George Santayana Quotes

George Santayana Quote: The muffled syllables that Nature speaks
Fill us with deeper longing for her word;
She hides a meaning that the spirit seeks,
She makes a sweeter music than is heard.
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The muffled syllables that Nature speaks
Fill us with deeper longing for her word;
She hides a meaning that the spirit seeks,
She makes a sweeter music than is heard.

George Santayana (Premonition)

I like to walk about amidst the beautiful things that adorn the world; but private wealth I should decline, or any sort of personal possessions, because they would take away my liberty.

George Santayana

To cement a new friendship, especially between foreigners or persons of a different social world, a spark with which both were secretly charged must fly from person to person, and cut across the accidents of place and time.

George Santayana (Persons and Places - Autobiography, 1944)

Each religion, by the help of more or less myth which it takes more or less seriously, proposes some method of fortifying the human soul and enabline it to make its peace with its destiny.

George Santayana (Persons and Places - Autobiography, 1944)

Old places and old persons in their turn, when spirit dwells in them, have an intrinsic vitality of which youth is incapable, precisely, the balance and wisdom that come from long perspectives and broad foundations.

George Santayana

Nothing can be meaner than the anxiety to live on, to live on anyhow and in any shape; a spirit with any honor is not willing to live except in its own way, and a spirit with any wisdom is not over-eager to live at all.

George Santayana (Winds of Doctrine, 1913)

To be happy, even to conceive happiness, you must be reasonable or ... you must be tamed. You must have taken the measure of your powers, tasted the fruits of your passions and learned your place in the world.

George Santayana (Egotism in German Philosophy, 1916)

I leave you but the sound of many a word
In mocking echoes haply overheard,
I sang to heaven. My exile made me free,
from world to world, from all worlds carried me.

George Santayana (The Poet's Testament)

Progress, far from consisting in change, depends on retentiveness. When change is absolute there remains no being to improve and no direction is set for possible improvement: and when experience is not retained, as among savages, infancy is perpetual.

George Santayana (Life of Reason, 1905)

Religious doctrines would do well to withdraw their pretension to be dealing with matters of fact. That pretension is not only the source of the conflicts of religion with science and the vain and bitter controversies of sects; it is also the cause of the impurity and incoherence of religion in the soul.

George Santayana (Interpretations of Poetry and Religion, 1900)

Before he sets out, the traveller must possess fixed interests and facilities, to be served by travel. If he drifted aimlessly from country to country he would not travel but only wander, ramble as a tramp. The traveller must be somebody and come from somewhere so his definite character and moral traditions may supply an organ and a point of comparison for his observations.

George Santayana (Persons and Places - Autobiography, 1944)

Never have I enjoyed youth so thoroughly as I have in my old age. In writing Dialogues in Limbo, The Last Puritan, and now all these descriptions of the friends of my youth and the young friends of my middle age, I have drunk the pleasure of life more pure, more joyful than it ever was when mingled with all the hidden anxieties and little annoyances of actual living. Nothing is inherently and invincibly young except spirit. And spirit can enter a human being perhaps better in the quiet of old age and dwell there more undisturbed than in the turmoil of adventure.

George Santayana (Persons and Places - Autobiography, 1944)

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George Santayana Biography

Born: December 16, 1863
Died: September 26, 1952

George Santayana was an Spanish-born American philosopher, poet and writer. He is perhaps best known for his many aphorisms and his philosophy.

Notable Works

The Sense of Beauty (1896)
Life of Reason (1905)
Scepticism and Animal Faith
The Last Puritan (1935)
The Realms of Being (1942)

Picture Quotes