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Quotations about Common Sense

Common-sense is not so common a quality as we imagine. ~Antoine Arnauld and Pierre Nicole, Logic, or The Art of Thinking: Being the Port-Royal Logic, 1662, translated from the French by Thomas Spencer Baynes, 1850

...common sense in an uncommon degree is what the world calls wisdom. ~Samuel Taylor Coleridge (1772–1834)

Nothing astonishes men so much as common-sense and plain dealing. All great actions have been simple... ~Ralph Waldo Emerson, "Art"

Of the five senses, common-sense and a sense of humor are the rarest. ~"Poor Richard Junior's Philosophy," The Saturday Evening Post, 1906, George Horace Lorimer, editor

Common sense is a flower that does not grow in everyone's garden. ~Author unknown

Common sense, do what it will, cannot avoid being surprised occasionally. ~Bertrand Russell, "Knowledge of Particular Matters of Fact," The Analysis of Matter, 1927

Philosophy is common sense in a dress suit. ~Oliver F. Braston, 1920s

Soap and water and common sense are the best disinfectants. ~William Osler (1849–1919)

Well, there was some of the brethren who said the earth couldn't be round because the Bible told how four angels stood on the four corners of the earth — and so it does tell. But that's where I say you got to use common sense. You'd be surprised how many people don't believe in common sense... ~Cid Ricketts Sumner, Tammy Out of Time, 1958

...the theory of probabilities is at bottom only common sense reduced to calculus... ~Pierre Simon, Marquis de Laplace, 1795, translated by Frederick Wilson Truscott and Frederick Lincoln Emory, 1902

The door to safety swings on the hinges of common sense. ~Author unknown

It would appear, however, that we have not even begun to apply the scientific spirit, the inquiring mind — Reason, and even its lesser brother, Common Sense — to our communal affairs. ~Dorothy Thompson, 1938

Common sense and a sense of humor are the same thing, moving at different speeds. A sense of humor is just common sense, dancing. ~Clive James, in The Observer, London, as quoted by The Reader's Digest, 1980

...a commonwealth ruled by common-sense and common virtue... ~Thomas Jenckes, 1870

Logic is one thing, and common sense another. ~Elbert Hubbard, 1905

[P]reventive medicine isn't anything to do with medicine at all, really — it's concerned with conditions, living conditions and common sense and hygiene. ~Noël Coward, Still Life, 1935

There is nobody so irritating as somebody with less intelligence and more sense than we have. ~Don Herold, So Human, 1924

Common sense (which, in truth, is very uncommon) is the best sense I know of: abide by it; it will counsel you best. ~Lord Chesterfield

Evil always tries to paint good as foolishness and itself as common sense. ~Robert Brault,

The liberal spirit... has about it a refreshing common sense... It is even-tempered, and of even tempo... ~Dorothy Thompson, 1937

...a statesman of the school of sound common sense, and a philanthropist of the most practical type... ~C. S. Harrington, 1880, of Abraham Lincoln

The wise men of old have sent most of their morality down the stream of time in the light skiff of apothegm or epigram; and the proverbs of nations, which embody the commonsense of nations, have the brisk concussion of the most sparkling wit. ~Edwin P. Whipple, 1845

It seems a pity that Psychology should have destroyed all our knowledge of human nature. It is a natural enough catastrophe; for the very act of changing it from a matter of common sense to a matter of scientific enquiry, labelled and separated as a science, involves a change which nobody has adequately noted. ~G. K. Chesterton, 1934

We have been led to think that to drink is manly, and to get in a condition where common sense has fled and the tongue is tangled is funny... ~Elbert Hubbard, 1913

There are few things in the world more blinding than race prejudice, and there are but few things more inflexible and persistent. Against the claims of truth and justice, to say nothing of brotherly kindness, it stands like a wall of brass. Reason and common sense dash themselves against it in vain. ~Frederick Douglass, c.1890

Man is the only animal that requires religion to help him to live a common-sense life. ~"Poor Richard Junior's Philosophy," The Saturday Evening Post, 1906, George Horace Lorimer, editor

Trust Yourself... You know more than you think you do. ~Benjamin Spock, M.D., The Common Sense Book of Baby and Child Care, 1946

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