35 Best Mary Wollstonecraft Quotes

35 Best Mary Wollstonecraft Quotes

by / Comments Off / 73 View / Dec 23, 2014

Mary Wollstonecraft was a writer, women’s rights activist, and philosopher from the late 1700′s. She wrote many novels during her career including children’s conduct books and her most famous A Vindication of the Rights of Woman. She died on September 10, 1797.

“A modest man is steady, an humble man timid, and a vain one presumptuous.”

“Good habits, imperceptibly fixed, are far preferable to the precepts of reason.”

“Hereditary property sophisticates the mind, and the unfortunate victims to it … swathed from their birth, seldom exert the locomotive faculty of body or mind; and, thus viewing every
thing through one medium, and that a false one, they are unable to discern in what true merit and happiness consist.”

“How can a rational being be ennobled by any thing that is not obtained by its own exertions?”

“How frequently has melancholy and even misanthropy taken possession of me, when the world has disgusted me, and friends have proven unkind. I have then considered myself as a particle
broken off from the grand mass of mankind.”

“I do earnestly wish to see the distinction of sex confounded in society, unless where love animates the behaviour”

“I do not wish them women to have power over men; but over themselves.”

“I never wanted but your heart–that gone, you have nothing more to give.”

“If women be educated for dependence; that is, to act according to the will of another fallible being, and submit, right or wrong, to power, where are we to stop?”

“In fact, it is a farce to call any being virtuous whose virtues do not result from the exercise of its own reason.”

“It appears to me impossible that I should cease to exist, or that this active, restless spirit, equally alive to joy and sorrow, should only be organised dust — ready to fly abroad the
moment the spring snaps, or the spark goes out which kept it together.”

“It is justice, not charity, that is wanting in the world.”

“It is time to effect a revolution in female manners – time to restore to them their lost dignity – and make them, as a part of the human species, labour by reforming themselves to reform
the world. It is time to separate unchangeable morals from local manners.”

“It is vain to expect virtue from women till they are in some degree independent of men.”

“Make women rational creatures, and free citizens, and they will quickly become good wives; — that is, if men do not neglect the duties of husbands and fathers.”

“Men and women must be educated, in a great degree, by the opinions and manners of the society they live in. In every age there has been a stream of popular opinion that has carried all
before it, and given a family character, as it were, to the century. It may then fairly be inferred, that, till society be differently constituted, much cannot be expected from education.”

“My own sex, I hope, will excuse me, if I treat them like rational creatures, instead of flattering their fascinating graces, and viewing them as if they were in a state of perpetual
childhood, unable to stand alone.”

“No man chooses evil because it is evil; he only mistakes it for happiness, the good he seeks.”

“Simplicity and sincerity generally go hand in hand, as both proceed from a love of truth.”

“Situation seems to be the mould in which men’s characters are formed.”

“Strengthen the female mind by enlarging it, and there will be an end to blind obedience.”

“Surely something resides in this heart that is not perishable, and life is more than a dream.”

“The beginning is always today.”

“The being cannot be termed rational or virtuous, who obeys any authority, but that of reason.”

“The divine right of husbands, like the divine right of kings, may, it is hoped, in this enlightened age, be contested without danger.”

“The endeavor to keep alive any hoary establishment beyond its natural date is often pernicious and always useless.”

“The power of generalizing ideas, of drawing comprehensive conclusions from individual observations, is the only acquirement, for an immortal being, that really deserves the name of

“The same energy of character which renders a man a daring villain would have rendered him useful to society, had that society been well organized.”

“Till women are more rationally educated, the progress in human virtue and improvement in knowledge must receive continual checks.”

“To be a good mother — a woman must have sense, and that independence of mind which few women possess who are taught to depend entirely on their husbands.”

“We reason deeply, when we forcibly feel.”

“Wealth and female softness equally tend to debase mankind!”

“What a weak barrier is truth when it stands in the way of an hypothesis!”

“Women are systematically degraded by receiving the trivial attentions which men think it manly to pay to the sex, when, in fact, men are insultingly supporting their own superiority.”

“Women ought to have representatives, instead of being arbitrarily governed without any direct share allowed them in the deliberations of government.”