Ambition Quotes and Sayings

Here you can find the best collection of inspirational, wise, and humorous Ambition quotes and Ambition sayings, and Ambition proverbs, collected over the years from a variety of sources.

"The universe is not required to be in perfect harmony with human ambition. "

Carl Sagan

"Me only have one ambition, y’know. I only have one thing I really like to see happen. I like to see mankind live together – black, white, Chinese, everyone – that’s all."

Bob Marley

"Moderation has been called a virtue to limit the ambition of great men, and to console undistinguished people for their want of fortune and their lack of merit."

Benjamin Disraeli

"Most people would succeed in small things, if they were not troubled with great ambitions."

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

"Ambition has but one reward for all: A little power, a little transient fame, A grave to rest in, and a fading name!"

William Winter

"Though ambition in itself is a vice, yet it is often the parent of virtues."


"The very substance of the ambitious is merely the shadow of a dream."

William Shakespeare

"Ambition is an uncomfortable companion many times. He creates a discontent with present surroundings and achievements; he is never satisfied but always pressing forward to better things in the future. Restless, energetic, purposeful, it is ambition that makes of the creature a real man."

Lyndon B. Johnson

"Ambition and the belly are the two worst counselors."

German Proverb

"Ambition is so powerful a passion in the human breast, that however high we reach we are never satisfied."

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

"It will not be amiss to distinguish the three kinds and, as it were, grades of ambition in mankind. The first is of those who desire to extend their own power in their native country, a vulgar and degenerate kind. The second is of those who labor to extend the power and dominion of their country among men. This certainly has more dignity, though not less covetousness. But if a man endeavor to establish and extend the power and dominion of the human race itself over the universe, his ambition (if ambition it can be called) is without doubt both a more wholesome and a more noble thing than the other two."

Francis Bacon

"Ambition is a Dead Sea fruit, and the greatest peril to the soul is that one is likely to get precisely what he is seeking."

Edward Dahlberg

"Ambition is a gilded misery, a secret poison, a hidden plague, the engineer of deceit, the mother of hypocrisy, the parent of envy, the original of vices, the moth of holiness, the blinder of hearts, turning medicines into maladies, and remedies into diseases."

Thomas Brooks

"Ambition has its disappointments to sour us, but never the good fortune to satisfy us. Its appetite grows keener by indulgence and all we can gratify it with at present serves but the more to inflame its insatiable desires."

Benjamin Franklin

"Love, a pleasant folly; ambition, a serious stupidity."

Nicolas Chamfort

"Where ambition can cover its enterprises, even to the person himself, under the appearance of principle, it is the most incurable and inflexible of passions."

David Hume

"It is the nature of ambition to make men liars and cheats, to hide the truth in their breasts, and show, like jugglers, another thing in their mouths, to cut all friendships and enmities to the measure of their own interest, and to make a good countenance without the help of good will."


"Ambition beats genius 99% of the time"

Jay Leno

"Ambition. An overmastering desire to be vilified by enemies while living and made ridiculous by friends when dead."

Ambrose Bierce

"A man without ambition is like a beautiful worm–it can creep, but it cannot fly."

Henry Ward Beecher

"Ambition often puts Men upon doing the meanest offices; so climbing is performed in the same position with creeping."

Jonathan Swift

"Ambition first sprung from your blest abodes; The glorious fault of Angels and of Gods."

Alexander Pope

"Ambition is a poor excuse for not having sense enough to be lazy."

Edgar Bergen

"Ambition is to the mind what the cap is to the falcon; it blinds us first, and then compels us to tower, by reason of our blindness. But alas, when we are at the summit of a vain ambition, we are also at the depth of real misery. We are placed where time cannot improve, but must impair us; where chance and change cannot befriend, but may betray us; in short, by attaining all we wish, and gaining all we want, we have only reached a pinnacle where we have nothing to hope, but everything to fear."

Charles Caleb Colton

"Ambition is putting a ladder against the sky."


"Ambition is an idol, on whose wings great minds are carried only to extreme, to be sublimely great, or to be nothing."

Thomas Southerne

"Say what we will, we may be sure that ambition is an error. Its wear and tear on the heart are never recompensed."

Edward Bulwer-Lytton

"Ambition is a dream with a V8 engine."

Elvis Presley

"Ambition is the germ from which all growth of nobleness proceeds."

Ralph Waldo Emerson

"Ambition is like love, impatient both of delays and rivals."

Sir John Denham

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