I have always thought that all men should be free; but if any should be slaves, it should be first those who desire it for themselves, and secondly, those who desire it for others. When I hear anyone arguing for slavery, I feel a strong impulse to see it tried on him personally.
I have now come to the conclusion never again to think of marrying, and for this reason; I can never be satisfied with anyone who would be blockhead enough to have me.
Every man is said to have his peculiar ambition. Whether it be true or not, I can say, for one, that I have no other so great as that of being truly esteemed of my fellow-men, by rendering myself worthy of their esteem.
With malice toward none, with charity for all, with firmness in the right, as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in, to bind up the nation’s wounds.
Folks are usually about as happy as they make their minds up to be.
We must not be enemies. Though passion may have strained, it must not break our bonds of affection. The mystic chords of memory, stretching from every battlefield and patriot grave, to every living heart and hearth-stone, allover this broad land, will yet swell the chorus of the Union when again touched, as surely they will be, by the better angels of our nature.
The Lord prefers common-looking people. That is why he makes so many of them.
I don’t know who my grandfather was. I am much more concerned to know what his grandson will be.
I would consent to any great evil, to avoid a greater one.
When I do good I feel good, when I do bad I feel bad, and that’s my religion.
It is better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to open your mouth and remove all doubt.
You may fool all the people some of the time; you can even fool some of the people all the time; but you cannot fool all the people all the time.
I am anxious to afford some alleviation of your present distress. Perfect relief is not possible, except with time. You can not now realize that you will ever feel better. Is not this so? And yet it is a mistake. You are sure to be happy again. To know this, which is certainly true, will make you some less miserable now. I have had experience enough to know what I say; and you need only to believe it, to feel better at once. The memory of your dear Father, instead of an agony, will yet be a sad, sweet feeling in your heart, of a purer, and holier sort than you have ever known before.