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Questions tagged [quote-identification]

For questions looking to identify the source of a quote.

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Does this quote belong to Goethe?

This quote is often attributed to Goethe. Did he actually write this? If yes, then where can we find it? It would wonderful if there is a reliable source or a book so that I can quote it in my future ...
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79 views

Which book is the maxim 大道無門 from?

From which book is the maxim 大道無門 Zen kōan だいどうむもん "Daidō mumon" "to achieve great understanding there is no single but thousands of ways".
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Source of the quote “The only bad question is an unasked one”?

There are many variations on this phrase, but is there an original source which inspired the others, or is it just a piece of popular wisdom that's emerged naturally from humanity? Wikipedia has a ...
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188 views

Where does this quotation by C. S. Lewis come from?

On the internet I found this beautiful quotation by C .S. Lewis: "There are far, far better things ahead than any we leave behind". Now, I'd like to find the exact book where he wrote it.
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Source of quote “Our government should have no quarrel…”

I am looking for the source of a quote which William F. Buckley Jr. referenced once during a debate. I believe he said it was from "Admiral Fulbright," but I have been completely unable to find it ...
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Quote: “No more effective device has yet been invented to prevent one man from helping another as writing a book”

I thought I once heard something like the following quote: No more effective device has yet been invented to prevent one man from helping another as writing a book. or maybe There is no more ...
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53 views

In what book does Paul Dirac say, “Some new ideas are here needed”?

In an interview for the Yorkshire Television program Take the World from Another Point of View (1972), Richard Feynman said: You see, I have had in my life a number of pleasant experiences. One of ...
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Finding author and source of quote about holocaust

I cannot remember where I read a quote about holocaust (partial quote further down) and although I'm almost certain that it was from some jewish author who himself survived holocaust I cannot remember ...
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Source of quote: “Speaking the truth that somebody wants you not to publish is journalism. Everything else is marketing.”

Heard from a BitCoin motivational speaker: Oscar Wilde said, "Speaking the truth that somebody wants you not to publish is journalism. Everything else is marketing." However, we all know that ...
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Quote about renouncing power over another and hoping they will do the same back

I'm trying to track down a quote that, through a series of examples, expresses the author's desire to renounce any power they may have over the reader, each followed by their wish that the reader ...
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What famous writer said, “to accurately (or precisely) say how things are is to be truly revolutionary?”

The extended version is something like this: "to accurately say how things are (or how the world is) is to be truly revolutionary, to say how things (or how the world) should be merely reactionary." ...
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In which act/scene of Antigone (Sophocles) is this passage?

I just stumbled on this translation of Antigone by F. L. Lucas where it says: Wonders there are many, but there is no wonder wilder than man - Man who makes the winds of winter bear him, ...
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What is the source of Paul Theroux's quote: “Travel is glamorous only in retrospect.”

There is a quote about travel attributed to the writer Paul Theroux: "Travel is glamorous only in retrospect." This quote is used by a lot of writers on the Internet, but there is no citation ...
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What is the source of Paul Theroux's quote: “Tourists don't know where they've been, travelers don't know where they're going.”

There is a quote about travel attributed to the writer Paul Theroux: "Tourists don't know where they've been, travelers don't know where they're going." It shows up on web sites like Goodreads and ...
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61 views

Tracking down a literary quote about grammar

I once read a quote that goes something like, We should all be grateful to grammarians for saving us in fifty years from a grievous error. I think it's by Proust, but Google doesn't seem to ...
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1answer
55 views

Who wrote the poem that begins “What have we not done for this country”?

About 15 years ago I read a popular history (in the sense of popular science, not popular politics) of the 20th century which includes a short poem that I believe went as follows: What have we not ...
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127 views

Identify a possible quote by Shakespeare

To those familiar with Shakespeare, do you know where this phrase comes from? Robust grass endures mighty winds; loyal ministers emerge through ordeal
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What is the source of Herb Caen's “I have a memory like an elephant.”?

I found the following quote, attributed to author Herb Caen. I have a memory like an elephant. I remember every elephant I've ever met. However, my efforts to identify the source of this quote via ...
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1answer
67 views

Allusion by Albert Camus to another author

In Camus's essay The Sea Close By there's a sentence: This life rebellious to forgetfulness, rebellious to memory, of which Stevenson speaks. (page 5 of Penguin Classics 2013). Can anyone tell ...
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326 views

Who said this quote? Napoleon Bonaparte or Theodore Roosevelt?

Courage isn't having the strength to go on - it is going on when you don't have strength. Who said this quote? Napoleon Bonaparte or Theodore Roosevelt?
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On a quote of Hegel in L'été (Summer) of Camus

This is my first question on this website, so I am not completely sure that this is the most adequate one (I could have also tried Philosophy stack exchange). In the chapter "L'exil d'Hélène" of L'...
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Did Stefan Zweig tell this anecdote in The World of Yesterday"?

Many years ago I read The World of Yesterday by Stefan Zweig. I believe that in this book there was the following, real-life story: Shortly before the outbreak of World War II several intellectuals, ...
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Where did Rilke say or write “The purpose of life is to be defeated by greater and greater things”?

The purpose of life is to be defeated by greater and greater things. This quote is widely attributed to the German poet Rainer Maria Rilke, but I cannot find the source. Where did he say or write ...
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Where did the Robert Frost Quote “If we couldn't laugh, we would all go insane” come from?

I have found numerous sources that attribute the quote "If we couldn't laugh we would all go insane" to Robert Frost but for the life of me, I cannot find when / where he actually said / wrote it.
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Who said “Poetry is the art of giving different names to the same thing”?

Over on Skeptics, Laurel found some partial information in a quote from Mathematics as a culture clue and other essays: I once quoted that mot to a poet, and got the quick response: "Poetry is ...
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Did Stevenson really claim to have been inspired by brownies?

Jorge Luis Borges claims, in his Book of Imaginary Beings, that the author Robert Louis Stevenson attributed some of the stranger ideas in his writing to fantastical creatures such as brownies who ...
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“It might be for years, and it might be for ever,” - What is the original novel this quote appeared in?

There are many novels of the same period that have this quote in them based on my perusal through the Internet Archive but could anyone please tell me what the original source of the quote was? Thanks....
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2answers
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Where is this quote about Man, Hero, Legend and Myth from?

This quote is scattered throughout the Web: Through action, a Man becomes a Hero Through death, a Hero becomes a Legend Through time, a Legend becomes a Myth And by learning from the ...
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Looking for a quote: “I'm a capitalist and a socialist and a communist and an anarchist and a monarchist”

I remember very well that I was reading somewhere or I've seen it on the TV that Federico García Lorca said something like "I'm a capitalist and a socialist and a communist and an anarchist and a ...
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Where is this Greek extract from?

Eἰς τὸν λειμῶνα καθίσας, ἔδρεπεν ἕτερον ἐφ' ἑτέρῳ αἰρόμενος ἄγρευμ' ἀνθέων ἁδομένᾳ ψυχᾷ [Eurip. frag. 754.] [sic] ['He sat in the meadow and plucked with glad heart the ...
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143 views

Which poem contains a phrase like "it was all done in Berlin in the thirties”

My father is adamant that he has heard a poem which contains a phrase like “it was all done in Berlin in the thirties”. Possibly read by Kenneth Williams. But Google search has let us down. Can anyone ...
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Who is the author of this quote about saying the right words on a mountaintop and changing the world?

I have a recollection of a quote I thought came from Heinrich Heine. My recollection of the quote is something like this: If you go up to the mountaintop and say the right words, the whole world ...
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1answer
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Who wrote a specific poem in the movie 'Dead Poets Society'?

Who wrote "Show me the heart unfettered by foolish dreams…And I'll show you a happy man." ? It was spoken by George McAllister (=the character name of the Latin teacher "the Realist" in Dead Poets ...
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1answer
240 views

On what occasion did Shelley say “Keats was a Greek”?

Once Shelley said, "Keats was a Greek." What was the context? Whom did he say this to?
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2k views

Who is the author of the quote: “We build too many walls and not enough bridges”?

I narrowed my search to two Newton: Joseph Fort Newton and Isaac Newton. I think the first one did it. I see four solutions: Joseph Fort Newton wrote it. Isaac Newton wrote it. Both wrote it (maybe ...
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What is the quote “We do not describe the world we see, we see the world we can describe” trying to convey?

We do not describe the world we see, we see the world we can describe. I need help with understanding this quote and what it's trying to convey.
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Trying to find a quote: Salt on top of the mountain, instead of snow

Google has failed me. I am trying to recall a quote I read once, which goes something like this: "I have reached the mountain peak I saw in my youth, but it is not snow here; it is only salt." Meaning,...
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1answer
248 views

Looking for a quote: “It may be true that every man has his price but there is not enough gold in the world to pay mine”

I'm looking for a quote that goes along the lines of "It may be true that every man has his price but there is not enough gold in the world to pay mine" I'm looking for the exact quote and who ...
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1answer
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Origins of quote: “Do not meddle in the affairs of dragons for you are crunchy and taste good with ketchup.”

I've grown up loving the quote "Do not meddle in the affairs of dragons for you are crunchy and taste good with ketchup." and I've been searching around to find out where it came from (with only a ...
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1answer
1k views

Where do I find Edmund Wilson's quote “No two persons ever read the same book?”

The internet seems crazy about this quote, but nobody reports a reliable source. Where was it originally written or spoken? (I.e., which book, interview, or essay?)
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Did Sarojini Naidu say this: When the house is on fire, the poet should stop singing…?

Did Sarojini Naidu say something about this: "When the house is on fire, the poet should stop singing, and get the buckets to put out the fire." I got this from a FB post. But I want to find out ...
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Nicanor Parra line: “Nothing important is learned from books. (I read this in a book.)”

This is one of Parra's "anti-poems" but I can't recall the exact wording, or which book it appeared in, and can't seem to find it online. The poem says something along the lines of Nothing ...
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1answer
5k views

Who said it first - Orwell or Churchill?

One of my favorite quotes is Churchill's "We sleep safely at night because rough men stand ready to visit violence on those who would harm us." But recently I found out that Orwell was attributed ...
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Where does this Federico Garcia Lorca quote come from? Is it a fake?

The quote is the following: Besides black art, there is only automation and mechanization. I ran into this quote in a book named Site Reliability Engineering: How Google Runs Production Systems ...
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141 views

In which book did Poirot find a four-foot long clue?

In one of the Poirot books he mentions that though clues are often small he once found a four-foot long one. Unfortunately I can't remember in which book he mentions this. Does anyone know which ...
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What did Charles Dickens say about genius and pain?

While reading Somerset Maugham's Cakes and Ale, I came across this quote (emphasis mine): ...Charles Dickens in an after-dinner speech had stated that genius was an infinite capacity for taking ...
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Who said that Allingham “polished her prose until it shone over-bright,” and where?

Somebody read to me from a book about Allingham long ago that she would "polish her prose until it shone over-bright" and then dictate it to her husband to reduce it to a more readable vernacular. I ...