Frederick Douglass (1818 – 1895) was a renowned social reformer, abolitionist, author and statesman.
After being born into slavery, Douglass eventually managed to escape and become one of the most-influential African Americans in history.
Frederick Douglass is well regarded for giving a voice to African Americans and women’s rights.
His autobiographies tell of his early life as a slave, the physical punishments, lack of education, how he escaped from slavery, and his fight for emancipation and suffrage. He provided insight, a voice and inspirational hope in a deeply troubling and shameful time in history.
The following quotes provide further background about the truly inspirational Frederick Douglass; these quotes show his views on race, slavery, freedom, education, and personal strength.
Famous Frederick Douglass Quotes
It is easier to build strong children than to repair broken men. Frederick Douglass
The soul that is within me no man can degrade. Frederick Douglass
If there is no struggle, there is no progress. Frederick Douglass
I would unite with anybody to do right and with nobody to do wrong. Frederick Douglass
I prefer to be true to myself, even at the hazard of incurring the ridicule of others, rather than to be false, and to incur my own abhorrence. Frederick Douglass
Once you learn to read, you will be forever free. Frederick Douglass
To suppress free speech is a double wrong. It violates the rights of the hearer as well as those of the speaker. Frederick Douglass
Man’s greatness consists in his ability to do and the proper application of his powers to things needed to be done. Frederick Douglass
A gentleman will not insult me, and no man not a gentleman can insult me. Frederick Douglass
I prayed for twenty years but received no answer until I prayed with my legs. Frederick Douglass
The white man’s happiness cannot be purchased by the black man’s misery. Frederick Douglass
We have to do with the past only as we can make it useful to the present and the future. Frederick Douglass
People might not get all they work for in this world, but they must certainly work for all they get. Frederick Douglass
A battle lost or won is easily described, understood, and appreciated, but the moral growth of a great nation requires reflection, as well as observation, to appreciate it. Frederick Douglass
Find out just what any people will quietly submit to and you have the exact measure of the injustice and wrong which will be imposed on them. Frederick Douglass
When men sow the wind it is rational to expect that they will reap the whirlwind. Frederick Douglass
Frederick Douglass Quotes On Slavery
The limits of tyrants are prescribed by the endurance of those whom they oppress. Frederick Douglass
There is not a man beneath the canopy of Heaven who does not know that slavery is wrong for him. Frederick Douglass
I didn’t know I was a slave until I found out I couldn’t do the things I wanted. Frederick Douglass
That which is inhuman cannot be divine. Frederick Douglass
No man can put a chain about the ankle of his fellow man without at last finding the other end fastened about his own neck. Frederick Douglass
Where justice is denied, where poverty is enforced, where ignorance prevails, and where any one class is made to feel that society is an organized conspiracy to oppress, rob and degrade them, neither persons nor property will be safe. Frederick Douglass
Frederick Douglass Quotes On Freedom
I am a Republican, a black, dyed in the wool Republican, and I never intend to belong to any other party than the party of freedom and progress. Frederick Douglass
Those who profess to favor freedom, and yet deprecate agitation, are men who want crops without plowing up the ground. Frederick Douglass
America is false to the past, false to the present, and solemnly binds herself to be false to the future. Frederick Douglass
The life of the nation is secure only while the nation is honest, truthful, and virtuous. Frederick Douglass
A little learning, indeed, may be a dangerous thing, but the want of learning is a calamity to any people. Frederick Douglass
The thing worse than rebellion is the thing that causes rebellion. Frederick Douglass
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