Quotes about Books and Reading

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Quotes about Books and Reading

Post by Scott »

Please use this thread to post and discuss quotes about books and reading. Here are some quotes about books and reading:

  • A book is the only place in which you can examine a fragile thought without breaking it, or explore an explosive idea without fear it will go off in your face. It is one of the few havens remaining where a man's mind can get both provocation and privacy. ~Edward P. Morgan

    The worth of a book is to be measured by what you can carry away from it. ~James Bryce

    A good book should leave you... slightly exhausted at the end. You live several lives while reading it. ~William Styron

    I would be most content if my children grew up to be the kind of people who think decorating consists mostly of building enough bookshelves. ~Anna Quindlen

    Books are the quietest and most constant of friends; they are the most accessible and wisest of counselors, and the most patient of teachers. ~Charles W. Eliot

    Outside of a dog, a book is man's best friend. Inside of a dog it's too dark to read. ~Groucho Marx

    I find television to be very educating. Every time somebody turns on the set, I go in the other room and read a book. ~Groucho Marx

    A book is like a garden carried in the pocket. ~Chinese Proverb

    Books let us into their souls and lay open to us the secrets of our own. ~William Hazlitt

    In reading, a lonely quiet concert is given to our minds; all our mental faculties will be present in this symphonic exaltation. ~Stéphane Mallarmé

    Books are the bees which carry the quickening pollen from one to another mind. ~James Russell Lowell

    Books can be dangerous. The best ones should be labeled "This could change your life." ~Helen Exley

    Books - the best antidote against the marsh-gas of boredom and vacuity. ~George Steiner

    My test of a good novel is dreading to begin the last chapter. ~Thomas Helm

    This will never be a civilized country until we expend more money for books than we do for chewing gum. ~Elbert Hubbard

    Good friends, good books and a sleepy conscience: this is the ideal life. ~Mark Twain

    A book is to me like a hat or coat - a very uncomfortable thing until the newness has been worn off. ~Charles B. Fairbanks

    You know you've read a good book when you turn the last page and feel a little as if you have lost a friend. ~Paul Sweeney

    It is what you read when you don't have to that determines what you will be when you can't help it. ~Oscar Wilde

    Books had instant replay long before televised sports. ~Bern Williams

    How many a man has dated a new era in his life from the reading of a book. ~Henry David Thoreau

    Fiction reveals truths that reality obscures. ~Jessamyn West

    A book must be an ice-axe to break the seas frozen inside our soul. ~Franz Kafka

    Lord! when you sell a man a book you don't sell just twelve ounces of paper and ink and glue - you sell him a whole new life. Love and friendship and humour and ships at sea by night - there's all heaven and earth in a book, a real book. ~Christopher Morley

    Books serve to show a man that those original thoughts of his aren't very new after all. ~Abraham Lincoln

    The smallest bookstore still contains more ideas of worth than have been presented in the entire history of television. ~Andrew Ross

    I've never known any trouble that an hour's reading didn't assuage. ~Charles de Secondat

    To sit alone in the lamplight with a book spread out before you, and hold intimate converse with men of unseen generations - such is a pleasure beyond compare. ~Kenko Yoshida

    Books are not made for furniture, but there is nothing else that so beautifully furnishes a house. ~Henry Ward Beecher

    Books are the compasses and telescopes and sextants and charts which other men have prepared to help us navigate the dangerous seas of human life. ~Jesse Lee Bennett

    The scholar only knows how dear these silent, yet eloquent, companions of pure thoughts and innocent hours become in the season of adversity. When all that is worldly turns to dross around us, these only retain their steady value. ~Washington Irving

    When you reread a classic you do not see more in the book than you did before; you see more in you than was there before. ~Clifton Fadiman

    For friends... do but look upon good Books: they are true friends, that will neither flatter nor dissemble. ~Francis Bacon

    A book that is shut is but a block. ~Thomas Fuller

    There are books so alive that you're always afraid that while you weren't reading, the book has gone and changed, has shifted like a river; while you went on living, it went on living too, and like a river moved on and moved away. No one has stepped twice into the same river. But did anyone ever step twice into the same book? ~Marina Tsvetaeva

    Books are lighthouses erected in the great sea of time. ~E.P. Whipple

    These are not books, lumps of lifeless paper, but minds alive on the shelves. From each of them goes out its own voice... and just as the touch of a button on our set will fill the room with music, so by taking down one of these volumes and opening it, one can call into range the voice of a man far distant in time and space, and hear him speaking to us, mind to mind, heart to heart. ~Gilbert Highet

    "Tell me what you read and I'll tell you who you are" is true enough, but I'd know you better if you told me what you reread. ~François Mauriac

    Books are embalmed minds. ~Bovee

    The oldest books are still only just out to those who have not read them. ~Samuel Butler

    The art of reading is in great part that of acquiring a better understanding of life from one's encounter with it in a book. ~André Maurois

    A house without books is like a room without windows. ~Heinrich Mann

    Never judge a book by its movie. ~J.W. Eagan

    Far more seemly were it for thee to have thy study full of books, than thy purse full of money. ~John Lyly

    I like intellectual reading. It's to my mind what fiber is to my body. ~Grey Livingston

    I often derive a peculiar satisfaction in conversing with the ancient and modern dead, - who yet live and speak excellently in their works. My neighbors think me often alone, - and yet at such times I am in company with more than five hundred mutes - each of whom, at my pleasure, communicates his ideas to me by dumb signs - quite as intelligently as any person living can do by uttering of words. ~Laurence Sterne

    He who lends a book is an idiot. He who returns the book is more of an idiot. ~Arabic Proverb

    An ordinary man can... surround himself with two thousand books... and thenceforward have at least one place in the world in which it is possible to be happy. ~Augustine Birrell

    Reading is to the mind what exercise is to the body. ~Richard Steele

    That is a good book which is opened with expectation and closed with profit. ~Amos Bronson Alcott

    There is no such thing as a moral or immoral book; books are well written or badly written. ~Oscar Wilde

    The best of a book is not the thought which it contains, but the thought which it suggests; just as the charm of music dwells not in the tones but in the echoes of our hearts. ~Oliver Wendell Holmes

    Except a living man there is nothing more wonderful than a book! A message to us from the dead, - from human souls whom we never saw, who lived perhaps thousands of miles away; and yet these, on those little sheets of paper, speak to us, teach us, comfort us, open their hearts to us as brothers. ~Charles Kingsley

    Let your bookcases and your shelves be your gardens and your pleasure-grounds. Pluck the fruit that grows therein, gather the roses, the spices, and the myrrh. ~Judah Ibn Tibbon

    Some books are to be tasted, others to be swallowed, and some few to be chewed and digested. ~Francis Bacon

    A truly good book teaches me better than to read it. I must soon lay it down, and commence living on its hint.... What I began by reading, I must finish by acting. ~Henry David Thoreau

    To read a book for the first time is to make an acquaintance with a new friend; to read it for a second time is to meet an old one. ~Chinese Saying

    No entertainment is so cheap as reading, nor any pleasure so lasting. ~Mary Wortley Montagu

    We should read to give our souls a chance to luxuriate. ~Henry Miller

    The time to read is any time: no apparatus, no appointment of time and place, is necessary. It is the only art which can be practised at any hour of the day or night, whenever the time and inclination comes, that is your time for reading; in joy or sorrow, health or illness. ~Holbrook Jackson

    Books are delightful society. If you go into a room and find it full of books - even without taking them from the shelves they seem to speak to you, to bid you welcome. ~William Ewart Gladstone

Please post any other quotes about books and reading that you like.
"That virtue we appreciate is as much ours as another's. We see so much only as we possess." - Henry David Thoreau

"Non ignara mali miseris succurrere disco." Virgil, The Aeneid
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Post by Eric »

"All that I know about my life, it seems, I have learned in books." -- Jean-Paul Sartre
Freedom of conscience entails more dangers than authority and despotism. -- Michel Foucault
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Post by Tracey Neal »

Scott, you have some of my favorites already posted here, so I found this a weebit of a challenge, but thats ok...I love a little challenge...especially if it has to do with books :D I hope everyone enjoys these wonderfully witty and wise quotes :)

"The instruction we find in books is like fire. We fetch it from our neighbours, kindle it at home, communicate it to others, and it becomes the property of all." ~

"Literature is my Utopia. Here I am not disenfranchised. No barrier of the sense shuts me out from the sweet, gracious discourse of my book friends. They talk to me without embarrassment or awkwardness."~
Helen Keller

"Knowing I lov'd my books, he furnish'd me From mine own library with volumes that I prize above my dukedom."~
William Shakespeare

"No man can be called friendless when he has God and the companionship of good books."~
Elizabeth Barrett Browning

"A good book has no ending." ~
R D Cumming

"The love of learning, the sequestered nooks, And all the sweet serenity of books."~
Henry Wordsworth Longfellow

"The only words that ever satisfied me as describing Nature are the terms used in fairy books, charm, spell, enchantment. They express the arbitrariness of the fact and its mystery." ~
G K Chesterton

"From the moment I picked your book up until I laid it down I was convulsed with laughter. Some day I intend reading it." ~
Groucho Marx

"Reading made Don Quixote a gentleman, but believing what he read made him mad."~
George Bernard Shaw

"If you will protest courageously, and yet with dignity and Christian love, when the history books are written in future generations, the historians will have to pause and say, "There lived a great people-a black people-who injected new meaning and dignity into the veins of civilization."~
Martin Luther King

The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only one page."~Saint Augustine

"Honesty is the first chapter of the book of wisdom."~
Thomas Jefferson

"A room without books is like a body without a soul."~
Marcus Tullius Cicero

"I still find each day too short for all the thoughts I want to think, all the walks I want to take, all the books I want to read, and all the friends I want to see."~
John Burroughs

"Be careful of reading health books, you might die of a misprint."~
Mark Twain

"No two persons ever read the same book." ~
Edmund Wilson

"I do not believe that civilization will be wiped out in a war fought with the atomic bomb. Perhaps two-thirds of the people of the Earth might be killed, but enough men capable of thinking, and enough books, would be left to start again, and civilization could be restored." ~
Albert Einstein

"If I have not read a book before, it is, for all intents and purposes, new to me whether it was printed yesterday or three hundred years ago." ~
William Hazlitt

"Every burned book or house enlightens the world; every suppressed or expunged word reverberates through the earth from side to side." ~
Ralph Waldo Emerson

"Liesure without books is death, and burial of a man alive."~
Lucius Annaeus Seneca

"Nobody ever outgrows Scripture; the book widens and deepens with our years."~
Charles Haddon Spurgeon

"Don't join the book burners. Do not think you are going to conceal thoughts by concealing evidence that they ever existed."~
Dwight David Eisenhower

"I am sure of this, that by going much alone a man will get more of a noble courage in thought and word than from all the wisdom that is in books." ~
Ralph Waldo Emerson

"Whenever you read a good book, it's like the author is right there, in the room, talking to you, which is why I don't like to read good books."~
Jack Handey

"A good novel tells us the truth about its hero; but a bad novel tells us the truth about its author."~
G K Chesterton

"Where is human nature so weak as in the bookstore?"~
Henry Ward Beecher

"People say that life is the thing, but I prefer reading." ~
Logan Pearsall Smith

"Learn as much by writing as by reading."~
Lord Acton

"Live always in the best company when you read."~
Sydney Smith
Last edited by Tracey Neal on 31 May 2008, 23:17, edited 1 time in total.
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Post by Erasmus_Folly »

I love this thread:

There is no frigate like a book to take us lands away
Nor any courses like a page of prancing poetry
This traverse may the poorest take without oppress of toil
How frugal is the chariot that bears the human soul!

- Emily Dickinson
One must think like a hero merely to behave like a decent human being.
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Post by Tracey Neal »

Erasmus_Folly wrote:I love this thread:

There is no frigate like a book to take us lands away
Nor any courses like a page of prancing poetry
This traverse may the poorest take without oppress of toil
How frugal is the chariot that bears the human soul!

- Emily Dickinson
Beautiful. :) <3<3<3 it :D
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Post by sleepydumpling »

Such wonderful quotes! I know I will be able to dip back here from time to time when I need something inspirational!
Have a Hoot: Read a Book! http://www.haveahootreadabook.co.uk

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Post by Spoons »

books are a narcotic- Franz Kafka
There is no greater misfortune in the world than the loss of reason
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Post by IanBookMan »

awesome quotes!
great thread.

I always laugh at the ones already posted by Scott from Groucho Marx.

"I find television to be very educating. Every time somebody turns on the set, I go in the other room and read a book." ~Groucho Marx

"Outside of a dog, a book is man's best friend. Inside of a dog it's too dark to read." ~Groucho Marx

And this one Star posted:

"From the moment I picked your book up until I laid it down I was convulsed with laughter. Some day I intend reading it." ~
Groucho Marx

Thanks for the morning laugh!
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Post by Inkling »

Books - those miraculous memories of high thoughts and golden moods; those magical shells, tremulous with the secrets of the ocean of life; those love-letters that pass from hand to hand of a thousand lovers that never meet; those honeycombs of dreams; those orchards of knowledge; those still beating hearts of the noble dead; those mysterious signals that beckon along the darksome pathways of the past; voices through which the myriad lispings of the earth find perfect speech; prisms of beauty; urns stored with all the sweets of all the summers of time; immortal nightingales that sing for ever to the rose of life. ~Richard Le Gallienne

Read not to contradict and confute, nor to believe and take for granted, nor to find talk and discourse, but to weigh and consider. ~Francis Bacon

Books are for company the best friends, in doubts counsellors, in damps comforters, ... the busy man's recreation, the opiate of idle weariness, the mind's best ordinary, Nature's garden and seed-plot of immortality. ~Richard Whitlock

A good book is the best of friends, the same today and for ever. ~Martin Tupper

In my library I have profitably and pleasantly dwelt among the shining lights, with which the learned, wise, and holy men of all ages have illuminated the world. ~Richard Baxter

When I get a little money, I buy books; and if any is left, I buy food and clothes. ~ Desiderius Erasmus

I have always imagined that Paradise will be a kind of library. ~ Jorge Luis Borges

Children are made readers on the laps of their parents. ~Emilie Buchwald
To accomplish great things, we must not only act, but also dream, not only plan, but also believe.
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Post by Erasmus_Folly »

When I get a little money I buy books; and if any is left I buy food and clothes
~Desiderius Erasmus Roterodamus (1466-1536)

(Not by me, it's from the other guy)
One must think like a hero merely to behave like a decent human being.
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Post by Dori »

  • On the Dangers of Reading Fiction
    A great obstacle to good education is the inordinate passion prevalent for novels, and the time lost in that reading which should be instructively emplyed. When this poison infects the mind, it destorys its tone and revolts it against wholesome reading. Reason and fact, plain and unadorned, are rejected. Nothing can engage attention unless dressed in all the figments of fancy, and nothing so bedecked comes amiss. The result is a bloated imagination, sickly judgment, and disgust towards all the real businesses of lide. This mass of trach, however, is not without some distinction; some few modeling their narratives, although fictitious, on the incidents of real life, have been able to make them interesting and useful vehicles of sound morality. . . . For a like reason, too, much poetry should not be indulged. Some is useful for forming style and taste. Pope, Dryden, Thompson, Shakespeare, and of the French, Moliere, Racine, the Corneilles, may be read with pleasure and improvement.

    -Thomas Jefferson

    (qtd. in The Bedford Introduction to Literature, pp. 39)
"Fine words will butter no parsnips."
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Post by syedalimudassar »

"Where there is fear, there is lack of faith and trust in God"
-Me(Syed Ali Mudassar)
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Post by Fran »

“No matter how busy you may think you are, you must find time for reading, or surrender yourself to self-chosen ignorance.”

- Confucius
We fade away, but vivid in our eyes
A world is born again that never dies.
- My Home by Clive James
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Post by starlightsjewel »

“The ability to read becomes devalued when what one has learned to read adds nothing of importance to one's life.”
― Bruno Bettelheim
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Post by paige742698 »

“One must always be careful of books and what is inside them, for words have the power to change us.” -Cassandra clare
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