Florence Nightingale Quotes

Who the Heck is Florence Nightingale?

Florence Nightingale was a British social reformer and statistician, and the founder of modern nursing. Nightingale became an icon of Victorian culture in the persona of "The Lady with the Lamp".

Born May 12, 1820
Died August 13, 1910

Books by Florence Nightingale


Best 62 Quotes by Florence Nightingale

“A human being does not cease to exist at death. It is change, not destruction, which takes place.”

Florence Nightingale

“Apprehension, uncertainty, waiting, expectation, fear of surprise, do a patient more harm than any exertion. Remember he is face to face with his enemy all the time.”

Florence Nightingale

“Badly constructed houses do for the healthy what badly constructed hospitals do for the sick. Once insure that the air in a house is stagnant, and sickness is certain to follow.”

Florence Nightingale

“By mortifying vanity we do ourselves no good. It is the want of interest in our life which produces it; by filling up that want of interest in our life we can alone remedy it.”

Florence Nightingale

“Every nurse ought to be careful to wash her hands very frequently during the day. If her face, too, so much the better.”

Florence Nightingale

“Everything is sketchy. The world does nothing but sketch.”

Florence Nightingale

“For the sick, it is important to have the best.”

Florence Nightingale

“How very little can be done under the spirit of fear.”

Florence Nightingale

“I am of certain convinced that the greatest heroes are those who do their duty in the daily grind of domestic affairs whilst the world whirls as a maddening dreidel.”

Florence Nightingale

“I attribute my success to this - I never gave or took any excuse.”

Florence Nightingale

“I do see the difference now between me and other men. When a disaster happens, I act and they make excuses.”

Florence Nightingale

“I have lived and slept in the same bed with English countesses and Prussian farm women. No woman has excited passions among women more than I have.”

Florence Nightingale

“I think one's feelings waste themselves in words; they ought all to be distilled into actions which bring results.”

Florence Nightingale

“I use the word nursing for want of a better. It has been limited to signify little more than the administration of medicines and the application of poultices. It ought to signify the proper use of fresh air, light, warmth, cleanliness, quiet, and the proper selection and administration of diet-all at the least expense of vital power to the patient.”

Florence Nightingale

“If a nurse declines to do these kinds of things for her patient, 'because it is not her business', I should say that nursing was not her calling.”

Florence Nightingale

“If a patient is cold, if a patient is feverish, if a patient is faint, if he is sick after taking food, if he has a bed-sore, it is generally the fault not of the disease, but of the nursing.”

Florence Nightingale

“If you knew how unreasonably sick people suffer from reasonable causes of distress, you would take more pains about all these things.”

Florence Nightingale

“Instead of wishing to see more doctors made by women joining what there are, I wish to see as few doctors, either male or female, as possible. For, mark you, the women have made no improvement they have only tried to be ‘men’ and they have only succeeded in being third-rate men.”

Florence Nightingale

“It is very well to say 'be prudent, be careful, try to know each other'. But how are you to know each other?”

Florence Nightingale

“It may seem a strange principle to enunciate as the very first requirement in a hospital that it should do the sick no harm.”

Florence Nightingale

“Let us never consider ourselves finished nurses. We must be learning all of our lives.”

Florence Nightingale

Products by Florence Nightingale

“Let whoever is in charge keep this simple question in her head (not, how can I always do this right thing myself, but) how can I provide for this right thing to be always done?”

Florence Nightingale

“Life is a hard fight, a struggle, a wrestling with the principle of evil, hand to hand, foot to foot. Every inch of the way is disputed. The night is given us to take breath, to pray, to drink deep at the fountain of power. The day, to use the strength which has been given us, to go forth to work with it till the evening.”

Florence Nightingale

“Live life when you have it. Life is a splendid gift. There is nothing small about it.”

Florence Nightingale

“Mankind must make heaven before we can ‘go to heaven’, in this world as in any other.”

Florence Nightingale

“Nature alone cures. What nursing has to do is to put the patient in the best condition for nature to act upon him.”

Florence Nightingale

“Never give nor take an excuse.”

Florence Nightingale

“Never lose an opportunity of urging a practical beginning, however small, for it is wonderful how often in such matters the mustard-seed germinates and roots itself.”

Florence Nightingale

“Never underestimate the healing effects of beauty.”

Florence Nightingale

“No man, not even a doctor, ever gives any other definition of what a nurse should be than this – ‘devoted and obedient’. This definition would do just as well for a porter. It might even do for a horse. It would not do for a policeman.”

Florence Nightingale