All Time Famous George Orwell Quotes

George Orwell Quotes

Eric Arthur Blair (25 June 1903 – 21 January 1950) was an English novelist, essayist, journalist, and critic who wrote under the name George Orwell. His work is characterized by lucid prose, social criticism, opposition to totalitarianism, and support of democratic socialism.

George Orwell, known for his dystopian masterpieces “Animal Farm” and “Nineteen Eighty-Four,” was a prolific writer who explored social and political themes through various genres. Born in India but raised in England, he worked as a policeman in Burma before becoming a writer in London. His experiences with poverty and war deeply influenced his work, including non-fiction like “The Road to Wigan Pier” and “Homage to Catalonia.” He achieved fame with “Animal Farm” and continued exploring totalitarian societies in “Nineteen Eighty-Four” before his untimely death. His impactful vocabulary and social critiques remain relevant, solidifying his legacy as a prominent literary figure.

George Orwell Quotes

1. “Journalism is printing what someone else does not want printed. Everything else is public relations.”
— George Orwell

2. “The further a society drifts from truth the more it will hate those who speak it.”
— George Orwell

3. “In a time of deceit telling the truth is a revolutionary act.”
— George Orwell

4. “Big Brother is watching you.”
— George Orwell

5. “He who controls the past controls the future. He who controls the present controls the past.”
— George Orwell

6. “If liberty means anything at all, it means the right to tell people what they do not want to hear.”
— George Orwell

7. “Political language is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind. ”
— George Orwell

8. “The most effective way to destroy people is to deny and obliterate their own understanding of their history.”
— George Orwell

9. “Every generation imagines itself to be more intelligent than the one that went before it, and wiser than the one that comes after it.”
— George Orwell

10. “We shall meet in the place where there is no darkness.”
— George Orwell

11. “All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others.”
— George Orwell

12. “War is peace. Freedom is slavery. Ignorance is strength.”
— George Orwell

13. “Perhaps one did not want to be loved so much as to be understood.”
— George Orwell

14. “Writing a book is a horrible, exhausting struggle, like a long bout with some painful illness. One would never undertake such a thing if one were not driven on by some demon whom one can neither resist nor understand.”
— George Orwell

15. “Freedom is the freedom to say that two plus two make four. If that is granted, all else follows.”
— George Orwell

16. “If people cannot write well, they cannot think well, and if they cannot think well, others will do their thinking for them.”
— George Orwell

17. “Sanity is not statistical.”
— George Orwell

18. “If you want to keep a secret, you must also hide it from yourself.”
— George Orwell

19. “Until they became conscious they will never rebel, and until after they have rebelled they cannot become conscious.”
— George Orwell

20. “Doublethink means the power of holding two contradictory beliefs in one’s mind simultaneously, and accepting both of them.”
— George Orwell

21. “Happiness can exist only in acceptance.”
— George Orwell

22. “Men can only be happy when they do not assume that the object of life is happiness.”
— George Orwell

23. “People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf.”
— George Orwell

24. “If you want a vision of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face – forever.”
— George Orwell

25. “The choice for mankind lies between freedom and happiness and for the great bulk of mankind, happiness is better.”
— George Orwell

26. “We know that no one ever seizes power with the intention of relinquishing it.”
— George Orwell

27. “To see what is in front of one’s nose needs a constant struggle.”
— George Orwell

28. “The people will believe what the media tells them they believe.”
— George Orwell

29. “Free speech is my right to say what you don’t want to hear.”
— George Orwell

30. “All tyrannies rule through fraud and force, but once the fraud is exposed they must rely exclusively on force.”
— George Orwell

31. “The past was erased, the erasure was forgotten, the lie became the truth.”
— George Orwell

32. “When I sit down to write a book, I do not say to myself, ‘I am going to produce a work of art.’ I write it because there is some lie that I want to expose, some fact to which I want to draw attention, and my initial concern is to get a hearing.”
— George Orwell

33. “He wears a mask, and his face grows to fit it.”
— George Orwell

34. “Rich people are poor people with money.”
— George Orwell

35. “It’s not so much staying alive, it’s staying human that’s important. What counts is that we don’t betray each other.”
— George Orwell

36. “A society becomes totalitarian when its structure becomes flagrantly artificial: that is, when its ruling class has lost its function but succeeds in clinging to power by force or fraud.”
— George Orwell

37. “We have now sunk to a depth at which restatement of the obvious is the first duty of intelligent men.”
— George Orwell

38. “If there is hope, it lies in the proles.”
— George Orwell

39. “The war is not meant to be won, it is meant to be continuous.”
— George Orwell

40. “I understand HOW. I do not understand WHY.”
— George Orwell

41. “Don’t you see that the whole aim of Newspeak is to narrow the range of thought? In the end we shall make thoughtcrime literally impossible, because there will be no words in which to express it.”
— George Orwell

42. “In the face of pain there are no heroes.”
— George Orwell

43. “The enemies of intellectual liberty always try to present their case as a plea for discipline versus individualism. The issue truth-versus-untruth is as far as possible kept in the background.”
— George Orwell

44. “Being in a minority, even in a minority of one, did not make you mad. There was truth and there was untruth, and if you clung to the truth even against the whole world, you were not mad.”
— George Orwell

45. “But if thought corrupts language, language can also corrupt thought.”
— George Orwell

46. “You must try harder. It is not easy to become sane.”
— George Orwell

47. “It was a bright cold day in April, and the clocks were striking thirteen.”
— George Orwell

48. “He was a lonely ghost uttering a truth that nobody would ever hear. But so long as he uttered it, in some obscure way, the continuity was not broken. It was not by making yourself heard but by staying sane that you carried on the human heritage.”
— George Orwell

49. “The essence of being human is that one does not seek perfection.”
— George Orwell

50. “If you want to know who rules over you, look at who you are not allowed to criticize.”
— George Orwell

51. “But it was alright, everything was alright, the struggle was finished. He had won the victory over himself. He loved Big Brother.”
— George Orwell

52. “That rifle on the wall of the laborer’s cottage or working class flat is the symbol of democracy. It is our job to see that it stays there.”
— George Orwell

53. “The creatures outside looked from pig to man, and from man to pig, and from pig to man again; but already it was impossible to say which was which.”
— George Orwell

54. “This life we live nowadays. It’s not life, it’s stagnation death-in-life. Look at all these bloody houses and the meaningless people inside them. Sometimes I think we’re all corpses. Just rotting upright.”
— George Orwell

55. “Freedom of the Press, if it means anything at all, means the freedom to criticize and oppose.”
— George Orwell

56. “Under the spreading chestnut tree I sold you and you sold me –.”
— George Orwell

57. “There is no swifter route to the corruption of thought than through the corruption of language.”
— George Orwell

58. “To survive it is often necessary to fight and to fight you have to dirty yourself.”
— George Orwell

59. “All art is propaganda; on the other hand, not all propaganda is art.”
— George Orwell

60. “Real power is achieved when the ruling class controls the material essentials of life, granting and withholding them from the masses as if they were privileges.”
— George Orwell

61. “Four legs good, two legs bad.”
— George Orwell

62. “Oceania was at war with Eurasia; therefore Oceania had always been at war with Eurasia.”
— George Orwell

63. “Power is in tearing human minds to pieces and putting them together again in new shapes of your own choosing.”
— George Orwell

64. “Never use a long word where a short one will do.”
— George Orwell

65. “War is evil, but it is often the lesser evil.”
— George Orwell

66. “Progress is not an illusion, it happens, but it is slow and invariably disappointing.”
— George Orwell

67. “Right thinking will be rewarded, wrong thinking punished.”
— George Orwell

68. “If you can feel that staying human is worthwhile, even when it can’t have any practical result whatsoever, you’ve beaten them.”
— George Orwell

69. “Thoughtcrime does not entail death: thoughtcrime is death.”
— George Orwell

70. “In real life it is always the anvil that breaks the hammer…”
— George Orwell

71. “Nationalism is power hunger tempered by self-deception.”
— George Orwell

72. “In general, the greater the understanding, the greater the delusion; the more intelligent, the less sane.”
— George Orwell

73. “If you loved someone, you loved him, and when you had nothing else to give, you still gave him love.”
— George Orwell

74. “Reality exists in the human mind, and nowhere else.”
— George Orwell

75. “Perhaps a lunatic was simply a minority of one.”
— George Orwell

76. “The Party told you to reject the evidence of your eyes and ears. It was their final, most essential command.”
— George Orwell

77. “History has stopped. Nothing exists except an endless present in which the Party is always right.”
— George Orwell

78. “It’s a beautiful thing, the destruction of words.”
— George Orwell

79. “Good prose should be transparent, like a window pane.”
— George Orwell

80. “If it is possible to cut a word out, always cut it out.”
— George Orwell

81. “Orthodoxy means not thinking – not needing to think. Orthodoxy is unconsciousness.”
— George Orwell

82. “At fifty everyone has the face he deserves.”
— George Orwell

83. “My best fishing memory is about some fish that I never caught.”
— George Orwell

84. “It’s frightful that people who are so ignorant have so much influence.”
— George Orwell

85. “Every line of serious work that I have written since 1936 has been written, directly or indirectly against totalitarianism and for democratic Socialism as I understand it.”
— George Orwell

86. “Advertising is the rattling of a stick inside a swill bucket.”
— George Orwell

87. “It is a mysterious thing, the loss of faith – as mysterious as faith itself.”
— George Orwell

88. “The fight against bad English is not frivolous.”
— George Orwell

89. “Every record has been destroyed or falsified, every book rewritten, every picture has been repainted, every statue and street building has been renamed, every date has been altered. And the process is continuing day by day and minute by minute. History has stopped. Nothing exists except an endless present in which the Party is always right.”
— George Orwell

90. “The nationalist not only does not disapprove of atrocities committed by his own side, but he has a remarkable capacity for not even hearing about them.”
— George Orwell

91. “Serious sport is war minus the shooting.”
— George Orwell

92. “In our time political speech and writing are largely the defense of the indefensible.”
— George Orwell

93. “The main motive for nonattachment is a desire to escape from the pain of living, and above all from love, which, sexual or non-sexual, is hard work.”
— George Orwell

94. “The secret of a successful restaurant is sharp knives.”
— George Orwell

95. “The very concept of objective truth is fading out of the world. Lies will pass into history.”
— George Orwell

96. “Sooner or later a false belief bumps up against solid reality, usually on a battlefield.”
— George Orwell

97. “And if all others accepted the lie which the Party imposed – if all records told the same tale – then the lie passed into history and became truth. ‘Who controls the past’ ran the Party slogan,’ Controls the future: who controls the present controls the past.”
— George Orwell

98. “However much you deny the truth, the truth goes on existing.”
— George Orwell

99. “High sentiments always win in the end. The leaders who offer blood, toil, tears, and sweat always get more out of their followers than those who offer safety and a good time. When it comes to the pinch, human beings are heroic.”
— George Orwell

100. “I enjoy talking to you. Your mind appeals to me. It resembles my own mind except that you happen to be insane.”
— George Orwell

101. “If you have no money, men won’t care for you, women won’t love you; won’t, that is, care for you or love you the last little bit that matters.”
— George Orwell

102. “I hate purity, I hate goodness! I don’t want virtue to exist anywhere. I want everyone to be corrupt to the bones.”
— George Orwell

103. “Threats to freedom of speech, writing, and action, though often trivial in isolation, are cumulative in their effect and, unless checked, lead to a general disrespect for the rights of the citizen.”
— George Orwell

104. “We do not merely destroy our enemies; we change them.”
— George Orwell

105. “Now I will tell you the answer to my question. It is this. The Party seeks power entirely for its own sake. We are not interested in the good of others; we are interested solely in power, pure power.”
— George Orwell

106. “The greatest enemy of clear language is insincerity.”
— George Orwell

107. “TRUTH – It’s the New Hate Speech: “During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act” – George Orwell.”
— George Orwell

108. “Preventive war is a crime not easily committed by a country that retains any traces of democracy.”
— George Orwell

109. “Confession is not betrayal. What you say or do doesn’t matter; only feelings matter. If they could make me stop loving you-that would be the real betrayal.”
— George Orwell

110. “The real test of character is how you treat someone who has no possibility of doing you any good.”
— George Orwell

111. “In philosophy, or religion, or ethics, or politics, two and two might make five, but when one was designing a gun or an aeroplane they had to make four.”
— George Orwell

112. “A humanitarian is always a hypocrite.”
— George Orwell

113. “For, after all, how do we know that two and two make four? Or that the force of gravity works? Or that the past is unchangeable? If both the past and the external world exist only in the mind, and if the mind itself is controllable – what then?”
— George Orwell

114. “Pacifism is objectively pro-Fascist.”
— George Orwell

115. “Stupidity was as necessary as intelligence and as difficult to attain.”
— George Orwell

116. “All the war propaganda, all the screaming and lies and hatred, comes invariably from people who are not fighting.”
— George Orwell

117. “So much of left-wing thought is a kind of playing with fire by people who don’t even know that fire is hot.”
— George Orwell

118. “Serious sport has nothing to do with fair play. It is bound up with hatred, jealousy, boastfulness, disregard of all rules and sadistic pleasure in witnessing violence. In other words, it is war minus the shooting.”
— George Orwell

119. “A man may take to drink because he feels himself to be a failure, but then fail all the more completely because he drinks.”
— George Orwell

120. “From the totalitarian point of view, history is something to be created rather than learned.”
— George Orwell

121. “In our age there is no such thing as ‘keeping out of politics.’ All issues are political issues, and politics itself is a mass of lies, evasions, folly, hatred and schizophrenia.”
— George Orwell

122. “The smell of her hair, the taste of her mouth, the feeling of her skin seemed to have got inside him, or into the air all round him. She had become a physical necessity.”
— George Orwell

123. “A human being is primarily a bag for putting food into.”
— George Orwell

124. “He loved Big Brother.”
— George Orwell

125. “One has to belong to the intelligentsia to believe things like that: no ordinary man could be such a fool.”
— George Orwell

126. “Every Joke is a Tiny Revolution.”
— George Orwell

127. “The real division is not between conservatives and revolutionaries but between authoritarians and libertarians.”
— George Orwell

128. “The inflated style is itself a kind of euphemism. A mass of Latin words falls upon the facts like soft snow, blurring the outlines and covering up all the details. The great enemy of clear language is insincerity.”
— George Orwell

129. “International football is the continuation of war by other means.”
— George Orwell

130. “The word Fascism has now no meaning except in so far as it signifies ‘something not desirable.’”
— George Orwell

131. “Nothing was your own except the few cubic centimeters inside your skull.”
— George Orwell

132. “Of pain, you could wish only one thing: that it should stop. Nothing in the world was so bad as physical pain. In the face of pain, there are no heroes.”
— George Orwell

133. “To die hating them, that was freedom.”
— George Orwell

134. “He was a fattish but active man of paralyzing stupidity, a mass of imbecile enthusiasms – one of those completely unquestioning, devoted drudges on whom, more even than on the Thought Police, the stability of the Party depended.”
— George Orwell

135. “Those who ‘abjure’ violence can do so only because others are committing violence on their behalf.”
— George Orwell

136. “News is something somebody doesn’t want printed; all else is advertising.”
— George Orwell

137. “Winston Smith: Does Big Brother exist? O’Brien: Of course he exists. Winston Smith: Does he exist like you or me? O’Brien: You do not exist.”
— George Orwell

138. “There are some things only intellectuals are crazy enough to believe.”
— George Orwell

139. “War is war. The only good human being is a dead one.”
— George Orwell

140. “No animal shall kill any other animal WITHOUT CAUSE.”
— George Orwell

141. “We are living in a world in which nobody is free, in which hardly anybody is secure, in which it is almost impossible to be honest and to remain alive.”
— George Orwell

142. “Gambling, beer, and football filled the horizons of their minds.”
— George Orwell

143. “Some ideas are so stupid that only intellectuals believe them.”
— George Orwell

144. “All the papers that matter live off their advertisements, and the advertisers exercise an indirect censorship over news.”
— George Orwell

145. “Every life viewed from the inside is a series of defeats.”
— George Orwell

146. “Thoughtcrime was not a thing that could be concealed forever. You might dodge successfully for a while, even for years, but sooner or later they were bound to get you.”
— George Orwell

147. “If you want to keep a secret, you must also hide it from yourself. You must know all the while that it is there, but until it is needed you must never let it emerge into your consciousness in any shape that can be given a name.”
— George Orwell

148. “Politics is the choice between the lesser of two evils.”
— George Orwell

149. “As with the Christian religion, the worst advertisement for Socialism is its adherents.”
— George Orwell

150. “Reality exists in the human mind, and nowhere else. Not in the individual mind, which can make mistakes, and in any case soon perishes: only in the mind of the Party, which is collective and immortal.”
— George Orwell

151. “And I believe that totalitarianism, if not fought against, could triumph again.”
— George Orwell

152. “A Socialist United States of Europe seems to me the only worthwhile political objective today.”
— George Orwell

153. “Never use a metaphor, simile, or other figure of speech which you are used to seeing in print.”
— George Orwell

154. “It is not possible for any thinking person to live in such a society as our own without wanting to change it.”
— George Orwell

155. “In this game that we’re playing, we can’t win. Some kinds of failure are better than other kinds, that’s all.”
— George Orwell

156. “Man serves the interests of no creature except himself.”
— George Orwell

157. “Power is not a means; it is an end.”
— George Orwell

158. “If you want a picture of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face, forever. The moral to be drawn from this dangerous nightmare situation is a simple one: don’t let it happen. It depends on you.”
— George Orwell

159. “To an ordinary human being, love means nothing if it does not mean loving some people more than others.”
— George Orwell

160. “All writers are vain, selfish, and lazy, and at the very bottom of their motives lies a mystery.”
— George Orwell

161. “It was not by making yourself heard but by staying sane that you carried on the human heritage.”
— George Orwell

162. “Patriotism is usually stronger than class hatred, and always stronger than internationalism.”
— George Orwell

163. “These people don’t see that if you encourage totalitarian methods, the time may come when they will be used against you instead of for you.”
— George Orwell

164. “Always eyes watching you and the voice enveloping you. Asleep or awake, indoors or out of doors, in the bath or bed- no escape. Nothing was your own except the few cubic centimeters in your skull.”
— George Orwell

165. “The masses never revolt of their own accord, and they never revolt merely because they are oppressed. Indeed, so long as they are not permitted to have standards of comparison, they never even become aware that they are oppressed.”
— George Orwell

166. “Since pacifists have more freedom of action in countries where traces of democracy survive, pacifism can act more effectively against democracy than for it. Objectively the pacifist is pro-Nazi.”
— George Orwell

167. “All rulers of all ages have tried to impose a false view of the world upon their followers.”
— George Orwell

168. “The heresy of heresies was common sense.”
— George Orwell

169. “Weakness is strength.”
— George Orwell

170. “Literature is doomed if liberty of thought perishes.”
— George Orwell

171. “To be corrupted by totalitarianism, one does not have to live in a totalitarian country.”
— George Orwell

172. “Beauty is meaningless until it is shared.”
— George Orwell

173. “War against a foreign country only happens when the moneyed classes think they are going to profit from it.”
— George Orwell

174. “If human equality is to be forever averted – if the High, as we have called them, are to keep their places permanently – then the prevailing mental condition must be controlled insanity.”
— George Orwell

175. “Rifles, muskets, longbows, and hand grenades are inherently democratic weapons. A complex weapon makes the strong stronger, while a simple weapon – so long as there is no answer to it – gives claws to the weak.”
— George Orwell

176. “For a creative writer possession of the ‘truth’ is less important than emotional sincerity.”
— George Orwell

177. “Your worst enemy, he reflected, was your nervous system. At any moment the tension inside you was liable to translate itself into some visible symptom.”
— George Orwell

178. “What can you do against the lunatic who is more intelligent than yourself, who gives your arguments a fair hearing and then simply persists in his lunacy?”
— George Orwell

179. “If one harbors anywhere in one’s mind a nationalistic loyalty or hatred, certain facts, though in a sense known to be true, are inadmissible.”
— George Orwell

180. “They were born, they grew up in the gutters, they went to work at twelve, they passed through a brief blossoming period of beauty and sexual desire, they married at twenty, they were middle-aged at thirty, they died, for the most part, at sixty. Heavy physical work, the care of home and children, petty quarrels with neighbors, films, football, beer, and above all, gambling, filled up the horizon of their minds. To keep them in control was not difficult.”
— George Orwell

181. “Manchester is the belly and guts of the nation.”
— George Orwell

182. “Windmill or no windmill, he said, life would go on as it had always gone on – that is, badly.”
— George Orwell

183. “A generation of the unteachable is hanging upon us like a necklace of corpses.”
— George Orwell

184. “England is the most class-ridden country under the sun. It is a land of snobbery and privilege, ruled largely by the old and silly.”
— George Orwell

185. “The opinion that art should have nothing to do with politics is itself a political attitude.”
— George Orwell

186. “Human beings were behaving as human beings and not as cogs in the capitalist machine.”
— George Orwell

187. “Writing a book is a horrible, exhausting struggle, like a long bout of some painful illness.”
— George Orwell

188. “England is perhaps the only great country whose intellectuals are ashamed of their own nationality.”
— George Orwell

189. “Early in life, I had noticed that no event is ever correctly reported in a newspaper.”
— George Orwell

190. “Everyone believes in the atrocities of the enemy and disbelieves in those of his own side, without ever bothering to examine the evidence.”
— George Orwell

191. “Every war when it comes, or before it comes, is represented not as a war but as an act of self-defense against a homicidal maniac.”
— George Orwell

192. “Several of them would have protested if they could have found the right arguments.”
— George Orwell

193. “Patriotism has nothing to do with Conservatism. It is actually the opposite of Conservatism since it is a devotion to something that is always changing and yet is felt to be mystically the same.”
— George Orwell

194. “Sanity was statistical. It was merely a question of learning to think as they thought.”
— George Orwell

195. “Man is the only real enemy we have. Remove Man from the scene, and the root cause of hunger and overwork is abolished forever.”
— George Orwell

196. “Donkeys live a long time. None of you has ever seen a dead donkey.”
— George Orwell

197. “It is a feeling of relief, almost of pleasure, at knowing yourself at last genuinely down and out. You have talked so often of going to the dogs – and well, here are the dogs, and you have reached them, and you can stand it. It takes off a lot of anxiety.”
— George Orwell

198. “When I see an actual flesh-and-blood worker in conflict with his natural enemy, the policeman, I do not have to ask myself which side I am on.”
— George Orwell

199. “If thought corrupts language, language can also corrupt thought. A bad usage can spread by tradition and imitation even among people who should and do know better.”
— George Orwell

200. “The past is whatever the records and the memories agree upon.”
— George Orwell

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