Plato Quotes

Do you have any favorite Plato quotes?

Plato was a Greek philosopher who is very famous for being the first man to start a higher institution of learning in the Western world. Ideas and philosophies from the Platonist school of thought and the Academy have been a source of inspiration to many people and it can be said that they have helped to shape modern day civilization.

One famous work of Plato is The Republic, which is basically a Socratic dialogue centered around topics of morality, justice, character, order and many other interesting facets of life. Other popular books written by Plato include Apology, The Symposium, Allegory of the cave, Phaedo, Phaedrus, Laws and so much more.

As a young man, Plato was greatly influenced by great men like Socrates, Pythagoras and Homer. So, it can be considered to be paying it forward when I say that, this article features some of of Plato’s best quotes to inspire and help you change the course of your life.

Here are some famous Plato quotes about life, love, education, self, politics, democracy, leadership, success, the soul, wisdom, knowledge, the republic and many other topics:

Famous Plato Quotes

Famous Plato Quotes

1. Your silence gives consent. -Plato

2. Science is nothing but perception. -Plato

3. Ignorance, the root and stem of all evil. -Plato

4. There is no harm in repeating a good thing. -Plato

5. Rhetoric is the art of ruling the minds of men. -Plato

6. The beginning is the most important part of the work. -Plato

7. To be sure I must; and therefore I may assume that your silence gives consent. -Plato

8. This and no other is the root from which a tyrant springs; when he first appears he is a protector. -Plato

9. There are two things a person should never be angry at, what they can help, and what they cannot. -Plato

10. Ignorance of all things is an evil neither terrible nor excessive, nor yet the greatest of all; but great cleverness and much learning, if they be accompanied by a bad training, are a much greater misfortune. -Plato

11. Justice means minding one’s own business and not meddling with other men’s concerns.


12. It is right to give every man his due. -Plato

13. We are twice armed if we fight with faith. -Plato

14. Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle. -Plato

15. This City is what it is because our citizens are what they are. -Plato

16. Better a little which is well done, than a great deal imperfectly. -Plato

17. Wonder is the feeling of the philosopher, and philosophy begins in wonder. -Plato

18. Let parents bequeath to their children not riches, but the spirit of reverence. -Plato

19. Never discourage anyone… who continually makes progress, no matter how slow. -Plato

20. Good people do not need laws to tell them to act responsibly, while bad people will find a way around the laws. -Plato

21. People are like dirt. They can either nourish you and help you grow as a person or they can stunt your growth and make you wilt and die. -Plato

22. All men are by nature equal, made all of the same earth by one Workman; and however we deceive ourselves, as dear unto God is the poor peasant as the mighty prince. -Plato

Plato Quotes On Life

23. Life must be lived as play. -Plato

24. Attention to health is life’s greatest hindrance. -Plato

25. We can easily forgive a child who is afraid of the dark; the real tragedy of life is when men are afraid of the light.


26. Only the dead have seen the end of war. -Plato

27. Death is not the worst that can happen to men. -Plato

Plato Quotes On Love

Plato Quotes On Love

28. Love is the joy of the good, the wonder of the wise, the amazement of the Gods. -Plato

29. To love rightly is to love what is orderly and beautiful in an educated and disciplined way. -Plato

30. Love is a serious mental disease.


31. Every heart sings a song, incomplete, until another heart whispers back. Those who wish to sing always find a song. At the touch of a lover, everyone becomes a poet. -Plato

32. Love is born into every human being; it calls back the halves of our original nature together; it tries to make one out of two and heal the wound of human nature. -Plato

Plato Quotes On Education

Plato Quotes On Education

33. For good nurture and education implant good constitutions. -Plato

34. The object of education is to teach us to love what is beautiful. -Plato

35. We do not learn; and what we call learning is only a process of recollection. -Plato

36. Bodily exercise, when compulsory, does no harm to the body; but knowledge which is acquired under compulsion obtains no hold on the mind. -Plato

37. The most important part of education is proper training in the nursery.


38. If a man neglects education, he walks lame to the end of his life. -Plato

39. The direction in which education starts a man will determine his future in life. -Plato

40. If women are expected to do the same work as men, we must teach them the same things. -Plato

41. Come then, and let us pass a leisure hour in storytelling, and our story shall be the education of our heroes. -Plato

42. That’s what education should be,” I said, “the art of orientation. Educators should devise the simplest and most effective methods of turning minds around. It shouldn’t be the art of implanting sight in the organ, but should proceed on the understanding that the organ already has the capacity, but is improperly aligned and isn’t facing the right way. -Plato

Plato Quotes About Self

Plato Quotes About Self

43. When men speak ill of thee, live so as nobody may believe them. -Plato

44. For a man to conquer himself is the first and noblest of all victories. -Plato

45. The first and greatest victory is to conquer yourself; to be conquered by yourself is of all things most shameful and vile.


46. Man – a being in search of meaning. -Plato

47. Apply yourself both now and in the next life. Without effort, you cannot be prosperous. Though the land be good, You cannot have an abundant crop without cultivation. -Plato

48. The man who makes everything that leads to happiness depends upon himself, and not upon other men, has adopted the very best plan for living happily. This is the man of moderation, the man of manly character and of wisdom. -Plato

Plato Quotes On Politics

Plato Quotes On Politics

49. Excess of liberty, whether it lies in state or individuals, seems only to pass into excess of slavery. -Plato

50. One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors.


51. There will be no end to the troubles of states, or of humanity itself, till philosophers become kings in this world, or till those we now call kings and rulers really and truly become philosophers, and political power and philosophy thus come into the same hands. -Plato

Plato Quotes On Democracy

Plato Quotes On Democracy

52. Justice in the life and conduct of the State is possible only as first it resides in the hearts and souls of the citizens. -Plato

53. Dictatorship naturally arises out of democracy, and the most aggravated form of tyranny and slavery out of the most extreme liberty.


54. Democracy… is a charming form of government, full of variety and disorder; and dispensing a sort of equality to equals and unequals alike. -Plato

Plato Quotes On Leadership

Plato Quotes On Leadership

55. Courage is knowing what not to fear. -Plato

56. The measure of a man is what he does with power. -Plato

57. Good actions give strength to ourselves and inspire good actions in others.


58. He who is not a good servant will not be a good master. -Plato

59. A hero is born among a hundred, a wise man is found among a thousand, but an accomplished one might not be found even among a hundred thousand men. -Plato

Plato Quotes On Success

Plato Quotes On Success

60. The greatest wealth is to live content with little. -Plato

61. The first and greatest victory is to conquer yourself; to be conquered by yourself is of all things most shameful and vile. -Plato

62. Wealth is the parent of luxury and indolence, and poverty of meanness and viciousness, and both of discontent.


63. Money-makers are tiresome company, as they have no standard but cash value. -Plato

64. In order for man to succeed in life, God provided him with two means, education and physical activity. Not separately, one for the soul and the other for the body, but for the two together. With these means, man can attain perfection. -Plato

Plato Quotes On The Soul

Plato Quotes On The Soul

65. Have you ever sensed that our soul is immortal and never dies? -Plato

66. Music is the movement of sound to reach the soul for the education of its virtue. -Plato

67. Thinking: the talking of the soul with itself.


68. Astronomy compels the soul to look upwards and leads us from this world to another. -Plato

69. Music is a moral law. It gives soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination, and charm and gaiety to life and to everything. -Plato

70. The soul takes nothing with her to the next world but her education and her culture. At the beginning of the journey to the next world, one’s education and culture can either provide the greatest assistance, or else act as the greatest burden, to the person who has just died. -Plato

Plato Quotes On Wisdom

Plato Quotes On Wisdom

71. The wise man will want to be ever with him who is better than himself. -Plato

72. I am the wisest man alive, for I know one thing, and that is that I know nothing.


73. There are three classes of men; lovers of wisdom, lovers of honor, and lovers of gain. -Plato

74. Wise men speak because they have something to say; fools because they have to say something. -Plato

Plato Quotes On Knowledge

Plato Quotes On Knowledge

75. Those who don’t know must learn from those who do. -Plato

76. A good decision is based on knowledge and not on numbers. -Plato

77. The learning and knowledge that we have, is, at the most, but little compared with that of which we are ignorant.


78. Opinion is the medium between knowledge and ignorance. -Plato

79. Human behavior flows from three main sources: desire, emotion, and knowledge. -Plato

80. Knowledge which is acquired under compulsion obtains no hold on the mind. -Plato

Plato The Republic Quotes

Plato The Republic Quotes

81. Appearance tyrannizes over truth. -Plato

82. Nothing beautiful without struggle. -Plato

83. You take the words in the sense which is most damaging to the argument. -Plato

84. I am the wisest man alive, for I know one thing, and that is that I know nothing. -Plato

85. There is in every one of us, even those who seem to be most moderate, a type of desire that is terrible, wild, and lawless. -Plato

86. It is only just that anything that grows up on its own should feel it has nothing to repay for an upbringing which it owes no one. -Plato

87. Either we shall find what it is we are seeking or at least we shall free ourselves from the persuasion that we know what we do not know. -Plato

88. Musical innovation is full of danger to the State, for when modes of music change, the fundamental laws of the State always change with them. -Plato

89. And then, at this stage, every dictator comes up with the notorious and typical demand: he asks the people for bodyguards to protect him, the people’s champion. -Plato

90. It’s not at all uncommon to find a person’s desires compelling him to go against his reason, and to see him cursing himself and venting his passion on the source of the compulsion within him. It’s as if there were two warring factions, with passion fighting on the side of reason. But I’m sure you won’t claim that you had ever, in yourself or in anyone else, met a case of passion siding with his desires against the rational mind, when the rational mind prohibits resistance.


91. The worst type of man behaves as badly in his waking life as some men do in their dreams. -Plato

92. Musical training is a more potent instrument than any other, because rhythm and harmony find their way into the inward places of the soul. -Plato

93. He who is of a calm and happy nature will hardly feel the pressure of age. But to him who is of an opposite disposition, youth and age are equally a burden. -Plato

94. Physical excellence does not of itself produce a good mind and character: on the other hand, excellence of mind and character will make the best of the physique it is given. -Plato

95. Do you mean that the tyrant will dare to use violence against the people who fathered him, and raise his hand against them if they oppose him? So the tyrant is a parricide, and little comfort to his old parent. -Plato

96. In practice people who study philosophy too long become very odd birds, not to say thoroughly vicious; while even those who are the best of them are reduced by…[philosophy] to complete uselessness as members of society. -Plato

97. The best is to do injustice without paying the penalty; the worst is to suffer it without being able to take revenge. Justice is a mean between these two extremes. People value it not because it is a good but because they are too weak to do injustice with impunity. -Plato

98. There’s no chance of their having a conscious glimpse of the truth as long as they refuse to disturb the things they take for granted and remain incapable of explaining them. For if your starting-point is unknown, and your end-point and intermediate stages are woven together out of unknown material, there may be coherence, but knowledge is completely out of the question. -Plato

99. The society we have described can never grow into a reality or see the light of day, and there will be no end to the troubles of states, or indeed, my dear Glaucon, of humanity itself, till philosophers become rulers in this world, or till those we now call kings and rulers really and truly become philosophers, and political power and philosophy thus come into the same hands. -Plato

100. Until philosophers rule as kings or those who are now called kings and leading men genuinely and adequately philosophise, that is, until political power and philosophy entirely coincide, while the many natures who at present pursue either one exclusively are forcibly prevented from doing so, cities will have no rest from evils,… nor, I think, will the human race. -Plato