What is ambition? It is an act of wanting to achieve success, wealth or to reach a specific goal in life. To have an ambition in life, means one wants to ful fill his/her dream. Thus, it also means that we need to believe in our won selves which necessarily requires that we create a path full of inspiration. To have an ambition means to embrace failure, to accept challenges and to have perseverance.

Below is a list of quotes about ambition which will help you understand what others think about ambition and how some famous people defined their ambitious journey whether in writing, sports or politics

I feel that you are justified in looking into the future with true assurance, because you have a mode of living in which we find the joy of life and the joy of work harmoniously combined. Added to this is the spirit of ambition which pervades your very being, and seems to make the day’s work like a happy child at play. (referring to America)

Albert Einstein

The same ambition can destroy or save, and make a patriot as it makes a knave.

Alexander Pope

Ambition. An overmastering desire to be vilified by enemies while living and made ridiculous by friends when dead.

Ambrose Bierce

Where ambition can cover its enterprises, even to the person himself, under the appearance of principle, it is the most incurable and inflexible of passions.

Angela Carter

My biggest ambition is never to be bored. I’m not aggressive enough to strongly run after being an actress.

Anjelica Huston

The failure of women to produce genius of the first rank in most of the supreme forms of human effort has been used to block the way of all women of talent and ambition for intellectual achievement in a manner that would be amusingly absurd were it not so monstrously unjust and socially harmful.

Anna Garlin Spencer

Whatever ambivalence I felt about my own career, Frankie more than made up for it with his ambition and tenacity.

Annette Funicello

It is a grand thing to rise in the world. The ambition to do so is the very salt of the earth. It is the parent of all enterprise, and the cause of all improvement.

Anthony Trollope

I have no ambition to surprise my reader. Castles with unknown passages are not compatible with my homely muse.

Anthony Trollope

Ambition makes more trusty slaves than need.

Ben Jonson

Me only have one ambition, y’know. I only have one thing I really like to see happen. I like to see mankind live together – black, white, Chinese, everyone – that’s all.

Bob Marley

It’s stasis that kills you off in the end, not ambition.


Maybe wanting to retire is my ambition.

Brenda Blethyn

The universe is not required to be in perfect harmony with human ambition.

Carl Sagan

All my ambition is, I own, to profit and to please unknown; like streams supplied from springs below, which scatter blessings as they go.

Charles Cotton

I had a burning ambition. Otherwise, I wouldn’t have accomplished it.

Claire Bloom

I can’t sing. Definitely no ambition in that area.

Corin Nemec

The preserve of ambition and folly in pursuit of illusion, or delusion.

Derek Jarman

Ambition can creep as well as soar.

Edmund Burke

Ambition is pitiless. Any merit that it cannot use it finds despicable.

Eleanor Roosevelt

I did not want to be depressed by the gap existing between my weakness and my ambition.

Ella Maillart

I didn’t know then that I would never be able to leave the sounds and smells of these sights behind me, but I was fiercely conscious of one thing-my ambition.

Emanuel Celler

Ambition is a drug that makes its addicts potential madmen.

Emile M. Cioran

A youthful mind is seldom totally free from ambition; to curb that, is the first step to contentment, since to diminish expectation is to increase enjoyment.

Frances Burney

Five enemies of peace inhabit with us–avarice, ambition, envy, anger, and pride if these were to be banished, we should infallibly enjoy perpetual peace.

Francesco Petrarch

What seems to be generosity is often no more than disguised ambition, which overlooks a small interest in order to secure a great one.

Francois de La Rochefoucauld

Our aversion to lying is commonly a secret ambition to make what we say considerable, and have every word received with a religious respect.

Francois de La Rochefoucauld

It is my ambition to say in ten sentences what others say in a whole book.

Friedrich Nietzsche

The aphorism in which I am the first master among Germans, are the forms of “eternity”; my ambition is to say in ten sentences what everyone else says in a book – what everyone else does not say in a book.

Friedrich Nietzsche

My own ambition in the ring had always been skillful boxing, speed and defense – on the order of Mike Gibbons.

Gene Tunney

There are so many things to take into account – your ambition, your ego, the press, the consumers. You can never be sure that you’ll be on top of the pile again.

Giorgio Armani

My ambition was to stop waiting tables. That was how I measured success: finally, I was able to stop waiting tables, and I was able to pay the rent, and that was by being a stand-up comic. Not a very good stand-up comic, but good enough to make a living.

Graham Norton

My ambition is to go back to Spurs and Rangers in some capacity and give something back that they gave to me.

Graham Roberts

He was my friend, faithful and just to me: But Brutus says he was ambitious; And Brutus is an honourable man???. He hath brought many captives home to Rome, Whose ransoms did the general coffers fill: Did this in Caesar seem ambitious? When that

Harold Taylor

We’re not all nice, and there are a lot of levels of ambition and niceness.

Heather Donahue

There is a loftier ambition than merely to stand high in the world. It is to stoop down and lift mankind a little higher.

Henry Van Dyke

Ambition is so powerful a passion in the human breast, that however high we reach we are never satisfied.

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Failure is only postponed success as long as courage coaches ambition. The habit of persistence is the habit of victory.

Herbert Kaufman

Oh that I were seated as high as my ambition, I’d place my naked foot on the necks of monarchs.

Horace Walpole

My ambition is to do a good job. I never plan anything.

Ilie Nastase

Ambition it is the last infirmity of noble minds.

J. M. Barrie

Ambition leads me not only farther than any other man has been before me, but as far as I think it possible for man to go.

James Cook

This source of corruption, alas, is inherent in the democratic system itself, and it can only be controlled, if at all, by finding ways to encourage legislators to subordinate ambition to principle.

James L. Buckley

Ambition – it is the last infirmity of noble minds.

James M. Barrie

Ambition must be made to counteract ambition.

James Madison

I am still full of ambition.

Jan Timman

I think we still believe that ambition is for boys.

Jeanette Winterson

I know what I have done, and Your Honor knows what I have done. … Somewhere between my ambition and my ideals, I lost my ethical compass.

Jeb Stuart Magruder

I’m just a ballplayer with one ambition, and that is to give all I’ve got to help my ball club win. I’ve never played any other way.

Joe DiMaggio

The road to happiness lies in two simple principles; find what interests you and that you can do well, and put your whole soul into it – every bit of energy and ambition and natural ability you have.

John D. Rockefeller

I never had any ambition to be a star, or whatever it is called, and I’m still embarrassed at the word.

John Hurt

The imagination of a boy is healthy, and the mature imagination of a man is healthy but there is a space of life between, in which the soul is in a ferment, the character undecided, the way of life uncertain, the ambition thick-sighted thence proceeds mawkishness.

John Keats

His ambition is to be the spider in the World Wide Web.

John McCarthy

Here at lastWe shall be freethe Almighty hath not builtHere for his envy, will not drive us henceHere we may reign secure, and in my choiceTo reign is worth ambition though in HellBetter to reign in Hell, than serve in Heaven.

John Milton

Whether we fall by ambition, blood, or lust, like diamonds we are cut with our own dust.

John Webster

Vain ambition of kings Who seek by trophies and dead things To leave a living name behind, And weave but nets to catch the wind.

John Webster

Ambition often puts men upon doing the meanest offices so climbing is performed in the same posture with creeping.

Jonathan Swift

I had ambition not only to go farther than any man had ever been before, but as far as it was possible for a man to go.

Joseph Conrad

If your energy is as boundless as your ambition, total commitment may be a way of life you should seriously consider.

Joyce Brothers

My only ambition is to be true every moment I am living.

Juliette Binoche

Character cannot be developed in ease and quiet. Only through experience of trial and suffering can the soul be strengthened, ambition inspired, and success achieved.

Ken Keys

Ambition never comes to an end.

Kenneth Kaunda

Do you have any ambitions outside racing? My main ambition at the moment, whether inside or outside racing, is to become Formula 1 World Champion.

Kimi Raikkonen

My nomination to be Governor was not to gratify ambition.

Lajos Kossuth

I will not become a Napoleon nor an Alexander, and labour for my own ambition; but I will labour for freedom and for the moral well-being of man.

Lajos Kossuth

Ambition has one heel nailed in well, though she stretch her fingers to touch the heavens.

Lao Tzu

One thing all stage mothers share is an overpowering ambition for their daughters.

Lawrence Welk

For those with ambition, reality is more of a creation than an unalterable certainty.

Lori Guinn

Keep away from people who try to belittle your ambitions. Small people always do that, but the really great make you feel that you, too, can become great.

Louis Untermeyer

That which is given with pride and ostentation is rather an ambition than a bounty.

Lucius Annaeus Seneca

As a youngster, I enjoyed sport and my ambition was to be a great sportsman.

Lynn Davies

Though ambition in itself is a vice, yet it is often the parent of virtues.

Marcus Fabius Quintilian

We must learn to reawaken and keep ourselves awake . . . by an infinite expectation of the dawn, which does not forsake us in our soundest sleep. I know of no more encouraging fact than the unquestionable ability of man to elevate his life by a conscious

Mark Twain

I wasn’t really interested in doing television. I don’t have that much ambition. My agent, Eileen Feldman, has all the ambition for me.

Meg Tilly

The bulk of mankind have indeed, in all countries in their turn, been made the prey of ambition.

Mercy Otis Warren

An ounce of hypocracy is worth a pound of ambition.

Michael Korda

You want the book to be special, and they are not always going to be special, but at least you want that to be the ambition. So the only way that happens is if you are not pressing to write a book.

Michael Lewis

My craziest ambition is to take John Madden’s job and salary.

Michael Strahan

My ambition in high school was to be a high school coach and teacher, and that’s still what I do: teach.

Mike Krzyzewski

Ambition is a poor excuse for not having sense enough to be lazy.

Milan Kundera

Ambition never is in a greater hurry that I; it merely keeps pace with circumstances and with my general way of thinking.

Napoleon Bonaparte

What is my loftiest ambition? I’ve always wanted to throw an egg at an electric fan.

Oliver Herford

A man without ambition is dead. A man with ambition but no love is dead. A man with ambition and love for his blessings here on earth is ever so alive. Having been alive, it won’t be so hard in the end to lie down and rest.

Pearl Bailey

My ambition is to be happy.

Penelope Cruz

Ambition aspires to descend.

Pierre Corneille

Though ambition itself be a vice, yet it is often times the cause of virtues.


I used to think I had ambition… but now I’m not so sure. It may have been only discontent. They’re easily confused.

Rachel Field

Ambition can be a disease, and it feeds on itself.

Rebecca Miller

Ambition is not what man does… but what man would do.

Robert Browning

We must love stupid people better than ourselves; are they not the really unfortunate ones of this world? Do not people without taste and without ideal grow constantly weary, rejoicing in nothing, and being quite useless here below?

Robert L. Schwartz

It is a good idea to be ambitious, to have goals, to want to be good at what you do, but it is a terrible mistake to let drive and ambition get in the way of treating people with kindness and decency. The point is no that they will then be nice to you. It is that you will feel better about yourself.

Robert Merton Solow

Ambition drove many men to become false to have one thought locked in the breast, another ready on the tongue.


A wise man is cured of ambition by ambition itself; his aim is so exalted that riches, office, fortune and favour cannot satisfy him.

Samuel Johnson

What likelihood is there of corrupting a man who has no ambition?

Samuel Richardson

My one ambition is to play a hero.

Sessue Hayakawa

Ambition is an idol, on whose wings great minds are carried only to extreme; to be sublimely great or to be nothing.

Shakti Gawain

Among those best known, their highest ambition is to build American homes, possess American furniture, dress in American clothes, adopt the American style of living and be American citizens.

Sheldon Jackson

Our ambition should be to rule ourselves, the true kingdom for each one of us and true progress is to know more, and be more, and to do more.

Sir John Lubbock

Among precautions against ambition, it may not be amiss to take precautions against our own. I must fairly say, I dread our own power and our own ambition: I dread our being too much dreaded. ??? We may say that we shall not abuse this astonishing and hithe

Sir Winston Churchill

A young man without ambition is an old man waiting to be.

Steven Brust

Ambition, if it feeds at all, does so on the ambition of others.

Susan Sontag

I have been absolutely hag-ridden with ambition. If I could wish to have anything in the world it would be to be free of ambition.

Tallulah Bankhead

Obscurity can be a fire of ambition in those who have stalwart souls.

Taylor Caldwell

Never let inexperience get in the way of ambition.

Terry Josephson

The man of petty ambition if invited to dinner will be eager to be set next his host.


I’ve got a great ambition to die of exhaustion rather than boredom.

Thomas Carlyle

I have no ambition to govern men; it is a painful and thankless office.

Thomas Jefferson

Ambition is a lust that is never quenched, but grows more inflamed and madder by enjoyment.

Thomas Otway

Women who seek to be equal with men lack ambition.

Timothy Leary

There’s no secret about my ambition, I do not want to go into the House of Commons. My only real political interest is in London and if one day I’m in a position to run for mayor, then terrific.

Trevor Phillips

My ambition when I started out was to play two or three gigs a week. And that’s what I’m doing.

Van Morrison

You despise books you whose lives are absorbed in the vanities of ambition, the pursuit of pleasure or indolence but remember that all the known world, excepting only savage nations, is governed by books.


The decay of decency in the modern age, the rebellion against law and good faith, the treatment of human beings as things, as the mere instruments of power and ambition, is without a doubt the consequence of the decay of the belief in man as something mor

Walter Lippmann

Ambition is but avarice on stilts, and masked.

Walter Savage Landor

If you have ambition, you might not achieve anything, but without ambition, you are almost certain not to achieve anything.

Whitfield Diffie

Ambition may be defined as the willingness to receive any number of hits on the nose.

Wilfred Owen

From compromise and things half done, Keep me with stern and stubborn pride, And when at last the fight is won, God, keep me still unsatisfied.

William Arthur Ward

Don’t let ambition get so far ahead that it loses sight of the job at hand.

William Feather

Live neither in the past nor in the future, but let each day’s work absorb your entire energies, and satisfy your widest ambition.

William Osler

Ambition should be made of sterner stuff.

William Shakespeare

He was my friend, faithful, and just to meBut Brutus says, he was ambitious,And Brutus is an honorable man.He hath brought many captives home to Rome,Whose ransoms did the general coffers fill.Did this in Caesar seem ambitiousWhen the poor have cried, Caesar hath wept.Ambition should me made of sterner stuff,Yet Brutus says, he was ambitiousAnd Brutus is an honorable man.

William Shakespeare

O, now, for ever Farewell the tranquil mind farewell content Farewell the plumed troop and the big wars That make ambition virtue O, farewell Farewell the neighing steed and the shrill trump, The spirit-stirring drum, the ear-piercing fife, The royal banner, and all quality, Pride, pomp, and circumstance of glorious war And, O you mortal engines, whose rude throats The immortal Jove’s dread clamours counterfeit, Farewell Othello’s occupation’s gone

William Shakespeare

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