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quotations about justice

Justice quote

The golden eye of justice sees, and requites the unjust man.

SOPHOCLES, Ajax the Locrian [fragment]

For Justice, though she's painted blind,
Is to the weaker side inclin'd.


Justice is the means by which established injustices are sanctioned.

ANATOLE FRANCE, Crainquebille

You know, the courts may not be working any more, but as long as everyone is videotaping everyone else, justice will be done.


The most reasonable man always manages, when he pulls the trigger, to become a dispenser of justice.

JEAN GENET, The Balcony

If we expect others to rely on our fairness and justice we must show that we rely on their fairness and justice.

CALVIN COOLIDGE, inaugural address, Mar. 4, 1925

Injustice alone can shake down the pillars of the skies, and restore the reign of Chaos and Night.

HORACE MANN, A Few Thoughts for a Young Man

This thing that men call justice, this blind snake that strikes men down in the dark, mindless with fury, keep your hand back from it, pass by in silence.


Justice is truth in action.

BENJAMIN DISRAELI, speech, Feb. 11, 1851

Justice is a knee in the gut from the floor on the chin at night sneaky with a knife brought up down on the magazine of a battleship sandbagged underhanded in the dark without a word of warning. Garroting. That's what justice is.


Oh, I am arm'd with more than complete steel,
The justice of my quarrel.

APHRA BEHN, The Moor's Revenge

Justice is a fading light.

SHERYL CROW, "Love is a Good Thing"

The moral arc of the universe is long, but it bends toward justice.

MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR., A Testament of Hope

Many remark justice is blind; pity those in her sway, shocked to discover she is also deaf.


It’s every man’s business to see justice done.

SIR ARTHUR CONAN DOYLE, The Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes

Justice quote

It is highly convenient to believe in the infinite mercy of God when you feel the need of mercy, but remember also his infinite justice.

B. R. HAYDON, Table Talk

If one really wishes to know how justice is administered in a country, one does not question the policemen, the lawyers, the judges, or the protected members of the middle class. One goes to the unprotected--those, precisely, who need the law's protection most!--and listens to their testimony.

JAMES BALDWIN, The Price of the Ticket

The just man is not the product of a day, but of a long brooding and a painful birth. To become a power for peace, a man must first pass through experiences which lead him to see things in their different aspects: it is necessary that he have a wide horizon, and breathe various atmospheres--in a word, from crossing, one after another, paths and points of view the most diverse, and sometimes the most contradictory, he must acquire the faculty of putting himself in the place of others and appreciating them.


Law is not law, if it violates the principles of eternal justice.

LYDIA MARIA CHILD, speech, 1861

The love of justice is, in most men, nothing more than the fear of suffering injustice.

FRANCOIS, DUC DE LA ROCHEFOUCAULD, Sentences et Maximes Morales

Justice, sir, is the great interest of man on earth. It is the ligament which holds civilized beings and civilized nations together. Wherever her temple stands, and so long as it is duly honored, there is a foundation for general security, general happiness, and the improvement and progress of our race.

DANIEL WEBSTER, speech, Sep. 12, 1845

The righteous care about justice for the poor, but the wicked have no such concern.


There's no surer justice in the world than that which makes the rich thief hang the poor one.

PEIRE CARDENAL, Songs of the Troubadours

The course of justice often prevents it.


There is no virtue so truly great and godlike as justice.

JOSEPH ADDISON, The Guardian, Jul. 4, 1713

Justice is justly represented blind, because she sees no difference in the parties concerned. She has but one scale and weight, for rich and poor, great and small.

WILLIAM PENN, Some Fruits of Solitude

Justice is a whore that won't let herself be stiffed, and collects the wages of shame even from the poor.

KARL KRAUS, "The Good Conduct Medal"

To have the power of forgetting, for the time, self, friends, interests, relationship; and to think of doing right toward another, a stranger, an enemy, perhaps, is to have that which men can share only with the angels, and with Him who is above men and angels.

DAVID DUDLEY FIELD, speech, Mar. 18, 1876

The need for justice grows out of the conflict of human interests. That is to say, if there were no conflict of interests among mankind we should never have invented the word justice, nor conceived the idea for which it stands.

THOMAS NIXON CARVER, Essays in Social Justice

Justice is always violent to the party offending, for every man is innocent in his own eyes.

DANIEL DEFOE, Shortest Way with Dissenters

The Lord is known by his justice; the wicked are ensnared by the work of their hands.

PSALM 9:16

There is a certain attitude of mind that underlies the theory of justice and that ought to be strengthened by the experience of complex equality: we can think of it as a decent respect for the opinions of mankind. Not the opinions of this or that individual, which may well deserve a brusque response: I mean those deeper opinions that are the reflections in individual minds, shaped also by individual thought, of the social meanings that constitute our common life. For us, and for the foreseeable future, these opinions make for autonomous distributions; and every form of dominance is therefore an act of disrespect. To argue against dominance and its accompanying inequalities, it is only necessary to attend to the goods at stake and to the shared understanding of these goods. When philosophers do this, when they write out of respect for the understandings they share with their fellow citizens, they pursue justice justly, and they reinforce the common pursuit.

MICHAEL WALZER, Spheres of Justice

Delay of justice is injustice.

WALTER SAVAGE LANDOR, Imaginary Conversations

Justice and the facade of a temple are seen best from the outside.

AUSTIN O'MALLEY, Keystones of Thought

Justice is never so slender to us as when we first practice it.

HENRY WARD BEECHER, Proverbs from Plymouth Pulpit

The safety of the people requireth further from him or them that have the sovereign power, that justice be equally administered to all degrees of people, that is, that as well the rich and mighty as poor and obscure persons may be righted of the injuries done them, so as the great may have no greater hope of impunity when they do violence, dishonor, or any injury to the meaner sort than when one of these does the like to one of them. For in this consisteth equity, to which, as being a precept of the law of Nature, a sovereign is as much subject as any of the meanest of his people.


Justice is that which is practiced by God himself, and to be practiced in its perfection by none but him. Omniscience and omnipotence are requisite for the full exertion of it.

JOSEPH ADDISON, The Guardian, Jul. 4, 1713

The greatest trespasser on justice still wishes it done to him.


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