François-Marie Arouet (21 November 1694 – 30 May 1778), known by his nom de plume Voltaire, was a French Enlightenment writer, historian, and philosopher famous for his wit, his attacks on the established Catholic Church, and his advocacy of freedom of religion, freedom of speech, and separation of church and state.

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What then do you call your soul? What idea have you of it? You cannot of yourselves without revelation admit the existence within you of anything but a power unknown to you of feeling and thinking.

It is not enough to conquer, one must learn to seduce.

The very impossibility in which I find myself to prove that God is not discovers to me his existence.

We are rarely proud when we are alone.

I have lived eighty years of life and know nothing for it but to be resigned and tell myself that flies are born to be eaten by spiders and man to be devoured by sorrow.

The ear is the avenue to the heart.

The sovereign is called a tyrant who knows no laws but his caprice.

Tyrants have always some slight shade of virtue, they support the laws before destroying them.

A witty saying proves nothing.

Is there anyone so wise as to learn by the experience of others?

The Holy Roman Empire is neither Holy nor Roman nor an Empire.

Appreciation is a wonderful thing: It makes what is excellent in others belong to us as well.

Superstition is to religion what astrology is to astronomy the mad daughter of a wise mother. These daughters have too long dominated the earth.

We never live, we are always in the expectation of living.

Originality is nothing but judicious imitation. The most original writers borrowed one from another.

Very learned women are to be found in the same manner as female warriors, but they are seldom or ever inventors.

Prejudices are what fools use for reason.

Nothing can be more contrary to religion and the clergy than reason and common sense.

The progress of rivers to the ocean is not so rapid as that of man to error.

Every man is guilty of all the good he did not do.

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