After the dazzling orgies in form and color of the eighteenth century, art was put on a diet, and allowed nothing but the straight line. This sort of progress ended in ugliness. Art reduced to a skeleton, was the result. This was the advantage of this kind of wisdom and abstinence; the style was so sober that it became lean.

An intelligent hell would be better than a stupid paradise.

A wretched woman is more unfortunate than a wretched man, because she is an instrument of pleasure.

Catastrophes have a somber way of arranging things.

Curiosity is one of the forms of feminine bravery.

Death does not concern me. He who takes his first step uses perhaps his last shoes. (Halmalo)

Et ces deux âmes, sœurs tragiques, s'envolèrent ensemble, l'ombre de l'une mêlée à la lumière de l'autre.

Gauvin reprit :
-Et la femme? qu'en faites-vous?
Cimourdain répondit:
-Ce qu'elle est. La servante de l'homme.
-Oui. À une condition.
-C'est que l'homme sera le serviteur de la femme.
-Y penses-tu? s'écria Cimourdain, l'homme serviteur! Jamais. L'homme est maître . Je n'admet qu'une royauté, celle du foyer. L'homme chez lui est roi.
-Oui. À une condition.
-C'est que la femme y sera reine.

He had the confidence of a man who had never been wounded.

He was not his father, and this was not his work; but he was the master, and this was his masterpiece.

History has its truth, and so has legend. Legendary truth is of another nature than historical truth. Legendary truth is invention whose result is reality. Furthermore, history and legend have the same goal; to depict eternal man beneath momentary man.

In short, between men and women you want..."
"Equality! You can't mean it. Man and woman are two different creatures."
"I said equality. I didn't say identity.

It is difficult to frighten those who are easily astonished; ignorance causes fearlessness. Children have so little claim on hell, that if they should see it they would admire it.

I was confided to your loyalty and accepted by your treason; you offer my death to those to whom you had promised my life. Do you know who it is you are destroying here? It is yourself.

Nature is pitiless; she never withdraws her flowers, her music, her fragrance, and her sunlight from before human cruelty or suffering.

Nature is pitiless; she never withdraws her flowers, her music, her fragrance and her sunlight, from before human cruelty or suffering. She overwhelms man by the contrast between divine beauty and social hideousness. She spares him nothing of her loveliness, neither wing or butterfly, nor song of bird; in the midst of murder, vengeance, barbarism, he must feel himself watched by holy things; he cannot escape the immense reproach of universal nature and the implacable serenity of the sky. The deformity of human laws is forced to exhibit itself naked amidst the dazzling rays of eternal beauty. Man breaks and destroys; man lays waste; man kills; but the summer remains summer; the lily remains the lily; and the star remains the star.
As though it said to man, 'Behold my work. and yours.

Ninety-three" was the war of Europe against France, and of France against Paris. And what was the Revolution? It was the victory of France over Europe, and of Paris over France. Hence the immensity of that terrible moment?, '93, greater than all the rest of the century

On the one side blind force, on the other a soul.

So a voice in the mountain is enough to let loose an avalanche. A word too much may be followed by a caving in. If the word had not been spoken, it would not have happened.

There is a sacred horror about everything grand. It is easy to admire mediocrity and hills; but whatever is too lofty, a genius as well as a mountain, an assembly as well as a masterpiece, seen too near, is appalling. Every summit seems an exaggeration. Climbing wearies. The steepnesses take away one's breath; we slip on the slopes, we are hurt by the sharp points which are its beauty; the foaming torrents betray the precipices, clouds hide the mountain tops; mounting is full of terror, as well as a fall. Hence, there is more dismay than admiration. People have a strange feeling of aversion to anything grand. They see abysses, they do not see sublimity; they see the monster, they do not see the prodigy.

The unforeseen, that strange, haughty power which plays with man, had seized Gauvain and held him fast.

The victory of humanity over man.

Humanity had conquered the inhuman.

And by what means? In what way? How had it overcome the giant of anger and hatred? What arms had it used? What engine of war? The cradle.

To blame or praise men on account of the result, is almost like praising or blaming figures on account of the sum total. Whatever is to happen, happens; whatever is to blow, blows. The eternal serenity does not suffer from these north winds. Above Revolutions, Truth and Justice reign, as the starry heavens above the tempest.

To know how to distinguish the agitation arising from covetousness, from the agitation arising from principles, to fight the one and aid the other, in this lies the genius and the power of great revolutionary leaders.

We are in the hands of those gods, those monsters, those giants: our thoughts.

Whatever causes night in our souls may leave stars.

Whatever causes night in our souls may leave stars. Cimourdain was full of virtues and truth, but they shine out of a dark background.

What makes night within us may leave stars.

Wide horizons lead the soul to broad ideas; circumscribed horizons engender narrow ideas; this sometimes condemns great hearts to become small minded.

Broad ideas hated by narrow ideas,—this is the very struggle of progress.

Wonderful nature has a double meaning, which dazzles great minds and blinds uncultivated souls. When man is ignorant, when the desert is filled with visions, the darkness of solitude is added to the darkness of intelligence; hence, in man, the possibilities of perdition