Stendhal Quotes

A forty-year-old woman is only something to men who have loved her in her youth.

A novel is a mirror carried along a main road. A very small degree of hope is sufficient to cause the birth of love.

A wise woman never yields by appointment. It should always be an unforeseen happiness.

All religions are founded on the fear of the many and the cleverness of the few.

Far less envy in America than in France, and far less wit.

Friendship has its illusions no less than love.

God’s only excuse is that he does not exist.

I think no woman I have had ever gave me so sweet a moment, or at so light a price, as the moment I owe to a newly heard musical phrase.

If you don’t love me, it does not matter, anyway I can love for both of us.

If you think of paying court to the men in power, your eternal ruin is assured.

In love, unlike most other passions, the recollection of what you have had and lost is always better than what you can hope for in the future.

It is the nobility of their style which will make our writers of 1840 unreadable forty years from now.

Life is too short, and the time we waste in yawning never can be regained.

Logic is neither an art nor a science but a dodge.

Love has always been the most important business in my life, I should say the only one.

Mathematics allows for no hypocrisy and no vagueness.

Never had he found himself so close to those terrible weapons of feminine artillery.

Nothing is so hideous as an obsolete fashion.

One can acquire everything in solitude except character.

Only great minds can afford a simple style.

Our true passions are selfish.

People happy in love have an air of intensity.

People who have been made to suffer by certain things cannot be reminded of them without a horror which paralyses every other pleasure, even that to be found in reading a story.

Pleasure is often spoiled by describing it.

Politics in a literary work, is like a gun shot in the middle of a concert, something vulgar, and however, something which is impossible to ignore.

Power, after love, is the first source of happiness.

Prudery is a kind of avarice, the worst of all.

She had caprices of a marvellous unexpectedness, and how is any one to imitate a caprice?

The first qualification for a historian is to have no ability to invent.

The French are the wittiest, the most charming, and up to the present, at all events, the least musical race on Earth.

The great majority of men, especially in France, both desire and possess a fashionable woman, much in the way one might own a fine horse – as a luxury befitting a young man.

The man of genius is he and he alone who finds such joy in his art that he will work at it come hell or high water.

The more a race is governed by its passions, the less it has acquired the habit of cautious and reasoned argument, the more intense will be its love of music.

The more one pleases everybody, the less one pleases profoundly.

The pleasures of love are always in proportion to our fears.

The Russians imitate French ways, but always at a distance of fifty years.

The shepherd always tries to persuade the sheep that their interests and his own are the same.

This is the curse of our age, even the strangest aberrations are no cure for boredom.

To be loved at first sight, a man should have at the same time something to respect and something to pity in his face.

To describe happiness is to diminish it.

True love makes the thought of death frequent, easy, without terrors; it merely becomes the standard of comparison, the price one would pay for many things.

What is really beautiful must always be true.

Women are always eagerly on the lookout for any emotion.