphysical opinions, in an hour of anguish, are like playthings by the bedside of a child deathly sick.


Samuel Taylor Coleridge (1772-1834, British poet, critic, philosopher)


Opinions, like showers, are generated in high places, but they invariably descend into lower ones, and ultimately flow down to the people as rain unto the sea.


Charles Caleb Colton (1780-1832, British sportsman writer)


It is a besetting vice of democracies to substitute public opinion for law. This is the usual form in which masses of men exhibit their tyranny.


James F. Cooper (1789-1851, American novelist)


They look for a victim to chivy, and howl him down, and finally lynch him in a sheer storm of sexual frenzy which they honestly imagine to be moral indignation, patriotic passion or some equally allowable emotion, it may be an innocent Negro, a Jew like L


Aleister Crowley (1875-1947, British occultist)


Life is not a static thing. The only people who do not change their minds are incompetents in asylums, and those in cemeteries.


Everett M. Dirksen (1896-1969, American representative, senator)


Predominant opinions are generally the opinions of the generation that is vanishing.


Benjamin Disraeli (1804-1881, British statesman, Prime Minister)


What we call public opinion is generally public sentiment.


Benjamin Disraeli (1804-1881, British statesman, Prime Minister)


A lot of my peer group think I'm an eccentric bisexual, like I may even have an ammonia-filled tentacle somewhere on my body. That's okay.


Robert Downey Jr. (1965-, American actor)


There is space within sisterhood for likeness and difference, for the subtle differences that challenge and delight; there is space for disappointment and surprise.


Christine Downing


It is always brave to say what everyone thinks.


George Duhamel


Self-actualized people are independent of the good opinion of others.


Wayne Dyer (1940-, American  psychotherapist, author, lecturer)

Author's website:


He that never changes his opinion never corrects mistakes and will never be wiser on the morrow than he is today.


Tryon Edwards (1809-1894, American theologian)


Men are disturbed not by things that happen, but by their opinion of the things that happen.


Epictetus (50-138, Phrygian philosopher)


Few people are capable of expressing with equanimity opinions which differ from the prejudices of their social environment. Most people are even incapable of forming such opinions.


Albert Einstein (1879-1955, German-born American physicist)


The opinion prevailed among advanced minds that it was time that belief should be replaced increasingly by knowledge; belief that did not itself rest on knowledge was superstition, and as such had to be opposed.


Albert Einstein (1879-1955, German-born American physicist)


Stay at home in your mind. Don't recite other people's opinions. I hate quotations. Tell me what you know.


Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882, American poet, essayist)


The only sin that we never forgive in each other is a difference in opinion.


Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882, American poet, essayist)


Opinion is that exercise of the human will which helps us to make a decision without information.


John Erskine (1878-1951, American poet, essayist, novelist, musician)


It takes a disciplined person to listen to convictions which are different from their own.


Dorothy Fuldheim


Under the species of Syndicalism and Fascism there appears for the first time in Europe, a type of man who does not want to give reasons or to be right but simply shows himself resolved to impose his opinions.


Jose Ortega Y Gasset (1883-1955, Spanish essayist, philosopher)


No one can have a higher opinion of him than I have; and I think he's a dirty little beast.


W. S. Gilbert (1836-1911, British librettist)


No two men see the world exactly alike, and different temperaments will apply in different ways a principle that they both acknowledge. The same man will indeed, often see and judge the same things differently on different occasions: early convictions must give way to more mature ones. Nevertheless, may not the opinions that a man holds and expresses withstand all trials, if he only remains true to himself and others?


Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe (1749-1832, German poet, dramatist, novelist)


When I want your opinion, I will give it to you.


Samuel Goldwyn (1882-1974, American film producer, founder of MGM)


It rarely adds anything to say, "In my opinion" --not even modesty. Naturally a sentence is only your opinion; and you are not the Pope.


Paul Goodman (1911-1972, American author, poet, critic)


Nothing is more unjust or capricious than public opinion.


William Hazlitt (1778-1830, British essayist)


Men who borrow their opinions can never repay their debts.


Edward F. Halifax (1881-1959, British conservative statesman)


We should be eternally vigilant against attempts to check the expression of opinions that we loathe.


Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr. (1841-1935, American judge)


People talk fundamentals and superlatives and then make some changes of detail.


Oliver Wendell Holmes (1809-1894, American author, wit, poet)


One accurate measurement is worth a thousand expert opinions.


Admiral Grace Hopper (1906-1992, American  navy officer)


American public opinion is like an ocean -- it cannot be stirred by a teaspoon.


Hubert H. Humphrey (1911-1978, American Vice President)


The consistent thinker... is either a walking mummy or else, if he has not succeeded in stifling all his vitality, a fanatical monomaniac.


Aldous Huxley (1894-1963, British author)


There is no greater mistake than the hasty conclusion that opinions are worthless because they are badly argued.


Thomas H. Huxley (1825-1895, British biologist, educator)


There is no greater mistake than the hasty conclusion that opinions are worthless because they are badly argued.


Thomas H. Huxley (1825-1895, British biologist, educator)


Public opinion, a vulgar, impertinent, anonymous tyrant who deliberately makes life unpleasant for anyone who is not content to the average. person.


Dean William R. Inge (1860-1954, Dean of St. Paul's, London)


To compel a man to furnish contributions of money for the propagation of opinions which he disbelieves and abhors is sinful and tyrannical.


Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826, American President (3rd))


Ah! Sir, a boy's being flogged is not so severe as a man's having the hiss of the world against him.


Samuel Johnson (1709-1784, British author)


The majority have no other reason for their opinions than that they are the fashion.


Samuel Johnson (1709-1784, British author)


Those who never retract their opinions love themselves more than they love the truth.


Joseph Joubert (1754-1824, French moralist)


The only means of strengthening one's intellect is to make up one's mind about nothing -- to let the mind be a thoroughfare for all thoughts. Not a select party.


John Keats (1795-1821, British poet)


A study of the history of opinion is a necessary preliminary to the emancipation of the mind.


John Maynard Keynes (1883-1946, British economist)


I used to look down on the world for being corrupt, but now I adore it for the utter magnificence of that corruption.


Richard J. Needham


Altered opinions do not alter a man's character (or do so very little); but they do illuminate individual aspects of the constellation of his personality which with a different constellation of opinions had hitherto remained dark and unrecognizable.


Friedrich Nietzsche (1844-1900, German philosopher)


We credit scarcely any persons with good sense except those who are of our opinion.


Francois De La Rochefoucauld (1613-1680, French classical writer)


We think very few people sensible, except those who are of our opinion.


Francois De La Rochefoucauld (1613-1680, French classical writer)


Contrary to popular opinion, the hustle is not a new dance step -- it is an old business procedure.


Fran Lebowitz (1951-, American journalist)


I have remarked very clearly that I am often of one opinion when I am lying down and of another when I am standing up...


Georg C. Lichtenberg (1742-1799, German physicist, satirist)


It is a golden rule not to judge men by their opinions but rather by what their opinions make of them.


Georg C. Lichtenberg (1742-1799, German physicist, satirist)


Man is a gregarious animal and much more so in his mind than in his body. A golden rule; judge men not by their opinions but by what their opinions have made of them.


Georg C. Lichtenberg (1742-1799, German physicist, satirist)


We accumulate our opinions at an age when our understanding is at its weakest.


Georg C. Lichtenberg (1742-1799, German physicist, satirist)


The private citizen, beset by partisan appeals for the loan of his Public Opinion, will soon see, perhaps, that these appeals are not a compliment to his intelligence, but an imposition on his good nature and an insult to his sense of evidence.


Walter Lippmann (1889-1974, American journalist)


Where mass opinion dominates the government, there is a morbid derangement of the true functions of power. The derangement brings about the enfeeblement, verging on paralysis, of the capacity to govern. This breakdown in the constitutional order is the cause of the precipitate and catastrophic decline of Western society. It may, if it cannot be arrested and reversed, bring about the fall of the West.


Walter Lippmann (1889-1974, American journalist)


New opinions are always suspected, and usually opposed, without any other reason but because they are not already common.


John Locke (1632-1704, British philosopher)


The foolish and the dead alone never change their opinion.


James Russell Lowell (1819-1891, American poet, critic, editor)


Listen, everyone is entitled to my opinion.


Madonna (1958-, American musician, singer, actress,)


False opinions are like false money, struck first of all by guilty men and thereafter circulated by honest people who perpetuate the crime without knowing what they are doing.


Joseph De Maistre (1753-1821, French diplomat, philosopher)


Opinions cannot survive if one has no chance to fight for them.


Thomas Mann (1875-1955, German author, critic)


If forty million people say a foolish thing it does not become a wise one, but the wise man is foolish to give them the lie.


W. Somerset Maugham (1874-1965, British novelist, playwright)


A point of view can be a dangerous luxury when substituted for insight and understanding.


Marshall McLuhan (1911-1980, Canadian communications theorist)


The peculiar evil of silencing the expression of an opinion is, that it is robbing the human race; posterity as well as the existing generation; those who dissent from the opinion, still more than those who hold it. If the opinion is right, they are deprived of the opportunity of exchanging error for truth: if wrong, they lose, what is almost as great a benefit, the clearer perception and livelier impression of truth, produced by its collision with error.


John Stuart Mill (1806-1873, British philosopher, economist)


We can never be sure that the opinion we are endeavoring to stifle is a false opinion; and even if we were sure, stifling it would be an evil still.


John Stuart Mill (1806-1873, British philosopher, economist)


There never was in the world two opinions alike, no more than two hairs or two grains. The most universal quality is diversity.


Michel Eyquem De Montaigne (1533-1592, French philosopher, essayist)


Even good opinions are worth very little unless we hold them in the broad, intelligent, and spacious way.


John Morley (1838-1923, British journalist, biographer, statesman)


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