149 Inspirational ‘Good Man’ Quotes About What Makes Great Men

Photo: YourTango
good man quotes
Quotes

If you ask society what makes a man, you'll get a mixture of being aggressive, loud, violent, and dominant. But what it means to be a good man is unique to each individual.

For some, being a good man means asking for help when you need it or being the little spoon. Others say what makes a man a good man is being comfortable with yourself and not being afraid to show the world exactly who you are, or that being a good man is about treating others right.

There "good man" quotes about manhood below can remind you of what really matters when it comes to the meaning of manliness.

RELATED: 30 Quotes For Men About Masculinity, Being A Good Father & What Makes A Man

Look to these inspirational quotes for men for motivation and affirmation that you (or the man in your life) are on the right track.

149 Inspirational "Good Man" Quotes For Men

1. "You spend time with your family? Good. Because a man who doesn't spend time with his family can never be a real man." — Don Vito Corleone, "The Godfather"

2. "A real man won't date the most beautiful girl in the world — he'll date the girl that makes his world beautiful." — Unknown

 

3. "The stronger a man is, the more gentle he can afford to be." — Elbert Hubbard

4. "No man stands so tall as when he stoops to help a child." — Unknown

 

5. "A good boyfriend loves his girl with all heart. He isn't afraid to point to his girl in front of his friends and say: That's my baby." — Unknown

 

6. "A real man can't stand seeing his woman hurt. He's careful with his decisions and actions, so he never has to be responsible for her pain." — Unknown

 

7. "Men are like steel. When they lose their temper, they lose their worth." — Chuck Norris

8. "The first step to be a good man is this: You must deeply feel the burden of the stones some else [is] carrying." — Mehmet Murat Ildan

9. "A good boyfriend can't fix all of your problems, but he can promise you that you won't have to face them alone." — Unknown

 

10. "A good man will want you to shine. He wants you to be your amazing self. A good man loves to show off his happy, intelligent, amazing, powerful woman." — Anastasia Netri

11. "A man does what he must — in spite of personal consequences, in spite of obstacles and dangers and pressures — and that is the basis of all human morality." — President John F. Kennedy

12. "One can know a man from his laugh, and if you like a man's laugh before you know anything of him, you may confidently say that he is a good man." — Fyodor Dostoevsky

13. "Real men stay faithful. They don't have time to look for another woman because they're too busy looking for new ways to love their own." — Often attributed to John F. Kennedy

 

14. "A good man would prefer to be defeated than to defeat injustice by evil means." — Sallust

15. "Being a good husband is like being a good stand-up comic: you need ten years before you can even call yourself a beginner." — Jerry Seinfeld

16. "A gentleman will open doors, pull out chairs, and carry things. Not because she's helpless or unable, but because he wants to show her that she is valuable and worthy of respect." — Charles J. Orlando

17. "The real power of a man is in the size of the smile of the woman sitting next to him." — Unknown

 

18. "The mark of a real man, is a man who can allow himself to fall deeply in love with a woman." — C. JoyBell C.

19. "The real man smiles in trouble, gathers strength from distress, and grows brave by reflection." — Thomas Paine

20. "A man must at times be hard as nails: willing to face up to the truth about himself... But he must also be tender. No weapon will breach the armor of a woman's resentment like tenderness." — Elisabeth Elliot

21. "A real man only lies to his woman when he's surprising her." — Unknown

 

22. "The mark of a great man is one who knows when to set aside the important things in order to accomplish the vital ones." — Brandon Sanderson

23. "A real man never stops trying to show a girl how much she means to him, even after he's got her." — Unknown

 

24. “So, being a good man is not an exam or a qualification, it changes, and it incorporates being a good friend, a good father, a good employee, a good boss, a good neighbor, and a good citizen.” — A.A. Gill

 

25. “We are all ready to be savage in some cause. The difference between a good man and a bad one is the choice of the cause.” — William James

 

26. “The good man is the man who, no matter how morally unworthy he has been, is moving to become better.” — John Dewey

 

27. “The true measure of a man is how he treats someone who can do him absolutely no good.” — Samuel Johnson

28. “Nothing deters a good man from doing what is honorable.” — Seneca the Younger

 

29. “It is part of a good man to do great and noble deeds, though he risks everything.” — Plutarch

 

30. “Trying to learn to be a good man is like learning to play tennis against a wall. You are only a good man — a competent, capable, interesting and lovable man — when you’re doing it for, or with, other people.” — A.A. Gill

 

31. “I think a gentleman is someone who holds the comfort of other people above their own. The instinct to do that is inside every good man, I believe. The rules about opening doors and buying dinner and all of that other ‘gentleman’ stuff is a chess game, especially these days.” — Anna Kendrick

 

32. “It is the task of a good man to help those in misfortune.” — Sophocles

 

33. “Being a ‘good man’ is something you do, not something you are.” — Luvvie Ajayi

 

34. "I'm a good man, and I'm gonna become a better man." — Chance the Rapper

 

35. “It is not what he has, or even what he does which expresses the worth of a man, but what he is.” — Henri-Frederic Amiel

36. “A dog is not considered a good dog because he is a good barker. A man is not considered a good man because he is a good talker.” — Gautama Buddha

 

37. “A strong man doesn’t have to be dominant toward a woman. He doesn’t match his strength against a woman weak with love for him. He matches it against the world.” — Marilyn Monroe

 

38. “There is nothing noble being superior to your fellow man; true nobility is being superior to your former self.” — Ernest Hemingway

 

39. “You have to be a man before you can be a gentleman.” — John Wayne

 

40. “It is his nature, not his standing, that makes the good man.” — Publilius Syrus

 

41. “A good man does not spy around for the black spots in others, but presses unswervingly on towards his mark.” — Marcus Aurelius

 

42. “The greatness of a man is not in how much wealth he acquires, but in his integrity and his ability to affect those around him positively.” — Bob Marley

 

43. “A superior man is modest in his speech, but exceeds in his actions.” — Confucius

 

44. “A good man is kinder to his enemy than bad men are to their friends.” — Joseph Hall

45. “The value of a man should be seen in what he gives and not in what he is able to receive.” — Albert Einstein

 

46. “You can’t measure manhood with a tape line around his biceps.” — Billy Sunday

 

47. “It makes a big difference when men respect women. There are a lot of men who don’t, so that’s the main quality that would make a good man a great man.” — Stephanie Sigman

 

48. “Great men do not play stage tricks with the doctrines of life and death: only little men do that.” — John Ruskin, in "Sesame and Lillies"

 

49. “In the face of inhumanity, a good man reacts, but a great one acts.” — James Rollins

 

50. “A great man does not seek applause or place; he seeks for truth; he seeks the road to happiness, and what he ascertains, he gives to others.” — Robert Green Ingersoll

RELATED: 131 Most Powerful Martin Luther King Jr. Quotes Of All Time

51. “If a man can bridge the gap between life and death, if he can live on after he’s dead, then maybe he was a great man.” — James Dean

 

52. “I believe the first test of a truly great man is in his humility.” — John Ruskin

53. “A great man is always willing to be little.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson

 

54. “It takes a great man to give sound advice tactfully, but a greater man to accept it graciously.” — Logan Pearsall Smith

 

55. “It takes a great man to be a good listener.” — Calvin Coolidge

 

56. “Good men have the fewest fears. He has but one great fear who fears to do wrong; he has a thousand who has overcome it.” — Christian Nestell Bovee

 

57. “There is no better proof of a man’s being truly good than his desiring to be constantly under the observation of good men.” — Francois de La Rochefoucauld

 

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

 

59. “He who stops being better stops being good.” — Oliver Cromwell

60. “Waste no more time arguing about what a good man should be. Be one.” — Marcus Aurelius

 

61. “Nice guys may appear to finish last, but usually they are running a different race.” — Ken Blanchard

 

62. “The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moment of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.” — Martin Luther King, Jr.

 

63. “No great man ever complains of want of opportunity.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson

 

64. “Strive not to be a success, but rather to be a value.” — Albert Einstein

 

65. “A gentleman is one who puts more into the world than he takes out.” — George Bernard Shaw

66. “As a general rule, it pays to be confident, helpful and nice.” — Colin Wright

 

67. “Think like a man of action, act like a man of thought.” — Henri Bergson

 

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

 

69. “Education begins the gentleman, but reading, good company, and reflection must finish him.” — John Locke

 

70. “Don’t hide your scars, they make you who you are.” — Frank Sinatra

 

71. “Courtesy is a much a mark of a gentleman as courage.” — Theodore Roosevelt

 

72. “Excellence is not a skill, it’s an attitude.” — Ralph Marston

 

73. “If you cannot do great things, do small things in a great way.” — Napoleon Hill

74. “I walk slowly, but never backward.” — Abraham Lincoln

 

75. “All successes begin with self-discipline. It starts with you.” — Dwayne Johnson

 

76. “Manners matter. Good looks are a bonus. Humor is a must.” — Unknown

 

77. “A man is only as good as his words are.” — Frank Sinatra

 

78. “The measure of intelligence is the ability to change.” — Albert Einstein

 

79. “There is one rule, above all others, for being a man. Whatever comes, face it on your feet.” — Robert Jordan

 

80. "The fool doth think he is wise, but the wise man knows himself to be a fool." — William Shakespeare

81. "Only a man's character is the real criterion of worth." — Eleanor Roosevelt

 

82. "Men occasionally stumble over the truth, but most of them pick themselves up and hurry off as if nothing had happened.” — Winston Churchill

 

83. “Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice." — Steve Jobs

 

84. "A woman simply is, but a man must become."— Camille Paglia

 

85. "The greatest deception men suffer is from their own opinions."— Leonardo da Vinci

 

86. "Men do not fail; they give up trying." — Elihu Root

 

87. "Stronger by weakness, wiser men become." — Edmund Waller

 

88. "The true index of a man's character is the health of his wife."— Cyril Connolly

 

89. "Man becomes great exactly in the degree in which he works for the welfare of his fellow-men."— Mahatma Gandhi

 

90. "Men are more easily governed through their vices than through their virtues." — Napoleon Bonaparte

 

91. "The truth is found when men are free to pursue it." — Franklin D. Roosevelt

 

92. "The first rule of business is: Do other men for they would do you." — Charles Dickens

 

93. "For tis not in mere death that men die most." — Elizabeth Barrett Browning

 

94. "First find the man in yourself if you will inspire manliness in others." — Amos Bronson Alcott

 

95. "The superior man is distressed by the limitations of his ability; he is not distressed by the fact that men do not recognize the ability that he has." — Confucius

 

96. "One must judge men not by their opinions, but by what their opinions have made of them." — Georg C. Lichtenberg

 

97. "Men, who are rogues individually, are in the mass very honorable people." — Montesquieu

 

98. "Without feelings of respect, what is there to distinguish men from beasts?" — Confucius

 

99. "All men who have turned out worth anything have had the chief hand in their own education." — Walter Scott

 

Subscribe to our newsletter.

Join now for YourTango's trending articles, top expert advice and personal horoscopes delivered straight to your inbox each morning.

100. "Men are born to succeed, not to fail." — Henry David Thoreau

RELATED: 24 Powerful Eminem Quotes & Lyrics About Insecurities, Enemies & Never Backing Down

101. "Deliberation is the work of many men. Action, of one alone." — Charles de Gaulle

 

102. "Men get to be a mixture of the charming mannerisms of the women they have known." — F. Scott Fitzgerald

 

103. "I can accept failure, everyone fails at something. But I can't accept not trying. To be successful you have to be selfish, or else you never achieve."— Michael Jordan

 

104. "The heart of man is very much like the sea, it has its storms, it has its tides and in its depths it has its pearls too" — Vincent Van Gogh

 

105. "Men give away nothing so liberally as their advice." — Francois de La Rochefoucauld

 

106. "Evil prospers when good men do nothing."— John Philpot Curran

 

107. "A man is original when he speaks the truth that has always been known to all good men." — Patrick Kavanagh

 

108. "Leadership consists of picking good men and helping them do their best." — Chester W. Nimitz

 

109. "The natural desire of good men is knowledge." — Leonardo da Vinci

 

110. "There are good men out there. There are guys who have their priorities straight, who take care of their kids, who respect their mothers." — Pepa

 

111. "Every actual State is corrupt. Good men must not obey laws too well." — Ralph Waldo Emerson

 

112. “If a man’s mind becomes pure, his surroundings will also become pure.” — Buddha

 

113. “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.” — Confucius

 

114. “To be a man requires that you accept everything life has to give you, beginning with your name.” — Burl Ives

 

115. “A good man’s prayers will from the deepest dungeon climb heaven’s height, and bring a blessing down.” — Joanna Baillie

 

116. “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

 

117. “There are two questions a man must ask himself: The first is ‘Where am I going?’ and the second is ‘Who will go with me?’ If you ever get these questions in the wrong order you are in trouble.” — Sam Keen

 

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

 

119. “A man does what he must – in spite of personal consequences, in spite of obstacles and dangers and pressures – and that is the basis of all human morality.” — John F. Kennedy

 

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

 

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

 

122. “It is part of a good man to do great and noble deeds, though he risk everything.” — Plutarch

 

123. “It is not the situation which makes the man, but the man who makes the situation.” — Frederick William Robertson

 

124. “If there is anything that a man can do well, I say let him do it. Give him a chance.” — Abraham Lincoln

 

125. “Men are not prisoners of fate, but only prisoners of their own minds.” — Franklin D. Roosevelt

 

126. “Though in the order of nature angels rank above men, yet, by scale of justice, good men are of greater value than bad angels.” — Saint Augustine

 

127. “Compassion for animals is intimately associated with goodness of character, and it may be confidently asserted that he who is cruel to animals cannot be a good man.” — Arthur Schopenhauer

 

128. “A man may conquer a million men in battle but one who conquers himself is, indeed, the greatest of conquerors.” — Buddha

 

129. “Life is too short to be little. Man is never so manly as when he feels deeply, acts boldly, and expresses himself with frankness and with fervor.” — Benjamin Disraeli

 

130. “Nothing deters a good man from doing what is honorable.” — Seneca the Younger

 

131. “The heart of a good man is the sanctuary of God in this world.” — Suzanne Curchod

 

132. “You have to have a bunch of dimensions of yourself. You have to be able to adapt in this world. You can’t be a nice guy living in a world of savages.” — Mike Tyson

 

133. “Big jobs usually go to the men who prove their ability to outgrow small ones.” — Theodore Roosevelt

 

134. "There are a lot of good men out there who just need a little direction and leadership in order for them to offer what they have to young men and boys." — John Eldredge

 

135. "Good men are the stars, the planets of the ages wherein they live, and illustrate the times." — Ben Jonson

 

136. "When evil men destroy, good men must build and bind." — Anas Aremeyaw Anas

 

137. "Men are not punished for their sins, but by them." — Kin Hubbard

 

138. "Treat all men alike. Give them the same law. Give them an even chance to live and grow." — Chief Joseph

 

139. "Honor is simply the morality of superior men." — H. L. Mencken

 

140. "Many men owe the grandeur of their lives to their tremendous difficulties." — Charles Spurgeon

 

141. "Culture makes all men gentle." — Menander

 

142. "It's at the borders of pain and suffering that the men are separated from the boys." — Emil Zatopek

 

143. "Nothing great will ever be achieved without great men, and men are great only if they are determined to be so." — Charles de Gaulle

 

144. "Men do not quit playing because they grow old; they grow old because they quit playing." — Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr.

 

145. "Men must know their limitations." — Clint Eastwood

 

146. "The less men think, the more they talk." — Montesquieu

 

147. "Either men will learn to live like brothers, or they will die like beasts." — Max Lerner

 

148. "Neutral men are the devil's allies." — Edwin Hubbel Chapin

 

149. "A gentleman is simply a patient wolf." — Lana Turner

RELATED: 50 Inspirational Quotes To Motivate You Out Of Your Slump

Estee Kahn is a writer and amateur photographer who writes all about love — dating, relationships, friendships, yourself, and family.