Quotations by Pratchett, Terry


There is a rumour going around that I have found god. I think is unlikely because I have enough difficulty finding my keys, and there is empirical evidence that they exist.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
“I create gods all the time — now I think one might exist,” Daily Mail (21 Jun 2008)
    (Source)
Added on 29-Jun-21 | Last updated 29-Jun-21
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

I don’t have much truck with the “religion is the cause of most of our wars” school of thought because that is manifestly done by mad, manipulative and power-hungry men who cloak their ambition in God.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
“I create gods all the time — now I think one might exist,” Daily Mail (21 Jun 2008)
    (Source)
Added on 13-Jul-21 | Last updated 13-Jul-21
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

It’s that moment, that brief epiphany when the universe opens up and shows us something, and in that instant we get just a sense of an order greater than Heaven and, as yet at least, beyond the grasp of Stephen Hawking. It doesn’t require worship, but, I think, rewards intelligence, observation and enquiring minds. I don’t think I’ve found God, but I may have seen where gods come from.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
“I create gods all the time — now I think one might exist,” Daily Mail (21 Jun 2008)
    (Source)
Added on 29-Jul-21 | Last updated 29-Jul-21
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

If you said to a bunch of average people two hundred years ago “Would you be happy in a world where medical care is widely available, houses are clean, the world’s music and sights and foods can be brought into your home at small cost, travelling even 100 miles is easy, childbirth is generally not fatal to mother or child, you don’t have to die of dental abcesses and you don’t have to do what the squire tells you” they’d think you were talking about the New Jerusalem and say ‘yes’.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
(Attributed)

Usually cited to alt.fan.pratchett, but not found in the repository.
Added on 17-Apr-20 | Last updated 17-Apr-20
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

Fantasy is an exercise bicycle for the mind. It might not take you anywhere, but it tones up the muscles that can.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
(Attributed)
Added on 8-Jul-15 | Last updated 8-Jul-15
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

There are times in life when people must know when not to let go. Balloons are designed to teach small children this.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
(Attributed)
Added on 15-Jul-15 | Last updated 15-Jul-15
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

There isn’t a way things should be. There’s just what happens, and what we do.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
A Hat Full of Sky (2004)
Added on 20-May-15 | Last updated 20-May-15
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

There isn’t a way things should be. There’s just what happens, and what we do.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
A Hat Full of Sky (2004)
Added on 23-Sep-15 | Last updated 23-Sep-15
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , , , , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

Why do you go away? So that you can come back. So that you can see the place you came from with new eyes and extra colors. And the people there see you differently, too. Coming back to where you started is not the same as never leaving.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
A Hat Full of Sky (2004)
Added on 9-Feb-21 | Last updated 9-Feb-21
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

“And sin, young man, is when you treat people like things. Including yourself. That’s what sin is.”

“It’s a lot more complicated than that –”

“No. It ain’t. When people say things are a lot more complicated than that, they means they’re getting worried that they won’t like the truth. People as things, that’s where it starts.”

“Oh, I’m sure there are worse crimes –”

“But they starts with thinking about people as things …”

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Carpe Jugulum [Granny Weatherwax, Rev. Mightily Oats] (1998)
Added on 11-May-21 | Last updated 11-May-21
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

“It’s not as simple as that. It’s not a black and white issue. There are so many shades of grey.”

“Nope.”

“Pardon?”

“There’s no greys, only white that’s got grubby.”

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Carpe Jugulum [Rev. Mightily Oats, Granny Weatherwax] (1998)
Added on 25-May-21 | Last updated 25-May-21
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

THERE ARE BETTER THINGS IN THE WORLD THAN ALCOHOL, ALBERT.

“Oh, yes, sir. But alcohol sort of compensates for not getting them.”

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Death’s Domain (1999)
    (Source)

Death speaking with his manservant, Albert.
Added on 5-Jan-21 | Last updated 5-Jan-21
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

The trouble with having an open mind, of course, is that people will insist on coming along and trying to put things in it.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Diggers (1990)
Added on 1-Feb-04 | Last updated 1-Feb-04
Link to this post | No comments
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

And the funny thing was that people who weren’t entirely certain they were right always argued much louder than other people, as if the main person they were trying to convince were themselves.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Diggers (1990)
Added on 6-Apr-21 | Last updated 19-Apr-21
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

She was already learning that if you ignore the rules people will, half the time, quietly rewrite them so that they don’t apply to you.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Equal Rites (1987)
Added on 29-Apr-15 | Last updated 29-Apr-15
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

They say a little knowledge is a dangerous thing, but it’s not one half so bad as a lot of ignorance.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Equal Rites (1987)

See Pope.
Added on 6-Oct-20 | Last updated 6-Oct-20
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

Just erotic. Nothing kinky. It’s the difference between using a feather and using a chicken.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Eric (1990)
    (Source)

Compare to Isabel Allende.
Added on 29-Dec-20 | Last updated 29-Dec-20
Link to this post | 1 comment
Topics: , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

“Perhaps this isn’t just a test of the world,” said Crowley. “It might be a test of you people, too. Hmm?”

“God does not play games with His loyal servants,” said the Metatron, but in a worried tone of voice.

“Whooo-eee,” said Crowley. “Where have you been?”

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Good Omens (1990) [with Neil Gaiman]
Added on 1-Feb-04 | Last updated 8-Jun-21
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

“From what I remember,” replied Crowley, thoughtfully, “– and we were never actually on what you might call speaking terms — He wasn’t exactly one for a straight answer. In fact, in fact, he’d never answer at all. He’d just smile, as if He knew something that you didn’t.”

“And of course that’s true,” said the angel. “Otherwise, what’d be the point?”

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Good Omens (1990) [with Neil Gaiman]
Added on 1-Feb-04 | Last updated 8-Jun-21
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

In the end, as every human being who has ever breakfasted on their own in someone else’s kitchen has done since nearly the dawn of time, he made do with unsweetened instant black coffee.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Good Omens (1990) [with Neil Gaiman]
Added on 1-Feb-04 | Last updated 8-Jun-21
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

“I mean, maybe you just want to see how it all turns out. Maybe it’s all part of a great big ineffable plan. All of it. You, me, him, everything. Some great big test to see if what you’ve built all works properly, eh? You start thinking: it can’t be a great cosmic game of chess, it has to be just very complicated Solitaire. And don’t bother to answer. If we could understand, we wouldn’t be us. Because it’s all — all –”

INEFFABLE, said the figure feeding the ducks.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Good Omens (1990) [with Neil Gaiman]
Added on 1-Feb-04 | Last updated 8-Jun-21
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

Armageddon only happens once, you know. They don’t let you go around again until you get it right.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Good Omens (1990) [with Neil Gaiman]
Added on 1-Feb-04 | Last updated 8-Jun-21
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

Hastur was paranoid, which was simply a sensible and well-adjusted reaction to living in Hell, where they really were all out to get you.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Good Omens (1990) [with Neil Gaiman]
Added on 1-Feb-04 | Last updated 8-Jun-21
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

If you take the long view, the universe is just something small and round, like those water-filled balls which produce a miniature snowstorm when you shake them. (Although, unless the ineffable plan is a lot more ineffable than it’s given credit for, it does not have a giant plastic snowman at the bottom.)

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Good Omens (1990) [with Neil Gaiman]
Added on 1-Feb-04 | Last updated 8-Jun-21
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

The road to Hell is paved with good intentions. (This is not actually true. The road to Hell is paved with frozen door-to-door salesmen. On weekends many of the younger demons go ice-skating down it.)

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Good Omens (1990) [with Neil Gaiman]
Added on 1-Feb-04 | Last updated 8-Jun-21
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

“But the Great Plan can only be a tiny part of the overall ineffability,” said Crowley. “You can’t be certain that what’s happening right now isn’t exactly right, from an ineffable point of view.”

“It izz written!” bellowed Beelzebub.

“But it might be written differently somewhere else,” said Crowley. “Where you can’t read it.”

“In bigger letters,” said Aziraphale.

“Underlined,” Crowley added.

“Twice,” suggested Aziraphale.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Good Omens (1990) [with Neil Gaiman]
Added on 1-Feb-04 | Last updated 8-Jun-21
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

He didn’t say “That’s weird.” He wouldn’t have said “That’s weird” if a flock of sheep had cycled past playing violins. It wasn’t the sort of thing a responsible engineer said.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Good Omens (1990) [with Neil Gaiman]
Added on 8-May-14 | Last updated 8-Jun-21
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

Most books on witchcraft will tell you that witches work naked. This is because most books on witchcraft are written by men.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Good Omens (1990) [with Neil Gaiman]
Added on 16-Mar-09 | Last updated 8-Jun-21
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

Three very crowded hours went past. They involved quite a lot of phone calls, telexes, and faxes. Twenty-seven people were got out of bed in quick succession and they got another fifty-three out of bed, because if there is one thing a man wants to know when he’s woken up in a panic at 4:00 A.M., it’s that he’s not alone.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Good Omens (1990) [with Neil Gaiman]
Added on 15-May-14 | Last updated 8-Jun-21
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

So computers are tools of the Devil? thought Newt. He had no problem believing it. Computers had to be the tools of somebody, and all he knew for certain was that it definitely wasn’t him.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Good Omens (1990) [with Neil Gaiman]
Added on 22-May-14 | Last updated 8-Jun-21
Link to this post | No comments
Topics:
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

Now, as Crowley would be the first to protest, most demons weren’t deep down evil. In the great cosmic game they felt they occupied the same position as tax inspectors — doing an unpopular job, maybe, but essential to the overall operation of the whole thing. If it came to that, some angels weren’t paragons of virtue; Crowley had met one or two who, when it came to righteously smiting the ungodly, smote a good deal harder than was strictly necessary. On the whole, everyone had a job to do, and just did it. And on the other hand, you got people like Ligur and Hastur, who took such a dark delight in unpleasantness you might even have mistaken them for human.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Good Omens (1990) [with Neil Gaiman]
Added on 29-May-14 | Last updated 8-Jun-21
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

Anyway, if you stop tellin’ people it’s all sorted out after they’re dead, they might try sorting it all out while they’re alive.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Good Omens (1990) [with Neil Gaiman]
Added on 1-Dec-20 | Last updated 1-Dec-20
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

She was beautiful, but she was beautiful in the way a forest fire was beautiful: something to be admired from a distance, not up close.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Good Omens (1990) [with Neil Gaiman]
Added on 24-Jun-15 | Last updated 8-Jun-21
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

Bringing about Armageddon can be dangerous. Do not attempt it in your own home.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Good Omens, “Caveat” (1990) [with Neil Gaiman]
    (Source)
Added on 1-Feb-04 | Last updated 8-Jun-21
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

God moves in extremely mysterious, not to say, circuitous ways. God does not play dice with the universe; He plays an ineffable game of His own devising, which might be compared, from the perspective of any of the other players (i.e., everybody), to being involved in an obscure and complex version of poker in a pitch-dark room, with blank cards, for infinite stakes, with a Dealer who won’t tell you the rules, and who smiles all the time.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Good Omens, “Eleven Years Ago” (1990) [with Neil Gaiman]
    (Source)
Added on 1-Feb-04 | Last updated 8-Jun-21
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

It may help to understand human affairs to be clear that most of the great triumphs and tragedies of history are caused, not by people being fundamentally good or fundamentally bad, but by people being fundamentally people.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Good Omens, “Eleven Years Ago” (1990) [with Neil Gaiman]
    (Source)
Added on 4-Dec-08 | Last updated 8-Jun-21
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

Crowley had always known that he would be around when the world ended, because he was immortal and wouldn’t have any alternative. But he hoped it was a long way off.

Because he rather liked people.

It was major failing in a demon. Oh, he did his best to make their short lives miserable, because that was his job, but nothing he could think up was half as bad as the stuff they thought up themselves. They seemed to have a talent for it. It was built into the design, somehow. They were born into a world that was against them in a thousand little ways, and then devoted most of their energies to making it worse. Over the years Crowley had found it increasingly difficult to find anything demonic to do which showed up against the natural background of generalized nastiness. There had been times, over the past millennium, when he’d felt like sending a message back Below saying, Look we may as well give up right now, we might as well shut down Dis and Pandemonium and everywhere and move up here, there’s nothing we can do to them that they don’t do to themselves and they do things we’ve never even thought of, often involving electrodes. They’ve got what we lack. They’ve got imagination. And electricity, of course.

One of them had written it, hadn’t he … “Hell is empty, and all the devils are here.”

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Good Omens, “Eleven Years Ago” (1990) [with Neil Gaiman]
    (Source)
Added on 8-Jun-21 | Last updated 8-Jun-21
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

Most of the members of the convent were old-fashioned Satanists, like their parents and grandparents before them. They’d been brought up to it and weren’t, when you got right down to it, particularly evil. Human beings mostly aren’t. They just get carried away by new ideas, like dressing up in jackboots and shooting people, or dressing up in white sheets and lynching people, or dressing up in tie-dye jeans and playing guitars at people. Offer people a new creed with a costume and their hearts and minds will follow.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Good Omens, “Eleven Years Ago” (1990) [with Neil Gaiman]
    (Source)
Added on 12-Mar-09 | Last updated 8-Jun-21
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

He’d been an angel once. He hadn’t meant to Fall. He’d just hung around with the wrong people.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Good Omens, “Eleven Years Ago” (1990) [with Neil Gaiman]
    (Source)
Added on 2-Mar-09 | Last updated 8-Jun-21
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

Crowley thumped the wheel. Everything had been going so well, he’d had it really under his thumb these few centuries. That’s how it goes, you think you’re on top of the world, and suddenly they spring Armageddon on you.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Good Omens, “Eleven Years Ago” (1990) [with Neil Gaiman]
    (Source)
Added on 1-Dec-08 | Last updated 8-Jun-21
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

They had once — at Adam’s instigation — tried a health food diet for a while one afternoon. Their verdict was that you could live very well on healthy food provided you had a big cooked lunch beforehand.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Good Omens, “Thursday” (1990) [with Neil Gaiman]
Added on 27-Nov-08 | Last updated 8-Jun-21
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

It was a five hundred mile journey and, surprisingly, quite uneventful. People who are rather more than six feet tall and nearly as broad across the shoulders often have uneventful journeys. People jump out at them from behind rocks then say things like, “Oh. Sorry. I thought you were someone else.”

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Guards! Guards! (1989)
Added on 14-Oct-05 | Last updated 14-Oct-05
Link to this post | No comments
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

If there was anything that depressed him more than his own cynicism, it was that quite often it still wasn’t as cynical as real life.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Guards! Guards! (1989)
Added on 22-Sep-20 | Last updated 22-Sep-20
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

Never build a dungeon you wouldn’t be happy to spend the night in yourself. The world would be a happier place if more people remembered that.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Guards! Guards! [Vetinari] (1989)
Added on 14-Oct-05 | Last updated 14-Oct-05
Link to this post | No comments
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

“All right,” said Susan. “I’m not stupid. You’re saying humans need … fantasies to make life bearable.”

REALLY? AS IF IT WAS SOME KIND OF PINK PILL? NO. HUMANS NEED FANTASY TO BE HUMAN. TO BE THE PLACE WHERE THE FALLING ANGEL MEETS THE RISING APE.

“Tooth fairies? Hogfathers? Little –”

YES. AS PRACTICE. YOU HAVE TO START OUT LEARNING TO BELIEVE THE LITTLE LIES.

“So we can believe the big ones?”

YES. JUSTICE. MERCY. DUTY. THAT SORT OF THING.

“They’re not the same at all!”

YOU THINK SO? THEN TAKE THE UNIVERSE AND GRIND IT DOWN TO THE FINEST POWDER AND SIEVE IT THROUGH THE FINEST SIEVE AND THEN SHOW ME ONE ATOM OF JUSTICE, ONE MOLECULE OF MERCY. AND YET — Death waved a hand. AND YET YOU ACT AS IF THERE IS SOME IDEAL ORDER IN THE WORLD, AS IF THERE IS SOME … SOME RIGHTNESS IN THE UNIVERSE BY WHICH IT MAY BE JUDGED.

“Yes, but people have got to believe that, or what’s the point –”

MY POINT EXACTLY.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Hogfather (1996)
Added on 22-Dec-20 | Last updated 22-Dec-20
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , , , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

Some things are fairly obvious when it’s a seven-foot skeleton with a scythe telling you them.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Hogfather (1996)
Added on 16-Feb-21 | Last updated 16-Feb-21
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

Evil begins when you begin to treat people as things.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
I Shall Wear Midnight (2010)
Added on 8-Sep-20 | Last updated 8-Sep-20
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

She heard him mutter, “Can you take away this grief?”

“I’m sorry,” she replied. “Everyone asks me. And I would not do so even if I knew how. It belongs to you. Only time and tears take away grief; that is what they are for.”

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
I Shall Wear Midnight (2010)
Added on 20-Apr-21 | Last updated 20-Apr-21
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

There is a lot of folklore about equestrian statues, especially the ones with riders on them. There is said to be a code in the number and placement of the horse’s hooves: If one of the horse’s hooves is in the air, the rider was wounded in battle; two legs in the air means that the rider was killed in battle; three legs in the air indicates that the rider got lost on the way to the battle; and four legs in the air means that the sculptor was very, very clever. Five legs in the air means that there’s probably at least one other horse standing behind the horse you’re looking at; and the rider lying on the ground with his horse lying on top of him with all four legs in the air means that the rider was either a very incompetent horseman or owned a very bad-tempered horse.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
I Shall Wear Midnight (2010)
Added on 22-Jun-21 | Last updated 22-Jun-21
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

Whatever happens, they say afterwards, it must have been fate. People are always a little confused about this, as they are in the case of miracles. When someone is saved from certain death by a strange concatenation of circumstances, they say that’s a miracle. But of course if someone is killed by a freak chain of events — the oil spilled just there, the safety fence broken just there — that must also be a miracle. Just because it’s not nice doesn’t mean it’s not miraculous.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Interesting Times (1994)
Added on 2-Sep-15 | Last updated 2-Sep-15
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

It was so much easier to blame it on Them. It was bleakly depressing to think that They were Us. If it was Them, then nothing was anyone’s fault. If it was us, what did that make Me? After all, I’m one of Us. I must be. I’ve certainly never thought of myself as one of Them. No one ever thinks of themselves as one of Them. We’re always one of Us. It’s Them that do the bad things.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Jingo (1988)
Added on 23-Feb-21 | Last updated 23-Feb-21
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

The intelligence of that creature known as a crowd is the square root of the number of people in it.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Jingo (1997)
Added on 26-Aug-15 | Last updated 26-Aug-15
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

Night poured over the desert. It came suddenly, in purple. In the clear air, the stars drilled down out of the sky, reminding any thoughtful watcher that it is in the deserts and high places that religions are generated. When men see nothing but bottomless infinity over their heads they have always had a driving and desperate urge to find someone to put in the way.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Jingo (1997)
Added on 15-Sep-20 | Last updated 15-Sep-20
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

Build a man a fire, and he’ll be warm for a day. Set a man on fire, and he’ll be warm for the rest of his life.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Jingo (1999)
Added on 26-Jul-07 | Last updated 26-Jul-07
Link to this post | No comments
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

Elves are wonderful. They provoke wonder.
Elves are marvelous. They cause marvels.
Elves are fantastic. They create fantasies.
Elves are glamorous. They project glamour.
Elves are enchanting. They weave enchantment.
Elves are terrific. They beget terror.
The thing about words is that meanings can twist just like a snake, and if you want to find snakes look for them behind words that have changed their meaning.
No one ever said elves are nice.
Elves are bad.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Lords and Ladies (1992)
Added on 29-Jul-15 | Last updated 29-Jul-15
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , , , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

In fact, the mere act of opening the box will determine the state of the cat, although in this case there were three determinate states the cat could be in: these being Alive, Dead, and Bloody Furious.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Lords and Ladies (1992)
Added on 12-Aug-15 | Last updated 12-Aug-15
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

If cats looked like frogs we’d realize what nasty, cruel little bastards they are. Style. That’s what people remember.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Lords and Ladies (1992)
Added on 2-Feb-21 | Last updated 2-Feb-21
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

His progress through life was hampered by his tremendous sense of his own ignorance, a disability which affects all too few.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Maskerade (1995)
Added on 18-May-21 | Last updated 18-May-21
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

Sometimes it’s better to light a flamethrower than to curse the darkness.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Men at Arms (1993)
Added on 20-Oct-20 | Last updated 20-Oct-20
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

Something Vimes had learned as a young guard drifted up from memory. If you have to look along the shaft of an arrow from the wrong end, if a man has you entirely at his mercy, then hope like hell that man is an evil man. Because the evil like power, power over people, and they want to see you in fear. They want you to know you’re going to die. So they’ll talk. They’ll gloat.

They’ll watch you squirm. They’ll put off the moment of murder like another man will put off a good cigar.

So hope like hell your captor is an evil man. A good man will kill you with hardly a word.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Men at Arms (1993)
Added on 27-Apr-21 | Last updated 27-Apr-21
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

There was this about vampires: they could never look scruffy. Instead, they were … what was the word … deshabille. It meant untidy, but with bags and bags of style.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Monstrous Regiment (2003)
Added on 8-Dec-20 | Last updated 8-Dec-20
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

The presence of those seeking the truth is infinitely to be preferred to the presence of those who think they’ve found it.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Monstrous Regiment (2003)
Added on 6-May-15 | Last updated 6-May-15
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

Poets have tried to describe Ankh-Morpork. They have failed. Perhaps it’s the sheer zestful vitality of the place, or maybe it’s just that a city with a million inhabitants and no sewers is rather robust for poets, who prefer daffodils and no wonder. So let’s just say that Ankh-Morpork is as full of life as an old cheese on a hot day, as loud as a curse in a cathedral, as bright as an oil slick, as colorful as a bruise and as full of activity, industry, bustle and sheer exuberant busyness as a dead dog on a termite mound.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Mort (1987)
    (Source)
Added on 13-Apr-18 | Last updated 13-Apr-18
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

Albert grunted. “Do you know what happens to lads who ask too many questions?”

Mort thought for a moment. “No,” he said eventually, “what?”

There was silence.

Then Albert straightened up and said, “Damned if I know. Probably they get answers, and serve ’em right.”

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Mort (1987)
Added on 22-Jul-15 | Last updated 22-Jul-15
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

Scientists have calculated that the chances of something so patently absurd actually existing are millions to one. But magicians have calculated that million-to-one chances crop up nine times out of ten.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Mort (1987)
Added on 19-Aug-15 | Last updated 19-Aug-15
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

In short, Mort was one of those people who are more dangerous than a bag full of rattlesnakes. He was determined to discover the underlying logic behind the universe. Which was going to be hard, because there wasn’t one.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Mort (1987)
    (Source)
Added on 23-Feb-18 | Last updated 23-Feb-18
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

The Creator had a lot of remarkably good ideas when he put the world together, but making it understandable hadn’t been one of them.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Mort (1987)
    (Source)
Added on 6-Apr-18 | Last updated 6-Apr-18
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

It was crowded in the Curry Gardens on the corner of God Street and Blood Alley, but only with the cream of society — at least, with those people who are found floating on the top and who, therefore, it’s wisest to call the cream.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Mort (1987)
    (Source)
Added on 3-Aug-18 | Last updated 3-Aug-18
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

A faint smile hovered around the man’s lips. It was the sort of smile that lies on sandbanks waiting for incautious swimmers.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Mort (1987)
    (Source)
Added on 15-Oct-18 | Last updated 15-Oct-18
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

People don’t alter history any more than birds alter the sky, they just make brief patterns in it.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Mort (1987)
    (Source)
Added on 28-Dec-18 | Last updated 28-Dec-18
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

He’d been wrong, there was a light at the end of the tunnel, and it was a flamethrower.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Mort (1987)
Added on 13-Oct-20 | Last updated 13-Oct-20
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

People who used magic without knowing what they were doing usually came to a sticky end. All over the entire room, sometimes.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Moving Pictures (1990)
Added on 1-Feb-04 | Last updated 1-Feb-04
Link to this post | No comments
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

The whole of life is just like watching a film. Only it’s as though you always get in ten minutes after the big picture has started, and no-one will tell you the plot, so you have to work it out all yourself from the clues.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Moving Pictures (1990)
Added on 19-Mar-08 | Last updated 4-Sep-16
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

Because inside every old person is a young person wondering what happened.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Moving Pictures (1990)
Added on 5-Aug-15 | Last updated 5-Aug-15
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

The universe contains any amount of horrible ways to be woken up, such as the noise of the mob breaking down the front door, the scream of fire engines, or the realization that today is the Monday which on Friday night was a comfortably long way off. A dog’s wet nose is not strictly speaking the worst of the bunch, but it has its own peculiar dreadfulness which connoisseurs of the ghastly and dog owners everywhere have come to know and dread. It’s like having a small piece of defrosting liver pressed lovingly against you.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Moving Pictures (1990)
Added on 27-Oct-20 | Last updated 27-Oct-20
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

You know what the greatest tragedy is in the whole world? … It’s all the people who never find out what it is they really want to do or what it is they’re really good at. It’s all the sons who become blacksmiths because their fathers were blacksmiths. It’s all the people who could be really fantastic flute players who grow old and die without ever seeing a musical instrument, so they become bad plowmen instead. It’s all the people with talents who never even find out. Maybe they are never even born in a time when it’s even possible to find out. It’s all the people who never get to know what it is that they can really be. It’s all the wasted chances.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Moving Pictures (1990)
Added on 15-Dec-20 | Last updated 15-Dec-20
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

Sometimes you laugh because you’ve got no more room for crying. Sometimes you laugh because table manners on a beach are funny. And sometimes you laugh because you’re alive, when you really shouldn’t be.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Nation (2009)
Added on 9-Mar-21 | Last updated 9-Mar-21
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

His movements could be called cat-like, except that he did not stop to spray urine up against things.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Night Watch (2002)
Added on 24-Oct-05 | Last updated 24-Oct-05
Link to this post | No comments
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

We who think we are about to die will laugh at anything.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Night Watch (2002)
Added on 1-Jul-15 | Last updated 24-Jun-15
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

Here’s some advice boy. Don’t put your trust in revolutions. They always come around again. That’s why they’re called revolutions.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Night Watch (2002)
Added on 9-Sep-15 | Last updated 9-Sep-15
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

“Huh! Priests!” said Mr. Shoe. “They’re all the same. Always telling you that you’re going to live again after you’re dead, but you just try it and see the look on their faces!”

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Reaper Man (1991)
Added on 1-Feb-04 | Last updated 1-Feb-04
Link to this post | No comments
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

It was later that the story of Windle Poons really came to an end, if “story” means all that he did and caused and set in motion. In the Ramtop village where they dance the real Morris dance, for example, they believe that no one is finally dead until the ripples they cause in the world die away — until the clock he wound up winds down, until the wine she made has finished its ferment, until the crop they planted is harvested. The span of someone’s life, they say, is only the core of their actual existence.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Reaper Man (1991)
Added on 29-May-17 | Last updated 29-May-17
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

“Yo!” said the Dean.

“Yo what?” said Ridcully.

“It’s not a yo what, it’s just a yo,” said the Senior Wrangler, behind him. “It’s a general street greeting and affirmative with convivial military ingroup and masculine bonding-ritual overtones.”

“What? What? Like ‘jolly good’?” said Ridcully.

“I suppose so,” said the Senior Wrangler, reluctantly.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Reaper Man (1991)
Added on 18-Jan-19 | Last updated 18-Jan-19
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

Light thinks it travels faster than anything but it is wrong. No matter how fast light travels it finds the darkness has always got there first, and is waiting for it.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Reaper Man (1991)
Added on 31-May-19 | Last updated 31-May-19
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

LORD, WHAT CAN THE HARVEST HOPE FOR, IF NOT FOR THE CARE OF THE REAPER MAN?

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Reaper Man (1991)
Added on 26-Jul-19 | Last updated 26-Jul-19
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

Inside Every Living Person is a Dead Person Waiting to Get Out …

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Reaper Man (1991)
Added on 14-Feb-20 | Last updated 14-Feb-20
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

“They thought they were doing it for the best,” said Windle. “People often do. It’s amazing, the things that seem a good idea at the time.”

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Reaper Man, ch. 16 (1991)
    (Source)
Added on 24-Mar-19 | Last updated 24-Mar-19
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

A lot of this was beyond him, but to people like Ridcully this didn’t matter for very long. Ridcully was simple-minded. This doesn’t mean stupid. It just meant that he could only think properly about things if he cut away all the complicated bits around the edges.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Reaper Man, ch. 17 (1991)
    (Source)
Added on 5-May-19 | Last updated 5-May-19
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

“You’re not one of us.”

“I don’t think I’m one of them, either,” said Brutha. “I’m one of mine.”

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Small Gods (1992)
Added on 27-Jul-09 | Last updated 27-Jul-09
Link to this post | No comments
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

His philosophy was a mixture of three famous schools — the Cynics, the Stoics and the Epicureans — and summed up all three of them in his famous phrase, “You can’t trust any bugger further than you can throw him, and there’s nothing you can do about it, so let’s have a drink.”

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Small Gods (1992)
Added on 12-Jan-21 | Last updated 12-Jan-21
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

Time is a drug. Too much of it kills you.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Small Gods (1992)
Added on 13-May-15 | Last updated 13-May-15
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

What have I always believed? That on the whole, and by and large, if a man lived properly, not according to what any priests said, but according to what seemed decent and honest inside, then it would, at the end, more or less, turn out all right.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Small Gods (1992)
Added on 26-Jan-21 | Last updated 26-Jan-21
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

Goodness is about what you do. Not who you pray to.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Snuff (2011)
Added on 13-Apr-21 | Last updated 19-Apr-21
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

Satchelmouth was by no means averse to the finger-foxtrot and the skull fandango, but he’d never murdered anyone, at least on purpose. Satchelmouth had been made aware that he had a soul and, though it had a few holes in it and was a little ragged around the edges, he cherished the hope that some day the god Reg would find him a place in a celestial combo. You didn’t get the best gigs if you were a murderer. You probably had to play the viola.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Soul Music (1994)
Added on 13-Mar-20 | Last updated 13-Mar-20
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

“I meant,” said Ipslore bitterly, “what is there in this world that truly makes living worthwhile?”

Death thought about it.

CATS, he said eventually, CATS ARE NICE

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Sourcery (1988)
    (Source)
Added on 1-Sep-20 | Last updated 1-Sep-20
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

The truth isn’t easily pinned to a page. In the bathtub of history the truth is harder to hold than the soap and much more difficult to find.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Sourcery (1988)
Added on 4-May-21 | Last updated 4-May-21
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

“And what would humans be without love?”

RARE, said Death.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
Sourcery, ch. 1 (1988)
    (Source)
Added on 31-Jan-20 | Last updated 31-Jan-20
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

If you don’t turn your life into a story, you just become a part of someone else’s story.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
The Amazing Maurice and His Educated Rodents (2001)
Added on 16-Sep-15 | Last updated 16-Sep-15
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

He’d noticed that sex bore some resemblance to cookery: it fascinated people, they sometimes bought books full of complicated recipes and interesting pictures, and sometimes when they were really hungry they created vast banquets in their imagination — but at the end of the day they’d settle quite happily for egg and chips. If it was well done and maybe had a slice of tomato.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
The Fifth Elephant (1999)
Added on 10-Nov-20 | Last updated 10-Nov-20
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

A marriage is always made up of two people who are prepared to swear that only the other one snores.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
The Fifth Elephant (1999)
Added on 30-Mar-21 | Last updated 30-Mar-21
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

But still, one of the most basic rules for survival on any planet is never to upset someone wearing black leather.*
*This is why protesters against the wearing of animal skins by humans unaccountably fail to throw their paint over Hell’s Angels.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
The Last Continent (1998)
Added on 17-Oct-05 | Last updated 17-Oct-05
Link to this post | No comments
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

Lots of people would be as cowardly as me if they were brave enough.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
The Last Hero (2001)

See also Fuller.
Added on 16-Mar-21 | Last updated 16-Mar-21
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

I have no use for people who have learned the limits of the possible.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
The Last Hero (2001)

See also Clarke.
Added on 1-Jun-21 | Last updated 1-Jun-21
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

A Thaum is the basic unit of magical strength. It has been universally established as the amount of magic needed to create one small white pigeon or three normal sized billiard balls.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
The Light Fantastic (1986)
Added on 1-Feb-04 | Last updated 1-Feb-04
Link to this post | No comments
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

Inside every sane person there’s a madman struggling to get out,” said the shopkeeper. “That’s what I’ve always thought. No one goes mad quicker than a totally sane person.”

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
The Light Fantastic (1986)
Added on 29-Sep-20 | Last updated 29-Sep-20
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

Be careful. People like to be told what they already know. Remember that. They get uncomfortable when you tell them new things. New things … well, new things aren’t what they expect. They like to know that, say, a dog will bite a man. That is what dogs do. They don’t want to know that man bites a dog, because the world is not supposed to happen like that. In short, what people think they want is news, but what they really crave is olds … Not news but olds, telling people that what they think they already know is true.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
The Truth [Lord Vetinari] (2000)
Added on 6-Jul-10 | Last updated 25-Jun-21
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

“Now … if you trust in yourself …”
“Yes?”
“… and believe in your dreams …”
“Yes?”
“… and follow your star …” Miss Tick went on.
“Yes?”
“… you’ll still be beaten by people who spent their time working hard and learning things and weren’t so lazy.”

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
The Wee Free Men (2003)
Added on 13-Mar-15 | Last updated 13-Mar-15
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

Them as can do has to do for them as can’t. And someone has to speak up for them as has no voices.

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
The Wee Free Men (2003)
Added on 3-Jun-15 | Last updated 3-Jun-15
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

“I can see we’re going to get along like a house on fire,” said Miss Tick. “There may be no survivors.”

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
The Wee Free Men (2003)
Added on 10-Jun-15 | Last updated 10-Jun-15
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry

“We canna just rush in, ye ken.”

A big bearded Feegle raised his hand. “Point ‘o order, Big Man. Ye can just rush in. We always just rush in.”

“Aye, Big Yan, point well made. But ye gotta know where ye’re just gonna rush in. Ye cannae just rush in anywhere. It looks bad, havin’ to rush oout again straight awa’.”

Terry Pratchett (1948-2015) English author
The Wee Free Men, ch. 5 (2003)
    (Source)
Added on 7-Feb-20 | Last updated 7-Feb-20
Link to this post | No comments
Topics: , , , , , , , ,
More quotes by Pratchett, Terry