Top 100

Top 280 David McCullough Quotes (2023 Update)

David McCullough Quote: “Writing is thinking. To write well is to think clearly. That’s why it’s so hard.”
David McCullough Quote: “Climb the mountain not to plant your flag, but to embrace the challenge, enjoy the air and behold the view. Climb it so you can see the world, not so the world can see you.”
David McCullough Quote: “History is a guide to navigation in perilous times. History is who we are and why we are the way we are.”
David McCullough Quote: “If everyone is special, then no one is. If everyone gets a trophy, trophies become meaningless.”
David McCullough Quote: “Books can change your life. Some of the most influential people in our lives are characters we meet in books.”
David McCullough Quote: “Spotting talent is one of the essential elements of great leadership.”
David McCullough Quote: “There’s no such thing as a foreseeable future.”
David McCullough Quote: “Real success is finding your lifework in the work that you love.”
David McCullough Quote: “History isn’t just what happened, but what happened to whom and why and what would have been different if the cast of characters had been different.”
David McCullough Quote: “You can’t learn to play the piano without playing the piano, you can’t learn to write without writing, and, in many ways, you can’t learn to think without thinking. Writing is thinking. To write well is to think clearly. That’s why it’s so hard.”
David McCullough Quote: “America faces an enemy who believes in enforced ignorance. And all that we stand for is the open mind, the generous spirit, the ideal of tolerance, freedom, education, opportunity.”
David McCullough Quote: “Curiosity is what separates us from the cabbages. It’s accelerative. The more we know, the more we want to know.”
David McCullough Quote: “Read. Read all the time. Read as a matter of principle, as a matter of self-respect. Read as a nourishing staple of life.”
David McCullough Quote: “Your education never stops and college is just the beginning. You come out of college with a huge advantage in that you’ve ideally and more times than not you’ve come out with a love of learning and that’s what matters above all.”
David McCullough Quote: “You can’t be a full participant in our democracy if you don’t know our history.”
David McCullough Quote: “There’s an awful temptation to just keep on researching. There comes a point where you just have to stop, and start writing.”
David McCullough Quote: “You can’t love what you don’t know much about. You can’t convince, stimulate, hold the attention, teach, if you don’t know what you’re talking about.”
David McCullough Quote: “A nation that forgets its past can function no better than an individual with amnesia.”
David McCullough Quote: “I am adamant that we must not cut back on funding of the teaching of the arts in the schools: music, painting, theater, dance, all of it. The great thing about the arts is that the only way you learn how to do it is by doing it.”
David McCullough Quote: “Read. Read. Read. Read. Read great books. Read poetry, history, biography. Read the novels that have stood the test of time. And read closely.”
David McCullough Quote: “When the founders wrote about life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, they didn’t mean longer vacations and more comfortable hammocks. They meant the pursuit of learning. The pursuit of improvement and excellence. In hard work is happiness.”
David McCullough Quote: “I think that we need history as much as we need bread or water or love.”
David McCullough Quote: “If the attitude of the teacher toward the material is positive, enthusiastic, committed and excited, the students get that. If the teacher is bored, students get that and they get bored, quickly, instinctively.”
David McCullough Quote: “Freedom is found through the portals of our nation’s libraries.”
David McCullough Quote: “Develop and protect a moral sensibility and demonstrate the character to apply it. Dream big. Work hard. Think for yourself. Love everything you love, everyone you love, with all your might. And do so, please, with a sense of urgency, for every tick of the clock subtracts from fewer and fewer.”
David McCullough Quote: “Unlike the people you see in Mathew Brady’s photographs from the Civil War, the men and women of the Revolution seem more like characters in a costume pageant. And it’s a pageant in which the performers are all handsome as stage actors, with uniforms and dress that are always costume perfect.”
David McCullough Quote: “I lament the want of a liberal education. I feel the mist of ignorance to surround me – Nathanael Greene.”
David McCullough Quote: “Never assume that people in positions of responsibility are behaving responsibly.”
David McCullough Quote: “Every book is a new journey. I never felt I was an expert on a subject as I embarked on a project.”
David McCullough Quote: “How can we know who we are and where we are going if we don’t know anything about where we have come from and what we have been through, the courage shown, the costs paid, to be where we are?”
David McCullough Quote: “However little television you watch, watch less.”
David McCullough Quote: “The great thing about the arts is that you can only learn to do it by doing it.”
David McCullough Quote: “I write on the typewriter. I like it because I like the feeling of making something with my hands. I like pressing the key and a letter comes up and is printed on a piece of paper. I can understand that.”
David McCullough Quote: “Nothing ever invented can you a bigger life than a book.”
David McCullough Quote: “The truth isn’t just the facts. You can have all the facts imaginable and miss the truth, just as you can have facts missing or some wrong, and reach the larger truth.”
David McCullough Quote: “There are no people on earth in whom a spirit of enthusiastic zeal is so readily kindled, and burns so remarkably, as Americans.”
David McCullough Quote: “A leader must look and act the part.”
David McCullough Quote: “Courage is contagious. If a leader shows courage, others get the idea.”
David McCullough Quote: “The fulfilling life, the distinctive life, the relevant life is an achievement. To do whatever you do for no reason other than you love it and believe in its importance.”
David McCullough Quote: “I feel that history is in many ways the most important of all subjects because it is about everything and because it’s about who we are and how we came to be the way we are.”
David McCullough Quote: “We all know the old expression, “I’ll work my thoughts out on paper.” There’s something about the pen that focuses the brain in a way that nothing else does. That is why we must have more writing in the schools, more writing in all subjects, not just in English classes.”
David McCullough Quote: “We are raising a generation of young Americans who are, to a very large degree, historically illiterate. It’s not their faults. There’s no problem about enlisting their interest in history. None. The problem is the teachers so often have no history in their background.”
David McCullough Quote: “Our obligations to our country never cease but with our lives. – John Adams.”
David McCullough Quote: “The evil of technology was not technology itself, Lindbergh came to see after the war, not in airplanes or the myriad contrivances of modern technical igenuity, but in the extent to which they can distance us from our better moral nature, or sense of personal accountability.”
David McCullough Quote: “I’ve always been dissatisfied, I know that. But lately I find that I reek of discontentment. It fills my throat, and it floods my brain. And sometimes I fear there is no longer a dream, but only the discontentment.”
David McCullough Quote: “Yes, this is a dangerous time. Yes, this is a time full of shadows and fear. But we have been through worse before and we have faced more difficult days before. We have shown courage and determination, and skillful and inventive and courageous and committed responses to crisis before.”
David McCullough Quote: “Take the teacher not the course. Find out who the great professors are – the great teachers – and take their courses because a subject that you may not think you’re interested in may turn out to be infinitely fascinating because of the way it’s taught.”
David McCullough Quote: “Each generation, we peel back biases that have blinded those before us. The more we know about the past enables us to ask richer and more provocative questions about who we are today.”
David McCullough Quote: “The pull, the attraction of history, is in our human nature. What makes us tick? Why do we do what we do? How much is luck the deciding factor?”
David McCullough Quote: “We should draw on our story, we should draw on our history. If we don’t know who we are, if we don’t know how we became what we are, we’re going to start suffering from all the obvious detrimental effects of amnesia.”
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