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Quotations: Language

It is no coincidence that in no known language does the phrase 'As pretty as an Airport' appear.
Douglas Adams

I don't mind what language an opera is sung in so long as it is a language I don't understand.
Sir Edward Appleton

The language denotes the man. A coarse or refined character finds its expression naturally in a coarse or refined phraseology.
Christian Nestell Bovee

Language is a mixture of statement and evocation.
Elizabeth Bowen

Mechanical difficulties with language are the outcome of internal difficulties with thought.
Elizabeth Bowen

Language exerts hidden power, like the moon on the tides.
Rita Mae Brown

By and large, language is a tool for concealing the truth.
George Carlin

Morals and manners will rise or decline with our attention to grammar.
Jason Chamberlain

Language is the armory of the human mind, and at once contains the trophies of its past, and the weapons of its future conquests.
Samuel Taylor Coleridge

Pedantry consists in the use of words unsuitable to the time, place, and company.
Samuel Taylor Coleridge

It is curious that some learned dunces, because they can write nonsense in languages that are dead, should despise those that talk sense in language that are living. To acquire a few tongues, says a French writer, is the task of a few years, but to be eloquent in one, is the labor of a life.
Charles Caleb Colton

If names are not correct, language will not be in accordance with the truth of things.
Confucius

Language is not only the vehicle of thought, it is a great and efficient instrument in thinking.
Sir Humphrey Davy

Language is the source of misunderstandings.
Antoine de de Saint-Exupery

Music is the only language in which you cannot say a mean or sarcastic thing.
John Erskine

A different language is a different vision of life.
Federico Fellini

Language,--human language,--after all, is but little better than the cloak and cackle of fowls, and other utterances of brute nature,--sometimes not so adequate.
Nathaniel Hawthorne

We need a president who's fluent in at least one language.
Buck Henry

The chief virtue that language can have is clearness, and nothing detracts from it so much as the use of unfamiliar words.
Hippocrates

Language was invented to ask questions.
Eric Hoffer

Language! the blood of the soul, sir, into which our thoughts run, and out of which they grow.
Oliver Wendell Holmes Sr.

Language is the picture and counterpart of thought.
Mark Hopkins

Accuracy of language is one of the bulwarks of truth.
Anna Brownell Jameson

Languages are the pedigree of nations.
Samuel Johnson

Language is the only instrument of science, and words are but the signs of ideas.
Samuel Johnson

It's a strange world of language in which skating on thin ice can get you into hot water.
Franklin P. Jones

In the commerce of speech use only coin of gold and silver.
Joseph Joubert

If the English language made any sense, a catastrophe would be an apostrophe with fur.
Doug Larson

Language is a field of battle, the media is the artillery, and vocabulary is the ammunition. The NWO has taken the field by storm, and is proceeding with coordinated attacks on several fronts, using all the latest high-tech vocabulary ammunition. They've laid a bed of land mines that cripple us when we try to stand on them: 'liberalism', conservatism', prosperity', 'democracy'.
Richard Moore

Life is a foreign language; all men mispronounce it.
Christopher Morley

The great enemy of clear language is insincerity. When there is a gap between one's real and one's declared aims, one turns as it were instinctively to long words and exhausted idioms, like a cuttlefish spurting out ink.
George Orwell

A filthy mouth will not utter decent language.
Chinese Proverb

Every man is a part of each and our senses are attached to both. So when a man speaks of himself as a man, he is in matter; but when he speaks a scientific truth, he is out of matter and so far equal to god. So man's investigations are but an imitation of wisdom's experiments for his own happiness. And man not wanting to be outdone by his father tries to imitate what he sees and hears; this makes man a kind of progressive being. Man invents language from the fact that he cannot be satisfied to let God or wisdom dictate his acts, so he invents language to explain his wisdom. It has been said that language was invented to deceive others. In some cases I have no doubt but the world thinks it does but wisdom gives it another direction; or language acts to undeceive and it often exposes our ignorance.
Phineas Parkhurst Quimby

Language becomes a prison house only poets can escape...if we do not reject any strict distinctions between ordinary usage and figures of speech.
Arthur Quinn

The nine most terrifying words in the English language are, 'I'm from the government and I'm here to help.
Ronald Reagan

Differences of habit and language are nothing at all if our aims are identical and our hearts are open.
J. K. Rowling

If you want to tell the untold stories, if you want to give voice to the voiceless, you've got to find a language. Which goes for film as well as prose, for documentary as well as autobiography. Use the wrong language, and you're dumb and blind.
Salman Rushdie

Slang is a language that rolls up its sleeves, spits on its hands and goes to work.
Carl Sandburg

England and America are two countries separated by a common language.
George Bernard Shaw

The great thing about human language is that it prevents us from sticking to the matter at hand.
Lewis Thomas

Man invented language to satisfy his deep need to complain.
Lily Tomlin

In Paris they simply stared when I spoke to them in French; I never did succeed in making those idiots understand their language.
Mark Twain

To God I speak Spanish, to women Italian, to men French, and to my horse--German.
Charles V

The purpose of most computer languages is to lengthen your resume by a word and a comma.
Larry Wall

We have really everything in common with America nowadays except, of course, language.
Oscar Wilde

If we spoke a different language, we would perceive a somewhat different world.
Ludwig Wittgenstein

Language is a part of our organism and no less complicated than it.
Ludwig Wittgenstein

Philosophy is a battle against the bewitchment of our intelligence by means of language.
Ludwig Wittgenstein

The limits of my language mean the limits of my world.
Ludwig Wittgenstein

Language can only deal meaningfully with a special, restricted segment of reality. The rest, and it is presumably the much larger part, is silence.
George Steiner

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