The greatest happiness of life is the conviction that we are loved -- loved for ourselves, or rather, loved in spite of ourselves.

Victor Hugo

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More Quotes by Victor Hugo

victor hugo, Les Contemplations, MorsJe vis cette faucheuse. Elle était dans son champ. Elle allait à grands pas moissonnant et fauchant, Noir squelette laissant passer le crépuscule. Dans l'ombre où l'on dirait que tout tremble et recule, L'homme suivait des yeux les lueurs de la faulx.Et les triomphateurs sous les arcs triomphaux Tombaient ; elle changeait en désert Babylone, Le trône en échafaud et l'échafaud en trône, Les roses en fumier, les enfants en oiseaux,L'or en cendre, et les yeux des mères en ruisseaux. Et les femmes criaient : - Rends-nous ce petit être. Pour le faire mourir, pourquoi l'avoir fait naître ? -Ce n'était qu'un sanglot sur terre, en haut, en bas ; Des mains aux doigts osseux sortaient des noirs grabats ; Un vent froid bruissait dans les linceuls sans nombre ; Les peuples éperdus semblaient sous la faulx sombre Un troupeau frissonnant qui dans l'ombre s'enfuit ; Tout était sous ses pieds deuil, épouvante et nuit.Derrière elle, le front baigné de douces flammes, Un ange souriant portait la gerbe d'âmes.

- Victor Hugo

To commit the least possible sin is the law for man. To live without sin is the dream of an angel. Everything terrestrial is subject to sin. Sin is a gravitation.

- Victor Hugo

When Victor Hugo was buried, you couldn’t find a whore in all of Paris. They were too busy paying their respects. That was a man – and he still has a show on in the West End.

- Hanif Kureishi, The Last Word

God manifests himself to us in the first degree through the life of the universe, and in the second degree through the thought of man. The second manifestation is not less holy than the first. The first is named Nature, the second is named Art.

- Victor Hugo, Hugo's Works: William Shakespeare

Dream no small dreams. They have no power to stir the hearts of men.

- Victor Hugo

Usually, the murmur that rises up from Paris by day is the city talking; in the night it is the city breathing; but here it is the city singing. Listen, then, to this chorus of bell-towers - diffuse over the whole the murmur of half a million people - the eternal lament of the river - the endless sighing of the wind - the grave and distant quartet of the four forests placed upon the hills, in the distance, like immense organpipes - extinguish to a half light all in the central chime that would otherwise be too harsh or too shrill; and then say whetehr you know of anything in the world more rich, more joyous, more golden, more dazzling, than this tumult of bells and chimes - this furnace of music - these thousands of brazen voices, all singing together in flutes of stone three hundred feet high, than this city which is but one orchestra - this symphony which roars like a tempest.

- Victor Hugo

To breathe Paris is to preserve one's soul.

- Victor Hugo, Les Misérables

TO VICTOR HUGO OF MY CROW PLUTO “Even when the bird is walking we know that it has wings.”—VICTOR HUGO Of: my crow Pluto, the true Plato, azzurronegro green-blue rainbow— Victor Hugo, it is true we know that the crow “has wings,” however pigeon-toe- inturned on grass. We do. (adagio) Vivorosso “corvo,” although con dizionario io parlo Italiano— this pseudo Esperanto which, savio ucello you speak too— my vow and motto (botto e totto) io giuro è questo credo: lucro è peso morto. And so dear crow— gioièllo mio— I have to let you go; a bel bosco generoso, tuttuto vagabondo, serafino uvaceo Sunto, oltremarino verecondo Plato, a

- Marianne Moore, Complete Poems

Let us not, however, exaggerate our power. Whatever man does, the great lines of creation persist; the supreme mass does not depend on man. He has power over the detail, not over the whole. And it is right that this should be so. The Whole is providential. Its laws pass over our head. What we do goes no farther than the surface. Man clothes or unclothes the earth; clearing a forest is like taking off a garment. But to slow down the rotation of the globe on its axis, to accelerate the course of the globe on its orbit, to add or subtract a fathom on he earth's daily journey of 718,000 leagues around the sun, to modify the precession of the equinoxes, to eliminate one drop of rain--never! What is on high remains on high. Man can change the climate, but not the seasons Just try and make the moon revolve anywhere but in the ecliptic!Dreamers, some of them illustrious, have dreamed of restoring perpetual spring to the earth. The extreme seasons, summer and winter, are produced by the excess of the inclination of the earth's axis over the place of the ecliptic of which we have just spoken. In order to eliminate the seasons it would be necessary only to straighten this axis. Nothing could be simpler. Just plant a stake on the Pole and drive it in to the center of the globe; attach a chain to it; find a base outside the earth; have 10 billion teams, each of 10 billion horses, and get them to pull. THe axis will straighten up, ad you will have your spring. As you can see, an easy task.We must look elsewhere for Eden. Spring is good; but freedom and justice are beter. Eden is moral, not material. To be free and just depends on ourselves.

- Victor Hugo, The Toilers of the Sea

There, at a depth to which divers would find it difficult to descend, are caverns, haunts, and dusky mazes, where monstrous creatures multiply and destroy each other. Huge crabs devour fish and are devoured in their turn. Hideous shapes of living things, not created to be seen by human eyes wander in this twilight. Vague forms of antennae, tentacles, fins, open jaws, scales, and claws, float about there, quivering, growing larger, or decomposing and perishing in the gloom, while horrible swarms of swimming things prowl about seeking their prey.To gaze into the depths of the sea is, in the imagination, like beholding the vast unknown, and from its most terrible point of view. The submarine gulf is analogous to the realm of night and dreams. There also is sleep, unconsciousness, or at least apparent unconsciousness, of creation. There in the awful silence and darkness, the rude first forms of life, phantomlike, demoniacal, pursue their horrible instincts.

- Victor Hugo, The Toilers of the Sea

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