H. G. Wells Quotes

A time will come when a politician who has willfully made war and promoted international dissension will be as sure of the dock and much surer of the noose than a private homicide. It is not reasonable that those who gamble with men’s lives should not stake their own.

Adapt or perish, now as ever, is nature’s inexorable imperative.

Advertising is legalized lying.

Affliction comes to us, not to make us sad but sober; not to make us sorry but wise.

After people have repeated a phrase a great number of times, they begin to realize it has meaning and may even be true.

Beauty is in the heart of the beholder.

Biologically the species is the accumulation of the experiments of all its successful individuals since the beginning.

Crime and bad lives are the measure of a State’s failure, all crime in the end is the crime of the community.

Cynicism is humor in ill health.

Every time I see an adult on a bicycle, I no longer despair for the future of the human race.

Heresies are experiments in man’s unsatisfied search for truth.

History is a race between education and catastrophe.

Human history becomes more and more a race between education and catastrophe.

Human history in essence is the history of ideas.

I had rather be called a journalist than an artist.

I must confess that my imagination refuses to see any sort of submarine doing anything but suffocating its crew and floundering at sea.

I want to go ahead of Father Time with a scythe of my own.

If we don’t end war, war will end us.

If you fell down yesterday, stand up today.

In England we have come to rely upon a comfortable time-lag of fifty years or a century intervening between the perception that something ought to be done and a serious attempt to do it.

In politics, strangely enough, the best way to play your cards is to lay them face upwards on the table.

It is not reasonable that those who gamble with men’s lives should not pay with their own.

Leaders should lead as far as they can and then vanish. Their ashes should not choke the fire they have lit.

Man is the unnatural animal, the rebel child of nature, and more and more does he turn himself against the harsh and fitful hand that reared him.

Moral indignation is jealousy with a halo.

No passion in the world is equal to the passion to alter someone else’s draft.

Nothing leads so straight to futility as literary ambitions without systematic knowledge.

Once the command of the air is obtained by one of the contending armies, the war becomes a conflict between a seeing host and one that is blind.

One of the darkest evils of our world is surely the unteachable wildness of the Good.

Our true nationality is mankind.

Sailors ought never to go to church. They ought to go to hell, where it is much more comfortable.

Some people bear three kinds of trouble – the ones they’ve had, the ones they have, and the ones they expect to have.

The crisis of today is the joke of tomorrow.

The doctrine of the Kingdom of Heaven, which was the main teaching of Jesus, is certainly one of the most revolutionary doctrines that ever stirred and changed human thought.

The New Deal is plainly an attempt to achieve a working socialism and avert a social collapse in America; it is extraordinarily parallel to the successive ‘policies’ and ‘Plans’ of the Russian experiment. Americans shirk the word ‘socialism’, but what else can one call it?

The only true measure of success is the ratio between what we might have done and what we might have been on the one hand, and the thing we have made and the things we have made of ourselves on the other.

The past is but the past of a beginning.

The past is the beginning of the beginning and all that is and has been is but the twilight of the dawn.

The path of least resistance is the path of the loser.

The path of social advancement is, and must be, strewn with broken friendships.

The uglier a man’s legs are, the better he plays golf – it’s almost a law.

There is nothing in machinery, there is nothing in embankments and railways and iron bridges and engineering devices to oblige them to be ugly. Ugliness is the measure of imperfection.

There’s nothing wrong in suffering, if you suffer for a purpose. Our revolution didn’t abolish danger or death. It simply made danger and death worthwhile.

We are living in 1937, and our universities, I suggest, are not half-way out of the fifteenth century. We have made hardly any changes in our conception of university organization, education, graduation, for a century – for several centuries.

What really matters is what you do with what you have.

While there is a chance of the world getting through its troubles, I hold that a reasonable man has to behave as though he were sure of it. If at the end your cheerfulness in not justified, at any rate you will have been cheerful.

You have learned something. That always feels at first as if you had lost something.