Over 100 Aeschylus quotes

Aeschylus was an ancient Greek tragedian. He is often described as the father of tragedy.

Aeschylus quotes part 1

Know not to revere human things too much.

I say you must not win an unjust case by oaths.

For hostile word let hostile word be paid.

Happiness is a choice that requires effort at times.

Of all the gods only death does not desire gifts.

Whenever a man makes haste, God too hastens with him.

Since long I’ve held silence a remedy for harm.

To be free from evil thoughts is God’s best gift.

Mourn for me rather as living than as dead.

If you pour oil and vinegar into the same vessel, you would call them not friends but opponents.

Death is easier than a wretched life; and better never to have born than to live and fare badly.

The evils of mortals are manifold; nowhere is trouble of the same wing seen.

I know how men in exile feed on dreams.

And though all streams flow from a single course to cleanse the blood from polluted hand, they hasten on their course in vain.

It is a profitable thing, if one is wise, to seem foolish.

My friends, whoever has had experience of evils knows how whenever a flood of ills comes upon mortals, a man fears everything; but whenever a divine force cheers on our voyage, then we believe that the same fate will always blow fair.

I, schooled in misery, know many purifying rites, and I know where speech is proper and where silence.

When a match has equal partners then I fear not.

The words of truth are simple.

God loves to help him who strives to help himself.

There is no disgrace in an enemy suffering ill at an enemy’s hand, when you hate mutually.

Who, except the gods, can live time through forever without any pain?

It is always in season for old men to learn.

It is an easy thing for one whose foot is on the outside of calamity to give advice and to rebuke the sufferer.

Time brings all things to pass.

What is there more kindly than the feeling between host and guest?

If a man suffers ill, let it be without shame; for this is the only profit when we are dead. You will never say a good word about deeds that are evil and disgraceful.

His resolve is not to seem the bravest, but to be.

Death is softer by far than tyranny.

Call no man happy till he is dead.

Whoever is new to power is always harsh.

The anvil of justice is planted firm, and fate who makes the sword does the forging in advance.

What atonement is there for blood spilt upon the earth?

Search well and be wise, nor believe that self-willed pride will ever be better than good counsel.

Excessive fear is always powerless.

Only when a man’s life comes to its end in prosperity dare we pronounce him happy.

In the lack of judgment great harm arises, but one vote cast can set right a house.

Words are the physicians of a mind diseased.

It is easy when we are in prosperity to give advice to the afflicted.

You have been trapped in the inescapable net of ruin by your own want of sense.

The wisest of the wise may err.

I’m not afraid of storms, for I’m learning to sail my ship.

What exists outside is a man’s concern; let no woman give advice; and do no mischief within doors.

A god implants in mortal guilt whenever he wants utterly to confound a house.

It is best for the wise man not to seem wise.

For know that no one is free, except Zeus.

Don’t you know this, that words are doctors to a diseased temperment?

God’s most lordly gift to man is decency of mind.

Memory is the mother of all wisdom.

For the impious act begets more after it, like to the parent stock.

It is in the character of very few men to honor without envy a friend who has prospered.

Aeschylus quotes part 2

Ah, lives of men! When prosperous they glitter – Like a fair picture; when misfortune comes – A wet sponge at one blow has blurred the painting.

Everyone’s quick to blame the alien.

I willingly speak to those who know, but for those who do not know I forget.

Unions in wedlock are perverted by the victory of shameless passion that masters the female among men and beasts.

When a man’s willing and eager the god’s join in.

The one knowing what is profitable, and not the man knowing many things, is wise.

Married love between man and woman is bigger than oaths guarded by right of nature.

Of prosperity mortals can never have enough.

By Time and Age full many things are taught.

Bronze in the mirror of the form, wine of the mind.

Who apart from the gods is without pain for his whole lifetime’s length?

There is no sickness worse for me than words that to be kind must lie.

The man who does ill must suffer ill.

Time as he grows old teaches all things.

It is a light thing for whoever keeps his foot outside trouble to advise and counsel him that suffers.

And one who is just of his own free will shall not lack for happiness; and he will never come to utter ruin.

God lends a helping hand to the man who tries hard.

Too few rejoice at a friend’s good fortune.

For somehow this disease inheres in tyranny, never to trust one’s friends.

Justice turns the scale, bringing to some learning through suffering.

We shall perish by guile just as we slew.

It is an ill thing to be the first to bring news of ill.

Obedience is the mother of success and is wedded to safety.

But time growing old teaches all things.

God always strives together with those who strive.

Alas for the affairs of men! When they are fortunate you might compare them to a shadow; and if they are unfortunate, a wet sponge with one dash wipes the picture away.

It is not the oath that makes us believe the man, but the man the oath.

It is good even for old men to learn wisdom.

The man whose authority is recent is always stern.

Neither a life of anarchy nor one beneath a despot should you praise; to all that lies in the middle a god has given excellence.

What good is it to live a life that brings pains?

For the poison of hatred seated near the heart doubles the burden for the one who suffers the disease; he is burdened with his own sorrow, and groans on seeing another’s happiness.

Self-will in the man who does not reckon wisely is by itself the weakest of all things.

For there is no defense for a man who, in the excess of his wealth, has kicked the great altar of Justice out of sight.

For children preserve the fame of a man after his death.

Wisdom comes alone through suffering.

To mourn and bewail your ill-fortune, when you will gain a tear from those who listen, this is worth the trouble.

I have learned to hate all traitors, and there is no disease that I spit on more than treachery.

For a murderous blow let murderous blow atone.

Destiny waits alike for the free man as well as for him enslaved by another’s might.

By polluting clear water with slime you will never find good drinking water.

In every tyrant’s heart there springs in the end this poison, that he cannot trust a friend.

He who learns must suffer. And even in our sleep pain that cannot forget falls drop by drop upon the heart, and in our own despair, against our will, comes wisdom to us by the awful grace of God.

He who goes unenvied shall not be admired.

We must pronounce him fortunate who has ended his life in fair prosperity.

Be bold and boast, just like the cock beside the hen.

I would rather be ignorant than knowledgeable of evils.

There is no pain so great as the memory of joy in present grief.

From a small seed a mighty trunk may grow.

When strength is yoked with justice, where is a mightier pair than they?

There are times when fear is good. It must keep its watchful place at the heart’s controls.

For this is the mark of a wise and upright man, not to rail against the gods in misfortune.