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.




Wednesday, November 21, 2018

A piece of peculiarly bad advice is constantly given to modern writers, especially to modern theologians: that they should adapt themselves to the spirit of the age. If there is one thing that has made shipwreck of mankind form the beginning it has been the spirit of the age, which always means exaggerating still further that is grossly exaggerated already.
-Lunacy and Letters (1958)

Tuesday, November 20, 2018

"This fundamental sense of human fraternity can only exist in the presence of positive religion."

It may seem mere praise of the novel to say it is the art of sympathy and the study of human variations. But indeed, though this is a good thing, it is not universally good. We have gained in sympathy; but we have lost in brotherhood. Old quarrels had more equality than modern exonerations. Two peasants in the Middle Ages quarrelled about their two fields. But they went to the same church, served in the same semi-feudal militia, and had the same morality, which ever might happen to be breaking it at the moment. The very cause of their quarrel was the cause of their fraternity; they both liked land. But suppose one of them a teetotaler who desired the abolition of hops on both farms; suppose the other a vegetarian who desired the abolition of chickens on both farms: and it is at once apparent that a quarrel of quite a different kind would begin; and that in that quarrel it would not be a question of farmer against farmer, but of individual against individual. This fundamental sense of human fraternity can only exist in the presence of positive religion. Man is merely man only when he is seen against the sky. [..] Only where death and eternity are intensely present can human beings fully feel their fellowship. Once the divine darkness against which we stand is really dismissed from the mind [...] the differences between human beings become overpoweringly plain; whether they are expressed in the high caricatures of Dickens or the low lunacies of Zola.
-The Victorian Age in Literature (1913)

Monday, November 19, 2018

" [..] Yes, the poet will be discontented even in the streets of heaven. The poet is always in revolt."

"There again," said Syme irritably, "what is there poetical about being in revolt? You might as well say that it is poetical to be sea-sick. Being sick is a revolt. Both being sick and being rebellious may be the wholesome thing on certain desperate occasions; but I'm hanged if I can see why they are poetical. Revolt in the abstract is—revolting. It's mere vomiting."
-The Man Who Was Thursday (1908)

Sunday, November 18, 2018

"Humility is the only possible basis of enjoyment"

Toots [...] may be considered as being in some ways the master piece of Dickens. Nowhere else did Dickens express with such astonishing insight and truth his main contention, which is that to be good and idiotic is not a poor fate, but, on the contrary, an experience of primeval innocence, which wonders at all things. Dickens did not know, any more than any great man ever knows, what was the particular thing that he had to preach. He did not know it; he only preached it. But the particular thing that he had to preach was this: That humility is the only possible basis of enjoyment; that if one has no other way of being humble except being poor, then it is better to be poor, and to enjoy; that if one has no other way of being humble except being imbecile, then it is better to be imbecile, and to enjoy. That is the deep unconscious truth in the character of Toots -- that all his externals are flashy and false; all his internals unconscious, obscure, and true. He wears loud clothes, and he is silent inside them. His shirts and waistcoats are covered with bright spots of pink and purple, while his soul is always covered with the sacred shame. He always gets all the outside things of life wrong, and all the inside things right. 
-Appreciations and Criticisms of the Works of Charles Dickens (1911)

Saturday, November 17, 2018

[T]he object of all eloquence is to find the least common denominator of men's souls [.]
-Twelve Types

Friday, November 16, 2018

America has many faults, but it has the virtue of sensationalism. For it is only the trial or execution of a murderer that can be sensational. The murder itself is always a very delicate and domestic matter; and the murderer is generally very modest about his merits as an artist. [..] The real objection to having a skeleton in the cupboard is not that it may be found: that largely depends upon who has got the key [..] The danger is rather that it may not be found. The objection is that long before it can reach the comparatively elegant condition of a skeleton it has to pass through a process which will probably be put down to something being wrong with the drains. [...] On those occasions a little American sensationalism would have been much the most public-spirited thing we could have had. Prudence was very perilous, and recklessness would have been really wise.
-October 2, 1915, Illustrated London News

Thursday, November 15, 2018

The Fall is a view of life. It is not only the only enlightening, but the only encouraging view of life. It holds, as against the only real alternative philosophies, those of the Buddhist or the Pessimist or the Promethean, that we have misused a good world, and not merely been entrapped into a bad one. It refers evil back to the wrong use of the will, and thus declares that it can eventually be righted by the right use of the will. Every other creed except that one is some form of surrender to fate. A man who holds this view of life will find it giving light on a thousand things; on which mere evolutionary ethics have not a word to say. For instance, on the colossal contrast between the completeness of man’s machines and the continued corruption of his motives; on the fact that no social progress really seems to leave self behind [.]
-The Thing (1929)

Wednesday, November 14, 2018

[P]eople forget how to be grateful unless they learn how to be humble.
-December 15, 1906, Daily News

Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Thinking in isolation and with pride ends in being an idiot. Every man who will not have softening of the heart must at last have softening of the brain.
-Orthodoxy (1908)

Monday, November 12, 2018

Charles Dicken's Daughter and GKC

Some interesting information concerning the relationship between Kate Perugini (the daughter of Charles Dickens) with GKC and his wife:
[She] kept in touch with the Chestertons, writing, for example, nearly four years later a letter to Francis in which she discusses the characters in her father's novels, and says that she was always glad to see them both. Even after they moved to Beaconsfield, she used to visit, according to Dorothy Collins, and talk about the Dickens family life.

-G.K. Chesterton: A Biography, p. 183, Ian Ker (2011)

Sunday, November 11, 2018

[Today marks the 100th anniversary of the end of WW1. Therefore, I thought it fitting to quote from the first article GKC wrote for the Illustrated London News after the conclusion of that conflict. ]

It is the curse of all our culture that it abounds in mechanical and materialistic terms, so that things do not seem to have been done by men [...] It may even be possible for some [...] people to regard the end of the war as such people regarded the beginning of the war- as an enormous accident.  [...] The war did not begin; it was begun, because there is in the heart of man the anarchic art that can begin such things. The war did not end; it was ended, because there is in the heart of man that cleaner creative hope that can endure and end them.
-November 23, 1918, Illustrated London News

Saturday, November 10, 2018

Many a modern critic called delicate, elusive, reticent, subtle, individual, has gained this praise by saying something once which any one could see to be rubbish if he had said it twice.
-G.K.C. as M.C. (1929)