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130 Spy Quotes For Budding Special Agents

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Super secret spy quotes to uncover hidden secrets.

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A spy is someone who surveys your activity from what you do to where you go.

Spies usually work undercover because being a spy means you have to work in the shadows half of your life. A spy also has lots of secrets and assumes the roles of different kinds of characters too.

Being a spy is not about only tracking people, but also you have to be good in many aspects of life whether it is talking confidently, looking, checking, or being active and knowledgeable. You also have to be extremely observant noticing what others are really up to, how they do things, perceiving how they think things, and having a record of all these things. So, find out what exactly spies are made of and capable of doing with some of the best spy quotes. Check out [detective quotes] and James Bond quotes too.

Famous Spy Quotes

These spy quotes are from famous books and authors who really know the genres of spies. Grab detective glasses and start reading some of the best spy quotes.

1. "Spies are the ears and eyes of Princes."

-George Herbert.

2. "It’s a very dangerous and lonely thing, I imagine, to be a spy: to have friendships that are deceptions, that are not honest."

-Mark Rylance.

3. "He was a secret agent, and still alive thanks to his exact attention to the detail of his profession."

-Ian Fleming.

4. "Every man is surrounded by a neighborhood of voluntary spies."

-Jane Austen.

5. "There aren’t enough secrets to go round anymore. Some spies are having to invent secrets in order to earn a living."

-Shelagh Delaney.

6. "There are Russian spies here now. And if we’re lucky, they’ll steal some of our secrets and they’ll be two years behind."

-Mort Sahl.

7. "I am on Facebook, but mainly as a way to spy on my children."

-Salman Rushdi.

8. "Writing about magic is harder than writing about spies because you’re dealing with something that doesn’t really exist."

-Anthony Horowitz.

9. "A good man does not spy around for the black spots in others, but presses unswervingly on towards his mark."

-Marcus Aurelius.

10. "Spies are, by nature and necessity, pathological liars who strive to make their endgames justify their meanness."

-Stewart Stafford.

11. "There will come a time when it isn't 'They're spying on me through my phone' anymore. Eventually, it will be 'My phone is spying on me'."

-Philip K. Dick.

12. "Writing about magic is harder than writing about spies because you’re dealing with something that doesn’t really exist."

-Anthony Horowitz.

13. "The report also said I show great potential as an agent. I figure they must be right, since I successfully broke into a safe to find that out."

-Amy McAuley.

14. "Spies are a most important element in water, because on them depends an army’s ability to move."

-Sun Tzu.

15. "Protection is the first necessity of opulence and luxury."

-Joseph Conrad.

16. "A spy, like a writer, lives outside the mainstream population. He steals his experience through bribes and reconstructs it."

-John le Carré.

17. "I’m a spy, Cam. I was born to do this- to be this. It’s in my blood."

-Ally Carter, 'United We Spy'.

18. "Our mobile phones have become the greatest spy on the planet."

-John McAfee.

19. "If I was a spy, I would have a watch that would cloak me in invisibility."

-Kyle.

20. "I wanted to be a secret agent and an astronaut, preferably at the same time."

-David Byrn.

21. "For decades to come the spy world will continue to be the collective couch where the subconscious of each nation is confessed."

-John le Carré.

22. "The role of women has always been undervalued in the spy world, always undermined in terms of recognition."

-Helen Mirren.

23. "Spies cannot be usefully employed without a certain intuitive sagacity."

-Sun Tzu.

24. "Setting people to spy on one another is not the way to protect freedom."

-Tommy Douglas.

25. "I’ve always wanted to play a spy, because it is the ultimate acting exercise. You are never what you seem."

-Benedict Cumberbatch.

26. "You can’t be a real spy and have everybody in the world know who you are and what your drink is."

-Roger Moore.

27. "Spying is waiting."

-John le Carré.

28. "I'd be a terrible secret agent. I can't keep a secret and I'm not sneaky."

-Katherine Heigl.

29. "Of all those in the army close to the commander, none is more intimate than the secret agent."

-Sun Tzu.

30. "Spies go undercover. They take on different personas."

-David Leitch.

31. "That world of spies and espionage, there's a coldness to it. That's what makes those worlds fascinating"

-Elizabeth Debicki.

32. "I know people like to read about serial killers and spies, but most of us will never encounter these things."

-Paula Hawkins.

33. "As soon as I know it's about technological things or spies, I lose interest. I want to know what goes on in people's minds."

-Ruth Rendell.

34. "We knew we were talking about spies. I knew he knew I knew. I was digging my own grave."

-Christine Keeler.

35. "Female spies typically represented one of two extremes: the seductress who employed her wiles to manipulate men, and the cross-dresser who blended in by impersonating them."

-Karen Abbott.

Cool Spy Quotes

Spy quotes show the importance of an ally.

If you want to understand the mind of a spy, you can from this list of spy quotes. These spy quotes will give you an insight into all kinds of uses of spies, as well as how they operate. We've included some historical spy quotes, spy quotes from books and even TF2 spy quotes.

36. "You can never trust a spy. Even your own."

-Clifford Thurlow.

37. "The consequences of leaking sensitive information is that Americans and coalition forces die, and we lose trust with foreign spies, and our national security is put at risk."

-Brandon Webb.

38. "My siblings and I had this theory that my parents were spies."

-Dara Horn.

39. "In basic training we had been told to watch out for Japanese spies."

-Jack Adams.

40. "Since real spies are so good, you never really know what actual spying is. But I do think spying is a lot more dangerous than we are led to believe."

-Richard C. Armitage.

41. "I grew up on the Roger Moore and Sean Connery Bond movies, so the DNA of my spies is extremely ridiculous and goofy."

-Nick Harkaway.

42. "There will always be spies. We have to have them."

-Gary Oldman.

43. "The fact of the matter is that the United States faces real threats from criminals, terrorists, spies, and malicious cyber actors."

-James Comey.

44. "I hate newspapermen. They come into camp and pick up their camp rumors and print them as facts. I regard them as spies, which, in truth, they are."

-William Tecumseh Sherman.

45. "I just have this very simple idea about the rebel spies in the opening crawl of A 'New Hope' who steal the plans for the Death Star."

-John Knoll.

46. "From infancy on, we are all spies; the shame is not this but that the secrets to be discovered are so paltry and few."

-John Updike.

47. "They were conspiring to desert us in the night and steal some of our horses... we engaged a spy."

-Zebulon Pike.

48. "Friends don’t spy; true friendship is about privacy, too."

-Stephen King.

49. "She said the man in the gabardine suit was a spy I said 'Be careful his bowtie is really a camera."

-Paul Simon.

50. "I should probably bequeath the copyrights to my screenplay for Spies Like Us, just in case."

-Nathan Hale.

51. "As a rule, spies don't like dealing with cops."

-Michael Weston.

52. "I got nothing. Even the spies I'm spying on who are spying on other spies got nothing."

-Kresley Cole.

53. "The noblest part of a friend is an honest boldness in the notifying of errors. He that tells me of a fault, aiming at my good, I must think him wise and faithful--wise in spying that which I see not; faithful in a plain admonishment, not tainted with flattery."

-Owen Feltham.

54. "Whenever justice is uncertain and police spying and terror are at work, human beings fall into isolation, which, of course, is the aim and purpose of the dictator state, since it is based on the greatest possible accumulation of depotentiated social units."

-Carl Jung.

55. "There's been spying for years, there's been surveillance for years, and so forth, I'm not going to pass judgement on that, it's the nature of our society."

-Eric Schmidt.

56. "I'd say that one area where my political views have remained unchanged is that, I am opposed to the government spying on everybody."

-Tom Morello.

57. "Nothing shows our weakness more than to be so sharp-sighted at spying other men's faults, and so purblind about our own.

-William Penn.

58. "Facebook in particular is the most appalling spying machine that has ever been invented."

-Julian Assange.

59. "I used to try to pick locks because I grew up on my grandparents' farm and I started my own little spy club. I would go around the farm and try to break into the shed and try spying on my grandpa. It was ridiculous."

-Odette Annable.

60. "Spying on people by magic is the same as spying on them in any other way."

-C. S. Lewis, 'The Voyage of the Dawn Treader'.

61. "The one thing you can bet is that spying is never over."

-John le Carré.

62. "Spying is a like a game of chess: Sometimes you have to withdraw, sometimes you have to sacrifice one of your pieces to win"

-John Rhys-Davies.

63. "Finally, you've come to your senses and welcomed a Spy to your ranks!"

-TF2, Competitive Mode response.

Being A Spy Quotes

If you are a spy then you need to be in disguise very often. You will also have many plots and details you need to be aware of going on at the same time. Understanding the mind of a spy would be the most interesting thing. So here are some spy quotes about spying, being a spy, and what a spy might think about.

64. "I've always dreamt of having some sort of undercover job. I think it's probably the coolest thing in the world, but ultimately a very lonely life."

-Rashida Jones.

65. "While teaching, I also worked undercover in the lower courts by saying I was a young law teacher wanting experience in criminal law."

-Samuel Dash.

66. "Love is a spy who is plotting treason, In league with that warm, red rebel, the Heart."

-Ella Wheeler Wilcox.

67. "Usually people look at you when they're talking to you. I know that they're working out what I'm thinking, but I can't tell what they're thinking. It is like being in a room with a one-way mirror in a spy film."

-Mark Haddon.

68. "To me it was real war and my life was at stake, and I believe that all those clandestine spy games we played as children helped when the Occupation came."

-Diet Eman.

69. "Some people think my father was a spy, because of working for that government agency in Vietnam, but he can't find his car keys, much less keep a national secret."

-Lauren Graham.

70. "All these years I'd thought being a spy was challenging. Turns out, being a girl is the tricky part."

-Ally Carter.

71. "I have no spy stories to tell, because I saw no spies. Nor did I understand, at that time, any opposition between American and Russian national interest."

-Elia Kazan.

72. "I wasn't a spy. I'd have been spotted in five seconds. Yes, I was in intelligence, but that covered a multitude of things."

-Christopher Lee.

73. "If he'd expected to be pampered and coddled through his undercover assignments, he would have gone to work for the CIA."

-Julie James.

74. "I'm a holy man minus the holiness. Hand that on to your three spies, and tell them to put it in their pipes."

-E. M. Forster.

75. "At the end of the day, I like the spy genre, as opposed to the action movie genre, because spies are smart. The successful spies are the smarter spies."

-Doug Liman.

76. "Thoughts are to the Desires as Scouts and Spies, to range abroad, and find the way to the things Desired."

-Thomas Hobbes.

77. "Living, just by itself - what a dirge that is! Life is a classroom and Boredom's the usher, there all the time to spy on you."

-Louis-Ferdinand Celine.

78. "It's a thrilling world, and people really like stories about secrets, which is the essence of a spy drama."

-Andrew Scott.

79. "I think I would make a good spy. I can sort of be a chameleon. People don't notice me very easily. I never get recognized."

-Dana Delany.

80. "So I stepped away, reminding myself that when you're a spy, sometimes all you can do is go on."

-Ally Carter.

81. "He had the air of a spy in a melodrama, missing nothing, liking nothing, looking forward to the great day when everything would be turned upside down."

-Kurt Vonnegut.

82. "Spies have the same kinds of needs and desires that everybody does, which is funny."

-Matt Nix.

83. "A small country town is not the place in which one would choose to quarrel with a wife; every human being in such places is a spy."

-Samuel Johnson.

84. "Any time we give people the ability to use force, we have to be very careful. It's sort of like the people who spy on us - you've got to watch the watchers."

-Rand Paul.

85. "Re-reading is much underrated. I've read The Spy Who Came in from the Cold once every five years since I was 15. I only started to understand it the third time."

-Malcolm Gladwell.

86. "But I think the real tension lies in the relationship between what you might call the pursuer and his quarry, whether it's the writer or the spy."

-John le Carré.

87. "I've always enjoyed disappearing into a crowd in New York. As an actor, I love to spy, and it's hard to be a good spy if everyone is looking at you."

-Katherine Waterston.

88. "I am a spy in the house of me. I report back from the front lines of the battle that is me."

-Carrie Fisher.

89. "Spies go to bars for the same reason people go to libraries: full of information if you know where to ask."

-Michael Weston.

90. "The birds are the eyes of heaven, and the flies are the spies of hell."

-Suzy Kassem.

Spy Quotes From Spy Movies

Spy quotes from movies are iconic.

There are many iconic spy characters in movies and stories from whom we have learned all we know about spies. Sometimes we forget ourselves and get involved so deeply with the characters that we've wished we could live the secret lives of those characters too! So in this section, we have listed quotes from our favorite famous spies in the cinema world. Some of the best spy movies with super spy quotes are the James Bond movies (1962-), the Bourne series, 'Enter The Dragon' (1973), 'Kingsman: The Secret Service' (2015), 'Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy' (2011), the Spy Kids series and movies from the loved character, Johnny English. So, take a look at these spy quotes, including 'Spy Kids' quotes, below from famous spy characters.

91. "Trust. Truth. I think it's like most opinions: best unexpressed."

-Viktor Cherevin, 'Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit' (2014).

92. "Regret. It piles up around us like books we never read."

-Viktor Cherevin, 'Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit' (2014).

93. "It's time to unleash our secret weapon; I call it 'Black-man's Kryptonite'."

-Mr. Feather, 'Undercover Brother' (2002).

94. "If you're going to fit in to white America, you're gonna have to learn to like mayonnaise!"

-Smart Brother, 'Undercover Brother' (2002).

95. "I have stood on the sidelines of race relations long enough! I want to march down that field of oppression and kick that ball of bigotry right over the goalpost of intolerance!"

-Lance, 'Undercover Brother' (2002).

96. "Do you see what comes of all this running around, Mr. Bond? All this jumping and fighting, it's exhausting! Relax. You need to relax..."

-Silva, 'Skyfall' (2012).

97. "Only a certain kind of woman wears a backless dress with a Beretta 70 strapped to her thigh."

-James Bond, 'Skyfall' (2012).

98. "There is nothing superfluous in my life. When a thing is redundant, it is - poof - eliminated."

-Silva, 'Skyfall' (2012).

99. "You do any terrifying thing you are asked to do, but you have to do it running. You think you can outrun your fears, your doubts. The only thing that really scares you is stillness. But everyone is overtaken eventually."

-Carl, 'Munich' (2005).

100. [talking about a mission] "If you can't decide in one day, you can't decide.”

-General Zamir, 'Munich' (2005).

101. "I'm immune to 179 different types of poison. I know because I ingested them all at once when I was deep undercover in an underground poison-ingesting crime ring."

-Rick Ford, 'Spy' (2015).

102. "How do you like my English accent? I learned it from the Downton Abbey!”

-Aldo, 'Spy' (2015).

103. "I make a habit out of doing things that people say I can't do: walk through fire, waterski blindfolded, take up piano at a late age."

-Rick Ford, 'Spy' (2015).

104. "People are trying to kill me and all that's left of my security guard is you two and you look like someone's demented aunts on vacation."

-Rayna Boyanov, 'Spy' (2015).

105. "I'm very non-physically resourceful. I read a lot of intelligence, I read a lot of poems, and I've read all of the 'Hunger Games'."

-Nancy B. Artingstall, 'Spy' (2015).

106. "We aren't hunting a fox, we're hunting a man. He's an oldish man, with a wife. Oh, I know it's war and it's our job to do it, but that doesn't prevent it being murder - simple murder!”

-Edgar Brodie, 'Secret Agent' (19396).

107. "I was just running away from the person I'd been for the past five years. I wasn't particularly pleased with the person I was now, but I had hated and despised the other one, and I was glad to be rid of her face."

-'The Spy Who Loved Me'.

108. "Bond looked at the beautiful day and smiled. And no man, not even Mr. Big, would have liked the expression on his face."

-'Live and Let Die'.

109. "I've found that one must try and teach people that there's no top limit to disaster-that, so long as breath remains in your body, you've got accept the miseries of life. They will often seem infinite, insupportable. They are part of the human condition."

-'You Only Live Twice'.

110. "The scent and smoke and sweat of a casino are nauseating at three in the morning."

-'Casino Royale'.

111. "'Actually, I think I'm more into sleek-looking suits right now.' I ran my fingers over the arm of his tuxedo and gave him an appraising stare. 'You know, sort of that James Bond cool look.'"

-Janette Rallison, 'My Fair Godmother'.

112. "Eve: Cut-throat razor. How very traditional.

James Bond: Well, I like to do some things the old-fashioned way.

Eve: Sometimes the old ways are the best."

-'Skyfall' (2012).

113. "James Bond: Everybody needs a hobby.

Silva: So what’s yours?

James Bond: Resurrection."

-'Skyfall' (2012).

114. "Franz Oberhauser: Why did you come?

James Bond: I came here to kill you.

Franz Oberhauser: And I thought you came here to die.

James Bond: Well it’s all a matter of perspective."

-'Spectre' (2015).

115. "They say you’re judged by the strength of your enemies."

-James Bond, 'Quantum of Solace' (2008).

116. "Governments change. The lies stay the same."

-James Bond, 'GoldenEye' (1995).

117. "Never send an adult to do a kid's job."

-Carmen Cortez, 'Spy Kids'.

118. "It's a cruel world, all you little boys and girls and some mean, nasty people want to have you for their supper!"

-Fegan Floop, 'Spy Kids'.

119. "Our parents can't be spies... they're not cool enough!"

-Carmen Cortez, 'Spy Kids'.

120. "Mr. Bond is indeed of a very rare breed... soon to be made extinct."

-Kamal Khan, 'Octopussy' (1983).

121. "Oh, a man of principle with a price on his head. Naturally you do it for Queen and Country. I have no country. I have no price on my head!"

-Octopussy, 'Octopussy' (1983).

122. "A good agent doesn't need gadgets. The only gadgets I've ever needed are a sharp eye, sensitive hearing and a whole bunch of bigger brains.”

-Johnny English, 'Johnny English'(2003).

123. "I've been dropped into the Kalahari desert, carrying nothing more than a toothbrush and a pack of Sherbet Lemons, and I still found my way to Bulawayo before Ramadan."

-Johnny English, 'Johnny English'(2003).

124. "You hit me hard — I hit back harder." 

-Aldrich Killian, 'Spies In Disguise'.

125. "Evil doesn’t care that you’re nice."

-Lance Sterling, 'Spies In Disguise'.

126. "No we can’t just kill her. That’s dark Lovey."

-Lance Sterling, 'Spies In Disguise'.

127. "Your gadgets are going to keep the world safe and everyone will wish they were as weird as you."

-Walter's mom, 'Spies In Disguise'.

128. "There’s no good guys and bad guys, there’s just people."

-Walter, 'Spies In Disguise'.

129. "Don't try to understand it. Feel it."

-Laura, 'Tenet' (2020).

130. "What's happened happened. Which is an expression of faith in the mechanics of the world. It's not an excuse to do nothing."

-Neil, 'Tenet' (2020.)

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly quotes for everyone to enjoy! If you liked our suggestions for spy quotes then why not take a look at [secret admirer quotes], or Agent Smith quotes.

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