118+ Best Marcus Tullius Cicero Quotes: Exclusive Selection

Marcus Tullius Cicero was one of Rome’s greatest orator and a prolific writer of verse, letters, and works on philosophy, politics, and rhetoric that greatly influenced European thought. Inspirational Marcus Tullius Cicero quotes will help you to build up your self-confidence and broaden your views on success, life, government and youth.

If you’re searching for most famous philosopher quotes that perfectly capture what you’d like to say or just want to feel inspired yourself, browse through an amazing collection of Julius Caesar quotes, and most powerful Marcus Aurelius quotes.

Most Famous Marcus Tullius Cicero Quotes

Six mistakes mankind keeps making century after century: Believing that personal gain is made by crushing others; Worrying about things that cannot be changed or corrected; Insisting that a thing is impossible because we cannot accomplish it; Refusing to set aside trivial preferences; Neglecting development and refinement of the mind; Attempting to compel others to believe and live as we do. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

To be content with what we possess is the greatest and most secure of riches. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

The higher we are placed, the more humbly we should walk. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

If we are forced, at every hour, to watch or listen to horrible events, this constant stream of ghastly impressions will deprive even the most delicate among us of all respect for humanity. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

No wise man ever thought that a traitor should be trusted. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

Socrates was the first to call philosophy down from the heavens and to place it in cities, and even to introduce it into homes and compel it to inquire about life and standards and goods and evils. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

Friendship improves happiness and abates misery, by the doubling of our joy and the dividing of our grief. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

A man of courage is also full of faith. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

In fact, the whole passion ordinarily termed love (and heaven help me if I can think of any other term to apply to it) is of such exceeding triviality that I see nothing that I think comparable with it. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

Thus nature has no love for solitude, and always leans, as it were, on some support; and the sweetest support is found in the most intimate friendship. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

Rightly defined philosophy is simply the love of wisdom. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

To give and receive advice – the former with freedom, and yet without bitterness, the latter with patience and without irritation – is peculiarly appropriate to genuine friendship. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

Nothing is more noble, nothing more venerable than fidelity. Faithfulness and truth are the most sacred excellences and endowments of the human mind. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

The shifts of fortune test the reliability of friends. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

History is the witness that testifies to the passing of time; it illumines reality, vitalizes memory, provides guidance in daily life and brings us tidings of antiquities. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

Who doesn’t know that the first law of history is not to dare to say anything false, and the second is not to refrain from saying anything true? – Marcus Tullius Cicero

History is indeed the witness of the times, the light of truth. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

God’s law is ‘right reason.’ When perfectly understood it is called ‘wisdom.’ When applied by government in regulating human relations it is called ’justice. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

The administration of government, like a guardianship ought to be directed to the good of those who confer, not of those who receive the trust. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

When a government becomes powerful it is destructive, extravagant and violent; it is an usurer which takes bread from innocent mouths and deprives honorable men of their substance, for votes with which to perpetuate itself. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

No tempest or conflagration, however great, is harder to quell than mob carried away by the novelty of power. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

The budget should be balanced, the treasury refilled, public debt reduced, the arrogance of officialdom tempered and controlled, and the assistance to foreign lands curtailed, lest Rome become bankrupt. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

This excessive license, which the anarchists think is the only true freedom, provides the stock, as it were, from which a tyrant grows. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

Freedom is participation in power. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

The whole life of a philosopher is the meditation of his death. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

Nor do I regret that I have lived, since I have so lived that I think I was not born in vain, and I quit life as if it were an inn, not a home. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

No one could ever meet death for his country without the hope of immortality. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

The recovery of freedom is so splendid a thing that we must not shun even death when seeking to recover it. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

Freedom suppressed and again regained bites with keener fangs than freedom never endangered. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

What is so beneficial to the people as liberty, which we see not only to be greedily sought after by men, but also by beasts, and to be prepared in all things. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

It is as hard for the good to suspect evil, as it is for the bad to suspect good. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

To be ignorant of what occurred before you were born is to remain always a child. For what is the worth of human life, unless it is woven into the life of our ancestors by the records of history? – Marcus Tullius Cicero

Nothing is so strongly fortified that it cannot be taken by money. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

Frugality includes all the other virtues. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

Nothing is so secure as that money will not defeat it. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

There is no fortune so strong that money cannot take it. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

Philosophy, you leader of life. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

The man who commands efficiently must have obeyed others in the past, and the man who obeys dutifully is worthy of someday being a commander. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

Persistence in a single view has never been regarded as a merit in political leaders. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

It is certain that memory contains not only philosophy, but all the arts and all that appertain to the use of life. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

Not cohabitation but consensus constitutes marriage. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

There were poets before Homer. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

The freedom of poetic license. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

Democritus maintains that there can be no great poet without a spite of madness. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

How do our philosophers act? Do they not inscribe their signatures to the very essays they write on the propriety of despising glory. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

Times are bad. Children no longer obey their parents, and everyone is writing a book. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

We are motivated by a keen desire for praise, and the better a man is the more he is inspired by glory. The very philosophers themselves, even in those books which they write in contempt of glory, inscribe their names. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

My precept to all who build, is, that the owner should be an ornament to the house, and not the house to the owner. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

To those who are engaged in commercial dealings, justice is indispensable for the conduct of business. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

When you are aspiring to the highest place, it is honorable to reach the second or even the third rank. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

More is lost by indecision than wrong decision. Indecision is the thief of opportunity. It will steal you blind. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

Enmity is anger watching the opportunity for revenge. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

Hunger is the best sauce. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

Cultivation to the mind is as necessary as food to the body. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

The cultivation of the mind is a kind of food supplied for the soul of man. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

Let art, then, imitate nature, find what she desires, and follow as she directs. For in invention nature is never last, education never first; rather the beginnings of things arise from natural talent, and ends are reached by discipline. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

Silence is one of the great arts of conversation. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

When I consider the wonderful activity of the mind, so great a memory of what is past, and such a capacity of penetrating into the future: when I behold such a number of arts and sciences, and such a multitude of discoveries hence arising,–I believe and am firmly persuaded that a nature which contains so many things within itself cannot be mortal. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

Not only is there an art in knowing a thing, but also a certain art in teaching it. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

To err is human, but to persevere in error is only the act of a fool. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

There are two ways to resolve conflicts, through violence or through negotiation. Violence is for wild beasts, negotiation is for human beings. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

Gratitude is not only the greatest of virtues, but the parent of all the others. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

Man was born for two things–thinking and acting. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

There is no castle so strong that it cannot be overthrown by money. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

Genius is fostered by industry. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

Let your desires be ruled by reason. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

A home without books is a body without soul. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

I am never less alone than when alone. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

Non nobis solum nati sumus. (Not for ourselves alone are we born.) – Marcus Tullius Cicero

In a republic this rule ought to be observed: that the majority should not have the predominant power. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

Judge not by the number, but by the weight. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

Sound conviction should influence us rather than public opinion. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

They condemn what they do not understand. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

Nothing is so unbelievable that oratory cannot make it acceptable. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

The enemy is within the gates; it is with our own luxury, our own folly, our own criminality that we have to contend. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

We forget our pleasures, we remember our sufferings. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

Most happy is he who is entirely self-reliant, and who centers all his requirements in himself alone. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

The authority of those who teach is often an obstacle to those who want to learn. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

Too much liberty leads both men and nations to slavery. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

Let us not listen to those who think we ought to be angry with our enemies, and who believe this to be great and manly. Nothing is so praiseworthy, nothing so clearly shows a great and noble soul, as clemency and readiness to forgive. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

Nothing is more unreliable than the populace, nothing more obscure than human intentions, nothing more deceptive than the whole electoral system. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

Read at every wait; read at all hours; read within leisure; read in times of labor; read as one goes in; read as one goest out. The task of the educated mind is simply put: read to lead. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

A man would have no pleasures in discovering all the beauties of the universe, even in heaven itself, unless he had a partner to whom he might communicate his joys. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

It is the peculiar quality of a fool to perceive the faults of others and to forget his own. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

If you have a garden and a library, you have everything you need. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

People don’t know the value of what they have until it is gone: Freedom suppressed and again regained bites with keener fangs than freedom never endangered…. Liberty is rendered even more precious by the recollection of servitude. Don’t wait till freedom is gone before you enjoy, value, support, protect and make the most of it! – Marcus Tullius Cicero

If I had more time, I would have written a shorter letter. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

We learn nothing from history except that we learn nothing from history. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

I have always been of the opinion that unpopularity earned by doing what is right is not unpopularity at all, but glory. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

If you wish to persuade me, you must think my thoughts, feel my feelings, and speak my words. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

To live long, live slowly. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

It is not by muscle, speed, or physical dexterity that great things are achieved, but by reflection, force of character, and judgment. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

The Jews belong to a dark and repulsive force. One knows how numerous this clique is, how they stick together and what power they exercise through their unions. They are a nation of rascals and deceivers. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

For out of such an ungoverned populace one is usually chosen as a leader, someone bold and unscrupulous who curries favor with the people by giving them other men’s property. To such a man the protection of public office is given, and continually renewed. He emerges as a tyrant over the very people who raised him to power. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

As I give thought to the matter, I find four causes for the apparent misery of old age; first, it withdraws us from active accomplishments; second, it renders the body less powerful; third, it deprives us of almost all forms of enjoyment; fourth, it stands not far from death. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

What is morally wrong can never be advantageous, even when it enables you to make some gain that you believe to be to your advantage. The mere act of believing that some wrongful course of action constitutes an advantage is pernicious. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

The life of the dead is placed on the memories of the living. The love you gave in life keeps people alive beyond their time. Anyone who was given love will always live on in another’s heart. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

Next to God we are nothing. To God we are Everything. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

We should be as careful of our words as of our actions. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

Probabilities direct the conduct of the wise man. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

Enjoy the blessing of strength while you have it and do not bewail it when it is gone, unless, forsooth, you believe that youth must lament the loss of infancy, or early manhood the passing of youth. Life’s race-course is fixed; Nature has only a single path and that path is run but once, and to each stage of existence has been allotted its own appropriate quality; so that the weakness of childhood, the impetuosity of youth, the seriousness of middle life, the maturity of old age.. each bears some of Nature’s fruit, which must be garnered in its own season. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

Do not blame Caesar, blame the people of Rome who have so enthusiastically acclaimed and adored him and rejoiced in their loss of freedom and danced in his path and gave him triumphal processions. Blame the people who hail him when he speaks in the Forum of the ‘new, wonderful good society’ which shall now be Rome, interpreted to mean ‘more money, more ease, more security, more living fatly at the expense of the industrious.’ – Marcus Tullius Cicero

Politicians are not born; they are excreted. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

They are, all of them, born with raging fanaticism in their hearts, just as the Bretons and the Germans are born with blond hair. I would not be in the least bit surprised if these people would not someday become deadly to the human race. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

A nation can survive its fools, even the ambitious. But it cannot survive treason from within…. for the traitor appears not to be a traitor…he rots the soul of a nation…he infects the body politic so that it can no longer resist. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

Though liberty is established by law, we must be vigilant, for liberty to enslave us is always present under that very liberty. Our Constitution speaks of the general welfare of the people. Under that phrase all sorts of excesses can be employed by lusting tyrants to make us bondsmen. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

Poor is the nation that has no heroes, but poorer still is the nation that having heroes, fails to remember and honor them. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

Never was a government that was not composed of liars, malefactors and thieves. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

The wise are instructed by reason, average minds by experience, the stupid by necessity and the brute by instinct. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

What society does to its children, so will its children do to society. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

There exists a law, not written down anywhere but inborn in our hearts; a law which comes to us not by training or custom or reading but by derivation and absorption and adoption from nature itself; a law which has come to us not from theory but from practice, not by instruction but by natural intuition. I refer to the law which lays it down that, if our lives are endangered by plots or violence or armed robbers or enemies, any and every method of protecting ourselves is morally right. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

When you have no basis for an argument, abuse the plaintiff. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

I prefer tongue-tied knowledge to ignorant loquacity. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

It is not enough to acquire wisdom; it is necessary to employ it. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

Any man can make mistakes, but only an idiot persists in his error. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

A bureaucrat is the most despicable of men, though he is needed as vultures are needed, but one hardly admires vultures whom bureaucrats so strangely resemble. I have yet to meet a bureaucrat who was not petty, dull, almost witless, crafty or stupid, an oppressor or a thief, a holder of little authority in which he delights, as a boy delights in possessing a vicious dog. Who can trust such creatures? – Marcus Tullius Cicero

They who say that we should love our fellow citizens but not foreigners, destroy the universal brotherhood of mankind, with which benevolence and justice would perish forever. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

More laws, less justice. – Marcus Tullius Cicero

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