Sick, irritated, and the prey to a thousand discomforts, I go on with my labor like a true workingman, who, with sleeves rolled up, in the sweat of his brow, beats away at his anvil, not caring whether it rains or blows, hails or thunders.

—Gustave Flaubert, 1845

Far and away the best prize that life offers is the chance to work hard at work worth doing.

—Theodore Roosevelt, 1903

I began to realize how simple life could be if one had a regular routine to follow with fixed hours, a fixed salary, and very little original thinking to do.

—Roald Dahl, 1984

Hang work! I wish that all the year were holiday; I am sure that Indolence—indefeasible Indolence—is the true state of man.

—Charles Lamb, 1805

I am a friend of the workingman, and I would rather be his friend than be one.

—Clarence Darrow, 1932

God sells us all things at the price of labor.

—Leonardo da Vinci, c. 1500

Every man is worth just so much as the things he busies himself with.

—Marcus Aurelius, c. 175

It is shameful and inhuman to treat men like chattels to make money by, or to regard them merely as so much muscle or physical power.

—Pope Leo XIII, 1891

Labor disgraces no man; unfortunately, you occasionally find men who disgrace labor.

—Ulysses S. Grant, 1877

Man is a tool-using animal. Nowhere do you find him without tools; without tools he is nothing, with tools he is all.

—Thomas Carlyle, 1836

Labor is no disgrace.

—Hesiod, c. 700 BC

A tremendous number of people in America work very hard at something that bores them. Even a rich man thinks he has to go down to the office everyday. Not because he likes it but because he can’t think of anything else to do.

—W.H. Auden, 1946

Man must be doing something, or fancy that he is doing something, for in him throbs the creative impulse; the mere basker in the sunshine is not a natural, but an abnormal man.

—Henry George, 1879