Historical Figures

"Books constitute capital. A library book lasts as long as a house: for hundreds of years. It is not, then, an article of mere consumption but fairly of capital, and often in the case of professional men, setting out in life, it is their only capital."

Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826)
3rd President of the United States

Thomas Jefferson, in an 1821 letter to James Madison

"The worst thing about new books is that they keep us from reading old ones."

Joseph Joubert (1754-1824)
French Moralist and Essayist

Page Turner, newsletter of the Friends of the Whitefish Bay Library (WI)

"The only end of writing is to enable readers to enjoy life or better to endure it."

Samuel Johnson (1709-1784)
British Poet, Essayist, Editor, Critic, and Biographer

Newsnotes the newsletter of Jay County Public Library, IN

"What do we, as a nation, care about books? How much do you think we spend altogether on libraries, public or private, as compared with what we spend on our horses?"

John Ruskin (1819-1900)
English Art Critic, Social Thinker, Poet and Artist

The newsletter of the Friends of the Franklin Public Library, Franklin, WI

"When I am attacked by gloomy thoughts, nothing helps me so much as running to my books. They quickly absorb me and banish the clouds from my mind."

Michel de Montaigne (1533-1592)
Author and Statesman

ALFA-Bits, the newsletter of the Astor Library Friends Association (OR)

"Make thy books thy companions; let thy cases and shelves by thy pleasure-grounds and gardens. If thy soul be satiate and weary, change from garden to garden, from furrow to furrow, from prospect to prospect. Then will thy desire renew itself, and thy soul be filled with delight."

Judah Ibn Tibbon (1120-1190)
Translator and Physician

Folio, newsletter of The Friends of the Macon County, N.C., Public Library

"There is not such a cradle of democracy on earth as the Free Public Library, this republic of letters, where neither rank, office, nor wealth receives the slightest consideration."

Andrew Carnegie (1835-1919)
Industrialist, Businessman, Entrepreneur and Philanthropist

footnotes, the newsletter of the Friends of the Park Forest Public Library, Summer 2002

"Books are the quietest and most constant of friends: they are the most accessible and wisest of counselors, and the most patient of teachers."

Charles W. Eliot (1834-1926)
American Academic and Former President of Harvard University

Library Link, newsletter of the Family Friends of the Billerica Public Library, Inc. (MA)

"In a library we are surrounded by many hundreds of dear friends imprisoned by an enchanter in paper and leathern boxes."

Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882)
American lecturer, Essayist, and Poet

The newsletter of the Friends of the Tucson-Pima Public Library, Tucson, AZ

"Let your books be your dining table,
And you shall be full of delights;
Let them be your mattress,
And you shall sleep restful nights."

St. Emphrem the Syrian (c. 303-373)

Just Between Friends, newsletter of the Carmel Clay Public Library (IN)


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