Alexis De Tocqueville Quotes

Alexis De Tocqueville Quotes: The Americans, on the contrary, are fond of explaining almost all the actions of their lives by the principle of interest rightly understood; they show with complacency how an enlightened regard for themselves constantly prompts them to assist each other, and inclines them willingly to sacrifice a portion of their time and property to the welfare of the state.
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Alexis De Tocqueville Quote: Religion in America . . . Must be regarded as the foremost of the political institutions for that country; for if it does not impart a taste for freedom, it facilitates the use of it . . . I do know know whether all Americans have a sincere faith in their religion - for who can search the human heart? - But I am certain that they hold it to be indispensable to the maintenance of republican institutions. This opinion is not peculiar to a class of citizens or a party, but it belongs to the whole nation and to every rank of society.
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Quotes about Alexis De Tocqueville: In democratic ages men rarely sacrifice themselves for another, but they show a general compassion for all the human race. One never sees them inflict pointless suffering, and they are glad to relieve the sorrows of others when they can do so without much trouble to themselves. They are not disinterested, but they are gentle.
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Quote about Alexis De Tocqueville: When a monarchy gradually transforms itself into a republic, the executive power there preserves titles, honors, respect, and even money long after it has lost the reality of power. The English, having cut off the head of one of their kings and chased another off the throne, still go on their knees to address the successors of those princes. On the other hand, when a republic falls under one man's yoke, the ruler's demeanor remains simple, unaffected, and modest, as if he had not already been raised above everybody.
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Alexis De Tocqueville Sayings: When none but the wealthy had watches, they were almost all very good ones; few are now made which are worth much, but everybody has one in his pocket.
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Alexis De Tocqueville Saying: I cannot help fearing that men may reach a point where they look on every new theory as a danger, every innovation as a toilsome trouble, every social advance as a first step toward revolution, and that they may absolutely refuse to move at all.
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Sayings about Alexis De Tocqueville: Consider any individual at any period of his life, and you will always find him preoccupied with fresh plans to increase his comfort. Do not talk to him about the interests and rights of the human race; that little private business of his for the moment absorbs all his thoughts, and he hopes that public disturbances can be put off to some other time.
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Saying about Alexis De Tocqueville: The first who attracts the eye, the first in enlightenment, in power and in happiness, is the white man, the European, man par excellence; below him appear the Negro and the Indian. These two unfortunate races have neither birth, nor face, nor language, nor mores in common; only their misfortunes look alike. Both occupy an equally inferior position in the country that they inhabit; both experience the effects of tyranny; and if their miseries are different, they can accuse the same author for them.
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Alexis De Tocqueville Quotes: The character of Anglo-American civilization . . . is the product . . . of two perfectly distinct elements that elsewhere have often made war with each other, but which, in America, they have succeeded in incorporating somehow into one another and combining marvelously. I mean to speak of the spirit of religion and the spirit of freedom.
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Alexis De Tocqueville Quote: Nothing seems at first sight less important than the outward form of human actions, yet there is nothing upon which men set more store: they grow used to everything except to living in a society which has not their own manners.
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Quotes about Alexis De Tocqueville: To build enormous palaces, to conquer or to mimic nature, to ransack the world in order to gratify the passions of a man, is not thought of, but to add a few yards of land to your field, to plant an orchard, or enlarge a dwelling, to always be making life more comfortable and convenient, to avoid trouble, and to satisfy the smallest wants without effort and almost without cost. These are small objects, but the soul clings to them; it dwells upon them closely and day by day, till they at last shut out the rest of the world and sometimes intervene between itself and heaven.
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Quote about Alexis De Tocqueville: One has freedom as the principal means of action; the other has servitude. Their . . . paths [are] diverse; nevertheless, each seems called by some secret design of Providence one day to hold in its hands the destinies of half the world.
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Alexis De Tocqueville Sayings: What is most important for democracy is not that great fortunes should not exist, but that great fortunes should not remain in the same hands. In that way there are rich men, but they do not form a class.
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Alexis De Tocqueville Saying: Lawyers belong to the people by birth and interest, and to the aristocracy by habit and taste; they may be looked upon as the connecting link of the two great classes of society.
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Sayings about Alexis De Tocqueville: I know of no country in which there is so little independence of mind and real freedom of discussion as in America.
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Saying about Alexis De Tocqueville: Generally speaking, only simple conceptions can grip the mind of a nation. An idea that is clear and precise even though false will always have greater power in the world than an idea that is true but complex.
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Alexis De Tocqueville Quotes: The regime which is destroyed by a revolution is almost always an improvement on its immediate predecessor, and experience teaches that the most critical moment for bad governments is the one which witnesses their first steps toward reform.
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Alexis De Tocqueville Quote: In cities men cannot be prevented from concerting together, and from awakening a mutual excitement which prompts sudden and passionate resolutions. Cities may be looked upon as large assemblies, of which all the inhabitants are members; their populace exercises a prodigious influence upon the magistrates, and frequently executes its own wishes without their intervention.
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