Quotations About / On: HERO

  • 21.
    You cannot be a hero without being a coward.
    (George Bernard Shaw (1856-1950), Anglo-Irish playwright, critic. John Bull, in Other Island, preface (1907).)
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  • 22.
    Hero-worship is strongest where there is least regard for human freedom.
    (Herbert Spencer (1820-1903), British philosopher. Social Statistics, pt. 4, ch. 30, sect. 6 (1850).)
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  • 23.
    Show me a hero and I will write you a tragedy.
    (F. Scott Fitzgerald (1896-1940), U.S. author. The Crack-Up, "Notebook E," ed. Edmund Wilson (1945).)
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  • 24.
    Heroes are created by popular demand, sometimes out of the scantiest materials, or none at all.
    (Gerald W. Johnson (1890-1980), U.S. author. American Heroes and Hero-Worship, ch. 1 (1943).)
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  • 25.
    If a man wishes to become a hero, then the serpent must first become a dragon: otherwise he lacks his proper enemy.
    (Friedrich Nietzsche (1844-1900), German philosopher, classical scholar, critic of culture. Friedrich Nietzsche, Sämtliche Werke: Kritische Studienausgabe, vol. 2, p. 320, eds. Giorgio Colli and Mazzino Montinari, Berlin, de Gruyter (1980). Human, All-Too-Human, "Man Alone With Himself," aphorism 498, "A Condition of Heroism," (1878). An allusion to Arthur Schopenhauer, The World as Will and Idea, 1:173.)
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  • 26.
    The hero used to be the one in white. Now he is harder to spot.
    (Mason Cooley (b. 1927), U.S. aphorist. City Aphorisms, Sixth Selection, New York (1989).)
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  • 27.
    There are heroes of wickedness, as there are of goodness.
    (François, Duc De La Rochefoucauld (1613-1680), French writer, moralist. repr. F.A. Stokes Co., New York (c. 1930). Moral Maxims and Reflections, no. 186 (1665-1678), trans. London (1706).)
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  • 28.
    Higher than "thou shalt" stands "I will" (the heroes), and higher than "I will" stands "I am" (the Greek gods).
    (Friedrich Nietzsche (1844-1900), German philosopher, classical scholar, critic of culture. Friedrich Nietzsche, Sämtliche Werke: Kritische Studienausgabe, vol. 11, p. 105, selection 25[351], eds. Giorgio Colli and Mazzino Montinari, Berlin, de Gruyter (1980). Unpublished fragments dating to Spring 1884.)
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  • 29.
    We are really so prejudiced by our educations, that, as the ancients deified their heroes, we deify their madmen.
    (Philip Dormer Stanhope, 4th Earl Chesterfield (1694-1773), British statesman, man of letters. letter, Feb. 22, 1748; (first published 1774). The Letters of the Earl of Chesterfield to His Son, vol. 1, no. 142, ed. Charles Strachey (1901).)
  • 30.
    What's a hero? I didn't even think about it.
    (Uli Derickson (b. c. 1944), flight attendant. As quoted in People magazine, p. 111 (March 7-14, 1994). Working on TWA flight 847 from Athens to Rome, which was hijacked for seventeen days by Lebanese terrorists in 1985, she persuaded the hijackers to spare the lives of all but one person on board and maintained calm throughout the ordeal. Rejecting the "hero" label, she insisted that she was only doing her job.)
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