104 Best Terry Pratchett Quotes from the English Humorist

English author Sir Terence David John Pratchett, better known as Terry Pratchett, was celebrated for his humorous fantasy and science fiction works, most notably the globally popular Discworld series.

Born on April 28, 1948, in Beaconsfield, Buckinghamshire, England, Pratchett developed an early interest in fantasy and science fiction, publishing his first story, “The Hades Business,” in a school magazine in 1961.

Terry Pratchett

His first novel, The Carpet People, came out in 1971, introducing readers to his lighthearted style.

Despite working in journalism and public relations, Pratchett continued to write, with the first book in the Discworld series, The Colour of Magic, published in 1983.

The series evolved into a global phenomenon, leading to video games, television adaptations and more.

His work also catered to a younger audience, penning children’s novels in the Discworld universe and stand-alone trilogies.

Related: Paulo Coelho Quotes and Haruki Murakami Quotes

After his diagnosis with early-onset Alzheimer’s disease in 2007, Pratchett became a vocal advocate for Alzheimer’s research.

He continued writing despite his disease and even served as an adjunct professor of English at the University of Dublin.

He was knighted in 2009 for his contributions to literature and passed away in 2015.

His final Discworld book, The Shepherd’s Crown, was published posthumously later that year.

I have chosen a list of best quotes from Terry Pratchett for you.

Top Terry Pratchett Quotes

1. “It is said that your life flashes before your eyes just before you die. That is true, it’s called Life.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).


2. “When in doubt, choose to live.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

3. “It’s not worth doing something unless someone, somewhere, would much rather you weren’t doing it.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

4. “Give a man a fire and he’s warm for a day, but set fire to him and he’s warm for the rest of his life.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

5. “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).

6. “If you trust in yourself… and believe in your dreams… and follow your star… you’ll still get beaten by people who spent their time working hard and learning things and weren’t so lazy.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

7. “So much universe, and so little time.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

8. “In the beginning there was nothing, which exploded.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

9. “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).

10. “Wisdom comes from experience. Experience is often a result of lack of wisdom.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

11. “Stories of imagination tend to upset those without one.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

12. “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).

13. “And what would humans be without love? RARE, said Death.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

14. “Time is a drug. Too much of it kills you.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).


15. “Given enough coffee I could rule the world.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

16. “No one is actually dead until the ripples they cause in the world die away.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

17. “If you have enough book space, I don’t want to talk to you.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

18. “Do you not know that a man is not dead while his name is still spoken?” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

19. “They say a little knowledge is a dangerous thing, but it’s not one half so bad as a lot of ignorance.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

20. “Humans need fantasy to be human. To be the place where the falling angel meets the rising ape.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

Best Terry Pratchett Quotes

21. “Open your eyes and then open your eyes again.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

22. “Evil begins when you begin to treat people as things.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

23. “There isn’t a way things should be. There’s just what happens, and what we do.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

24. “The first draft is just you telling yourself the story.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

25. “Real stupidity beats artificial intelligence every time.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).


26. “Even if it’s not your fault, it’s your responsibility.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

27. “The pen is mightier than the sword if the sword is very short, and the pen is very sharp.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

28. “Always remember that the crowd that applauds your coronation is the same crowd that will applaud your beheading. People like a show.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

29. “You need to believe in things that aren’t true. How else can they become?” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

30. “Death: Human beings make life so interesting. Do you know, that in a universe so full of wonders, they have managed to invent boredom.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

31. “Everything is a test.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

32. “Education had been easy. Learning things had been harder.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

33. “A lie can run round the world before the truth has got its boots on.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

34. “Things just happen. What the hell.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

35. “Most gods throw dice, but Fate plays chess, and you don’t find out til too late that he’s been playing with two queens all along.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

36. “It was sad music. But it waved its sadness like a battle flag. It said the universe had done all it could, but you were still alive.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

37. “The harder I work, the luckier I become.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

38. “A marriage is always made up of two people who are prepared to swear that only the other one snores.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

39. “Geography is just physics slowed down, with a couple of trees stuck in it.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

40. “Coming back to where you started is not the same as never leaving.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

Great Terry Pratchett Quotes

41. “Coffee is a way of stealing time that should by rights belong to your older self.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

42. “Knowing how bad you could be is a great encouragement to being good.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

43. “Go on, prove me wrong. Destroy the fabric of the universe. See if I care.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

44. “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).

45. “Of course I’m sane, when trees start talking to me, I don’t talk back.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

46. “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).

47. “This I choose to do. If there is a price, this I choose to pay. If it is my death, then I choose to die. Where this takes me, there I choose to go. I choose. This I choose to do.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

48. “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).

49. “People think that stories are shaped by people. In fact, it’s the other way around.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

50. “Seeing, contrary to popular wisdom, isn’t believing. It’s where belief stops, because it isn’t needed any more.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

51. “The intelligence of the creature known as a crowd, is the square root of the number of people in it.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).


52. “It doesn’t stop being magic just because you know how it works.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

53. “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).

54. “People needed to believe in gods, if only because it was so hard to believe in people.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

55. “Everyone should occasionally break the law in some small and delightful way. It’s good for the hygiene of the brain.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

56. “There’s always a story. It’s all stories, really. The sun coming up every day is a story. Everything’s got a story in it. Change the story, change the world.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

57. “It’s vital to remember who you really are. It’s very important. It isn’t a good idea to rely on other people or things to do it for you, you see. They always get it wrong.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

58. “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).

59. “The best research is the research that you don’t know that you are doing.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

60. “The universe clearly operates for the benefit of humanity. This can be readily seen from the convenient way the sun comes up in the morning, when people are ready to start the day.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

Powerful Terry Pratchett Quotes

61. “Insanity is catching.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

62. “Steal five dollars and you’re a common thief. Steal thousands and you’re either the government or a hero.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

63. “The truth may be out there, but lies are inside your head.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

64. “Rings try to find their way back to their owner. Someone ought to write a book about it.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

65. “History always has a few tricks up its frayed sleeve. It’s been around a long time.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

66. “Most of the great triumphs and tragedies of history are caused not by people being fundamentally good or fundamentally evil, but by people being fundamentally people.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

67. “Truth! Freedom! Justice! And a hard-boiled egg!” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

68. “Despite rumor, Death isn’t cruel – merely terribly, terribly good at his job.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

69. “Fear is a strange soil. It grows obedience like corn, which grow in straight lines to make weeding easier. But sometimes it grows the potatoes of defiance, which flourish underground.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

70. “Grinning like a necrophiliac in a morgue.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

71. “When you look into the abyss, it’s not supposed to wave back.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).


72. “I don’t think I’ve drunk enough beer to understand that.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

73. “Just erotic. Nothing kinky. It’s the difference between using a feather and using a chicken.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

74. “I imagine that fish have no word for water.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

75. “There was no safety. There was no pride. All there was, was money. Everything became money, and money became everything. Money treated us as if we were things, and we died.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

76. “SCIENCE: a way of finding things out and then making them work. Science explains what is happening around us the whole time. So does RELIGION, but science is better because it comes up with more understandable excuses when it’s wrong.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

77. “Thinking. This book contains some. Whether you try it at home is up to you.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

78. “When Mister Safety Catch Is Not On, Mister Crossbow Is Not Your Friend.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

79. “Nanny Ogg looked under her bed in case there was a man there. Well, you never knew your luck.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

80. “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).

Inspiring Terry Pratchett Quotes

81. “It is important that we know where we come from, because if you do not know where you come from, then you don’t know where you are, and if you don’t know where you are, you don’t know where you’re going. And if you don’t know where you’re going, you’re probably going wrong.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

82. “You haven’t really been anywhere until you’ve got back home.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

83. “Mort was already aware that love made you feel hot and cold and cruel and weak, but he hadn’t realized that it could make you stupid.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

84. “But 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).

85. “Bringing about Armageddon can be dangerous. Do not attempt it in your own home.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

86. “The truth is a fog, in which one man sees the heavenly host and the other one sees a flying elephant.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

87. “Bishops move diagonally. That’s why they often turn up where the kings don’t expect them to be.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

88. “Vimes stalked gloomily through the crowded streets, feeling like the only pickled onion in a fruit salad.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

89. “Everywhere’s been where it is ever since it was first put there. It’s called geography.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

90. “All property is theft, except mine.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

91. “The thing about stories is you have to pick the ones that last.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

92. “Opera happens because a large number of things amazingly fail to go wrong.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

93. “If Not You, Who Else?” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

94. “Chaos is found in greatest abundance wherever order is being sought. It always defeats order, because it is better organized.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

95. “The sun set, which is everyday magic…” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

96. “You get a wonderful view from the point of no return.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

97. “Vimes had got around to a Clean Desk policy. It was a Clean Floor strategy that eluded him at the moment.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

98. “It wasn’t that Nanny Ogg sang badly. It was just that she could hit notes which, when amplified by a tin bath half full of water, ceased to be sound and became some sort of invasive presence.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

99. “And Sam Vimes thought: Why is Young Sam’s nursery full of farmyard animals anyway? Why are his books full of moo-cows and baa-lambs? He is growing up in the city. He will only see them on a plate! They go sizzle!” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

100. “One day all of us will die but – and this is the important thing – we are not dead yet.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

101. “If I were you, I’d sue my face for slander.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

102. “I read anything that’s going to be interesting. But you don’t know what it is until you’ve read it. Somewhere in a book on the history of false teeth there’ll be the making of a novel.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

103. “We are monkeys. We like to chatter. Chattering doesn’t cost us anything.” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

104. “It looked like the sort of book described in library catalogues as “slightly foxed”, although it would be more honest to admit that it looked as though it had been badgered, wolved and possibly beared as well. – Ah, but has it been hedgehogged?” ~ (Terry Pratchett).

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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