80 Manly Quotes To Know What It Means To Be A Man

A true man lives for people other than himself.

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Many people across the world have debated what it means to be a man - and it is a hard one to answer.

While there is no one answer, qualities like courage, love, breaking toxic notions of masculinity, and staying strong in the face of adversity rank at the top. If you are interested in short manly quotes, or manly quotes about life, then check out Good Man quotes and [Gentlemen quotes] too.

Best Quotes On Men, Manhood, And More

Real manhood emerges from the inside, says manly quotes.

Being a man can mean a lot of things. It can mean having to say difficult things, having to open up about your emotions, persisting without help, and working hard to get something you want. These manly motivational quotes are all you need to have a hard think about masculine power and the courage it takes to be manly. Read on for the best manly quotes.

1. “Stand true to your calling to be a man. Real women will always be relieved and grateful when men are willing to be men.”

–Elisabeth Elliott.

2. “Being a male is a matter of birth. Being a man is a matter of choice.”

— Edwin Louis Cole.

3. “The chief constituents of what we call manhood, are moral rather than intellectual.”

–J. S. Kieffer.

4. “I know you can fight, but it’s our wits that make us men.”

-Malcolm Wallace.

5. “Adversity toughens manhood, and the characteristic of the good or the great man is not that he has been exempt from the evils of life, but that he has surmounted them.”

–Patrick Henry.

6. “Try not to become a man of success, but rather try to become a man of value.”

-Albert Einstein.

7. “Men of ideas and men of action have much to learn from each other, and the truly great are men of both action and abstraction.”

–Jack Donovan.

8. “A man should be able to hear, and to bear, the worst that could be said of him.”

-Saul Bellows.

9. “If Boys don’t learn, men won’t know.”

- Douglas Wilson.

10. "There is a difference between being a good man and being good at being a man.”

–Jack Donovan.

11. “Judge a man by his questions rather than by his answers.”


12. “Man is never so manly as when he feels deeply, acts boldly, and expresses himself with frankness and with fervor.”

–Benjamin Disraeli.

13. “Manhood is the defeat of childhood narcissism.”

–David Gilmore.

14. “The man who is deserving the name is the one whose thoughts and exertions are for others rather than for himself.”

–Walter Scott

15. “If a man doesn’t know how to dance, he doesn’t know how to make love”

-Craig Ferguson.

16. “All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is those good men do nothing.”

-Edmund Burke.

17. “A man is responsible for his ignorance.”

-Milan Kundera.

18. “Strength, Courage, Mastery, and Honor are the alpha virtues of men all over the world.”

–Jack Donovan.

19. “Manliness is the character of a man as he ought to be, as he was meant to be.”

–James Freeman Clarke.

20. “Nobody can give you freedom. Nobody can give you equality or justice or anything. If you’re a man, you take it.”

–Malcolm X.

21. “To have done no man a wrong . . . to walk and live, unseduced, within arm’s length of what is not your own, with nothing between your desire and its gratification but the invisible law of rectitude — this is to be a man.”

Horace Mann.

22. “A man’s got to have a code, a creed to live by, no matter his job.”

–John Wayne.

23. "You have to be a man before you can be a gentleman.”

–John Wayne.

24. “Men and women have strengths that complement each other.”

-Edwin Louis Cole.

25. "A male was transformed into a man by the willful expenditure of energy. Above all, a man willed himself to be expendable.”

Carlin A. Barton.

26. “A man is one whose body has been trained to be the ready servant of his mind; whose passions are trained to be the servants of his will; who enjoys the beautiful, loves truth, hates wrong, loves to do good, and respects others as himself.”

–John Ruskin.

Inspirational Manly Quotes

Your loved ones can be your biggest strength, and so can manly quotes.

If you are looking for the best manly quotes, manly quotes from movies, strong man quotes, or inspirational quotes for men, then check out the following quotes. Sometimes all you need for inspiration is a few words from other men who have lived out the ideals of being manly. Read on for the best manly love quotes, and funny manly quotes.

27. “He understood well enough how a man with a choice between pride and responsibility will almost always choose pride — if responsibility robs him of his manhood.”

–Stephen King.

28. “It is not the situation which makes the man, but the man who makes the situation.”

Frederick William Robertson.

29. “A man’s ledger does not tell what he is, or what he is worth. Count what is in man, not what is on him, if you would know what he is worth — whether rich or poor.”

–Henry Ward Beecher.

30. “Manhood coerced into sensitivity is no manhood at all.”

–Camille Paglia.

31. “We do not admire the man of timid peace. We admire the man who embodies victorious effort; the man who never wrongs his neighbor, who is prompt to help a friend, but who has those virile qualities necessary to win in the stern strife of actual life.”

–Theodore Roosevelt.

32. “A woman simply is, but a man must become. Masculinity is risky and elusive. It is achieved by a revolt from woman, and it confirmed only by other men."  

Camille Paglia.

33. “Contemporaries appreciate the man rather than the merit; but posterity will regard the merit rather than the man.”

–Charles Caleb Colton.

34. “Personally, I hold that a man, who deliberately and intelligently takes a pledge and then breaks it, forfeits his manhood.”

–Mahatma Gandhi.

35. “It is not what he has, or even what he does which expresses the worth of a man, but what he is.

–Henri-Frédéric Amiel.

36. “There never was yet a truly great man, that was not at the same time truly virtuous.”

–Benjamin Franklin.

37. “Who — only let him be a man and intent upon honor — is not eager for the honorable ordeal and prompt to assume perilous duties? To what energetic man is not idleness a punishment?”


38. “In the modern techno-industrial culture, it is possible to proceed from infancy into senility without ever knowing manhood.”

–Edward Abbey.

39. “Private and public life are subject to the same rules — truth and manliness are two qualities that will carry you through this world much better than policy or tact of expediency or other words that were devised to conceal a deviation from a straight line.”

–Robert E. Lee.

40. “When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me.”

–The Bible.

41. "A man must stand erect, not be kept erect by others."

-Marcus Aurelius

42. “The way of a superior man is three-fold: virtuous, he is free from anxieties; wise, he is free from perplexities; bold, he is free from fear.”


43. “Waste no more time arguing what a good man should be. Be one.”

–Marcus Aurelius.

44. “I learned that he that will be a hero will barely be a man; that he that will be nothing but a doer of his work is sure of his manhood.”

George MacDonald.

45. "One can not always be a hero, but one can always choose to be a man."


46. “No man stands so tall as when he stoops to help a child.”

–Abraham Lincoln.

47. “This is the test of your manhood: How much is there left in you after you have lost everything outside of yourself?”

–Orison Swett Marden.

48. “First find the man in yourself if you will inspire manliness in others”

Thomas Alcott.

49. “For the man who makes everything that leads to happiness, or near to it, to depend upon himself, and not upon other men . . . has adopted the very best plan for living happily. This is the man of moderation; this is the man of manly character and of wisdom.”


50. “Duty is the essence of manhood.”

-General George Patton.

51. "You can tell the greatness of a man by what makes him angry."

-Abraham Lincoln.

52. “If unwilling to rise in the morning, say to thyself, ‘I awake to do the work of a man.’”

–Marcus Aurelius.

53. “Genius is the power of carrying the feelings of manhood into the powers of manhood.”

-Samuel Taylor Coleridge.

54. "Man should not ask what the meaning of his life is, but rather must recognize that it is he who is asked."

-Viktor Frankl.

55. “What a man knows should find its expression in what he does. The value of superior knowledge is chiefly in that it leads to a performing manhood.”

–Christian Nestell Bovee.

56. “And a man, a man provides. And he does it even when he’s not appreciated, or respected, or even loved. He simply bears up and he does it. Because he’s a man.”

—'Breaking Bad'.

57. "Do what thy manhood bids thee do, from none but self expect applause; He noblest lives and noblest dies who makes and keeps his self-made laws."

-Richard Francis Burton.

58. “You seek the heights of manhood when you seek the depths of God.”

-Edwin Louis Cole

59. "Here is the manliness of manhood, that a man has a good reason for what he does, and has a will in doing it."

-Alexander MacLaren.

60. “Men are made to take risks and live passionately on behalf of others.”

-John Eldredge.

61. "He who seeks to do the amiable always can only be successful at the frequent expense of his manhood.”

–W.G. Simms.

62. "To be a man requires that you accept everything life has to give you, beginning with your name.”

–Burl Ives.

63. “Manhood and Christlikeness are synonymous.”

-Edwin Louis Cole.

64. “Here is the manliness of manhood, that a man has a good reason for what he does, and has a will in doing it.”

–Alexander MacLaren.

Motivational Quotes For Men

Even if you are not a man, you can still read these quotes for him - a special man in your life. If your loved one is looking for manly tattoo quotes or manly man quotes, look no further. Share these quotes with him and you both are bound to find a favorite quote from these manly quotes.

65. “Be alert, stand firm in the faith, act like a man, be strong.”

-Paul the Apostle.

66. "What a piece of work is a man! How noble in reason! How infinite in faculties! In form and moving, how express and admirable! In action, how like an angel! In apprehension, how like a God.”


67. “It was men who stopped slavery. It was men who ran up the stairs in the Twin Towers to rescue people. It was men who gave up their seats on the lifeboats of the Titanic.”

-John Eldredge.

68. “To be a man is, precisely, to be responsible.”

-Antoine de Saint-Exupéry.

69. "To be a man was to forge ever upward toward the peak of manhood, there to die amid the white snows of that peak.”

–Yukio Mishima.

70. “The Strength of a man’s virtue should not be measured by his special exertions but by his habitual acts.”

–Blaise Pascal.

71. “Men want a battle to fight, an adventure to live, and a beauty to rescue. That is what is written in their hearts. That is what little boys play at. That is what men’s movies are about. You just see it. It is undeniable.”

- John Eldredge.

72. “The test of every religious, political, or educational system is the man which it forms.”

–Henri-Frédéric Amiel.

73. “There is nothing noble being superior to your fellow man; true nobility is being superior to your former self.”

- Winston Churchill.

74. “I hope I shall possess firmness and virtue enough to maintain what I consider the most enviable of all titles, the character of an honest man.”

–George Washington.

75. "No reimagined manhood of convenience can hold its head high so long as the earth remains the tomb of our ancestors.”

–Jack Donovan.

76. "Every man dies. But not every man lives."

-William Wallace.

77. “But as for you, O man of God, flee evil. Pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, steadfastness, gentleness.”

-Paul the Apostle.

78. "The man who acquires the ability to take full possession of his own mind may take possession of anything else to which he is justly entitled."

-Andrew Carnegie.

79. “The search after the great men is the dream of youth and the most serious occupation of manhood.”

–Ralph Waldo Emerson.

80. "Man is a rope stretched between the animal and the Superman–a rope over an abyss. A dangerous crossing, a dangerous wayfaring, a dangerous looking-back, a dangerous trembling and halting."

- Nietzsche.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly quotes for everyone to enjoy! If you liked our suggestions for Manly quotes then why not take a look at When a man loves a woman quotes, or Wild woman quotes.


Written By

Kidadl Team

The Kidadl Team is made up of people from different walks of life, from different families and backgrounds, each with unique experiences and nuggets of wisdom to share with you. From lino cutting to surfing to children’s mental health, their hobbies and interests range far and wide. They are passionate about turning your everyday moments into memories and bringing you inspiring ideas to have fun with your family.

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