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Quotations about Idleness

Related Quotes      Boredom      Labor      Exercise      Laziness      Procrastination

NOTE:  Some of the quotes on this page were submitted to me by visitors, and not all have been verified for original source or wording. I'm working hard to confirm everything, but in the meantime please be aware of the possibility for errors.  —ღ Terri, March 2021

One of the commonest characteristics of the successful man is his idleness, his immense capacity for wasting time. ~Arnold Bennett (1867–1931)

The hour of idleness is the hour of temptation. ~Proverb

A steady and agreeable occupation is one of the most potent adjuncts and favorers of health and long life. The idler, without object, without definite direction, is very apt to brood himself into some moral or physical fever — and one is about as bad as the other. ~Mose Velsor (Walt Whitman), "Manly Health and Training," New York Atlas, 1858 October 10th  [Thanks, Zachary Turpin! —tεᖇᖇ¡·g]

The idle man does not know what it is to enjoy rest, for he has not earned it.  ~John Lubbock

Few women and fewer men have enough character to be idle.  ~E.V. Lucas

The men who toil with might and main, who plow the glebe and reap the grain, receive my earnest, ardent praise, and I embalm them in my lays; but I am happy in the shade, with my tall jug of lemonade. ~Walt Mason (1862–1939), "Looking On"

The hardest work is to go idle.  ~Yiddish Proverb

Idleness is the mother of vice. ~Spanish proverb

So runs the genealogy of many another sin: idleness is usually the grandfather of the crime, whatever the father might be. ~C.H. Spurgeon

"In the afternoon they came unto a land in which it seemed always afternoon." I want to come to such a land. I want to be a lotus-eater.... I feel like that toad who, after being embedded in rock for thousands of years, on being rudely ejected, simply sat down on its haunches and blinked. I want to sit down on my haunches and blink in a sunny spot under a sunny wall. I might muster up sufficient energy to fold my hands on my lap as looking more elegant, but afterwards I should want to sit absolutely still and just let the sunshine filter through my tired being. ~Mabel Barnes-Grundy, The Vacillations of Hazel, "Chapter XIX: I Desire to be a Lotus-Eater, and Sammy Brings Me Rudely to Earth," 1905

An Idler's Chance in Life is like a Peach—
Too Green, or Over-Ripe, or Out of Reach.
~Arthur Guiterman, "Of Idlers," A Poet's Proverbs, 1924

Idleness is certainly the Cause, and Busyness the never-failing Cure of Melancholy. ~Author unknown, circa mid-1700s, possibly Charles Palmer

A good way to idleize a boy is to idolize him. ~"Poor Richard Junior's Philosophy," The Saturday Evening Post, 1904, George Horace Lorimer, editor

There is a working class - strong and happy - among both rich and poor:  there is an idle class - weak, wicked, and miserable - among both rich and poor.  ~John Ruskin

The real source of almost all our crimes, if the trouble is taken to trace them to a common origin, will be found to be in idleness.  ~Walter Gaston Shotwell

The only thing wrong with doing nothing is that you never know when you're finished.  ~Author Unknown

Keep doing some kind of work, that the devil may always find you employed.  ~St. Jerome

To be idle and to be poor have always been reproaches, and therefore every man endeavors with his utmost care to hide his poverty from others, and his idleness from himself.  ~Samuel Johnson

Hunger is not the worst feature of unemployment; idleness is.  ~William E. Barrett

Life is not long, and too much of it must not pass in idle deliberation how it shall be spent.  ~Samuel Johnson

All man's troubles come from not knowing how to sit still in one room.  ~Blaise Pascal, Pensées, 1670

A man is not idle because he is absorbed in thought.  There is a visible labor and there is an invisible labor  ~Victor Hugo

Shun idleness.  It is a rust that attaches itself to the most brilliant metals.  ~Voltaire

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