Criticism Sayings and Quotes

Below you will find our collection of inspirational, wise, and humorous old criticism quotes, criticism sayings, and criticism proverbs, collected over the years from a variety of sources.

A man convinced against his will is of the same opinion still. Laurence J. Peter
Don't call the alligator, big mouth until you have crossed the river. Belizean (on criticism)
Don't judge anyone unless you've walked in their moccasins one moon. Native American Proverb
Don't judge of men's wealth or piety by their Sunday appearances. Benjamin Franklin
It is easier to criticize than to do better. Swiss (on criticism)
Sticks and stones may break my bones, but names can never hurt me. unknown
The bad plowman quarrels with his ox. Korean (on criticism)
The human tongue is more poisonous than a bee's sting. Vietnamese (on criticism)
The pen is mightier than the sword. unknown
The rattan basket criticizes the palm Filipino (on criticism)
The worst enemy you have is right in your head. unknown
When strict with oneself, one rarely fails. Confucious
Worthless people blame their karma. Burmese (on criticism)
You'll never do anything behind you that won't come up in front of you. unknown
Criticism may not be agreeable, but it is necessary. It fulfils the same function as pain in the human body. It calls attention to an unhealthy state of things. Winston Churchill
Criticism, like rain, should be gentle enough to nourish a man's growth without destroying his roots. Frank A. Clark
There is no defense against criticism except obscurity. Joseph Addison
I much prefer the sharpest criticism of a single intelligent man to the thoughtless approval of the masses. Johannes Kepler
The final proof of greatness lies in being able to endure criticism without resentment. Elbert Hubbard
The trouble with most of us is that we would rather be ruined by praise than saved by criticism. Norman Vincent Peale
Don't criticize what you can't understand. Bob Dylan
To avoid criticism say nothing, do nothing, be nothing. Aristotle
He has a right to criticize, who has a heart to help. Abraham Lincoln
Let me never fall into the vulgar mistake of dreaming that I am persecuted whenever I am contradicted. Ralph Waldo Emerson
People ask you for criticism, but they only want praise. W. Somerset Maugham
Before you go and criticize the younger generation, just remember who raised them. Unknown Author
When we judge or criticize another person, it says nothing about that person; it merely says something about our own need to be critical. Unknown Author
Criticism is an indirect form of self-boasting. Emmet Fox
Any fool can criticize, condemn, and complain but it takes character and self control to be understanding and forgiving. Dale Carnegie
How much easier it is to be critical than to be correct. Benjamin Disraeli
Asking a working writer what he thinks about critics is like asking a lamppost how it feels about dogs. Christopher Hampton
Criticism is the disapproval of people, not for having faults, but having faults different from your own. Unknown Author
Do what you feel in your heart to be right - for you'll be criticized anyway. You'll be damned if you do, and damned if you don't. Eleanor Roosevelt
Honest criticism is hard to take, particularly from a relative, a friend, an acquaintance, or a stranger. Franklin P. Jones
If it's very painful for you to criticize your friends - you're safe in doing it. But if you take the slightest pleasure in it, that's the time to hold your tongue. Alice Miller
Persecution is the first law of society because it is always easier to suppress criticism than to meet it. Howard Mumford Jones
Nothing is complete and thus nothing is exempt from criticism. James Luther Adams
A successful person is one who can lay a firm foundation with the bricks that others throw at him or her. David Brinkley
The pleasure we feel in criticizing robs us from being moved by very beautiful things. Jean De La Bruyere
If criticism had any power to harm, the skunk would be extinct by now. Fred Allen
The man who cannot endure to have his errors and shortcomings brought to the surface and made known, but tries to hide them, is unfit to walk the highway of truth. James Allen
Do not seek praise. Seek criticism. Paul Arden
Sandwich every bit of criticism between two layers of praise. Mary Kay Ash
Criticism should be a casual conversation. W.H Auden
Remember that all is opinion. Marcus Aurelius
The critic has to educate the public; the artist has to educate the critic. Oscar Wilde
A sneer is the weapon of the weak. James Russell Lowell
Any jackass can kick a barn down, but it takes a carpenter to build it. Sam Rayburn
Do not use a hatchet to remove a fly from your friend's forehead. Unknown Author
The dread of criticism is the death of genius. William Gilmore Simms
Criticism is the science of literature: a systematic and progressive comprehension of it. Northrop Frye
Criticism can talk, and all the arts are dumb. Northrop Frye
We have criticism simply because the directed experience of literature is never adequate. Northrop Frye
Criticism and literature are related as a theory to practice, and the function of criticism is to explain the social function and relevance of literature. Northrop Frye
Criticism, in order to point beyond itself, needs to be actively iconoclastic about itself. Northrop Frye
Criticism is the primary act of human awareness: it expresses detachment without separation. Northrop Frye
If you had to write a criticism of a picture every day, you'd get awfully sick and tired of trying to figure out what to say about it. Howard Hawks
To many people, dramatic criticism must seem like an attempt to tattoo soap bubbles. James Mason Brown
The fetus that is afraid of criticism is never born. Burundi Saying
So much thought about everything appears in the form of literary criticism. Iris Murdoch
Whatever they criticize you for, intensify it. Jean Cocteau
Criticism comes easier than craftsmanship. Zeuxis
Of all the cants which are canted in this canting world, though the cant of hypocrites may be the worst, the cant of criticism is the most tormenting. Laurence Sterne
Of all the preposterous assumptions of humanity over humanity, nothing exceeds most of the criticisms made on the habits of the poor by the well-housed, well-warmed, and well-fed. Herman Melville
To criticize is to appreciate, to appropriate, to take intellectual possession, to establish and find in relation with the criticized thing, and to make it one's own. H. James
When I decided to go into politics I weighed the costs. I would get criticism. But I went ahead. so when virulent criticism came I wasn't surprised. I was better able to handle it. Herbert Hoover
Difficulties, opposition, criticism— these things are meant to be overcome, and there is a special joy in facing them and in coming out on top. It is only when there is nothing but praise that life loses its charm and I begin to wonder what I should do about it. Vijaya Lakshmi Pandit
Find the grain of truth in criticism—chew it and swallow it. Don Sutton
Any fool can criticize, and many of them do. Archbishop C. Garbett
A critic is a legless man who teaches running. Channing Pollock
To escape criticism—do nothing, say nothing, be nothing. Elbert Hubbard
Analysis kills spontaneity. The grain once ground into flour springs and germinates no more Henry Frederic Amiel
A critic is a man who knows the way but can't drive the car. Kenneth Tynan
The factor in human life provocative of a noble discontent is the gradual emergence of a sense of criticism, founded upon appreciation of beauty. and of intellectual distinction, and of beauty. Alfred North Whitehead
Animals are such agreeable friends—they ask no questions, they pass no criticisms. George Eliot
Those who are lifting the world upward and onward are those who encourage more than criticize. ELizabeth Harrison
If the end brings me out all right, what is said against me won't amount to anything. If the end brings me out wrong, then ten angels swearing I was right would make no difference. Lincoln
That is what the highest criticism really is, the record of one's own soul. It is more fascinating than history, as it is concerned simply with oneself. It is more delightful than philosophy, as its subject is concrete and not abstract, real and not vague. It is the only civilized form of autobiography. Oscar Wilde
I am sorry to think that you do not get a man's most effective criticism until you provoke him. Severe truth is expressed with some bitterness. Henry David Thoreau
Criticism is a study by which men grow important and formidable at a very small expense. He whom nature has made weak, and idleness keeps ignorant, may yet support his vanity by the name of a critic. Johnson