Join BookBrowse today and get access to free books, our twice monthly digital magazine, and more.

Who said: "To limit the press is to insult a nation; to prohibit reading of certain books is to declare the inhabitants to be either fools or slaves"

BookBrowse's Favorite Quotes

"To limit the press is to insult a nation; to prohibit reading of certain books is to declare the inhabitants to be either fools or slaves." - Claude Adrien Helvetius

Claude Adrien HelvetiusFrench philosopher Claude Adrien Helvétius (1715-1771) was born in Paris. After holding the exceedingly profitable post of farmer-general (tax collector) for some years he retired to the country in 1751 where he devoted himself to writing and philanthropy.

Like the English philosopher John Locke (1632-1704), Helvétius believed that all men are born with equal ability and that distinctions develop from education, and that through education all human problems could be solved. He is remembered for his 1758 book, De l'esprit (On Mind), which drew such condemnation from both the Pope and the Parlement of Paris for its heretical viewpoints that Helvétius hurriedly wrote no less than three humiliating retractions. Unmoved by his protestations the powers that be had the book publicly burned by the Paris hangman.

More Quotes

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

Support BookBrowse

Join our inner reading circle, go ad-free and get way more!

Find out more


Top Picks

  • Book Jacket: The Sicilian Inheritance
    The Sicilian Inheritance
    by Jo Piazza
    Sara Marsala is going through a rough patch, to say the least. In the process of divorcing from her ...
  • Book Jacket: The Light Eaters
    The Light Eaters
    by Zoë Schlanger
    The human race is completely dependent on plants. Many people, however, give little thought to ...
  • Book Jacket: Joy Is the Justice We Give Ourselves
    Joy Is the Justice We Give Ourselves
    by J Drew Lanham
    As a recipient of the MacArthur "Genius" Grant, and a Professor of Wildlife Ecology and Master ...
  • Book Jacket: Glorious Exploits
    Glorious Exploits
    by Ferdia Lennon
    Lampo and Gelon are two unemployed potters in their thirties whose lives are spent between their ...

BookBrowse Book Club

Book Jacket
Only the Beautiful
by Susan Meissner
A heartrending story about a young mother’s fight to keep her daughter, and the terrible injustice that tears them apart.

Members Recommend

  • Book Jacket

    Daughters of Shandong
    by Eve J. Chung

    Eve J. Chung's debut novel recounts a family's flight to Taiwan during China's Communist revolution.

  • Book Jacket

    The Stolen Child
    by Ann Hood

    An unlikely duo ventures through France and Italy to solve the mystery of a child’s fate.

Win This Book
Win Only the Brave

Only the Brave by Danielle Steel

A powerful, sweeping historical novel about a courageous woman in World War II Germany.

Enter

Wordplay

Solve this clue:

F T a T

and be entered to win..

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends the best in contemporary fiction and nonfiction—books that not only engage and entertain but also deepen our understanding of ourselves and the world around us.