Who said: "To be ignorant of what occurred before you were born is to remain always a child"

BookBrowse's Favorite Quotes

"To be ignorant of what occurred before you were born is to remain always a child"
- Marcus Tullius Cicero

CiceroCicero (106 B.C. -43 B.C.) was a Roman orator, statesman and philosopher.  He was born in Arpinum (modern day Arpino, about 60 miles from Rome) and studied law, oratory, philosophy and literature in Rome before embarking on a political career, becoming a consul in 63 B.C. He wrote most of his chief works while living in retirement in the couple of years preceding his death.  He greatly expanded the vocabulary of the Latin language, which allowed later writers to adopt a more fluid style to expound their own doctrines.  In 43 B.C. he delivered his famous speech against Marcus Antonius, and was murdered shortly afterwards on December 7th, 43 B.C.  He is considered the greatest forensic orator that Rome ever produced.

If you're rusty on the finer details of advocacy, the word forensic is defined as 'pertaining to, connected with, or used in courts of law' (coming from the word forum, which was the meeting place for judicial and other public business in ancient Rome).  Thus a forensic orator is one who practices legal oratory.  The Greek lawyer, Corax (5th century B.C.) established the principles of legal oratory.

It's difficult to pick just one Cicero quote. Here are a few more:
The higher we are placed, the more humbly we should walk.
Peace is liberty in tranquility.
While there's life, there's hope.
Every man can tell how many goats or sheep he possesses, but not how many friends.
What nobler employment, or more valuable to the state, than that of the man who instructs the rising generation?

More Quotes

This quote & biography originally ran in an issue of BookBrowse's membership magazine. Full Membership Features & Benefits.

Support BookBrowse

Become a Member and discover books that entertain, engage & enlighten!

Join Today!

Award Winners

  • Book Jacket: Killers of the Flower Moon
    Killers of the Flower Moon
    by David Grann
    Voted 2017 Best Nonfiction by BookBrowse's Subscribers

    The long, sorrowful list of injustices done ...
  • Book Jacket: The Dry
    The Dry
    by Jane Harper
    Voted 2017 Best Debut Novel by BookBrowse's Subscribers

    After receiving a letter from his childhood...
  • Book Jacket: Little Fires Everywhere
    Little Fires Everywhere
    by Celeste Ng
    Voted 2017 Best Fiction by BookBrowse's Subscribers

    Small towns, big drama. Acclaimed author ...
  • Book Jacket: La Belle Sauvage
    La Belle Sauvage
    by Philip Pullman
    Voted 2017 Best Young Adult Novel by BookBrowse's Subscribers

    I wasn't quite sure what to expect ...

Book Discussion
Book Jacket
The Second Mrs. Hockaday by Susan Rivers

At once a love story, a history lesson and a beautifully written tale of forgiveness.

About the book
Join the discussion!

First Impressions

  • Book Jacket

    The Story of Arthur Truluv
    by Elizabeth Berg

    An emotionally powerful novel from New York Times bestselling author Elizabeth Berg.
    Reader Reviews

Win this book!
Win Autumn

Autumn by Ali Smith

One of the New York Times 10 Best Books of the Year, and a Man Booker Prize Finalist

Enter

Word Play

The Big Holiday Wordplay: $400+ in Prizes

Enter Now

Books that     
entertain,
     engage

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends books that we believe to be best in class. Books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, that will expand your mind and challenge you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.