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)

Tuesday, May 28, 2019

[A]ll education is religious education- and never more than when it is irreligious education. It either teaches a definite doctrine about the universe, which is theology; or else it takes one for granted, which is mysticism. If it does not do that it does nothing at all, and means nothing at all, for everything must depend upon some first principles and refer to some causes, expressed or unexpressed.
-July 26,1924, Illustrated London News

Sunday, May 26, 2019

What fun it would be if good actors suddenly acted like real people!
-March 16, 1912, Illustrated London News

Monday, May 20, 2019

GKC "correcting" Shaw about the meaning of Shaw's own play....lol.

I seem destined to differ from Mr. Bernard Shaw just now. And having had the honour to differ from him about Shakespeare's plays I have now the even greater honour to differ from him about his own. Mr. Shaw's mistakes about the meaning of his own plays arise from the same source as his Shakespearean errors, a lack of warmth and poesy. Mr Huneker quotes in his book [...] Mr. Shaw's own account of the character of Candida. 'Candida' always appeared to me not only as the noblest work of Mr. Shaw, but as one of the noblest, if not the noblest, of modern plays; a most square and manly piece of moral truth. And with the authority of a close student of the work, I assure the author of it that if he imagines that he understands the character of Candida he is quite mistaken. Mr. Shaw says of Candida: 'Morell himself sees that "no law will bind her". She seduces Eugene just as far as it is worth her while to seduce him. She is a woman without "character" in the conventional sense. She is straight for natural reasons, not for conventional ethical ones." The fact of the matter is that Candida, being a strong woman and not a half-witted anarchist, knows, as all sane people do know, that 'convention' is a thing quite as real as 'nature', perhaps much more real than nature. Strong, experienced human souls accept the facts of habit, the magic of time, the need for continuity, the working loyalties, the compromises of fellowship, as they accept the sun and moon. Laws are not dead things, as the foolish Bohemians think, and as Mr. Huneker, and even Mr. Shaw, tend here to think them. Laws are living things, like songs; and for the same reason, for both songs and laws are filled with the passion and vigilance of mankind. To despise them is not to be a free man, but simply to be an unusually silly misanthrope. How far laws should sometimes be defied is another matter; but they should never be despised- for they are humanity.
-April 26, 1905, Daily News

Friday, May 17, 2019

The point about the Press is that it is not what it is called. It is not the "popular Press." It is not the public Press. It is not an organ of public opinion. It is a conspiracy of a very few millionaires, all sufficiently similar in type to agree on the limits of what this great nation (to which we belong) may know about itself and its friends and enemies. The ring is not quite complete; there are old-fashioned and honest papers: but it is sufficiently near to completion to produce on the ordinary purchaser of news the practical effects of a corner and a monopoly. He receives all his political information and all his political marching orders from what is by this time a sort of half-conscious secret society, with very few members, but a great deal of money.
-Utopia of Usurers and Other Essays (1917)

Thursday, May 16, 2019

[T]he cynical use of the enormous power of journalism is a thing which an honest man ought to fight against furiously and for ever.
-November 23, 1907, Daily News

Wednesday, May 15, 2019

There are some who say that Shakespeare was vitally anti-democratic, because every now and then he curses the rabble- as if every lover of the people had not often had cause to curse the rabble. For this is the very definition of the rabble- it is the people when the people are undemocratic.
-Lunacy and Letters (1958)

Tuesday, May 14, 2019

Music is mere beauty; it is beauty in the abstract, beauty in solution. It is a shapeless and liquid element of beauty, in which a man may really float, not indeed affirming the truth, but not denying it.
-George Bernard Shaw (1909)

Monday, May 13, 2019

What was the matter with most reformers [...] was that the reformers were never contented or even concerned to reform. They were not satisfied to alter the abnormal in favour of the normal; they were much more eager to alter the normal in favour of the novel. The trick that has tripped up generation after generation of perfectly just reformers is that they were more interested in some particular new-fangled plan than they were in pointing out the old and obvious evil. The removal of every abuse or abomination was always tangled and tied hand and foot with some temporary and trumpery fad.
-October 28, 1922, Illustrated London News

Sunday, May 12, 2019

I will defer the question of whether the democracy knows how to answer questions until the oligarchy knows how to ask them.
-Fancies Versus Fads (1923)

Saturday, May 11, 2019

Shaw's only essential error [is] modernity- which means the seeking for truth in terms of time.
George Bernard Shaw (1909)

Friday, May 10, 2019

A verbal accident has confused the mystical with the mysterious. Mysticism is generally felt vaguely to be itself vague—a thing of clouds and curtains, of darkness or concealing vapours, of bewildering conspiracies or impenetrable symbols. Some quacks have indeed dealt in such things: but no true mystic ever loved darkness rather than light. No pure mystic ever loved mere mystery. The mystic does not bring doubts or riddles: the doubts and riddles exist already. We all feel the riddle of the earth without anyone to point it out. The mystery of life is the plainest part of it. The clouds and curtains of darkness, the confounding vapours, these are the daily weather of this world. Whatever else we have grown accustomed to, we have grown accustomed to the unaccountable. Every stone or flower is a hieroglyphic of which we have lost the key; with every step of our lives we enter into the middle of some story which we are certain to misunderstand. The mystic is not the man who makes mysteries but the man who destroys them. The mystic is one who offers an explanation which may be true or false, but which is always comprehensible—by which I mean, not that it is always comprehended, but that it always can be comprehended, because there is always something to comprehend. The man whose meaning remains mysterious fails, I think, as a mystic.
-William Blake (1910)

Thursday, May 2, 2019

However, one of the state-level opponents to the anti-abortion legislation, Democratic Rep. John Rogers of Birningham, spoke out against the vote.

"Some kids are unwanted, so you kill them now or you kill them later. You bring them in the world unwanted, unloved, you send them to the electric chair. So, you kill them now or you kill them later," Rogers said.

Should I feel bad that, whenever I see arguments like that, I'm tempted to reply with this quote from Chesterton, written in 1908?
...I have always had an instinct against all the forms of science of morality which professed to be particularly prescient and provisional. Some beautiful idealists are eager to kill babies if they think they will grow up bad. But I say to them: 'No, beautiful idealists; let us wait until the babies do grow up bad- and then (if we have luck) perhaps they may kill you.

-May 30, 1908, Daily News
Ok, perhaps I should resist doing that- but it's so tempting!