Notable Quotes

Just some quotes I've held onto from novels I have read... 


From Thoreau's Walden : "Books are the treasured wealth of the World and the fit inheritance of generations and nations."

From Thoreau's Walden : "How many a man has dated a new era in his life from the reading of a book!"


Last updated 06/23/09

From Gordon Allport's The Nature of Prejudice : "Prejudgements become prejudices only if they are not reversible when exposed to new knowledge."

From Thoreau's Walden : "It is never too late to give up our prejudices."

From Pasternak's Doctor Zhivago : "Only the superfluous is sordid."

From Nietzsche's Thus Spoke Zaruthustra : "Verily, he who possesseth little is so much the less possessed: Blessed be moderate poverty."

From Alexander Solzhenitsyn's One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovitch : "How can you expect a man who's warm to understand a man who's cold?"

From Pearl S. Buck's The Good Earth : "When the rich are too rich there are ways and when the poor are too poor there are ways."

From Thomas More's Utopia : "For pride's criterion of posterity is not what you've got yourself, but what other people haven't got."

From Pasternak's Doctor Zhivago : "Gregariousness is always the refuge of mediocrity."

From Goethe's Faust : "Oh, speak no more of motley crowds to me, their presence makes my spirit flee.  Veil from my site those waves and surges that suck us down into their raging pools.  Take me rather to a quite little cell where pure delight blooms only for the poet,..."

From Tolstoy's Family Happiness : "I wanted feeling to be the guide of life, and not life to guide feeling."

From Voltaire's Candide : "Man is born to live either in the convulsions of distress or the lethargy of boredom."

From Tolstoy's The Kreutzer Sonata : "Both salvation and punishment for man lie in the fact that if he lives wrongly he can befog himself so as not to see the misery of his position."

From Hermann Hesse's Demian : "Each man had only one genuine vocation- to find the way to himself.  He might end up as poet or madman, as prophet or criminal- that was not his affair, ultimately it was of no concern."

From Elie Wiesel's Night : "Never shall I forget those flames that consumed my faith forever."

From Sophocles' Oedipus, The King : "Men should not name what men should never do."

From Virgil's The Aeneid : "Let us charge into things- the defeated have but one hope of safety- not to hope for it."

From Steinbeck's The Moon is Down : "His voice was very soft. 'The people don't like to be conquered, sir, and so they will not be.   Free men cannot start a war, but once it is started, they can fight on in defeat.   Herd men, followers of a leader, cannot do that, and so it is always the herd men who win battles and the free men who win wars.  You will find that is so, sir.'"

From Pearl S. Buck's The Good Earth : "'I have plowed and I have sown seeds and I have reaped harvest and thus I have filled my rice bowl.  And I have beyond this begotten a son and son's sons.'  And with this he trusted like a child that now he would be fed, seeing that he had a son and grandsons."

From Turgenev's Fathers and Sons : "Who has not seen such tears in the eyes of his beloved has never experienced the degree of terrestrial happiness of which man is capable when stunned with gratitude and overcome with shyness."


Other Quotes I like but obtained with less investment... (i.e. Google)

"The greatest and noblest pleasure which men can have in this world is to discover new truths; and the next is to shake off old prejudices."
-- Frederick the Great

"Tolerance implies no lack of commitment to one's own beliefs. Rather it condemns the oppression or persecution of others."
-- John F. Kennedy

"Religions are many and diverse, but reason and goodness are one. "  --Elbert Hubbard

"Toleration is the best religion" - Victor Hugo

"Everybody today seems to be in such a terrible rush; anxious for greater developments and greater wishes and so on; so that children have very little time for their parents; Parents have very little time for each other; and the home begins the disruption of the peace of the world. "
--Mother Teresa

"One day we must come to see that peace is not merely a distant goal we seek, but that it is a means by which we arrive at that goal. We must pursue peaceful ends through peaceful means. "- Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

"We send missionaries to China so the Chinese can get to heaven, but we won't let them into our country." - Pearl S. Buck

"The biggest cause of trouble in the world today is that the stupid people are so sure about things and the intelligent folks are so full of doubts." Bertrand Russell

"If you're mad at someone, try walking a mile in their shoes.  That way, they'll be a mile away and you'll have their shoes." - unknown

"Music is the soil in that the spirit lives, thinks and invents." -Ludwig van Beethoven

"If you want to feel rich, just count all of the things you have that money can't buy." - Robert Marlowe

"Even if I knew that tomorrow the world would go to pieces, I would still plant my apple tree." - Martin Luther King Jr.

"Inherited ideas are a curious thing, and interesting to observe and examine." - Mark Twain from A Connecticut Yankee In King Arthur's Court

"We must become the change we wish to see in the world." - Mahatma Gandhi

"Some trails are happy ones,
Others are blue.
It's the way you ride the trail that counts,
Here's a happy one for you."  Dale Evans-Rogers

"The mark of a successful man is one that has spent an entire day on the bank of a river without feeling guilty about it." - Chinese Philosopher

"I started out thinking of America as highways and state lines.  As I got to know it better, I began to think of it as rivers." - Charles Kuralt from The Magic of Rivers