Science is nothing but trained and organized common sense, differing from the latter only as a veteran may from a raw recruit, and its methods differ from those of common sense, only as the guardsman’s cut and thrust differ from the manner in which a savage wields his club.
—Thomas Henry Huxley (1825–95) English Biologist
Success is more a function of consistent common sense than it is of genius.
—An Wang (1920–90) Chinese-born American Engineer, Inventor, Entrepreneur
The country needs and, unless I mistake its temper, the country demands bold, persistent experimentation. It is common sense to take a method and try it; if it fails, admit it frankly and try another. But above all, try something. The millions who are in want will not stand by silently forever while the things to satisfy their needs are within easy reach.
—Franklin D. Roosevelt (1882–1945) American Head of State, Lawyer
Science is a first-rate piece of furniture for a man’s upper chamber, if it has common sense on the ground floor.
—Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr. (1809–94) American Physician, Essayist
One pound of learning requires ten pounds of common sense to apply it.
Nowadays most people die of a sort of creeping common sense, and discover when it is too late that the only things one never regrets are one’s mistakes.
—Oscar Wilde (1854–1900) Irish Poet, Playwright
Everybody gets so much information all day long that they lose their common sense.
—Gertrude Stein (1874–1946) American Writer
Common sense is that which judges the things given to it by other senses.
—Leonardo da Vinci (1452–1519) Italian Polymath, Painter, Sculptor, Inventor, Architect
Familiar things happen, and mankind does not bother about them. It requires a very unusual mind to undertake the analysis of the obvious.
—Alfred North Whitehead (1861–1947) English Mathematician, Philosopher
What a grand thing it is to be clever and have common sense.
—Terence (c.195–159 BCE) Roman Comic Dramatist
We all have a little weakness, which is very natural but rather misleading, for supposing that this epoch must be the end of the world because it will be the end of us. How future generations will get on without us is indeed, when we come to think of it, quite a puzzle. But I suppose they will get on somehow, and may possibly venture to revise our judgments as we have revised earlier judgments
—G. K. Chesterton (1874–1936) English Journalist, Novelist, Essayist, Poet
Common sense and good nature will do a lot to make the pilgrimage of life not too difficult.
—W. Somerset Maugham (1874–1965) British Novelist, Short-Story Writer, Playwright
Common sense is strengthened by joy.
—Nachman of Breslov (1772–1810) Ukrainian Jewish Rabbi
When you have got an elephant by the hind legs and he is trying to run away, it’s best to let him run.
—Abraham Lincoln (1809–65) American Head of State
He was one of those men who possess almost every gift, except the gift of the power to use them.
—Charles Kingsley (1819–75) English Clergyman, Academic, Historian, Novelist
Knowledge, without common sense, says Lee, is “folly; without method, it is waste; without kindness, it is fanaticism; without religion, it is death.” But with common sense, it is wisdom; with method, it is power; with charity, it is beneficence; with religion, it is virtue, and life, and peace.
—Frederic William Farrar (1831–1903) English Clergyman, Writer
Common sense is compelled to make its way without the enthusiasm of anyone; all admit it grudgingly.
—E. W. Howe (1853–1937) American Novelist, Editor
Common Sense is very uncommon.
—Horace Greeley (1811–72) American Elected Rep, Politician, Reformer, Editor