Tomáš Garrigue Masaryk

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Tomáš Garrigue Masaryk in 1918

Tomáš Garrigue Masaryk, sometimes anglicised to Thomas Masaryk (7 March 1850 – 14 September 1937), was a Czechoslovak politician, statesman, sociologist and philosopher, the first president of Czechoslovakia.


  • [I]t redounds to the honour of Russian literature that the leading spirits of that literature were the most efficient adversaries of slavery.
    • Garrigue Masaryk, Thomas (1919), The Spirit of Russia, I, p. 137 
  • Theology is to-day recognised to be the instrument of myth, philosophy to be the instrument of science.
    • Garrigue Masaryk, Thomas (1919), The Spirit of Russia, I, p. 208 
  • A great many people really care very little for their own compatriots, but they hate anything foreign.
    • Garrigue Masaryk, Thomas (1919), The Spirit of Russia, I, pp. 277–278 
  • Unquestionably society ought to be so organised as to render self-sacrifice superfluous, for as long as men exist who are ready and willing to make sacrifices, so long will egoists take advantage of these sacrifices.
    • Garrigue Masaryk, Thomas (1919), The Spirit of Russia, II, pp. 15–16 
  • War is not the greatest evil, though it is an evil. The open struggle of the battlefield is not the greatest evil; worse is that chronic condition of society which makes possible the violence of the stronger to the weaker; worse than war are insincerity and falsehood; worse is that egotism hidden under the mask of humanity and nobility in mind; worse is cowardice passing itself off as fortitude; worse is sophistry deceiving the sensible and wise. Death is not worse than a dishonourable life which destroys its own soul as well as that of its neighbour.