Margaret Thatcher, the first woman prime minister of Britain and considered one of the most powerful women in the world, was known for her strength of personality as well as her rapier-sharp wit – which often pierced through in her speeches and public statements.

Here are some of her most memorable quotes from her public life:

Need something done?

“In politics if you want something said, ask a man; if you want something done, ask a woman.” (May 20, 1965, Speech to National Union of Townswomen’s Guilds Conference)

On her firm beliefs:

"There are dangers in consensus: it could be an attempt to satisfy people holding no particular views about anything. ... No great party can survive except on the basis of firm beliefs about what it wants to do."

On choosing a side:

“Standing in the middle of the road is very dangerous; you get knocked down by traffic from both sides.”

After her election in 1979:

“Where there is discord, may we bring harmony. Where there is error, may we bring truth. Where there is doubt, may we bring faith. And where there is despair, may we bring hope.”

On her legacy:

“If you just set out to be liked, you would be prepared to compromise on anything at any time and you would achieve nothing." (May 3, 1989, commenting on her 10th anniversary as prime minister.)

"I am not immortal, but I've got a lot left in me yet." -- Sept. 9, 1990.

On her reputation as the 'Iron Lady':

"Ladies and gentlemen, I stand before you tonight in my red chiffon evening gown, my face softly made up, my fair hair gently waved ... the Iron Lady of the Western World. Me? A Cold War warrior? Well, yes -- if that is how they wish to interpret my defense of values of freedoms fundamental to our way of life." (Jan. 31, 1976)

"You turn if you want to; the lady's not for turning." (Oct. 10, 1980)

Her views on socialism:

“The problem with socialism is that eventually you run out of other people’s money [to spend].”

On the Falkland Islands war:

"When you've spent half your political life dealing with humdrum issues like the environment, it's exciting to have a real crisis on your hands." (May 14, 1982)

"We fought to show that aggression does not pay and that the robber cannot be allowed to get away with his swag. We fought with the support of so many throughout the world. ... Yet we also fought alone." (July 3, 1982)

On earning your keep:

“Pennies don’t fall from heaven, they have to be earned here on earth.” (November 1979, at the Lord Mayor’s Banquet)

On Victorian values:

"I was asked whether I was trying to restore Victorian values. I said straight out I was. And I am." (July 21, 1983, speech to British Jewish Community)

"There is no week, nor day, nor hour, when tyranny may not enter upon this country, if the people lose their supreme confidence in themselves, and lose their roughness and spirit of defiance. Tyranny may always enter -- there is no charm or bar against it." (July 19, 1984, during the coal miners' strike)

Tidbits from her life in office:

"We can do business together." (Dec. 17, 1984, speaking of Mikhail Gorbachev)

"No one would remember the Good Samaritan if he'd only had good intentions. He had money as well." (Jan. 6, 1986)

"There is no such thing as society. There are individual men and women, and there are families." (Oct. 31, 1987, magazine interview)

"We are a grandmother." (March 3, 1989, announcing the birth of her first grandchild)

With files from the Associated Press