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)

Wednesday, December 9, 2020

Being a pop culture illiterate, I do not know anything about the band, but apparently the drummer for the "Dropkick Murphys", Matt Kelly, has stated on his Instagram that G.K. Chesterton is his favorite author:
Happy birthday to the Prince of Paradox, the Apostle of Common Sense, the man whose face adorns my kick drum... no, not Wilford Brimly, not Teddy Roosevelt, I mean G.K. Chesterton. My favorite author and source of daily inspiration. On this day in 1874 Gilbert Keith Chesterton was born in Kensington, London, England. “The first fact about the celebration of a birthday is that it is a way of affirming defiantly, and even flamboyantly, that it is a good thing to be alive….But there is a second fact about Birthdays, and the birth-song of all creation, a fact which really follows on this; but which, as it seems to me, the other school of thought almost refuses to recognize. The point of that fact is simply that it is a fact. In being glad about my Birthday, I am being glad about something which I did not myself bring about.” GKC 3/21/1935

Sunday, November 22, 2020

The revolt against culture is often the last fashion of the cultured.
-Chesterton on Shakespeare (1971)

Thursday, November 19, 2020

Of all such educational processes, the hardest and apparently the most hopeless is the education of the educated They resist education more than anybody else; and they need it more than anybody else.
-May 16, 1916, Illustrated London News

Wednesday, November 18, 2020

[A] ritual is almost the opposite of a routine [...] The essence of real ritual is that a man does something because it signifies something; it may be stiff or slow or ceremonial in form; that depends on the nature of the artistic form that is used. But he does it because it is significant. It is the essence of routine that he does it because it is insignificant.
December 21, 1935 Illustrated London News

Sunday, September 20, 2020

Patricia Heaton on GKC

Patricia Heaton posted the following tweet the day before yesterday:


"I’ve been reading #GKChesterton at night before falling asleep. If you want to be transported out of this vulgar, hate-spewing brainless, illiterate world we live in, GK is your man. Witty, optimistic, learned, insightful, gentle, joyous, - a balm for the soul.

Also, from the thread, she states:

"I’ve been reading a Chesterton biography by Maisie Ward - includes many of his letters."


"I laugh every night - his wit sneaks up on you!

Monday, July 20, 2020

[Chesterton, writing about Robert Browning's elopement with Elizabeth Barrett]

The manner in which Browning bore himself in this acute and necessarily dubious position is, perhaps, more thoroughly to his credit than anything else in his career. He never came out so well in all his long years of sincerity and publicity as he does in this one act of deception. Having made up his mind to that act, he is not ashamed to name it; neither, on the other hand, does he rant about it, and talk about Philistine prejudices and higher laws and brides in the sight of God, after the manner of the cockney decadent. He was breaking a social law, but he was not declaring a crusade against social laws. We all feel, whatever may be our opinions on the matter, that the great danger of this kind of social opportunism, this pitting of a private necessity against a public custom, is that men are somewhat too weak and self-deceptive to be trusted with such a power of giving dispensations to themselves. We feel that men without meaning to do so might easily begin by breaking a social by-law and end by being thoroughly anti-social. One of the best and most striking things to notice about Robert Browning is the fact that he did this thing considering it as an exception, and that he contrived to leave it really exceptional. It did not in the least degree break the rounded clearness of his loyalty to social custom. It did not in the least degree weaken the sanctity of the general rule. At a supreme crisis of his life he did an unconventional thing, and he lived and died conventional. It would be hard to say whether he appears the more thoroughly sane in having performed the act, or in not having allowed it to affect him.
Robert Browning (1903)

Monday, May 18, 2020

[M]ost fundamental falsehoods are errors in language as well as in philosophy. Most statements that are unreasonable are really ungrammatical.
-October 16, 1909, Illustrated London News

Sunday, May 3, 2020

It is hard to give a definition of loyalty, but perhaps we come near it if we call it the thing which operates where an obligation is felt to be unlimited. And the minimum of duty or even decency asked of a patriot is the maximum that is asked by the most miraculous view of marriage. The recognized reality of patriotism is not mere citizenship. The recognized reality of patriotism is for better for worse, for richer for poorer, in sickness and in health, in national growth and glory and in national disgrace and decline; it is not to travel in the ship of state as a passenger, but if need be to go down with the ship.
-A Short History of England (1917)

Sunday, March 29, 2020

Manuel ("Fawlty Towers") as Father Brown

From the latest issue of Gilbert! (March/April 2020):
In our Rolling Road column this issue...we make reference to the character Manuel of Fawlty Towers fame. Here's an interesting trifle about Andrew Sachs, the wonderful actor who played Manuel: He also played Father Brown! In 1984, BBC radio produced 13 episodes of Father Brown stories. You can listen to them on the Internet Archive: http://archive.org/d…/FatherBrown_201704/Father+Brown+02.mp3 

Tuesday, March 24, 2020

The Great Pessimist.*
Daily News, June 7, 1901

Tuesday, January 28, 2020

Obviously, the advantage of Socialism would be that, if the state were supreme everywhere, it could see that everybody had enough money and comfort. Equally obviously the disadvantage of Socialism would be that if the state were supreme everywhere it might easily become a tyrant, as it has been again and again. To pack the whole matter as solidly as possible, officials could certainly go round and feed the whole people with bread. But it has often been found that in practice they feed the people with insults.
-Illustrated London News, September 10, 1910

Thursday, January 23, 2020

"Christianity has died many times and risen again; for it had a God who knew the way out of the grave."

Christendom has had a series of revolutions and in each one of them Christianity has died. Christianity has died many times and risen again; for it had a God who knew the way out of the grave. But the first extraordinary fact which marks this history is this: that Europe has been turned upside down over and over again; and that at the end of each of these revolutions the same religion has again been found on top. The Faith is always converting the age, not as an old religion but as a new religion. This truth is hidden from many by a convention that is too little noticed. Curiously enough, it is a convention of the sort which those who ignore it claim especially to detect and denounce. They are always telling us that priests and ceremonies are not religion and that religious organisation can be a hollow sham, but they hardly realise how true it is. It is so true that three or four times at least in the history of Christendom the whole soul seemed to have gone out of Christianity; and almost every man in his heart expected its end. This fact is only masked in medieval and other times by that very official religion which such critics pride themselves on seeing through. Christianity remained the official religion of a Renaissance prince or the official religion of an eighteenth-century bishop, just as an ancient mythology remained the official religion of Julius Caesar or the Arian creed long remained the official religion of Julian the Apostate. But there was a difference between the cases of Julius and of Julian; because the Church had begun its strange career. There was no reason why men like Julius should not worship gods like Jupiter for ever in public and laugh at them for ever in private. But when Julian treated Christianity as dead, he found it had come to life again. He also found, incidentally, that there was not the faintest sign of Jupiter ever coming to life again. This case of Julian and the episode of Arianism is but the first of a series of examples that can only be roughly indicated here. Arianism, as has been said, had every human appearance of being the natural way in which that particular superstition of Constantine might be expected to peter out. All the ordinary stages had been passed through; the creed had become a respectable thing, had become a ritual thing, had then been modified into a rational thing; and the rationalists were ready to dissipate the last remains of it, just as they do to-day. When Christianity rose again suddenly and threw them, it was almost as unexpected as Christ rising from the dead. But there are many other examples of the same thing, even about the same time. The rush of missionaries from Ireland, for instance, has all the air of an unexpected onslaught of young men on an old world, and even on a Church that showed signs of growing old. Some of them were martyred on the coast of Cornwall; and the chief authority on Cornish antiquities told me that he did not believe for a moment that they were martyred by heathens but (as he expressed it with some humour) 'by rather slack Christians.'

Now if we were to dip below the surface of history, as it is not in the scope of this argument to do, I suspect that we should find several occasions when Christendom was thus to all appearance hollowed out from within by doubt and indifference, so that only the old Christian shell stood as the pagan shell had stood so long. But the difference is that in every such case, the sons were fanatical for the faith where the fathers had been slack about it.
-The Everlasting Man (1925)

Wednesday, January 22, 2020

....which (I may remark) he cannot imagine either.

Man cannot imagine the universe being created, and therefore is “compelled by his reason” to think the universe without beginning or end, which (I may remark) he cannot imagine either.
-Utopia of Usurers (1917)

Tuesday, January 21, 2020

[E]arth is not even earth without heaven, as a landscape is not a landscape without the sky. And in a universe without God there is not room enough for a man.
-The Crimes of England (1916)

Monday, January 20, 2020

[H]atred is beautiful, when it is hatred of the ugliness of the soul.
-The Crimes of England (1916)

Sunday, January 19, 2020

The primary public duty before us to-day is not to educated the uneducated. The primary public duty before us is to uneducate the educated. For they have all been educated wrong, and cannot see with their eyes or hear with ears or (least of all) understand with their heart.
-November 8, 1913, Illustrated London News

Thursday, January 16, 2020

A short update: the "project" I referred to in my previous post has now been completed, and therefore I hope to soon begin posting on this blog again on a regular basis. I may not do so every day, but I will try to do so fairly frequently, at least.

(For those interested, the project I was working on was to complete copying out the entire Bible by hand. I had already been working on it for a while, but I wished the past few months to especially focus on it till I completed it, and hence why I was not updating this blog. But now that I have completed it, things can return to normal, and my regular posting habits can resume.)