„I have only one regret … that I have not worked harder.“

—  Henry Royce, Deathbed assertion, as quoted in Outlook Business, Vol. 3, No. 4 (23 February 2008)
Henry Royce Foto
Henry Royce
Pionier des Autobaus, Gründer des Unternehmens Rolls-Royce 1863 - 1933
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Abbie Hoffman Foto

„I only regret that I have but one shirt to give for my country.“

—  Abbie Hoffman American political and social activist 1936 - 1989
Post-trial statement (modeled after a quote by American revolutionary Nathan Hale), after being declared guilty of flag desecration for wearing a shirt that resembled an American flag (1968), quoted in "The Trial of Abbie Hoffman's Shirt" in The Huffington Post (8 June 2005) http://www.huffingtonpost.com/paul-krassner/the-trial-of-abbie-hoffma_b_2334.html.

Nathan Hale Foto

„I only regret that I have but one life to lose for my country.“

—  Nathan Hale soldier for the Continental Army during the American Revolutionary War 1755 - 1776
Last words before being hanged by the British as a spy, (September 22, 1776), according to the account by William Hull based on reports by British Captain John Montresor who was present and who spoke to Hull under a flag of truce the next day: ‘On the morning of his execution,’ continued the officer, ‘my station was near the fatal spot, and I requested the Provost Marshal to permit the prisoner to sit in my marquee, while he was making the necessary preparations. Captain Hale entered: he was calm, and bore himself with gentle dignity, in the consciousness of rectitude and high intentions. He asked for writing materials, which I furnished him: he wrote two letters, one to his mother and one to a brother officer.’ He was shortly after summoned to the gallows. But a few persons were around him, yet his characteristic dying words were remembered. He said, ‘I only regret, that I have but one life to lose for my country.’ Some speculation exists that Hale might have been repeating or paraphrasing lines from Joseph Addison's play Cato, Act IV, Scene IV: How beautiful is death when earned by virtue. Who would not be that youth? What pity is it that we can die but once to serve our country. See George Dudley Seymour, Captain Nathan Hale, Major John Palsgrave Wyllys, A Digressive History, (1933), p. 39. Another early variant of his last words exists, as reported in the Independent Chronicle and the Universal Advertiser (17 May 1781): I am so satisfied with the cause in which I have engaged, that my only regret is, that I have not more lives than one to offer in its service.

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Dan Quayle Foto

„I was recently on a tour of Latin America, and the only regret I have was that I didn't study Latin harder in school so I could converse with those people.“

—  Dan Quayle American politician, lawyer 1947
Misattributed, U.S. Representative Claudine Schneider (RI) telling an admitted joke about Quayle "Quayle Quotes" http://www.snopes.com/quotes/quayle.htm, Urban Legends Reference Pages

Gabriel García Márquez Foto
Stephen Leacock Foto
David Fleming Foto
Thomas Jefferson Foto

„I'm a great believer in luck, and I find the harder I work the more I have of it.“

—  Thomas Jefferson 3rd President of the United States of America 1743 - 1826
Misattributed, Has been attributed to Stephen Leacock's "Literary Lapses" (1910), but the quote does not appear in the Project Gutenberg edition http://www.gutenberg.org/files/6340/6340.txt of this work. Variant: I find that the harder I work, the more luck I seem to have.

Bernard Malamud Foto

„I have given my life to writing without regret, except when I consider what in my work I might have done better.“

—  Bernard Malamud American author 1914 - 1986
Context: I have written almost all my life. My writing has drawn, out of a reluctant soul, a measure of astonishment at the nature of life. And the more I wrote well, the better I felt I had to write. In writing I had to say what had happened to me, yet present it as though it had been magically revealed. I began to write seriously when I had taught myself the discipline necessary to achieve what I wanted. When I touched that time, my words announced themselves to me. I have given my life to writing without regret, except when I consider what in my work I might have done better. I wanted my writing to be as good as it must be, and on the whole I think it is. I would write a book, or a short story, at least three times — once to understand it, the second time to improve the prose, and a third to compel it to say what it still must say. Somewhere I put it this way: first drafts are for learning what one's fiction wants him to say. Revision works with that knowledge to enlarge and enhance an idea, to re-form it. Revision is one of the exquisite pleasures of writing: The men and things of today are wont to lie fairer and truer in tomorrow's meadow, Henry Thoreau said. I don't regret the years I put into my work. Perhaps I regret the fact that I was not two men, one who could live a full life apart from writing; and one who lived in art, exploring all he had to experience and know how to make his work right; yet not regretting that he had put his life into the art of perfecting the work. Address at Bennington College (30 October 1984) as published in "Reflections of a Writer: Long Work, Short Life" in The New York Times (20 March 1988)

Edward Gorey Foto
Martin Sheen Foto
Theodore Roosevelt Foto
Hyman George Rickover Foto

„I do not have regrets. I believe I helped preserve the peace for this country. Why should I regret that?“

—  Hyman George Rickover United States admiral 1900 - 1986
Thoughts on Man's Purpose in Life (1974), Context: I do not have regrets. I believe I helped preserve the peace for this country. Why should I regret that? What I accomplished was approved by Congress — which represents our people. All of you live in safety from domestic enemies because of security from the police. Likewise, you live in safety from foreign enemies because our military keeps them from attacking us. Nuclear technology was already under development in other countries. My assigned responsibility was to develop our nuclear navy. I managed to accomplish this.

Samuel Goldwyn Foto

„The harder I work, the luckier I get.“

—  Samuel Goldwyn American film producer (1879-1974). 1879 - 1974
Misattributed

Donald J. Trump Foto

„The harder I work, the luckier I get.“

—  Donald J. Trump 45th President of the United States of America 1946
Misattributed, Originated with Samuel Goldwyn as a paraphrase of a proverb from a collection by Coleman Cox, but similar proverbs have existed since the 16th century. http://quoteinvestigator.com/2012/07/21/luck-hard-work/

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