character

Atticus Finch Quotes

41 of the best book quotes from Atticus Finch
  1. #1
    “You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view...until you climb into his skin and walk around in it.”
  2. #2
    “He turned out the light and went into Jem’s room. He would be there all night, and he would be there when Jem waked up in the morning.”
  3. #3
    “She went to him. ‘Atticus,’ she said. ‘I’m—’
    ‘You may be sorry, but I’m proud of you.’
    She looked up and saw her father beaming at her. ‘What?’
    ‘I said I’m proud of you.’
    ‘I don’t understand you. I don’t understand men at all and I never will.’
    ‘Well, I certainly hoped a daughter of mine’d hold her ground for what she thinks is right—stand up to me first of all.‘”
  4. #4
    “As you say, Jean Louise, there’s only one thing higher than the Court in this country, and that’s the Constitution.”
  5. #5
    “The only remedy for this is not to let it beat you.”
  6. #6
    “She did not stand alone, but what stood behind her, the most potent moral force in her life, was the love of her father. She never questioned it, never thought about it, never even realized that before she made any decision of importance the reflex, ‘What would Atticus do?’ passed through her unconscious; she never realized what made her dig in her feet and stand firm whenever she did was her father; that whatever was decent and of good report in her character was put there by her father; she did not know that she worshiped him.”
  7. #7
    “I despise you and everything you stand for.”
  8. #8
    “The one thing that doesn’t abide by majority rule is a person’s conscience.”
  9. #9
    “Simply because we were licked a hundred years before we started is no reason for us not to try to win.”
  10. #10
    “Before I can live with other folks I’ve got to live with myself.”
  1. #11
    “You just hold your head high and keep those fists down. No matter what anybody says to you, don’t you let ‘em get your goat. Try fighting with your head for a change.”
  2. #12
    “Best way to clear the air is to have it all out in the open.”
  3. #13
    “This time we aren’t fighting the Yankees, we’re fighting our friends. But remember this, no matter how bitter things get, they’re still our friends and this is still our home.”
  4. #14
    “I wanted you to see what real courage is, instead of getting the idea that courage is a man with a gun in his hand. It’s when you know you’re licked before you begin but you begin anyway and you see it through no matter what. You rarely win, but sometimes you do.”
  5. #15
    “Are you proud of yourself tonight that you have insulted a total stranger whose circumstances you know nothing about?”
  6. #16
    “Shoot all the blue jays you want, if you can hit ‘em, but remember it’s a sin to kill a mockingbird.”
  7. #17
    “There’s a lot of ugly things in this world, son. I wish I could keep ‘em all away from you. That’s never possible.”
  8. #18
    “But there is one way in this country in which all men are created equal- there is one human institution that makes a pauper the equal of a Rockefeller, the stupid man the equal of an Einstein, and the ignorant man the equal of any college president. That institution gentlemen, is a court. It can be the Supreme Court of the United States or the humblest JP court in the land, or this honourable court which you serve. Our courts have their faults as does any human institution, but in this country our courts are the great levelers, and in our courts all men are created equal.”
  9. #19
    “When a child asks you something, answer him, for goodness’ sake. But don’t make a production of it. Children are children, but they can spot an evasion quicker than adults, and evasion simply muddles ‘em.”
  10. #20
    “It’s not time to worry yet...”
  1. #21
    “The one place where a man ought to get a square deal is in a courtroom, be he any color of the rainbow, but people have a way of carrying their resentments right into a jury box.”
  2. #22
    “As you grow older, you’ll see white men cheat black men every day of your life, but let me tell you something and don’t you forget it - whenever a white man does that to a black man, no matter who he is, how rich he is, or how fine a family he comes from, that white man is trash.”
  3. #23
    “Atticus, he was real nice...” His hands were under my chin, pulling up the cover, tucking it around me. “Most people are, Scout, when you finally see them.”
  4. #24
    “How could they do it, how could they?” “I don’t know, but they did it. They’ve done it before and they did it tonight and they’ll do it again and when they do it—seems that only children weep.”
  5. #25
    “Jem, see if you can stand in Bob Ewell’s shoes a minute. I destroyed his last shred of credibility at that trial, if he had any to begin with. The man had to have some kind of comeback, his kind always does. So if spitting in my face and threatening me saved Mayella Ewell one extra beating, that’s something I’ll gladly take.”
  6. #26
    “Those are twelve reasonable men in everyday life, Tom’s jury, but you saw something come between them and reason. You saw the same thing that night in front of the jail. When that crew went away, they didn’t go as reasonable men, they went because we were there. There’s something in our world that makes men lose their heads—they couldn’t be fair if they tried.”
  7. #27
    “That was the one thing that made me think, well, this may be the shadow of a beginning. That jury took a few hours. An inevitable verdict, maybe, but usually it takes ‘em just a few minutes.”
  8. #28
    “It’s never an insult to be called what somebody thinks is a bad name. It just shows you how poor that person is, it doesn’t hurt you.”
  9. #29
    “So it took an eight-year-old child to bring ‘em to their senses...That proves something - that a gang of wild animals can be stopped, simply because they’re still human. Hmp, maybe we need a police force of children.”
  10. #30
    “Bad language is a stage all children go through, and it dies with time when they learn they’re not attracting attention with it.”
  1. #31
    “You children made Walter Cunningham stand in my shoes for a minute. That was enough.”
  2. #32
    “Boo Radley. You were so busy looking at the fire you didn’t know it when he put the blanket around you.”
  3. #33
    “Before Jem looks at anyone else he looks at me, and I’ve tried to live so I can look squarely back at him.”
  4. #34
    “Which, gentlemen, we know is in itself a lie as black as Tom Robinson’s skin, a lie I do not have to point out to you. You know the truth, and the truth is this: some Negroes lie, some Negroes are immoral, some Negro men are not to be trusted around women—black or white. But this is a truth that applies to the human race and to no particular race of men. There is not a person in this courtroom who has never told a lie, who has never done an immoral thing, and there is no man living who has never looked upon a woman without desire.”
  5. #35
    “Why reasonable people go stark raving mad when anything involving a Negro comes up, is something I don’t pretend to understand.”
  6. #36
    “What I meant was, if Atticus Finch drank until he was drunk he wouldn’t be as hard as some men are at their best. There are just some kind of men who-who’re so busy worrying about the next world they’ve never learned to live in this one, and you can look down the street and see the results.”
  7. #37
    “It was times like these when I thought my father, who hated guns and had never been to any wars, was the bravest man who ever lived.”
  8. #38
    “Atticus told me to delete the adjectives and I’d have the facts.”
  9. #39
    “There are some men in this world who are born to do our unpleasant jobs for us. Your father’s one of them.”
  10. #40
    “Atticus had said it was the polite thing to talk to people about what they were interested in, not about what you were interested in.”
  11. #41
    “Did she die free?” asked Jem.
    “As the mountain air,” said Atticus.