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Inspirational and Insightful Quotations #51 --- Lies

Updated on December 7, 2015

Quotations on Lies

When we begin to lie we are on the road to almost any type of dishonesty.

—J.H. Funderburg, Lake Charles American Press, Lake Charles, La., Oct. 21, 1939.

After all is said and done, there is nothing so wholesome as the truth, and no one is so refreshing as the one who boldly and fearlessly tells the truth. Somehow, we can tie to such and fear no evil. A liar is always a fugitive from justice, and his little child—the lie—an eater of souls! There are more liars born in the Gossip Market than in any other place, and idlers are the only ones who seem to have the time to visit there. Lying about other people has always been a favorite sport on the part of many, and these scattered lies gather moss as they roll over other tongues—but the honest actor upon this stage of ours should never pay any attention to them, even though he many a morning find them at his door. Of all occupations, the telling of the truth is by far the most profitable. It brings friends to one, and eliminates the enemies. A lie cannot stand the light—neither can a liar. But a truthful person can always safely walk through the day and the night. Mean and untrue things said about another, whose character is honestly founded, have no continual life, so there is nothing to worry about. Lies mean no more, to such, than the barking of the dog—as the caravan passes on!

---George Matthew Adams, Waycross Journal-Herald, Waycross, Ga., April 3, 1934.

One lie calls for another. Before one can establish a version of an affair not as it really occurred but as he wants it to appear, he finds that he must tell many lies. He will have to be very quick and brilliant in imagination as he gets his lies to agree or prevents people from seeking that they do not agree. You may impose upon a few for a time, but you are sure to be found out. And when found out, you must have a conscience of brass if you are not ashamed. One need not say all he knows on every occasion, but let that which he does say be the truth. If one gets the reputation of lying, he is not believed even if he does tell the truth. A man given to untruthfulness is not respected even by other deceivers. He may have a brilliant mind, but he will have less influence in his community than the man of less ability but of known probity. If you would keep our own respect and that of others, be honest. Be honest in your work as well as in your word. Shamming in work is sure to be discovered. Be honest and you need not lie awake nights planning how you may appear honest. The only sure way of being known for truthfulness is never to lie.

---Lucius W. Nieman, Milwaukee Journal, Milwaukee, Wis., March 27, 1912.

We make human affairs so much more complicated than they really are by forgetting that the shortest distance between two points is a straight line. Lying is complicated. Truth telling is simple. By giving ourselves and our friends honest reasons for our acts we can go through difficult problems by a simple road. Fear, deception and confused thinking make many things hard that ought to be easy.

---Grove H. Patterson, Meriden Record, Meriden, Conn, July 9, 1929.

A lie feels easy only when it forgets that it has a truth on its track.

---Elijah Powell Brown, The Broad Ax, Chicago, Ill., Oct. 12, 1901.

The best denial of a lie is the doing of the truth.

---Elijah Powell Brown, Duluth Evening Herald, Duluth, Minn., Aug. 23, 1902.

A lie is a lie, no matter whether it is black or white.

---Elijah Powell Brown, East Oregonian, Pendleton, Ore., March 17, 1913.

A lie can run fast, but the feet of truth never slip.

---Elijah Powell Brown, El Paso Times, El Paso, Texas, July 12, 1893.

The man who expects to outrun a lie had better not start with lame feet.

---Elijah Powell Brown, El Paso Times, El Paso, Texas, Feb. 1, 1894.

To have to look into the face of truth always kills a lie dead.

---Elijah Powell Brown, The Evening Bulletin, Maysville, Ky., Nov. 21, 1891.

To bury a truth is to raise a lie.

---Elijah Powell Brown, Fulton County News, McConnelsburg, Pa., July 24, 1902.

Lies hatch quickly.

---Elijah Powell Brown, Kinsley Graphic, Kinsley, Kan., Nov. 9, 1900.

A white lie may be as hard to wipe out as a black one.

---Elijah Powell Brown, Los Angeles Herald, Los Angeles, Calif., Aug. 13, 1904.

Half a truth may be a whole lie.

---Elijah Powell Brown, Polk County News, Columbia, N.C., Sept. 25, 1902.

It is easy to tell a lie, but hard to tell only one.

---James Milton Racer, The Citizen, Berea, Ky., Jan. 7, 1904.

An insinuation is often worse than a lie.

---T.G. Pasco, The Citizen, Berea, Ky., Sept. 20, 1899.

Occasionally a liar tells the truth for the purpose of throwing people off the track.

---Frank Hilton Greer, Oklahoma State Capital, Guthrie, Okla., July 25, 1908

A lie must travel with some rapidity in order to avoid being nailed.

---Frank Hilton Greer, Oklahoma State Capital, Guthrie, Okla., Aug. 9, 1908.

Many marital difficulties can be traced to the fact that it is easier to tell a little lie than to answer a lot of questions.

---Frank Hilton Greer, Oklahoma State Capital, Guthrie, Okla., March 19, 1909.

It is natural for a liar to doubt every statement he hears.

---Frank Hilton Greer, Oklahoma State Capital, Guthrie, Okla., June 29, 1909.

A white lie is sometimes blacker than it is painted.

---Frank Hilton Greer, Oklahoma State Capital, Guthrie, Okla., Nov. 27, 1909.

The way to catch a liar is to pretend to believe him, so he will go on until he traps himself.

---Frank Hilton Greer, Oklahoma State Capital, Guthrie, Okla., Jan. 25, 1911.

Some people tell unnecessary lies merely to keep in practice.

---Frank Hilton Greer, Oklahoma State Capital, Guthrie, Okla., Jan. 31, 1911.

The liar has a fine time keeping cases.

---Henry Edward Warner, Richmond Times-Dispatch, Richmond, Va., Jan. 17, 1922.

A liar spends most of his leisure time trying to remember.

---Henry Edward Warner, Richmond Times-Dispatch, Richmond, Va., March 12, 1922.

The liar gets so used to it he is surprised by a truth.

---Henry Edward Warner, Richmond Times-Dispatch, Richmond, Va., March 26, 1922.

The liar has no use for another liar.

---Henry Edward Warner, Richmond Times-Dispatch, Richmond, Va., March 28, 1922.

Figures don’t lie, but liars must figure.

---Henry Edward Warner, Richmond Times-Dispatch, Richmond, Va., May 4, 1922.

The liar figures when figures refuse to lie.

---Henry Edward Warner, Richmond Times-Dispatch, Richmond, Va., May 29, 1922.

Because figures don’t lie, liars have to figure.

---Henry Edward Warner, Richmond Times-Dispatch, Richmond, Va., July 1, 1922.

You can tell a liar by the way he emphasizes his simplest lie.

---Henry Edward Warner, Richmond Times-Dispatch, Richmond, Va., July 28, 1922.

Beware of half‑truths‑‑you may get hold of the wrong half.

‑‑‑Theodore L. Cannon, Deseret News, Salt Lake City, Utah, June 27, 1958.

It doesn’t take a half truth long to become a whole lie.

---John L. Brown, Aurora Daily Star, Aurora, Ill., March 1, 1922.

The longer explanation the more lies it contains.

---Eugene Alexander “Gene” Howe, Atchison Daily Globe, Atchison, Kan., Jan. 2, 1919.

Some people who wouldn’t steal for any consideration don’t mind telling a lie every five minutes.

---Eugene Alexander “Gene” Howe, Atchison Daily Globe, Atchison, Kan., Jan. 5, 1922.

Lies travel in crowds. If you tell one lie, you will have to add several more to it.

---Eugene Alexander “Gene” Howe, Atchison Daily Globe, Atchison, Kan., Dec. 21, 1917.

Two liars never agree.

---Theophile Meerschaert, The Indian Advocate, Sacred Heart, Okla., April 1899.

You are conceited if you think everybody believes your lies.

---Carl J.G. Brown, Atchison Daily Globe, Atchison, Kan., Nov. 21, 1929.

The person who tells a half lie is more dangerous than the person who tells a whole lie, for half lies are believed. A whole lie is seldom believed.

---Carl J.G. Brown, Atchison Daily Globe, Atchison, Kan., Nov. 21, 1933.

A little difference of a lie makes a big difference in life.

---John Wesley Holland, Livingston Republican, Geneseo, N.Y., Jan. 23, 1930.

There are many nuisances in society, but the liar is the worst.

---John Wesley Holland, Livonia Gazette, Livonia, N.Y., Jan. 28, 1937.

It takes a good liar to catch other people fibbing.

---David A. Curtis, Texas Siftings, New York, N.Y., Jan. 25, 1890.

Some people don’t lie deliberately; they just lie automatically.

---Beverly Gray, The Calgary Herald, Calgary, Alberta, Canada, Aug. 6, 1947.

Some liars are such artists that they can draw on their imaginations.

---Hazen Conklin, The Evening World, New York, N.Y., March 24, 1916.

Nothing ever needs a lie.

---J. Marvin Nichols, Gainesville Daily Sun, Gainesville, Fla., June 16, 1907.

A twisted truth and a straight lie are on the same plane.

---J. Marvin Nichols, Gainesville Daily Sun, Gainesville, Fla., June 16, 1907.

A liar is a man who has no partition between his imagination and his information.

---Bert Harding, Daily Herald, Provo, Utah, Aug. 30, 1926.

The other side of a half-truth is a lie.

---Ernest C. Wareing, Western Christian Advocate, Cincinnati, Ohio, Feb. 26, 1925.

If all the lies were placed end to end they would reach many times around the world and yet could not strangle the truth.

—Jack Warwick, Toledo Blade, Toledo, Ohio, Jan. 2, 1942.

Two half-truths make one whole barefaced lie.

---John Merrill Chilcote, St. Joseph News-Press, St. Joseph, Mo., Nov. 15, 1972.

A lie is usually destined to a short life and its only hope is to last long enough that it achieves the dignity of a legend.

---John Merrill Chilcote, St. Joseph News-Press, St. Joseph, Mo., Aug. 5, 1980.

There are two kinds of liars–the egotistical and the cowardly. The one is making a hero out of himself and the other would make anything out of the other fellow in order to save himself. The one is to be pitied and the other to be blamed.

—A.J. Gearheard, The Shreveport Times, Shreveport, La., Sept. 20, 1925.

You cannot get away with or away from a lie.

—John Wesley Holland, quoted in Deseret News, Salt Lake City, Utah, Sept. 19, 1924.

A lie rides a motorcycle while truth jogs along in a wheelbarrow.

—Phil H. Armstrong, Florida Times-Union, Jacksonville, Fla., Nov. 26, 1924.

A lie is a poor port in any storm; its tide runs swift to the whirlpool of habitual deceit.

—Henry F. Cope, Chicago Tribune, Chicago, Ill., Nov. 10, 1907.

Lies always get ripe before we are ready for them.

—Henry F. Cope, Chicago Tribune, Chicago, Ill., July 11, 1909.

Nothing blackens the truth like a little white lie.

—Bill Copeland, Sarasota Journal, Sarasota, Fla., Sept. 29, 1965.

When you stretch the truth, watch out for the snapback.

—Bill Copeland, Sarasota Journal, Sarasota, Fla., May 20, 1970.

A half-truth has to travel only a short distance before it becomes a full-fledged lie.

—Roy E. Gibson, Nephi Times-News, Nephi, Utah, March 4, 1954.

It is easier to tell the truth because then you don't have to remember what you said.

—Les Goates, Deseret News, Salt Lake City, Utah, Nov. 7, 1949.

There is a truth about a lie, and that is if you let it alone it will chase itself to death.

—William C. Hunter, Chicago Tribune, Chicago, Ill., June 12, 1910.

The moment a lie is born it starts running.

—Grady Imes, The Starkville News, Starkville, Miss., April 19, 1940.

There are three kinds of lies: lies, black lies, and alibis.

—Nephi Jensen, Deseret News, Salt Lake City, Utah, March 20, 1928.

Lies are used to fill vacuums that thought was too lazy to remove.

—W.A. MacKenzie, Florida Times-Union, Jacksonville, March 22, 1923.

If you must lie, lie to yourself and get the reaction.

—W.A. MacKenzie, The Leesburg Morning Commercial, Leesburg, Fla., April 8, 1927.

In many cases when you stretch the truth, it snaps back and gives you a black eye.

—Olin Miller, Daily Clarion-Ledger, Jackson, Miss., Jan. 12, 1936.

One token of a liar is his anxiety to supply affidavits as proof of what he says.

—Bert Moses, Lake Charles American Press, Lake Charles, La., Sept. 12, 1940.

Don't tell a lie unless you are willing to eat it.

—Lewis T. Nordyke, Amarillo Daily News, Amarillo, Texas, July 15, 1950.

White lies are usually color schemes.

—Earl Riney, Church Management, Cleveland, Ohio, June 1941.

Lies never travel alone.

—Ernest C. Wareing, Western Christian Advocate, Cincinnati, Ohio, April 28, 1927.

Lies may be fleet, but they are not sure-footed.

—Ernest C. Wareing, Western Christian Advocate, Cincinnati, Ohio, May 23, 1929.

Once the truth is told that is the end of it. But a lie always breeds other lies.

—Jack Warwick, Toledo Blade, Toledo, Ohio, Aug. 5, 1940.

The liar has to be careful even when he tells the truth.

—Roy L. Smith, Christian Advocate, Chicago, Ill., Sept. 2, 1948.

The most serious consequence of lying is the development of a habitual disregard for reality. If this is carried to an extreme, insanity results with its hallucination of grandeur or persecution, with its mystic voices, and with its exhausting daydreaming. Lying may lead to a habit of adjustment of projection. Projection is a form of rationalizing that puts the responsibility for any undesirable state of affairs off of the individual on to someone or something else. When a person is awkward and falls over a stool, he kicks the stool and blames it for the accident. When he writes poorly, the fault is not that of the writer but of the pen. Lying may involve other people in the trouble and result in the loss of friends or even punishment for perjury.

Sometimes lying results from a desire to escape reality. Lies may be told because of fear of punishment. Sometimes lies are told because of resentment and the desire to malign or harm. Someone has called these lies poisonous lies and well does that adjective describe them....

Falsehoods are sometimes told in order to keep a promise, a secret, or a surprise or to prevent hurting the feelings of another person. Again they may be told in imitation of others. Deception seems to run in certain families not because of germinal factors but because the habits of the parents are copied in the child.

—Evelyn M. Carrington, The Texas Outlook, Fort Worth, Texas, April 1931.

Occasionally we hear some young mother deploring the fact that she has detected her small daughter in an untruth and further investigation bring to light the startling discovery that the wee bit of a girl has really fallen into the fibbing habit.

The young mother finds that correcting this habit isn't the easiest task imaginable. task that will require much thought and effort as of all habits into which we drift perhaps fibbing is the one we most readily acquire, and yet is, from the very first little half untruth, one that has a firm hold upon us.

And nearly always we grownups are absolutely responsible for the fibbing of the wee kiddies.

We tell our little so-called white lies, thoughtlessly ignoring the fact that our wee bit of kiddies are always watching us, always following along in the ways that we open us for them, and when they see their adored mothers and fathers who, in their worshipful young eyes can do no wrong, indulging in these little fabrications, they decide that there is no harm in them. S

o, as in many other things, it is more a case of prevention than of cure when it comes to the fibbing habit.

It is infinitely easier to implant in the child a high regard for truth by being absolutely truthful ourselves and banishing from our every day life the white lie custom, than it is to correct the habit of untruth once it has taken hold of the child.

One little white lie may be perfectly harmless and yet like a tiny seed in the fertile child mind may be productive of a large harvest of untruthfulness in the years of the child's development into maturity, so we should make a great effort not to indulge in this habit, for whether we have children of our own or merely are thrown with the children of others the responsibility is ours just the same.

We can never tell the impression one little white lie of ours may make upon some child mind and the far-reaching consequences of it, and though one little white lie isn't so very harmful, yet it leads to a habit which grows and grows until after a while it has a most decided tendency to weaken the general structure of one's character.

Correcting the fibbing habit is a strenuous task every young mother discovers and the best way to guard against the wee daughter's forming such a habit is to be absolutely truthful herself, not tolerating in her every day life a single little white lie that can be banished.

—Harriot Russell, Houston Daily Post, Houston, Texas, April 28, 1916.


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