The Bibliophile's Adventurers Club

Exemplars of bookish delight

Tag: quotes (page 2 of 3)

Birthday, George Bernard Shaw

‘Tis the birthday of George Bernard Shaw. That’s right, the Irish playwright and winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature {1925}, was born July 26, 1856. In honor of his big day, a few of his words:

I often quote myself. It adds spice to my conversation.”

A gentleman is one who puts more into the world than he takes out.”

Do not do unto others as you expect they should do unto you. Their tastes may not be the same.”

A happy family is but an earlier heaven.”

A life spent making mistakes is not only more honorable, but more useful than a life spent doing nothing.”

Do not waste your time on Social Questions. What is the matter with the poor is Poverty; what is the matter with the rich is Uselessness.”

A fool’s brain digests philosophy into folly, science into superstition, and art into pedantry. Hence University education.”

A little learning is a dangerous thing, but we must take that risk because a little is as much as our biggest heads can hold.”

A man never tells you anything until you contradict him.”

A veteran journalist has never had time to think twice before he writes.”

All great truths begin as blasphemies.”

A fashion is nothing but an induced epidemic.”

A broken heart is a very pleasant complaint for a man in London if he has a comfortable income.”

All my life affection has been showered upon me, and every forward step I have made has been taken in spite of it.”

Better keep yourself clean and bright; you are the window through which you must see the world.”

He knows nothing and thinks he knows everything. That points clearly to a political career.”

I am afraid we must make the world honest before we can honestly say to our children that honesty is the best policy.”

Find enough clever things to say, and you’re a Prime Minister; write them down and you’re a Shakespeare.”

I want to be thoroughly used up when I die, for the harder I work the more I live. I rejoice in life for its own sake.”

Do not try to live forever. You will not succeed.”


Birthday of Antoine de Saint-Exupery

The author of famed The Little Prince, Antoine de Saint-Exupery, was born June 29, 1900 in Lyon, France. As is our custom, a few words from the man of the hour …

Grown-ups never understand anything by themselves, and it is tiresome for children to be always and forever explaining things to them.”

The one thing that matters is the effort.”

To be a man is, precisely, to be responsible.”

A chief is a man who assumes responsibility. He says ‘I was beaten,’ he does not say ‘My men were beaten’.”

‘Men have forgotten this truth,’ said the fox. ‘But you must not forget it. You become responsible, forever, for what you have tamed.'”

Tell me who admires and loves you, and I will tell you who you are.”

The machine does not isolate us from the great problems of nature but plunges us more deeply into them.”

But the eyes are blind. One must look with the heart…

Life has taught us that love does not consist in gazing at each other, but in looking outward together in the same direction.”

And now here is my secret, a very simple secret; it is only with the heart that one can see rightly, what is esential is invisible to the eye.”

It is such a secret place, the land of tears.”

What saves a man is to take a step. Then another step.”

Only the unknown frightens men. But once a man has faced the unknown, that terror becomes the known.”

True happiness comes from the joy of deeds well done, the zest of creating things new.”

If you want to build a ship, don’t drum up people together to collect wood and don’t assign them tasks and work, but rather teach them to long for the endless immensity of the sea.”

A pile of rocks ceases to be a rock when somebody contemplates it with the idea of a cathedral in mind.”

The time for action is now. It’s never too late to do something.”


Horatio Hornblower {excerpt}

Dear Adventurers … I really have not forgotten about you. Not in the least. I’ve just been a tad on the crazy busy side … and in the summer no less! Summer, when we should have little more to do than lounge about, reading a good book.

Speaking of which, let’s take a bit of a break and have ourselves an adventure. And what better adventure than with Horatio Hornblower?


Hornblower and the Even Chance

A January Gale was roaring up the Channel, blustering loudly, and bearing on its bosom rain squalls whose big frops rattled loudly on the tarpaulin clothing of those among the officers and men whose duties kept them on deck. So hard and so long had the gale blown that even in the sheltered waters of Spithad the battleship moved uneasily at her anchors, pitching a little in the choppy seas, and snubbing herself against the tautened cables with unexpected jerks. A shore boat was on its way out to her, propelled by oars in the hands of two sturdy women; it danced madly on the steep little waves, now and then putting its nose into one and sending a sheet of spray flying aft. The oarswoman in the bow knew her business, and with rapid glances over her shoulder not only kept the boat on its course but turned the bows into the worse of the waves to keep from capsizing. It slowly drew up along the starboard side of the Justinian, and as it approached the main chains the midshipman of the watch hailed it.

‘Aye aye,’ came back the answering hail from the lusty lungs of the woman at the stroke oar; by the curious and ages-old convention of the navy the reply meant that the boat had an officer on board–presumably the huddled figure in the sternsheets looking more like a heap of trash with a boat cloak thrown over it…

-Excerpt, Mr. Midshipman Hornblower, by C.S. Forester


Happy birthday Joyce Carol Oates

Joyce Carol Oates was born June 16, 1938. So, as is our custom here at The Bibliophile’s Adventurers Club, a few words from the birthday girl:

I never change, I simply become more myself.”

If you are a writer you locate yourself behind a wall of silence and no matter what you are doing, driving a car or walking or donig housework, you can still be writing, because you have that space.”

If food is poetry, is not poetry also food?”

When poets write about food it is usually celebratory. Food as the thing-initself, but also the thoughtful preparation of meals, the serving of meals, meals communally shared: a sense of the sacred in the profane.”

When people say there is too much violence in [my books], what they are saying is there is too much reality in life.”

Life and people are complex. A writer as an artist doesn’t have the personality of a politician. We don’t see the world that simply.”

It makes me angry sometimes, it’s a visceral thing–how you come to despise your own words in your ears not because they aren’t genuine, but because they are; because you’ve said them so many times, your ‘principles,’ your ‘ideals’–and so damned little in the world has changed because of them.”

A daydreamer is prepared for most things.”

Where we come from in America no longer signifies. It’s where we go, and what we do when we get there, that tells us who we are.”

See, people come into your life for a reason. They might not know it themselves, why. You might not know it. But there’s a reason. There has to be.”

When you’re 50 you start thinking about things you haven’t thought about before. I used to think getting old was about vanity — but actually it’s about losing people you love. Getting wrinkles is trivial.”

Every scar in my face is worth it.”

My belief is that art should not be comforting; for comfort, we have mass entertainment and one another. Art should provoke, disturb, arouse our emotions, expand our sympathies in directions we may not anticipate and may not even wish.”

These are the moments for which we live.”

To Gwendolyn Brooks

On June 7th, 1917 a baby girl was born in Topeka, Kansas. Named Gwendolyn Brooks, she would grow up to write more than twenty books of poetry and win the Pulitzer Prize. Given that today is her big day, a few words …

I am a writer perhaps because I am not a talker.”

Very early in life I became fascinated with the wonders language can achieve. And I began playing with words.”

Poetry is life distilled.”

A writer should get as much education as possible, but just going to school is not enough; if it were, all owners of doctorates would be inspired writers.”

Art hurts. Art urges voyages – and it is easier to stay at home.”

Writing is delicious agony.”

I don’t want to say that these poems have to be simple, but I want to clarify my language. I want these poems to be free. I want them to be direct without sacrificing the kinds of music, the picturemaking I’ve always been interested in.”

Exhaust the little moment. Soon it dies. And be it gash or gold it will not come Again in this identical guise.”

When you love a man, he becomes more than a body. His physical limbs expand, and his outline recedes, vanishes. He is rich and sweet and right. He is part of the world, the atmosphere, the blue sky and the blue water.”

I felt that I had to write. Even if I had never been published, I knew that I would go on writing, enjoying it and experiencing the challenge.”

Reading is important–read between the lines. Don’t swallow everything.”

Older posts Newer posts