22 Most Powerful Quotes of Nelson Mandela


Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela served as South Africa’s President from 1994 to 1999 shortly after being released from prison where he served over 27 years.

Nelson Mandela, South Africa’s first black president was also a Nobel Prize winner.

Nelson’s memories down the lane
“No one in my family had ever attended school..On the first day of school my teacher, Miss Mdingane, gave each of us an English name. This was the custom among Africans in those days and was undoubtedly due to the British bias of our education. That day, Miss Mdingane told me that my new name was Nelson. Why this particular name I have no idea.”

— Mandela, 1994

22 Powerful Quotes by South Africa’s Legend (Mandiba)

  1. Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.
  2. After climbing a great hill, one only finds that there are many more hills to climb.
  3. Difficulties break some men but make others. No axe is sharp enough to cut the soul of a sinner who keeps on trying, one armed with the hope that he will rise even in the end.
  4. I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear
  5. Never, never and never again shall it be that this beautiful land will again experience the oppression of one by another.
  6. In my country, we go to prison first and then become President.
  7. It is better to lead from behind and to put others in front, especially when you celebrate victory when nice things occur. You take the front line when there is danger. Then people will appreciate your leadership.
  8. It always seems impossible until it’s done.
  9. Real leaders must be ready to sacrifice all for the freedom of their people.
  10. If there are dreams about a beautiful South Africa, there are also roads that lead to their goal. Two of these roads could be named Goodness and Forgiveness.
  11. If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his language, that goes to his heart.
  12. Everyone can rise above their circumstances and achieve success if they are dedicated to and passionate about what they do
  13. I detest racialism, because I regard it as a barbaric thing, whether it comes from a black man or a white man.
  14. Resentment is like drinking poison and then hoping it will kill your enemies.
  15. I like friends who have independent minds because they tend to make you see problems from all angles.
  16. A good head and a good heart are always a formidable combination.
  17. Money won’t create success, the freedom to make it will.
  18. If the United States of America or Britain is having elections, they don’t ask for observers from Africa or from Asia. But when we have elections, they want observers.
  19. When a man has done what he considers to be his duty to his people and his country, he can rest in peace
  20. For to be free is not merely to cast off one’s chains, but to live in a way that respects and enhances the freedom of others.
  21. Everyone can rise above their circumstances and achieve success if they are dedicated to and passionate about what they do.
  22. Man’s goodness is a flame that can be hidden but never extinguished

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