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50 Jean-Jacques Rousseau Quotes on Human Nature

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These Jean-Jacques Rousseau quotes on education, beliefs, and philosophy will enlighten you.

Jean-Jacques Rousseau was a Genevan philosopher, composer, educator, and writer.

Rousseau greatly influenced the world of politics, economics, and during the age of Enlightenment in Europe.

If you’re interested in expanding your mind and learning about important philosophies throughout history, you’ll love these Jean-Jacques Rousseau quotes on human nature.

French Revolution philosophers like Jean-Jacques Rousseau have a unique perspective on the world.

Keep that historical context in mind as you read these quotes on education and beliefs.

Have you ever read any Jean-Jacques Rousseau books or Jean-Jacques Rousseau philosophy before?

Take the time to read this list of the best Jean-Jacques Rousseau quotes on human nature and learn more about how this brilliant educator viewed the world.

Don’t forget to also check out these John Dewey quotes on teachers and education.

Check out our most popular quote article, a list of short inspirational quotes for daily inspiration. 

Check out our inspirational quotes category page for more inspirational life quotes.

Jean-Jacques Rousseau quotes on education, beliefs, and philosophy

1. “Patience is bitter, but its fruit is sweet.” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

Jean-Jacques Rousseau quotes on patience

2. “What wisdom can you find that is greater than kindness?” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

Jean-Jacques Rousseau quotes on what wisdom can you find that is greater than kindness

You will also enjoy our article on nature quotes.

3. “No man has any natural authority over his fellow men.” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

Jean-Jacques Rousseau quotes about no man has any natural authority over his fellow men

4. “We are born weak, we need strength; helpless, we need aid; foolish, we need reason. All that we lack at birth, all that we need when we come to man’s estate, is the gift of education.” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

Jean-Jacques Rousseau quotes on strength, helpless and foolish

5. “Gratitude is a duty which ought to be paid, but which none have a right to expect.” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

Jean-Jacques Rousseau quotes on gratitude

6. “The person who has lived the most is not the one with the most years but the one with the richest experiences.” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

Jean-Jacques Rousseau quotes aboutrichest experiences

7. “Nature never deceives us; it is we who deceive ourselves.” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

Jean-Jacques Rousseau quotes on nature never deceives us

8. “I may be no better, but at least I am different.” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

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Jean-Jacques Rousseau quotes about I'm different

9. “Our greatest evils flow from ourselves.” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

Jean-Jacques Rousseau quotes about our greatest evils flow from ourselves

10. “The world of reality has its limits; the world of imagination is boundless.” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

Jean-Jacques Rousseau quotes about the reality has it's limits

Thought-provoking Jean-Jacques Rousseau quotes

11. “It is unnatural for a majority to rule, for a majority can seldom be organized and united for specific action, and a minority can.” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

Jean-Jacques Rousseau quotes for majority to rule

12. “Insults are the arguments employed by those who are in the wrong.” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

Jean-Jacques Rousseau quotes about Insults

13. “You forget that the fruits belong to all and that the land belongs to no one.” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

Jean-Jacques Rousseau quotes that the fruits belong to all and that the land belongs to no one

14. “Free people, remember this maxim: we may acquire liberty, but it is never recovered if it is once lost.” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

Jean-Jacques Rousseau quotes about remember this maxim

15. “Happiness: a good bank account, a good cook, and a good digestion.” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

Jean-Jacques Rousseau quotes on happiness

16. “Every man has the right to risk his own life in order to preserve it. Has it ever been said that a man who throws himself out the window to escape from a fire is guilty of suicide?” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

Jean-Jacques Rousseau quotes about every man has the right to risk his own life in order to preserve it

17. “People who know little are usually great talkers, while men who know much say little.” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

Jean-Jacques Rousseau quotes about people who know little are usually great talkers

18. “Childhood is the sleep of reason.” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

Jean-Jacques Rousseau quotes about childhood is the sleep of reason

19. “Man was born free, and he is everywhere in chains.” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

Jean-Jacques Rousseau quotes about man was born free, and he is everywhere in chains

20. “The English think they are free. They are free only during the election of members of parliament.” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

Jean-Jacques Rousseau quotes about the election of members of parliament

Powerful Jean-Jacques Rousseau quotes

21. “Plant and your spouse plants with you; weed and you weed alone.” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

powerful Jean-Jacques Rousseau quotes

22. “Absolute silence leads to sadness. It is the image of death.” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

Jean-Jacques Rousseau quotes on absolute silence leads to sadness. it is the image of death

23. “Our will is always for our own good, but we do not always see what that is.” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

Jean-Jacques Rousseau quotes about our will is always for our own good

24. “We are born, so to speak, twice over; born into existence, and born into life; born a human being, and born a man.” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

Jean-Jacques Rousseau quotes about human being and born a man

25. “Those that are most slow in making a promise are the most faithful in the performance of it.” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

Jean-Jacques Rousseau quotes about those that are most slow in making a promise are the most faithful in the performance

26. “God made me and broke the mold.” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

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27. “It is too difficult to think nobly when one thinks only of earning a living.” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

28. “We should not teach children the sciences, but give them a taste for them.” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

29. “Falsehood has an infinity of combinations, but truth has only one mode of being.” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

30. “I undertake the same project as Montaigne, but with an aim contrary to his own: for he wrote his Essays only for others, and I write my reveries only for myself.” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

Jean-Jacques Rousseau quotes that will make you think

31. “How many famous and high-spirited heroes have lived a day too long?” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

32. “Take the course opposite to custom and you will almost always do well.” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

33. “Whoever blushes is already guilty; true innocence is ashamed of nothing.” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

34. “Virtue is a state of war, and to live in it we have always to combat with ourselves.” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

35. “Remorse sleeps during prosperity but awakes bitter consciousness during adversity.” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

36. “Take from the philosopher the pleasure of being heard and his desire for knowledge ceases.” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

37. “To endure is the first thing that a child ought to learn, and that which he will have the most need to know.” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

38. “Heroes are not known by the loftiness of their carriage; the greatest braggarts are generally the merest cowards.” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

39. “Ordinary readers, forgive my paradoxes: one must make them when one reflects; and whatever you may say, I prefer being a man with paradoxes than a man with prejudices.” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

40. “I have resolved on an enterprise that has no precedent and will have no imitator. I want to set before my fellow human beings a man in every way true to nature, and that man will be myself.” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

More Jean-Jacques Rousseau quotes

41. “I only see clearly what I remember.” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

42. “We do not know what is really good or bad fortune.” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

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43. “Religious persecutors are not believers, they are rascals.” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

44. “The English are predisposed to pride, the French to vanity.” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

45. “Fame is but the breath of people, and that often unwholesome.” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

46. “However great a man’s natural talent may be, the act of writing cannot be learned all at once.” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

47. “It is a mania shared by philosophers of all ages to deny what exists and to explain what does not exist.” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

48. “Although modesty is natural to man, it is not natural to children. Modesty only begins with the knowledge of evil.” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

49. “Do I dare set forth here the most important, the most useful rule of all education? It is not to save time, but to squander it.” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

50. “The body politic, as well as the human body, begins to die as soon as it is born, and carries itself the causes of its destruction.” Jean-Jacques Rousseau

What are your favorite Jean-Jacques Rousseau quotes about freedom and the social contract?

The legacy left behind by Jean-Jacques Rousseau is impressive.

He has had a profound effect on the way we think about many subjects.

These quotes about freedom, knowledge, and humanity are great words of wisdom to ponder.

The next time you want to work out your critical thinking skills, read through this collection of Jean-Jacques Rousseau’s beliefs and philosophies.

What was Jean Jacques Rousseau philosophy?

When it came to politics, his works, Discourse on Inequality and The Social Contract, are highly regarded.

In the world of literature, Jean-Jacques Rousseau is credited with playing a role in the development of the concept of romanticism in fiction and modern autobiographies.

These Jean-Jacques Rousseau sayings on education will make you analyze new concepts and deeply think about philosophy.

What are your favorite Jean-Jacques Rousseau quotes and sayings in French or English?

Let us know in the comment section below.

Samantha Williams
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