Quotations by Kipling, Rudyard


If any question why we died,
Tell them, because our fathers lied.

Rudyard Kipling (1865-1936) English writer
“Common Form,” The Years Between (1919)
Added on 19-Mar-14 | Last updated 19-Mar-14
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We’re poor little lambs who’ve lost our way,
Baa! Baa! Baa!
We’re little black sheep who’ve gone astray,
Baa-aa-aa!
Gentlemen rankers out on a spree,
Damned from here to Eternity.
God ha’ mercy on such as we,
Baa! Yah! Bah!

Rudyard Kipling (1865-1936) English writer
“Gentlemen-Rankers,” (1892)
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Added on 12-Jun-17 | Last updated 12-Jun-17
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Though I’ve belted you an’ flayed you,
By the livin’ Gawd that made you,
You’re a better man than I am, Gunga Din!

Rudyard Kipling (1865-1936) English writer
“Gunga Din,” st. 5 (1892)
Added on 21-Jan-13 | Last updated 23-Jul-15
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If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
But make allowance for their doubting, too ….

Rudyard Kipling (1865-1936) English writer
“If–” st. 1 (1910)
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Added on 16-Mar-15 | Last updated 3-Jul-17
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If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster
And treat those two impostors just the same ….

Rudyard Kipling (1865-1936) English writer
“If–” st. 2 (1910)
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Added on 3-Jul-17 | Last updated 3-Jul-17
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Everyone is more or less mad on one point.

Rudyard Kipling (1865-1936) English writer
“On the Strength of a Likeness”
Added on 1-Feb-04 | Last updated 7-Nov-17
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Lord God of Hosts, be with us yet,
Lest we forget — lest we forget!

Rudyard Kipling (1865-1936) English writer
“Recessional,” st. 1 (1897)
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Added on 19-Jun-17 | Last updated 19-Jun-17
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Take up the White Man’s burden —
Send forth the best ye breed —
Go bind your sons to exile
To serve your captives’ need;
To wait in heavy harness
On fluttered folk and wild —
Your new-caught sullen peoples,
Half devil and half child.

Rudyard Kipling (1865-1936) English writer
“The White Man’s Burden,” st. 1 (1899)
Added on 24-Jan-13 | Last updated 24-Jan-13
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By all ye cry and whisper,
By all ye leave or do,
The silent, sullen peoples
Shall weigh your Gods and you.

Rudyard Kipling (1865-1936) English writer
“The White Man’s Burden”
Added on 1-Feb-04 | Last updated 1-Feb-04
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When you’re wounded and left on Afghanistan’s plains,
And the women come out to cut up what remains,
Jest roll to your rifle and blow out your brains,
An’ go to your Gawd like a soldier.

Rudyard Kipling (1865-1936) English writer
“The Young British Soldier” (1895)
Added on 29-Mar-13 | Last updated 29-Mar-13
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For it’s Tommy this, and Tommy that, an’ ‘Chuck him out, the brute!’
But it’s ‘Saviour of ‘is country’ when the guns begin to shoot.

Rudyard Kipling (1865-1936) English writer
“Tommy,” Barrack-Room Ballads (1893)
Added on 1-Feb-04 | Last updated 19-Mar-14
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All the people like us are We,
And every one else is They.

Rudyard Kipling (1865-1936) English writer
“We and They” (1.3), Debits and Credits (1919-26)
Added on 9-Jan-12 | Last updated 9-Jan-12
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Four things greater than all things are, —
Women and Horses and Power and War.

Rudyard Kipling (1865-1936) English writer
“The Ballad of the King’s Jest,” st. 5
Added on 8-Nov-07 | Last updated 8-Nov-07
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For the strength of the Pack is the Wolf, and the strength of the Wolf is the Pack.

Rudyard Kipling (1865-1936) English writer
“The Law of the Jungle,” The Second Jungle Book (1899)
Added on 8-Feb-08 | Last updated 21-Oct-14
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I never made a mistake in my life; at least, never one that I couldn’t explain away afterwards.

Rudyard Kipling (1865-1936) English writer
(Attributed)
Added on 1-Feb-04 | Last updated 1-Feb-04
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I always prefer to believe the best of everybody — it saves so much trouble.

Rudyard Kipling (1865-1936) English writer
(Attributed)
Added on 1-Feb-04 | Last updated 1-Feb-04
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White hands cling to the bridle rein,
Slipping the spur from the booted heel;
Tenderest voices cry ‘Turn again!’
Red lips tarnish the scabbarded steel;
Down to Gehenna or up to the Throne,
He travels fastest who travels alone.

Rudyard Kipling (1865-1936) English writer
(Attributed)
Added on 1-Feb-04 | Last updated 1-Feb-04
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Of all the liars in the world, sometimes the worst are our own fears.

Rudyard Kipling (1865-1936) English writer
(Attributed)
Added on 23-Jul-15 | Last updated 23-Jul-15
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For Fiction is Truth’s elder sister. Obviously. No one in the world knew what truth was till somebody had told a story.

Rudyard Kipling (1865-1936) English writer
A Book of Words, ch. 24 “Fiction” (1928)
Added on 23-Feb-17 | Last updated 23-Feb-17
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He wrapped himself in quotations — as a beggar would enfold himself in the purple of Emperors.

Kipling - wrapped himself in quotations - wist_info quote

Rudyard Kipling (1865-1936) English writer
Many Inventions, “The Finest Story in the World” (1893)
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Added on 21-Apr-09 | Last updated 11-Apr-16
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The silliest woman can manage a clever man; but it needs a very clever woman to manage a fool!

Rudyard Kipling (1865-1936) English writer
Plain Tales from the Hills, “Three and — an Extra” (1888)
Added on 17-Mar-17 | Last updated 17-Mar-17
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It is always a temptation to a rich and lazy nation,
To puff and look important and to say: —
“Though we know we should defeat you, we have not the time to meet you.
We will therefore pay you cash to go away.”

And that is called paying the Dane-geld;
But we’ve proved it again and again,
That if once you have paid him the Dane-geld
You never get rid of the Dane.

Rudyard Kipling (1865-1936) English writer
School History, “Dane-Geld (A.D. 980-1016),” st. 3-4 (1911) [with C.R.L. Fletcher]
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Added on 10-Jul-17 | Last updated 10-Jul-17
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And that is called paying the Dane-geld;
But we’ve proved it again and again,
That if once you have paid him the Dane-geld
You never get rid of the Dane.

Rudyard Kipling (1865-1936) English writer
School History, “Dane-Geld (A.D. 980-1016)” (1911) [with C. Fletcher]
Added on 29-Jul-14 | Last updated 29-Jul-14
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Every nation, like every individual, walks in a vain show — else it could not live with itself — but I never got over the wonder of a people who, having extirpated the aboriginals of their continent more completely than any modern race had ever done, honestly believed that they were a godly little New England community, setting examples to brutal mankind.

Rudyard Kipling (1865-1936) English writer
Something of Myself, ch. 15 (1937)
Added on 11-Sep-13 | Last updated 17-Jul-17
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More men are killed by overwork than the importance of the world justifies.

Rudyard Kipling (1865-1936) English writer
The Phantom ‘Rickshaw
Added on 1-Feb-04 | Last updated 1-Feb-04
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All the people like us are We, and everyone else is They.

Rudyard Kipling (1865-1936) English writer
We and They (1926)
Added on 1-Feb-04 | Last updated 1-Feb-04
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