The quote (Latin citatum "quoted, summoned" to Latin citāre "to set in motion, summon", cf. "to quote someone in court") is a passage taken verbatim or in content from a text or a reference to a specific passage in the text. Content from other media can also be taken over: There are image, music and film quotations. Well-known literal quotations are often used as catchphrases. For example, many passages from the Bible are so firmly anchored in common usage that they are hardly perceived as quotes anymore. In political disputes, too, people speak of quotations when they refer to statements made by others. In journalism, a directly used quotation in literal speech is also referred to as original sound.

As a rule, a quotation is substantiated by a source citation or a bibliographical reference by naming its author and the exact text passage. Such a reference is called a citation in library science. Citations can also occur without an associated citation. Citations whose original context is lost and can no longer be reconstructed become fragments.

Likewise: An aphorism is an independent single thought, judgment, or life wisdom. It can consist of only one sentence or a few sentences. Often it formulates a particular insight rhetorically as a general saying (aphorism, maxim, aperçu, bon mot). In contrast, excerpts from other texts, such as winged words or pointed quotations are not considered aphorisms by literary scholars. A writer of aphorisms is called an aphorist.