Quotes about Greeks

Henry Miller, American writer


When the birthplace of the finest civilization the world ever experienced, the country to which we ought what makes life superior and more beautiful, faces such an attack, the place of all real people is by her side.
William Lyon Mackenzie King, Prime Minister of Canada

Greece gave the example that each one of us must follow, until the enemies of freedom, wherever in the world they may be, suffer their justified punishment.

[A]ll free peoples are deeply impressed by the courage and steadfastness of the Greek nation. …which is defending itself so valiantly.[1]

Franklin D. Roosevelt, 32nd President of the United States

Without Greek studies there is no education.

Leo Tolstoy, Russian writer

I have never come across someone who could inspire more respect than the Greek philosophers.

Friedrich Nietzsche, German philosopher

If in the library of your house you do not have the works of the ancient Greek writers, then you live in a house with no light.

George Bernard Shaw, Irish-British playwright

It’s a shame to be called “educated” those who do not study the ancient Greek writers.

François Rabelais, French Renaissance writer

The world is the expanding Greece and Greece is the shrinking world.

Victor Hugo, French Romantic writer

Though Greece was conquered, she defeated the conquerer and imported the arts in the uncivilised Latium.

Quintus Horatius Flaccus, Roman lyric poet

If there had not been the virtue and courage of the Greeks, we do not know which the outcome of World War II would had been.
Sir Winston Churchill, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom

First Greece taught us that free men can be brave, and that no defeat is meant to last forever. This small nation proved to be worthy of its history.
Albert Camus, French author and philosopher

Our country, in which virtue is especially honoured, watches with admiration the struggle of the Greeks in Albania. We are so much touched, that, by letting aside every other feeling, we shout: LONG LIVE HELLAS!.

Mainichi Shimbun, Japanese newspaper, 7 December 1940

The Russian people will always be grateful to the Greeks for delaying the German army long enough for winter to set in, thereby giving us the precious time we needed to prepare. We will never forget.[2]

Joseph Stalin, in an open letter read frequently on Radio Moscow during the war

Historical justice forces me to admit that among all the enemies who stand against us, the Greek soldier above all, fought with the most courage. He surrendered himself only when the continuation of resistance was not possible any longer, and when he had no reason not to… However, he fought so bravely, that even his enemies can not deny their respect for him… Thus, the Greek prisoners of war were released immediately, having in mind the heroic stance of these soldiers.[3]

Joseph Goebbels in his diary, 9 April 1941

The brave struggle of the people of this relatively small nation, for the right to live without interventions by dictatoric states, calls forth the respect and admiration of all the nations who love freedom.
United States Congress, 3 April 1941

Hence we will not say that Greeks fight like heroes, but that heroes fight like Greeks.[5]

Sir Winston Churchill, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom

In the name of the captured yet still alive French people, France wants to send her greetings to the Greek people who are fighting for their freedom. The 25th of March, 1941 finds Greece in the peak of their heroic struggle and in the top of their glory. Since the battle of Salamis Greece had not achieved the greatness and the glory which today holds.

Charles de Gaulle, President of the French Republic

If the sharp-sightedness of the Greeks had kept pace with their intelligence, then maybe even the Industrial Revolution had begun one thousand years before Columbus. And so, in our era, we would not just try to visit the Moon, but we would already had arrived on other close planets.

Sir Arthur C. Clarke, English author and inventor

Nobody can say a word against Greek: it stamps a man at once as an educated gentleman.

George Bernard Shaw, Irish-British playwright

Know ye the land where the cypress and myrtle

Are emblems of deeds that are done in their clime,

Where the rage of the vulture,

the love of the turtle,

Now melt into sorrow,

now madded to crime?

Lord Byron, Anglo-Scottish poet

To Greece we give our shining blades.

Thomas Moore, Irish poet

How can any educated person stay away from the Greeks? I have always been far more interested in them than in science.

Albert Einstein, Jewish-American scientist

Of all peoples the Greeks have dreamt the dream of life best.

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, German polymath

What a city we have given over to plunder and destruction.

Mehmed II, Ottoman Sultan, 29 May 1453

Greece is the mother of science and the source of knowledge.

Moses of Chorene, Armenian historian.

I would prefer to be a Greek, rather than a heir apparent of a throne.