Quotes by: Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.

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Oliver Wendell Holmes
Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States
In office
December 4, 1902 – January 12, 1932[1]
Nominated by Theodore Roosevelt
Preceded by Horace Gray
Succeeded by Benjamin Cardozo
Chief Justice of the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court
In office
August 2, 1899 – December 4, 1902
Nominated by Murray Crane
Preceded by Walbridge Field
Succeeded by Marcus Knowlton
Associate Justice of the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court
In office
December 15, 1882 – August 2, 1899
Nominated by John Long
Preceded by Otis Lord
Succeeded by William Loring
Personal details
Born (1841-03-08)March 8, 1841
Boston, Massachusetts, U.S.
Died March 6, 1935(1935-03-06) (aged 93)
Washington, D.C., U.S.
Political party Republican
Spouse(s) Fanny Dixwell (1840–1929)
Alma mater Harvard University
Religion Unitarian Universalism
Military service
Allegiance  United States
Service/branch  United States Army
Years of service 1861–1865
Rank Brevet Colonel
Unit 20th Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry
Battles/wars American Civil War

Most of the things we do, we do for no better reason than that our fathers have done them or our neighbors do them, and the same is true of a larger part than what we suspect of what we think.
Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.
Certitude is not the test of certainty. We have been cocksure of many things that were not so.
Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.
I have no respect for the passion of equality, which seems to me merely idealizing envy - I don't disparage envy, but I don't accept it as legitimately my master.
Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.
A mind that is stretched by a new experience can never go back to its old dimensions.
Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.
People talk fundamentals and superlatives and then make some changes of detail.
Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.
Between two groups of people who want to make inconsistent kinds of worlds, I see no remedy but force.
Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.
If there is any principle of the Constitution that more imperatively calls for attachment than any other it is the principle of free thought, not free thought for those who agree with us but freedom for the thought that we hate.
Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.
On the whole, I am on the side of the unregenerate who affirms the worth of life as an end in itself, as against the saints who deny it.
Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.
Young man, the secret of my success is that at early age I discovered that I was not God.
Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.
You make me chuckle when you say that you are no longer young, that you have turned twenty-four. A man is or may be young to after sixty, and not old before eighty.
Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.
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