Thomas A. Edison Quotes

Home / Inventor / Thomas A. Edison Quotes
Thomas Edison

Photograph of Edison (c.1922)
Born Thomas Alva Edison
(1847-02-11)February 11, 1847
Milan, Ohio, U.S.
Died October 18, 1931(1931-10-18) (aged 84)
West Orange, New Jersey, U.S.
Nationality American
Education Self-educated
Occupation Inventor, businessman

Mary Stilwell (m. 1871–84)
Mina Miller (m. 1886–1931)


Marion Estelle Edison (1873–1965)
Thomas Alva Edison Jr. (1876–1935)
William Leslie Edison (1878–1937)
Madeleine Edison (1888–1979)
Charles Edison (1890–1969)
Theodore Miller Edison (1898–1992)


Samuel Ogden Edison, Jr. (1804–1896)
Nancy Matthews Elliott (1810–1871)

Relatives Lewis Miller (father-in-law)

There will one day spring from the brain of science a machine or force so fearful in its potentialities, so absolutely terrifying, that even man, the fighter, who will dare torture and death in order to inflict torture and death, will be appalled, and so abandon war forever.
Thomas A. Edison
Waste is worse than loss. The time is coming when every person who lays claim to ability will keep the question of waste before him constantly. The scope of thrift is limitless.
Thomas A. Edison
One might think that the money value of an invention constitutes its reward to the man who loves his work. But… I continue to find my greatest pleasure, and so my reward, in the work that precedes what the world calls success.
Thomas A. Edison
Just because something doesn’t do what you planned it to do doesn’t mean it’s useless.
Thomas A. Edison
We don't know a millionth of one percent about anything.
There is no substitute for hard work.
The chief function of the body is to carry the brain around.
Nearly every man who develops an idea works it up to the point where it looks impossible, and then he gets discouraged. That’s not the place to become discouraged.
Thomas A. Edison
Your worth consists in what you are and not in what you have.
The reason a lot of people do not recognize opportunity is because it usually goes around wearing overalls looking like hard work.
Thomas A. Edison
There's a way to do it better - find it.
Great ideas originate in the muscles.
I know this world is ruled by infinite intelligence. Everything that surrounds us- everything that exists – proves that there are infinite laws behind it. There can be no denying this fact. It is mathematical in its precision.
Thomas A. Edison
What a man's mind can create, man's character can control.
Being busy does not always mean real work. The object of all work is production or accomplishment and to either of these ends there must be forethought, system, planning, intelligence, and honest purpose, as well as perspiration. Seeming to do is not doing.
Thomas A. Edison
What you are will show in what you do.
Religion is all bunk.
When I have fully decided that a result is worth getting I go ahead of it and make trial after trial until it comes.
Thomas A. Edison
Hell, there are no rules here - we're trying to accomplish something.
I have friends in overalls whose friendship I would not swap for the favor of the kings of the world.
Thomas A. Edison
The three great essentials to achieve anything worth while are: Hard work, Stick-to-itiveness, and Common sense.
Thomas A. Edison
Everything comes to him who hustles while he waits.
They say President Wilson has blundered. Perhaps he has, but I notice he usually blunders forward.
Thomas A. Edison
Results! Why, man, I have gotten a lot of results. I know several thousand things that won’t work.
Thomas A. Edison
Anything that won’t sell, I don’t want to invent. Its sale is proof of utility, and utility is success.
Thomas A. Edison
To have a great idea, have a lot of them.
The best thinking has been done in solitude. The worst has been done in turmoil.
Thomas A. Edison
The value of an idea lies in the using of it.
To my mind the old masters are not art; their value is in their scarcity.
Maturity is often more absurd than youth and very frequently is most unjust to youth.
Thomas A. Edison
Discontent is the first necessity of progress.
The body is a community made up of its innumerable cells or inhabitants.
There is far more opportunity than there is ability.
Show me a thoroughly satisfied man and I will show you a failure.
It is astonishing what an effort it seems to be for many people to put their brains definitely and systematically to work.
Thomas A. Edison
I never did anything by accident, nor did any of my inventions come by accident; they came by work.
Thomas A. Edison
Be courageous. I have seen many depressions in business. Always America has emerged from these stronger and more prosperous. Be brave as your fathers before you. Have faith! Go forward!
Thomas A. Edison
If we did all the things we are capable of, we would literally astound ourselves.
Thomas A. Edison
I find my greatest pleasure, and so my reward, in the work that precedes what the world calls success.
Thomas A. Edison
I never did a day's work in my life. It was all fun.
I have not failed. I've just found 10,000 ways that won't work.
Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work.
Thomas A. Edison
Many of life’s failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up.
Thomas A. Edison
Non-violence leads to the highest ethics, which is the goal of all evolution. Until we stop harming all other living beings, we are still savages.
Thomas A. Edison
Our greatest weakness lies in giving up. The most certain way to succeed is always to try just one more time.
Thomas A. Edison
I start where the last man left off.
Genius is one percent inspiration and ninety-nine percent perspiration.
To invent, you need a good imagination and a pile of junk.
Restlessness is discontent and discontent is the first necessity of progress. Show me a thoroughly satisfied man and I will show you a failure.
Thomas A. Edison
I am proud of the fact that I never invented weapons to kill.
His genius he was quite content in one brief sentence to define; Of inspiration one percent, of perspiration, ninety nine.
Thomas A. Edison