The Big Fish Blog

25 Awesome Public Speaking Quotes

Public speaking is the number one fear in America.  Death is number two.

From sweaty palms to cracking voices, speaking publicly can be terrifying, yet it is a crucial skill to have in the business world.  We’d like to alleviate some of this stress by offering up some inspirational, informative quotes.  These quotes are in no particular order, and the speakers range from well-known orators to presentation gurus.  Some are serious, some are classic, and some are short and funny.  Feel free to spread these around, write them in your journals, whatever you want! Enjoy!

“You can speak well if your tongue can deliver the message of your heart.” -John Ford  

“Be still when you have nothing to say; when genuine passion moves you, say what you’ve got to say, and say it hot.” -D. H. Lawrence  

“Let thy speech be better than silence, or be silent.” -Dionysius Of Halicarnassus  

“What we say is important… for in most cases the mouth speaks what the heart is full of.” -Jim Beggs  

“If you can’t write your message in a sentence, you can’t say it in an hour.” -Dianna Booher  

“There are always three speeches, for every one you actually gave. The one you practiced, the one you gave, and the one you wish you gave.” -Dale Carnegie

“It usually takes me more than three weeks to prepare a good impromptu speech.” - Mark Twain

“A good orator is pointed and impassioned.” -Marcus T. Cicero

“Oratory is the power to talk people out of their sober and natural opinions.” - Joseph Chatfield

“He who wants to persuade should put his trust not in the right argument, but in the right word. The power of sound has always been greater than the power of sense.” - Joseph Conrad

“There are three things to aim at in public speaking: first, to get into your subject, then to get your subject into yourself, and lastly, to get your subject into the heart of your audience.” - Alexander Gregg

“The success of your presentation will be judged not by the knowledge you send but by what the listener receives.” - Lilly Walters

“If you don’t know what you want to achieve in your presentation your audience never will.” - Harvey Diamond

“Best way to conquer stage fright is to know what you’re talking about.” - Michael H Mescon

“There are only two types of speakers in the world. 1. The nervous and 2. Liars.” - Mark Twain

“No one ever complains about a speech being too short!” - Ira Hayes

“90% of how well the talk will go is determined before the speaker steps on the platform.” - Somers White

“It takes one hour of preparation for each minute of presentation time.” - Wayne Burgraff

“The most precious things in speech are the pauses.” - Sir Ralph Richardson

“Well-timed silence hath more eloquence than speech.” - Martin Fraquhar Tupper

“They may forget what you said, but they will never forget how you made them feel.” - Carl W. Buechner

“The problem with speeches isn’t so much not knowing when to stop, as knowing when not to begin.” - Frances Rodman

“Words have incredible power.
They can make people’s hearts soar,
or they can make people’s hearts sore.”
-Dr. Mardy Grothe

“Speech is power: speech is to persuade, to convert, to compel.” -Ralph Waldo Emerson

“The right word may be effective, but no word was ever as effective as a rightly timed pause.” - Mark Twain

UPDATED*
See below for a visual representation of these in a slideshow:

6 thoughts on “25 Awesome Public Speaking Quotes

  1. These are 25 quotes that every writer on oratory as well as every orator need to have in his or her repertory of quotes. The one by Martin Fraquhar Tupper, “Well-timed silence hath more eloquence than speech.” is a special favorite of mine because I’m always telling the new speakers that I mentor to pause when speaking as an alternative to using filler words when they need a moment to gather their thoughts. A well-laced pause can add dramatic impact to a speech while filler words do nothing but detract from the quality of ones speech.

Leave a Reply