Jean Paul, born Johann Paul Friedrich Richter, aka Jean Paul Richter

Paul, born Johann Paul Friedrich Richter, aka Jean Paul Richter

German Romantic Writer and Novelist

Author Quotes

Why is it that a blessing only when it is lost cuts as deep into the heart as a sharp diamond? Why must we first weep before we can love so deeply that our hearts ache?

Whoever can turn his weeping eyes to heaven has lost nothing; for there, above, is everything he an wish for here below. He only is a loser, who persists in looking down on the narrow plains of the present time.

When we die, we shall find we have not lost our dreams; we have only lost our sleep.

What most increases anger is the feeling that one is in the wrong.

What makes old age so sad is, not that our joys, but that our hopes, cease.

What a father says to his children is not heard by the world, but it will be heard by posterity.

We do not marvel at the sunrise of a joy, only at its sunset! Then, on the other hand, we are amazed at the commencement of a sorrow-storm; but that it should go off in gentle showers, we think quite natural.

We could not endure solitude were it not for the powerful companionship of hope, or of some unseen one.

Universal love is a glove without fingers, which fits all hands alike, and none closely; but true affection is like a glove with fingers, which fits one hand only, and sits closest to that one.

Unhappy is the man for whom his own mother has not made all other mothers venerable.

To love all mankind, from the greatest to the lowest, a cheerful state of being is required; but in order to see into mankind, into life, and still more into ourselves, suffering is requisite.

To die for truth is not to die for one’s country, but to die for the world.

Time, which deadens hatred, secretly strengthens love; and in the hour of threatened separation its growth is manifested at once in radiant brightness.

Time is a continual over-dropping of moments, which fall down one upon the other and evaporate.

There is a long and wearisome step between admiration and imitation.

The youth of the soul is everlasting and eternity is youth.

The past and future are veiled; but the past wears the widow’s veil, the future, the virgin’s.

The more weakness the more falsehood; strength goes straight; every cannon-ball that has in its hollows and holes goes crooked. Weaklings must lie.

The miracles of earth are the laws of heaven.

The long sleep of death closes our scars, and the short sleep of life our wounds. Sleep is the half of time which heals us.

The guardian angel of life sometimes flies so high that man cannot see it; but he always is looking down upon us, and will soon hover nearer to us.

The earlier in life the first fright occurs, the more dangerous it is.

The contemplation of night should lead to elevating rather than to depressing ideas. Who can fix his mind on transitory and earthly things, in presence of those glittering myriads of worlds; and who can dread death or solitude in the midst of this brillings, animated universe, composed of countless suns and worlds, all full of light and life and motion?

The apparently irreconcilable dissimilarity between our wishes and our means, between our hearts and this world, remains a riddle.

Tears of joy are the dew in which the sun of righteousness is mirrored.

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Paul, born Johann Paul Friedrich Richter, aka Jean Paul Richter
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German Romantic Writer and Novelist