Felix Frankfurter, 1882 - 1965
Portrait by Harris and Ewing (1918)
Born: 15 November 1882, Vienna, Austria
Died: 22 February 1965, Washington City
Biography from Wikipedia
Additional quotes from Wikiquote. Wikiquote entries are "sourced" and may include items longer than those included here, particularly for poets, lyricists, and dramatists.
Felix Frankfurter quotes:
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- All our work, our whole life is a matter of semantics, because words are the tools with which we work, the material out of which laws are made, out of which the Constitution was written. Everything depends on our understanding of them. permalink
- As a member of this court I am not justified in writing my private notions of policy into the Constitution, no matter how deeply I may cherish them or how mischievous I may deem their disregard. permalink
(9 August 1964)
- Fragile as reason is and limited as law is as the institutionalised medium of reason, that's all we have between us and the tyranny of mere will and the cruelty of unbridled, undisciplined feelings. permalink
- Government is itself an art, one of the subtlest of arts. permalink
- It is a fair summary of history to say that the safeguards of liberty have been forged in controversies involving not very nice people. permalink
- It is anomalous to hold that in order to convict a man the police cannot extract by force what is in his mind, but can extract what is in his stomach. permalink
- It is easy to make light of insistence on scrupulous regard for the safeguards of civil liberties when invoked on behalf of the unworthy. It is too easy. History bears testimony that by such disregard are the rights of liberty extinguished, heedlessly at first, then stealthily, and brazenly in the end. permalink
Davis v. United States, 328 U.S. 582, 597 (1946)
- It must never be forgotten, however, that the Bill of Rights was the child of the Enlightenment. Back of the guarantee of free speech lay faith in the power of an appeal to reason by all the peaceful means for gaining access to the mind. permalink
writing for the court, Milk Wagon Drivers Union of Chicago, Local 753. v. Meadowmoor Dairies, Inc., 312 U.S. 287 (1941)
- Judicial judgment must take deep account ... of the day before yesterday in order that yesterday may not paralyze today. permalink
- Lawyers better remember they are human beings, and a human being who hasn't his periods of doubts and distresses and disappointments must be a cabbage, not a human being. That is number one. permalink
- Litigation is the pursuit of practical ends, not a game of chess. permalink
Indianapolis v. Chase Nat'l Bank, 314 U.S. 63, 69 (1941)
- Mere speed is not a test of justice. Deliberate speed is. Deliberate speed takes time. But it is time well spent. permalink
First Iowa Coop. v. Power Comm'n., 328 U.S. 152, 188 (1946).
- Morals are three-quarters manners. permalink
quoted by Harlan Phillips in Felix Frankfurter Reminiscences (1960)
- No court can make time stand still. permalink
writing for the court, Scripps-Howard Radio, Inc. v. FCC, 316 U.S. 4 (1942).
- Old age and sickness bring out the essential characteristics of a man. permalink
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