65 Best Plato Quotes from the Ancient Greek Philosopher

Plato, an eminent Greek philosopher, was a student and friend of Socrates and is best known for founding the Academy, a significant school in ancient Athens.

Most of Plato’s existing works are epistles and dialogues that chronologically outline his philosophical evolution.

His early works present Socrates’s major ideas, emphasizing the relationship between virtue, knowledge and happiness.


Plato’s mid-period dialogues, like the Republic and Symposium, explore the rational connection between the soul, society and the cosmos, while his later works include treatises on law, mathematics and natural science.

Plato saw the rational soul as immortal and believed in a cosmic soul and a Demiurge, the creator of the physical world.

He also advocated for the independent reality of Ideas or Forms, which serve as ethical standards and the basis of objective scientific knowledge.

Related: Umberto Eco Quotes from the Italian Philosopher & Novelist and Marshall McLuhan Quotes from the Canadian Philosopher

He believed that a philosopher, who comprehends the harmony of the universe, is most qualified to lead a just state.

Plato’s teachings significantly influenced Western civilization and are considered among the world’s finest literature.

Let’s dive into some of his most popular quotes.

Best Plato Quotes

1. “Music gives a soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination and life to everything.” ~ (Plato).


2. “The beginning is the most important part of the work.” ~ (Plato).


3. “Wise men speak because they have something to say; fools because they have to say something.” ~ (Plato).


4. If women are expected to do the same work as men, we must teach them the same things. ~ Plato.


5. Knowledge without justice ought to be called cunning rather than wisdom. ~ Plato.


6. There is no harm in repeating a good thing. ~ Plato.


7. Never discourage anyone who continually makes progress, no matter how slow. ~ Plato.


8. The first and greatest victory is to conquer yourself; to be conquered by yourself is of all things most shameful and vile. ~ Plato.


9. “A house that has a library in it has a soul.” ~ (Plato).


10. “Happiness springs from doing good and helping others.” ~ (Plato).


11. “Love is a serious mental disease.” ~ (Plato).


12. “Only the dead have seen the end of war.” ~ (Plato).


13. “Human behavior flows from three main sources: desire, emotion, and knowledge.” ~ (Plato).

14. “The heaviest penalty for declining to rule is to be ruled by someone inferior to yourself.” ~ (Plato).


15. Books give a soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination, and life to everything. ~ Plato.

16. Ideas are the source of all things. ~ Plato.


17. Thinking – the talking of the soul with itself. ~ Plato.

18. Wealth, and poverty; one is the parent of luxury and indolence, and the other of meanness and viciousness, and both of discontent. ~ Plato.


19. A good decision is based on knowledge and not on numbers. ~ Plato.

20. “In order for man to succeed in life, God provided him with two means, education and physical activity. Not separately, one for the soul and the other for the body, but for the two together. With these means, man can attain perfection.” ~ (Plato).


21. “Those who tell the stories rule society.” ~ (Plato).

22. “Every heart sings a song, incomplete, until another heart whispers back. Those who wish to sing always find a song. At the touch of a lover, everyone becomes a poet.” ~ (Plato).


23. “Ignorance, the root and the stem of every evil.” ~ (Plato).

24. “I am the wisest man alive, for I know one thing, and that is that I know nothing.” ~ (Plato).

Top Plato Quotes

25. “One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors.” ~ (Plato).


26. “We can easily forgive a child who is afraid of the dark; the real tragedy of life is when men are afraid of the light.” ~ (Plato).

27. “Astronomy compels the soul to look upwards and leads us from this world to another.” ~ (Plato).

28. There is truth in wine and children. ~ Plato.


29. All men are by nature equal, made all of the same earth by one workman. ~ Plato.

30. Truth is the beginning of every good to the gods, and of every good to man. ~ Plato.

31. There is in every one of us, even those who seem to be most moderate, a type of desire that is terrible, wild, and lawless. ~ Plato.


32. Nothing beautiful without struggle. ~ Plato.

33. “The worst form of injustice is pretended justice.” ~ (Plato).

34. “Opinion is the medium between knowledge and ignorance.” ~ (Plato).

35. “The price good men pay for indifference to public affairs is to be ruled by evil men.” ~ (Plato).


36. “Courage is knowing what not to fear.” ~ (Plato).

37. “Lack of activity destroys the good condition of every human being.” ~ (Plato).

38. “Philosophy is the highest music.” ~ (Plato).

Famous Plato Quotes

39. “The true lover of knowledge naturally strives for truth, and is not content with common opinion, but soars with undimmed and unwearied passion till he grasps the essential nature of things.” ~ (Plato).


40. “There are three classes of men; lovers of wisdom, lovers of honor, and lovers of gain.” ~ (Plato).

41. “Nothing in the affairs of men is worthy of great anxiety.” ~ (Plato).

42. “An empty vessel makes the loudest sound, so they that have the least wit are the greatest babblers.” ~ (Plato).

Short Plato Quotes

43. “Education is teaching our children to desire the right things.” ~ (Plato).


44. “I’m trying to think, don’t confuse me with facts.” ~ (Plato).

45. “When men speak ill of thee, live so that nobody will believe them.” ~ (Plato).

46. “The wise man will want to be ever with him who is better than himself.” ~ (Plato).

47. “Do not train a child to learn by force or harshness; but direct them to it by what amuses their minds, so that you may be better able to discover with accuracy the peculiar bent of the genius of each.” ~ (Plato).


48. “The object of education is to teach us to love what is beautiful.” ~ (Plato).

49. “According to Greek mythology, humans were originally created with four arms, four legs and a head with two faces. Fearing their power, Zeus split them into two separate parts, condemning them to spend their lives in search of their other halves.” ~ (Plato).

50. “Any man may easily do harm, but not every man can do good to another.” ~ (Plato).

51. “No one is more hated than he who speaks the truth.” ~ (Plato).


52. “Character is simply habit long continued.” ~ (Plato).

53. “Necessity is the mother of invention.” ~ (Plato).

54. “The measure of a man is what he does with power.” ~ (Plato).

55. “Those who are able to see beyond the shadows and lies of their culture will never be understood let alone believed by the masses.” ~ (Plato).


56. “The first and best victory is to conquer self.” ~ (Plato).

57. “No wealth can ever make a bad man at peace with himself.” ~ (Plato).

58. “The greatest wealth is to live content with little.” ~ (Plato).

59. “Geometry existed before creation.” ~ (Plato).

60. “The soul of man is immortal and imperishable.” ~ (Plato).

61. “To conquer oneself is the best and noblest victory; to be vanquished by one’s own nature is the worst and most ignoble defeat.” ~ (Plato).


62. “He who is not a good servant will not be a good master.” ~ (Plato).

63. “A grateful mind is a great mind which eventually attracts to itself great things.” ~ (Plato).

64. “Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a harder battle.” ~ (Plato).

65. “You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation.” ~ (Plato).

So these were the 65 quotes by Plato.

If you like these quotes and sayings, then you can also read my other popular blog posts on the topics of Sidney Poitier Quotes and Benjamin Disraeli Quotes.

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Chandan Negi
Chandan Negi

I’m the Founder of Internet Pillar - I love sharing quotes and motivational content to inspire and motivate people - #quotes #motivation #internetpillar