Tyrants and oppressors, when living, are the terror of mankind; but when dead, they are the objects of general contempt and scorn. The death of Nero was celebrated by the Romans with bonfires and plays; birds ate the naked flesh of Pompey; Alexander lay unburied thirty days; but a useful and holy life is generally closed by an honorable and lamented death.
A king ruleth as he ought; a tyrant as he lists; a king to the profit of all, a tyrant only to please a few.
Tyranny and anarchy are never far asunder.
Every wanton and causeless restraint of the will of the subject, whether practised by a monarch, a nobility, or a popular assembly, is a degree of tyranny.
Tyranny absolves all faith; and who invades our rights can never be but an usurper.
Free governments have committed more flagrant acts of tyranny than the most perfectly despotic governments we have ever known.
Kings will be tyrants from policy, when subjects are rebels from principle.
Bad laws are the worst sort of tyranny.
Tyranny is far the worst of treasons.—The prince who neglects or violates his trust is more a brigand than the robber-chief.
Where law ends, tyranny begins.
Power, unless managed with gentleness and discretion, does but make a man the more hated; no intervals of good humor, no starts of bounty, will atone for tyranny and oppression.
A tyrant never tasteth of true friendship, nor of perfect liberty.
Of all the evils that infest a state, a tyrant is the greatest; his sole will commands the laws, and lords it over them.
Rebellion to tyrants is obedience to God.
Tyrants forego all respect for humanity in proportion as they are sunk beneath it. Taught to believe themselves of a different species, they really become so, lose their participation with their kind, and in mimicking the god dwindle into the brute.
Tyranny is always weakness.
And with necessity, the tyrant's plea, excused his devilish deeds.
Hateful is the power, and pitiable is the life, of those who wish to be feared rather than to be loved.
Necessity is the argument of tyrants; it is the creed of slaves.
It is worthy of observation that the most imperious masters over their own servants are at the same time the most abject slaves to the servants of other masters.
Hardness ever of hardness is the mother.
Tyranny sways, not as it hath power, but as it is suffered.
That sovereign is a tyrant who knows no law but his own caprice.
There is a natural and necessary progression, from the extreme of anarchy to the extreme of tyranny; and arbitrary power is most easily established on the ruins of liberty abused to licentiousness.