A blog dedicated to providing quotes by and posts relating to one of the most influential (and quotable!) authors of the twentieth century, G.K. Chesterton (1874-1936). If you do not know much about GKC, I suggest visiting the webpage of the American Chesterton Society as well as this wonderful Chesterton Facebook Page by a fellow Chestertonian

I also have created a list detailing examples of the influence of Chesterton if you are interested, that I work on from time to time.

(Moreover, for a list of short GKC quotes, I have created one here, citing the sources)

"...Stevenson had found that the secret of life lies in laughter and humility."

-Heretics (1905)

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"The Speaker" Articles

A book I published containing 112 pieces Chesterton wrote for the newspaper "The Speaker" at the beginning of his career.

They are also available for free electronically on another blog of mine here, if you wish to read them that way.


Friday, May 26, 2017

"It acts on a fixed theory that religious motives [...] need not be calculated and must not even be mentioned."

In all ages the world has rightly satirised religious hypocrisy. But in our age the world suffers terribly from something that can only be called secular hypocrisy. The cant is not only secular, it is even secularist. It acts on a fixed theory that religious motives, in national and international things, need not be calculated and must not even be mentioned [...] It is not a question of liking or disliking any of the religions, or of having any religion at all. It is simply a taboo of tact or convention, whereby we are free to say that a man does this or that because of his nationality, or his profession, or his place of residence, or his hobby, but not because of his creed about the very cosmos in which he lives.
-The End of the Armistice
(collection of essays published posthumously in 1940)

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

I wish we could sometimes love the characters in real life as we love the characters in romances. There are a great many human souls whom we should accept more kindly, and even appreciate more clearly, if we simply thought of them as people in a story.
-What I Saw In America (1922)

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

G.K. Chesterton's Nightmare (Philip Jenkins)
Thirty years ago, a British newspaper took an unscientific survey of current and former intelligence agents, asking them which fictional work best captured the realities of their profession. Would it be John Le Carré, Ian Fleming, Robert Ludlum? To the amazement of most readers, the book that won easily was G.K. Chesterton's The Man Who Was Thursday, published in 1908.

This was so surprising because of the book's early date, but also its powerful mystical and Christian content: Chesterton subtitled it "a nightmare." But perhaps the choice was not so startling. Looking at the problems Western intelligence agencies confront fighting terrorism today, Chesterton's fantasy looks more relevant than ever, and more like a practical how-to guide.
An interesting article to read

Monday, May 22, 2017

Upon this very simple fact of human nature- that bustle always mean banality- the whole gigantic modern Press [...] is built.
-March 26, 1910, Illustrated London News

Thursday, May 18, 2017

That power to control thoughts, moralities, and tones of life which we would not give to the Commonwealth itself, crowned with the auctoritas of the people, we are actually giving to every two-penny firm, to every ephemeral business that can scrape together enough money to enslave a score or two of men. 
-March 6, 1909, Daily News

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

[...] every high civilisation decays by forgetting obvious things.
-The New Jerusalem (1920)

Monday, May 15, 2017

People said his distinctions were fine distinctions, and so they were; very fine indeed. A fine distinction is like a fine painting or a fine poem or anything else fine; a triumph of the human mind. In these days when large-mindedness is supposed to consist of confusing everything with everything else, of saying that man is the same as woman and religion the same as irreligion, and the unnatural as good as the natural and all the rest of it, it is well to keep high in the mind the great power of distinction, by which man becomes in the true sense distinguished.
-G.K.'s Weekly, March 29, 1930
(quoted in The Man Who Was Orthodox by A.L. Maycock, 1963)

Saturday, May 6, 2017

[...] there is no limit to the lunacy of men when they think themselves superior both to humility and laughter.
-March 2, 1907, Daily News

Friday, May 5, 2017

"They desire the democracy to be sexually fluid, because the making of small nuclei is like the making of small nations."

There is only one form of freedom which they tolerate; and that is the sort of sexual freedom which is covered by the legal fiction of divorce. If we ask why this liberty is alone left, when so many liberties are lost, we shall find the answer in the summary of this chapter. They are trying to break the vow of the knight as they broke the vow of the monk. They recognise the vow as the vital antithesis to servile status, the alternative and therefore the antagonist. Marriage makes a small state within the state, which resists all such regimentation. That bond breaks all other bonds; that law is found stronger than all later and lesser laws. They desire the democracy to be sexually fluid, because the making of small nuclei is like the making of small nations. Like small nations, they are a nuisance to the mind of imperial scope. In short, what they fear, in the most literal sense, is home rule.
-The Superstition of Divorce (1920)

Saturday, April 29, 2017

Saturday, April 22, 2017

"The question of miracles is not one of physical science; it is obviously, by its nature, purely one of philosophical belief."

The question of miracles is not one of physical science; it is obviously, by its nature, purely one of philosophical belief. There can be no such thing as a proof from physical science that the order of Nature is rigid, or necessarily recurrent; for obviously, the study of things in the order can prove nothing about whether there is anything out of the order. A man who says that he has learnt from science that water cannot be changed into wine might just as well say that he had learnt from Blackstone's commentaries on the Laws of England that a burglary cannot occur in Fulham. The mere repetition of anything cannot prove, however incessant, that the repetition is destined to go on. Only if we know the reason of the repetition can we know that.
-October 8, 1904, Daily News

Friday, April 21, 2017

"It was never allowed to be enough of a success to be properly called a failure."

[Chesterton, writing in the aftermath of WWI, but which seems applicable in a large degree a century later as well, and something for the Church to keep in mind...]

[...] any good movement will do most good not by embracing the world, but by attacking the world. If it is to end by converting everybody, it must not begin by including everybody.

The modern world was not made by its religion, but rather in spite of its religion. Religion has produced evils of its own; but the special evils which we now suffer began with its breakdown. Nor do I mean religion merely in an ideal, but strictly in a historical sense. The cruel competition of classes went with the abandonment of charity- not merely of the primitive theory of charity, but of the medieval practice of charity. The colossal evil of cosmopolitan finance came with a new toleration of usury. The Prussian superman, the supreme product of modern immoralism, arose through a denial not merely of the mystical humility of Christian saints, but of the ordinary modesty of Christian men. The wickedness that led up to the war may be called, if anyone likes to put it so, the failure of Christianity. But it was it's failure to rule, not its failure to rule well. It was never allowed to be enough of a success to be properly called a failure. All the actual causes- Colonial expansion, scientific warfare, industrial development, racial theories, even journalism- were all things which the modern mind has made in its reaction from the old religion [...] It has not made modernity- it has not that on its conscience. Its only spiritual justification, and its obvious social strategy, is to attack modernity. It ought to show, as it really could show, that social evils have not come from its presence, but rather from its absence. So far from insisting on its power, it ought rather to insist on its impotence. So far from claiming to be obeyed, it ought to claim to have been disobeyed. So far from assuming indefinite numbers of men as belonging to it, it ought to note the enormous numbers of men who fail by not belonging to it. In short, to recur to the original text, it ought not to be content with all the people who will consent or condescend to call themselves something. It ought to lead them into the way of truth. For any movement to do this, of course, is it necessary for it to have a truth to lead them to.
-July 12, 1919, Illustrated London News