John Ruskin image
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Born in 1819 / Died in 1900 / United Kingdom / English

Quotes by John Ruskin

No human being, however great, or powerful, was ever so free as a fish.
The higher a man stands, the more the word vulgar becomes unintelligible to him.
It is impossible, as impossible as to raise the dead, to restore anything that has ever been great or beautiful in architecture. That which I have insisted upon as the life of the whole, that spirit which is given only by the hand and eye of the workman, can never be recalled.
No person who is not a great sculptor or painter can be an architect. If he is not a sculptor or painter, he can only be a builder.
Education is the leading of human souls to what is best, and making what is best out of them.
The essence of lying is in deception, not in words.
The art which we may call generally art of the wayside, as opposed to that which is the business of men's lives, is, in the best sense of the word, Grotesque.
It seems a fantastic paradox, but it is nevertheless a most important truth, that no architecture can be truly noble which is not imperfect.
It is in this power of saying everything, and yet saying nothing too plainly, that the perfection of art consists.
Men were not intended to work with the accuracy of tools, to be precise and perfect in all their actions.
There is never vulgarity in a whole truth, however commonplace. It may be unimportant or painful. It cannot be vulgar. Vulgarity is only in concealment of truth, or in affectation.
All great and beautiful work has come of first gazing without shrinking into the darkness.
All violent feelings have the same effect. They produce in us a falseness in all our impressions of external things, which I would generally characterize as the pathetic fallacy.
To know anything well involves a profound sensation of ignorance.
There is no such thing as bad weather, only different kinds of good weather.
I have not written in vain if I have heretofore done anything towards diminishing the reputation of the Renaissance landscape painting.
No architecture is so haughty as that which is simple.
You might sooner get lightning out of incense smoke than true action or passion out of your modern English religion.
Let us reform our schools, and we shall find little reform needed in our prisons.
There are no such things as Flowers there are only gladdened Leaves.
Life being very short, and the quiet hours of it few, we ought to waste none of them in reading valueless books.
To see clearly is poetry, prophecy and religion all in one.
You may either win your peace or buy it: win it, by resistance to evil; buy it, by compromise with evil.
That country is the richest which nourishes the greatest number of noble and happy human beings.
I believe the right question to ask, respecting all ornament, is simply this; was it done with enjoyment, was the carver happy while he was about it?