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Home > Dictionary of Science Quotations > Scientist Names Index S > Samuel Smiles Quotes

Samuel Smiles
(1812 - 1904)

British author and social reformer.

Science Quotes by Samuel Smiles (13 quotes)

A place for everything, and everything in its place.
— Samuel Smiles
In Thrift (1875), 13.
Science quotes on:  |  Everything (476)  |  Place (177)

England was nothing, compared to continental nations until she had become commercial … until about the middle of the last century, when a number of ingenious and inventive men, without apparent relation to each other, arose in various parts of the kingdom, succeeded in giving an immense impulse to all the branches of the national industry; the result of which has been a harvest of wealth and prosperity, perhaps without a parallel in the history of the world.
— Samuel Smiles
In Lives of the Engineers (1862, 1874), xvii.
Science quotes on:  |  All (4107)  |  Apparent (84)  |  Become (815)  |  Branch (150)  |  Century (310)  |  Commercial (26)  |  Continent (76)  |  England (40)  |  Harvest (27)  |  History (675)  |  Immense (86)  |  Impulse (48)  |  Industry (137)  |  Ingenious (55)  |  Inventive (8)  |  Kingdom (78)  |  Last (426)  |  Nation (194)  |  National (26)  |  Nothing (969)  |  Number (701)  |  Other (2236)  |  Parallel (43)  |  Prosperity (21)  |  Result (678)  |  Succeed (109)  |  Various (200)  |  Wealth (94)  |  World (1778)

Even happiness itself may become habitual. There is a habit of looking at the bright side of things, and also of looking at the dark side. Dr. Johnson has said that the habit of looking at the best side of a thing is worth more to a man than a thousand pounds a year. And we possess the power, to a great extent, of so exercising the will as to direct the thoughts upon objects calculated to yield happiness and improvement rather than their opposites.
— Samuel Smiles
In Self-help: With Illustrations of Character and Conduct (1859, 1861), 405-406.
Science quotes on:  |  Become (815)  |  Best (459)  |  Bright (79)  |  Dark (140)  |  Direct (225)  |  Extent (139)  |  Great (1575)  |  Habit (168)  |  Happiness (116)  |  Improvement (110)  |  Samuel Johnson (50)  |  Looking (189)  |  Man (2249)  |  More (2559)  |  Object (422)  |  Opposite (104)  |  Possess (156)  |  Power (747)  |  Side (232)  |  Thing (1915)  |  Thought (954)  |  Thousand (331)  |  Will (2354)  |  Worth (169)  |  Year (932)  |  Yield (81)

Good actions give strength to ourselves, and inspire good actions in others.
— Samuel Smiles
In 'Duty: With Illustrations of Courage, Patience, and Endurance', Harper’s Franklin Square Library (3 Dec 1880), No. 151, 9.
Science quotes on:  |  Action (328)  |  Good (889)  |  Inspire (52)  |  Other (2236)  |  Ourselves (245)  |  Strength (126)

Mere political reform will not cure the manifold evils which now afflict society. There requires a social reform, a domestic reform, an individual reform.
— Samuel Smiles
As quoted in Frank Daniels III (The Tennessean), 'Author Samuel Smiles thought reform started with ourselves', The Des Moines Register (22 Dec 2013). Also quoted in Timothy Travers, Samuel Smiles and the Victorian Work Ethic (1987),. 162.
Science quotes on:  |  Afflict (4)  |  Cure (122)  |  Domestic (26)  |  Evil (116)  |  Individual (404)  |  Manifold (22)  |  Political (121)  |  Politics (112)  |  Reform (22)  |  Require (219)  |  Social (252)  |  Society (325)  |  Will (2354)

Nothing, however, is more common than energy in money-making, quite independent of any higher object than its accumulation. A man who devotes himself to this pursuit, body and soul, can scarcely fail to become rich. Very little brains will do; spend less than you earn; add guinea to guinea; scrape and save; and the pile of gold will gradually rise.
— Samuel Smiles
In Self-help: With Illustrations of Character and Conduct (1859, 1861), 301-302.
Science quotes on:  |  Accumulation (50)  |  Become (815)  |  Body (537)  |  Brain (270)  |  Common (436)  |  Devote (35)  |  Do (1908)  |  Earn (7)  |  Energy (346)  |  Fail (185)  |  Gold (98)  |  Gradual (27)  |  Gradually (102)  |  Guinea (2)  |  Himself (461)  |  Little (708)  |  Making (300)  |  Man (2249)  |  Money (173)  |  More (2559)  |  Nothing (969)  |  Object (422)  |  Pile (12)  |  Pursuit (121)  |  Rich (63)  |  Rise (166)  |  Save (118)  |  Scarcely (74)  |  Soul (227)  |  Spend (95)  |  Will (2354)

The close observation of little things is the secret of success in business, in art, in science, and in every pursuit in life.
— Samuel Smiles
In Self-help: With Illustrations of Character and Conduct (1861), 100.
Science quotes on:  |  Art (657)  |  Business (149)  |  Life (1799)  |  Little (708)  |  Observation (560)  |  Pursuit (121)  |  Science (3880)  |  Secret (195)  |  Success (303)  |  Thing (1915)

The crown and glory of life is Character. It is the noblest possession of a man, constituting a rank in itself, and an estate in the general goodwill; dignifying every station, and exalting every position in society. It exercises a greater power than wealth, and secures all the honour without the jealousies of fame. It carries with it an influence which always tells; for it is the result of proved honour, rectitude, and consistency—qualities which, perhaps more than any other, command the general confidence and respect of mankind.
— Samuel Smiles
In Self-help: With Illustrations of Character and Conduct (1859, 1861), 396.
Science quotes on:  |  All (4107)  |  Character (243)  |  Command (58)  |  Confidence (68)  |  Consistency (31)  |  Crown (38)  |  Estate (5)  |  Exercise (110)  |  Fame (50)  |  General (511)  |  Glory (58)  |  Goodwill (6)  |  Greater (288)  |  Honour (56)  |  Influence (222)  |  Jealousy (9)  |  Life (1799)  |  Man (2249)  |  Mankind (340)  |  More (2559)  |  Noble (90)  |  Other (2236)  |  Possession (65)  |  Power (747)  |  Rank (67)  |  Respect (207)  |  Result (678)  |  Society (325)  |  Station (29)  |  Tell (340)  |  Wealth (94)

The greatest slave is not he who is ruled by a despot, great though that evil be, but he who is in the thrall of his own moral ignorance, selfishness, and vice.
— Samuel Smiles
In Self-help: With Illustrations of Character and Conduct (1859, 1861), 17.
Science quotes on:  |  Despot (2)  |  Evil (116)  |  Great (1575)  |  Greatest (329)  |  Ignorance (240)  |  Moral (195)  |  Rule (295)  |  Selfishness (8)  |  Slave (37)  |  Vice (40)

There is no power of law that can make the idle industrious, the thriftless provident, or the drunken sober.
— Samuel Smiles
In Self-help: With Illustrations of Character and Conduct (1859, 1861), 16.
Science quotes on:  |  Drunken (2)  |  Idle (33)  |  Industrious (12)  |  Law (895)  |  Power (747)  |  Sober (9)

This extraordinary metal [iron], the soul of every manufacture, and the mainspring perhaps of civilised society.
— Samuel Smiles
Men of Invention and Industry (1884), 108.
Science quotes on:  |  Civilization (206)  |  Extraordinary (79)  |  Industry (137)  |  Iron (96)  |  Mainspring (2)  |  Manufacture (29)  |  Metal (84)  |  Society (325)  |  Soul (227)

We learn wisdom from failure much more than from success. We often discover what will do, by finding out what will not do; and probably he who never made a mistake never made a discovery.
— Samuel Smiles
In Self-help: With Illustrations of Character and Conduct (1859, 1861), 349.
Science quotes on:  |  Discover (553)  |  Discovery (785)  |  Do (1908)  |  Failure (161)  |  Find Out (21)  |  Learn (632)  |  Mistake (170)  |  More (2559)  |  Never (1087)  |  Success (303)  |  Will (2354)  |  Wisdom (221)

“Heaven helps those who help themselves” is a well-tried maxim, embodying in a small compass the results of vast human experience. The spirit of self-help is the root of all genuine growth in the individual; and, exhibited in the lives of many, it constitutes the true source of national vigour and strength. Help from without is often enfeebling in its effects, but help from within invariably invigorates. Whatever is done for men or classes, to a certain extent takes away the stimulus and necessity of doing for themselves; and where men are subjected to over-guidance and over-government, the inevitable tendency is to render them comparatively helpless.
— Samuel Smiles
In Self-help: With Illustrations of Character and Conduct (1859, 1861), 15.
Science quotes on:  |  All (4107)  |  Certain (550)  |  Compass (34)  |  Constitute (97)  |  Doing (280)  |  Effect (394)  |  Experience (470)  |  Extent (139)  |  Genuine (52)  |  Government (111)  |  Growth (188)  |  Guidance (28)  |  Heaven (258)  |  Help (106)  |  Helpless (11)  |  Human (1470)  |  Individual (404)  |  Inevitable (49)  |  Invariably (35)  |  Invigorate (3)  |  Live (629)  |  Maxim (17)  |  National (26)  |  Necessity (191)  |  Render (93)  |  Result (678)  |  Root (120)  |  Self (267)  |  Small (479)  |  Spirit (265)  |  Stimulus (26)  |  Strength (126)  |  Subject (522)  |  Tendency (99)  |  Themselves (433)  |  Vast (178)  |  Vigour (18)  |  Whatever (234)


Carl Sagan Thumbnail In science it often happens that scientists say, 'You know that's a really good argument; my position is mistaken,' and then they would actually change their minds and you never hear that old view from them again. They really do it. It doesn't happen as often as it should, because scientists are human and change is sometimes painful. But it happens every day. I cannot recall the last time something like that happened in politics or religion. (1987) -- Carl Sagan
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