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10 Best Benjamin Franklin Quotes

Updated on September 9, 2012

Benjamin Franklin Photo


Benjamin Franklin Quotes

Benjamin Franklin was a founding father of the US, politician, inventor, political theorist, postmaster, scientist, musician, author, printer, and diplomat. Benjamin Franklin lived from January 17, 1706 - April 17, 1790. Franklin earned the title "The First American" by campaigning for uniting the colonies. He invented the lighting rod, bifocals, the Franklin stove, a carriageodemeter, and the glass armonica.

Inspirational Quotes

Three can keep a secret, if two of them are dead.
Benjamin Franklin

If you have a secret and tell someone everyone will know. You can only keep a secret if you don't tell anyone.

By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.
Benjamin Franklin

You must always be prepared. Make sure to look at things from all angles. If you are not prepared you will fail.

Wine is constant proof that God loves us and loves to see us happy.
Benjamin Franklin

People want to catch a buzz. That is why drugs are illegal, yet people still try to get their hands on them no matter what the consequence. Drugs make us happy, they may not be healthy.

They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.
Benjamin Franklin

You never want to give up your liberty, even if you are told it is for security. The Patriot Act is a perfect example of giving up liberty for security. It says let us tap your phones so we can keep safe.

Any fool can criticize, condemn and complain - and most fools do.
Benjamin Franklin

Anyone can complain, and they should have the right to, but if you want to see change you must act. Actions speak louder than words. Don't complain about things, change things.

Benjamin Franklin Photo


Benjamin Franklin Quotes

Either write something worth reading or do something worth writing.
Benjamin Franklin

You have two choices, write about something of significance or do something someone wants to write about.

We are all born ignorant, but one must work hard to remain stupid.
Benjamin Franklin

We are all born without knowledge, but curious. With curiosity we should be able to learn as much as possible. With curiosity, it has to take a lot of work to remain ignorant.

The U. S. Constitution doesn't guarantee happiness, only the pursuit of it. You have to catch up with it yourself.
Benjamin Franklin

The US Constitution only guarantees your rights as a citizen, it doesn't guarantee happiness. It may take work, but if you have your rights, happiness is very possible.

Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve me and I learn.
Benjamin Franklin

You can't tell anyone anything. You have to teach people for them to remember. Let the person experience what you are teaching and they will learn.

The Constitution only gives people the right to pursue happiness. You have to catch it yourself.
Benjamin Franklin

You are allowed to do what you want as long as you don't hurt others. Since you have that right, it is your job to find happiness.


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    • homesteadpatch profile image


      6 years ago from Michigan

      Giving up liberty for safety is something more people need to understand. And I agree, narrowing down to just ten, must have been difficult.

    • alifeofdesign profile image

      Graham Gifford 

      6 years ago from New Hamphire

      Voted:interesting! I'm a fan of Franklin and I also have enjoyed keeping a book of quotes. I'm currently reading "...An American Life" and have found it most interesting. I enjoyed your hub...I'll certainly be reading the other quote hubs.

      Best Regards,

    • mecheshier profile image


      6 years ago

      Wonderful Hub. Ben Franklin has always been a favorite of mine. Not only was he a great inventor but he had some wise words. Franklin did so many things in such a short time. In fact, I sometimes wonder if he might have taken credit for other peoples work (just a thought). But being a high achiever myself I know that what he is credited for is possible.

      Thank you for sharing such great quotes. Voted up for awesome.

    • L.L. Woodard profile image

      L.L. Woodard 

      6 years ago from Oklahoma City

      It must have been difficult to narrow down Franklin's quotes to a top 10. He was an amazing man in many different aspects.

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      Nice hub!

    • DzyMsLizzy profile image

      Liz Elias 

      6 years ago from Oakley, CA

      I love so many of his quotes, and I love the one about 'sacrificing liberty for safety.' So very true, and we are in very dangerous waters in that regard these days...yet, so many don't even realize what that so-called "Patriot Act" has done. In reality, those who passed it are themselves guilty of treason!

      Also love the one, so very true, about 'most fools complain.' Words of wisdom, indeed!

      Voted up, interesting, useful and shared.

    • cat on a soapbox profile image

      Catherine Tally 

      6 years ago from Los Angeles

      I've always enjoyed Franklin's wit and intelligence. Thank you for sharing your top 10!

      I noticed that nos. 8 and 10 on your list say the same thing, and it's worth saying twice! :)


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