Quotes from The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves, and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History

Robert M. Edsel ·  473 pages

Rating: (39.5K votes)


“There are fights that you may lose without losing your honor; what makes you lose your honor is not to fight.
-Jaques Jaujard”
― Robert M. Edsel, quote from The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves, and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History


“The thought came back to him, as it often did: To save the culture of your allies is a small thing. To cherish the culture of your enemy, to risk your life and the life of other men to save it, to give it all back to them as soon as the battle was won … it was unheard of, but that was exactly what Walker Hancock and the other Monuments Men intended to do.”
― Robert M. Edsel, quote from The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves, and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History


“If, in time of peace, our museums and art galleries are important to the community, in time of war they are doubly valuable. For then, when the petty and the trivial fall way and we are face to face with final and lasting values, we… must summon to our defense all our intellectual and spiritual resources. We must guard jealously all we have inherited from a long past, all we are capable of creating in a trying present, and all we are determined to preserve in a foreseeable future. Art is the imperishable and dynamic expression of these aims. It is, and always has been, the visible evidence of the activity of free minds.…”
― Robert M. Edsel, quote from The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves, and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History


“War did not come like a hurricane, Rorimer realized, destroying everything in its path. It came like a tornado, touching down in patches, taking with it one life while leaving the next person unharmed.”
― Robert M. Edsel, quote from The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves, and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History


“Destiny is not one push, she thought as she waited to cross a quiet street on that cold Paris evening years later, but a thousand small moments that through insight and hard work you line up in the right direction, like the magnet does the metal shavings.”
― Robert M. Edsel, quote from The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves, and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History



“To save the culture of your allies is a small thing. To cherish the culture of your enemy, to risk your life and the life of other men to save it, to give it all back to them as soon as the battle was won… it was unheard of, but that is exactly what Walker Hancock and the other Monuments Men intended to do.”
― Robert M. Edsel, quote from The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves, and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History


“It matters little that you are afraid if you manage to hide it. You are then at the edge of courage. (one of Jaujard's philosophies)”
― Robert M. Edsel, quote from The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves, and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History


“When I am billeted a German home even for one night I go out and search for the chickens and rabbits or pets and give them water and food if possible. Generally the family has pulled out too rapidly to care for such things. I suppose the stern and the cruel ones rule the world. If so, I shall be content to try to live each day within the limits of my conscience and let great plaudits go to those who are willing to pay the price for it.”
― Robert M. Edsel, quote from The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves, and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History


“There’s one good thing about being in the bomb disposal unit: No superior officer is ever looking over your shoulder.”
― Robert M. Edsel, quote from The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves, and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History


“Possessed by the grasp of quality and connoisseurship, he knew and measured the worth of man’s visible heritage and determined, in the midst of constant change, to preserve and enhance that heritage so that it might be visible to anyone with eyes to see.”30”
― Robert M. Edsel, quote from The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves, and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History



“Writing now makes me feel as if I had lost at least one of my senses. I can't hear you or see you and I wonder if you hear me. One thing is quite sure. I love you. Yours, George.”
― Robert M. Edsel, quote from The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves, and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History


“I think we got some work done, back at the start, because nobody knew us, nobody bothered us - and we had no money.”
― Robert M. Edsel, quote from The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves, and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History


“When the Nazis took Paris, the director of the Toledo Museum of Art wrote to David Finley, director of the not yet opened National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C., to encourage the creation of a national plan, saying, “I know [the possibility of invasion] is remote at the moment, but it was once remote in France.”
― Robert M. Edsel, quote from The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves, and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History


“That was the secret, he believed, to success in any endeavor: to be a careful, knowledgeable, and efficient observer of the world, and to act in accordance with what you saw.”
― Robert M. Edsel, quote from The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves, and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History


“Winston Churchill had grasped Eisenhower’s hand and told him, with tears in his eyes, “I am with you to the end, and if it fails we will go down together.”
― Robert M. Edsel, quote from The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves, and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History



“He had no idea that the world was entering an economic depression, or that hard times bring recriminations and blame. Privately, Harry's parents worried not just about the economy, but about the rising tide of nationalism and anti- Semitism.”
― Robert M. Edsel, quote from The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves, and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History


“had sold his soul, and that is something you can never repurchase at any price.”
― Robert M. Edsel, quote from The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves, and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History


“General Patton, upon seeing the Roman ruins at Agrigento, remarked to a local expert, “Seventh Army didn’t cause that destruction, did it, sir?” The man replied, “No sir, that happened in the last war.” “What war was that?” “The Second Punic War.”5”
― Robert M. Edsel, quote from The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves, and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History


“It is amazing how the world can change, he thought, during the life span of a fruitcake.”
― Robert M. Edsel, quote from The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves, and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History


“Here, Mortimer Wheeler thought, is power. And a reminder of our mortality.”
― Robert M. Edsel, quote from The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves, and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History



“Those who had benefited from the false stories of Altaussee had been working behind the scenes to defeat the petition. Without”
― Robert M. Edsel, quote from The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves, and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History


“There are fights that you may lose without losing your honor; what makes you lose your honor is not to fight them.”19”
― Robert M. Edsel, quote from The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves, and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History


“I suppose the stern and the cruel ones rule the world. If so, I shall be content to try to live each day within the limits of my conscience and let great plaudits go to those who are willing to pay the price for it.”7”
― Robert M. Edsel, quote from The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves, and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History


“But was art worth a life, Taper wanted to know. Like all Monuments Men, it was a question that haunted him. “I had that choice,” Leonard said. “I chose to remove the bombs. It was worth the reward.” “What reward?” “When I finished, I got to sit in Chartres Cathedral, the cathedral I had helped save, for almost an hour. Alone.”
― Robert M. Edsel, quote from The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves, and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History


“At a point where the destruction widened out, leaving a vast field of broken lintels and cornerstones, some GIs had posted a sign with a quote from Hitler: “Gebt mir fünf Jahre und Ihr werdet Deutschland nicht wiedererkennen.” Below was the English translation: “Give me five years & you will not recognize Germany again.”
― Robert M. Edsel, quote from The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves, and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History



“World War II had exposed millions of young American men and women to the art and architecture of Europe and Asia and almost overnight created an interest in and appreciation for the arts that would normally require generations to nurture.”
― Robert M. Edsel, quote from The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves, and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History


“A good start, a willingness—even eagerness—to work beyond the call of duty, a sense of fair play, and a recognition of opportunities before and when they arrive.”
― Robert M. Edsel, quote from The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves, and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History


“He was a modernizer, in other words, who never forgot the importance of the individual people behind the machines. His”
― Robert M. Edsel, quote from The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves, and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History


“An expert and a precisionist makes his analysis first, he always said, then his decision.3”
― Robert M. Edsel, quote from The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves, and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History


“Since the 1300s, this job had been performed by members of a small group of families, all living in the hills near the mine. Over the centuries humans grew larger, but the miners stayed the same size, until they eventually seemed dwarfed by the demands of the mine and their time underground (diet and inbreeding were more likely causes). Even in the early twentieth century, this small isolated community spoke a dialect last popular in the Middle Ages. They explored their tunnels with acetylene torches, and wore the white linen suits and peaked caps of medieval miners.”
― Robert M. Edsel, quote from The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves, and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History



About the author

Robert M. Edsel
See more on GoodReads

Popular quotes

“Tyler?” Brayden asked, and Tyler shook his head to clear thoughts that were going way too fast for him. “Sorry, yes, we’ll just deal with my issues now,” Tyler finally answered. “But, whatever it is that’s bothering you, I hope you know I’ll help if you need it.” “I don’t know if I like this new caring-brother thing you’re doing.” “Hey, I’ve always been caring, just a bit of an ass at times.” “At times?” Brayden smiled.”
― Carrie Ann Ryan, quote from Finding Abigail


“Ad astra per aspera- From the mud to the stars”
― quote from Breathless


“Nazi persecution didn’t limit itself to race. Religion, national origin, alternative lifestyles, persons with disabilities—all were targets. How would you characterize the Slavs? Gypsies? Moors? All the lines get blurred. Even within Judaism, there are many races. There are Negro Jews in Ethiopia and Middle Eastern Jews in Iraq. There have been Jews in Japan since the 1860s. Poland was fractionally Jewish, but there were still three and a half million Jews living there in the 1930s.” “But still, today it all seems so incomprehensible.” Ben raised his eyebrows. “Incomprehensible because we’re Americans? Land of the free and home of the brave? Let’s not kid ourselves. We’ve authored our own chapters in the history of shame, periods where the world looked at us and shook its head. Early America built an economy based on slavery and it was firmly supported by law. Read the Supreme Court’s decision in Dred Scott. We trampled entire cultures of Native Americans. ‘No Irish Need Apply’ was written on factory gates in nineteenth-century New York.” Ben shook his head. “We’d like to think we’re beyond such hatred, but the fact is, we can never let our guard down. That’s why this case is so important. To you and to me. It’s another reminder of what can happen when evil is allowed to incubate. Find a reason to turn your nose up at a culture, to denigrate a people because they’re different, and it’s not such a giant leap from ethnic subjugation to ethnic slaughter.” Catherine”
― Ronald H. Balson, quote from Once We Were Brothers


“Nothing is worse and more hurtful than a happiness that comes too late. It can give no pleasure, yet it deprives you of that most precious of rights - the right to swear and curse at your fate!”
― Ivan Turgenev, quote from Rudin


“I returning South on horseback, by Rome, Allatoona, Marietta, Atlanta, and Madison, Georgia. Stockton stopped at Marietta, where he resided. Hammond took the cars at Madison, and I rode alone to Augusta, Georgia, where I left the horse and returned to Charleston and Fort Moultrie by rail. Thus by a mere accident I was enabled to traverse on horseback the very ground where in after-years I had to conduct vast armies and fight great battles. That the knowledge thus acquired was of infinite use to me, and consequently to the government, I have always felt”
― William T. Sherman, quote from Memoirs of General W.T. Sherman


Interesting books

Night's Master
(1.6K)
Night's Master
by Tanith Lee
The Clearing
(2K)
The Clearing
by Heather Davis
Damn Few: Making the Modern SEAL Warrior
(2.2K)
Damn Few: Making the...
by Rorke Denver
Selected Letters
(111)
Selected Letters
by Martha Gellhorn
ttyl
(15.1K)
ttyl
by Lauren Myracle
A Different Mirror: A History of Multicultural America
(3.2K)
A Different Mirror:...
by Ronald Takaki

About BookQuoters

BookQuoters is a community of passionate readers who enjoy sharing the most meaningful, memorable and interesting quotes from great books. As the world communicates more and more via texts, memes and sound bytes, short but profound quotes from books have become more relevant and important. For some of us a quote becomes a mantra, a goal or a philosophy by which we live. For all of us, quotes are a great way to remember a book and to carry with us the author’s best ideas.

We thoughtfully gather quotes from our favorite books, both classic and current, and choose the ones that are most thought-provoking. Each quote represents a book that is interesting, well written and has potential to enhance the reader’s life. We also accept submissions from our visitors and will select the quotes we feel are most appealing to the BookQuoters community.

Founded in 2023, BookQuoters has quickly become a large and vibrant community of people who share an affinity for books. Books are seen by some as a throwback to a previous world; conversely, gleaning the main ideas of a book via a quote or a quick summary is typical of the Information Age but is a habit disdained by some diehard readers. We feel that we have the best of both worlds at BookQuoters; we read books cover-to-cover but offer you some of the highlights. We hope you’ll join us.