God sells us all things at the price of labor.

—Leonardo da Vinci, c. 1500

Plough deep while sluggards sleep.

—Benjamin Franklin, 1758

A man is not idle, because he is absorbed in thought. There is visible labor and there is an invisible labor.

—Victor Hugo, 1862

All paid jobs absorb and degrade the mind.

—Aristotle, c. 330 BC

The three little sentences that will get you through life. Number 1: Cover for me. Number 2: Oh, good idea, Boss! Number 3: It was like that when I got here.

—Nell Scovell, 1991

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

—Marcus Aurelius, c. 175

“Work” does not exist in a nonliterate world. The primitive hunter or fisherman did no work, any more than does the poet, painter, or thinker of today. Where the whole man is involved there is no work.

—Marshall McLuhan, 1964

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

—Ulysses S. Grant, 1877

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

To do nothing at all is the most difficult thing in the world, the most difficult and the most intellectual.

—Oscar Wilde, 1891

I hate the present modes of living and getting a living. Farming and shopkeeping and working at a trade or profession are all odious to me. I should relish getting my living in a simple, primitive fashion.

—Henry David Thoreau, 1855

The most fitting occupation for a civilized man is to do nothing.

—Théophile Gautier, c. 1835

The workers are the saviors of society, the redeemers of the race.

—Eugene V. Debs, 1905