40 Herodotus Quotes To Know More About History

Herodotus, often referred to as the “Father of History,” was a Greek historian and geographer. He is best known for his famous work, “The Histories,” a detailed account of the Greco-Persian Wars. Here are the best Herodotus quotes on history, war, democracy and more that will enlighten and inspire you.

Born in 484 BCE, in Halicarnassus (Bodrum, Turkey), Herodotus was thirsty to know about history from an early age. He dedicated his life to recording historical events, cultures, and peoples of the ancient world.

Herodotus was the first writer to use a unique and systematic style to analyze historical events. He used to write using a historiographic pattern, which was a very fresh concept back in those times.

His groundbreaking book, The Histories, covers the life of prominent kings and famous battles such as Marathon, Thermopylae, Mycale, Plataea, Artemisium, and Salamis.

In the pages of “Histories,” Herodotus not only chronicles the events of the Greco-Persian Wars but also provides valuable insights into ancient cultures, civilizations, and the human condition he encountered.

Although many think that his methodology may not align with modern historical standards, but his contributions are definitely an invaluable source for understanding the ancient past.

Here are the best Herodotus quotes from the Father of history that will inspire you to embrace the wisdom of the past.

Top 10 Herodotus Quotes

  1. “Haste in every business brings failures.” — Herodotus                                                    

    Herodotus Quotes
    Herodotus Quotes
  2. “All men’s gains are the fruit of venturing.” — Herodotus                                              

    Quotes By Herodotus
    Quotes By Herodotus
  3. “Great deeds are usually wrought at great risks.” — Herodotus         

    Quotes From Herodotus
    Quotes From Herodotus
  4. “Where wisdom is called for, force is of little use.” — Herodotus             

    Best Herodotus Quotes
    Best Herodotus Quotes
  5. “Circumstances rule men; men do not rule circumstances.” — Herodotus

    Inspirational Herodotus Quotes
    Inspirational Herodotus Quotes
  6. “When life is so burdensome death has become a sought after refuge.” — Herodotus
  7. “The most hateful human misfortune is for a wise man to have no influence.” — Herodotus
  8. “The secret of success is that it is not the absence of failure, but the absence of envy.” — Herodotus
  9. “The worst part a man can suffer is to have insight into much and power over nothing.” — Herodotus
  10. “Of all men’s miseries the bitterest is this: to know so much and to have control over nothing.” — Herodotus

Famous Quotes From Herodotus

  1. “The destiny of man is in his own soul.” — Herodotus
  2. “Men trust their ears less than their eyes.” — Herodotus
  3. “Let there be nothing untried; for nothing happens by itself, but men obtain all things by trying.” — Herodotus
  4. “It is clear that not in one thing alone, but in many ways equality and freedom of speech are a good thing.” — Herodotus
  5. “The man who has planned badly, if fortune is on his side, may have had a stroke of luck; but his plan was a bad one nonetheless.” — Herodotus
  6. “All of life is action and passion, and not to be involved in the actions and passions of your time is to risk having not really lived at all.” — Herodotus
  7. “He is the best man who, when making his plans, fears and reflects on everything that can happen to him, but in the moment of action is bold.” — Herodotus
  8. “Those who are guided by reason are generally successful in their plans; those who are rash and precipitate seldom enjoy the favour of the gods.” — Herodotus
  9. “If a man insisted always on being serious, and never allowed himself a bit of fun and relaxation, he would go mad or become unstable without knowing it.” — Herodotus
  10. “The man of affluence is not in fact more happy than the possessor of a bare competency, unless, in addition to his wealth, the end of his life be fortunate. We often see misery dwelling in the midst of splendour, whilst real happiness is found in humbler stations.” — Herodotus

Best Quotes of Herodotus

  1. “It is better to be envied than pitied.” — Herodotus
  2. “Force has no place where there is need of skill.” — Herodotus
  3. “Death is a delightful hiding place for weary men.” — Herodotus
  4. “Guard the head well, and the head will save the body.” — Herodotus
  5. “I know that human happiness never remains long in the same place.” — Herodotus
  6. “The worst pain a man can have is to know much and be impotent to act.” — Herodotus
  7. “No one is fool enough to choose war instead of peace – in peace sons bury fathers, but in war fathers bury sons.” — Herodotus
  8. “Adversity has the effect of drawing out strength and qualities of a man that would have laid dormant in its absence.” — Herodotus
  9. “History is marked by alternating movements across the imaginary line that separates East from West in Eurasia.” — Herodotus
  10. “Neither snow, nor rain, nor heat, nor gloom of night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds.” — Herodotus

Inspirational Herodotus Quotes

  1. “In soft regions are born soft men.” — Herodotus
  2. “Of all possessions a friend is the most precious.” — Herodotus
  3. “Remember that with her clothes a woman puts off her modesty.” — Herodotus
  4. “But I like not these great success of yours; for I know how jealous are the gods.” — Herodotus
  5. “For as the body grows old, so the wits grow old and become blind towards all things alike.” — Herodotus
  6. “Knowledge may give weight, but accomplishments give lustre, and many more people see than weigh.” — Herodotus
  7. “Everyone without exception believes his own native customs, and the religion he was brought up in, to be the best…” — Herodotus
  8. “Right and wrong were distinguished long ago – and I’ll tell you one thing that is right: a man should mind his own business.” — Herodotus
  9. “They made it plain to everyone, however, and above all to the king himself, that although he had plenty of troops, he did not have many men.” — Herodotus
  10. “Some men give up their designs when they have almost reached the goal; While others, on the contrary, obtain a victory by exerting, at the last moment, more vigorous efforts than ever before.” — Herodotus


What are your favorite Herodotus quotes and sayings listed above? If there is a quote that we’ve missed then let us know in the comments section what your thoughts are.

If you like these famous quotes from Herodotus then check our collection of Plato quotes and Heraclitus quotes to have a good laugh.

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