Leo Tolstoy, aka Count Lev Nikolayevich Tolstoy or Tolstoi

Leo
Tolstoy, aka Count Lev Nikolayevich Tolstoy or Tolstoi
1828
1910

Russian Essayist, Realistic Fiction Novelist and Playwright, best known for novels "War and Peace" and "Anna Karenina"

Author Quotes

There can be no peace for us, only misery, and the greatest happiness.

There was no solution, but that universal solution which life gives to all questions, even the most complex and insoluble. That answer is: one must live in the needs of the day?that is, forget oneself. To forget himself in sleep was impossible now, at least till nighttime; he could not go back now to the music sung by the decanter-women; so he must forget himself in the dream of daily life.

The women are the main stumbling block in the way of the man. It is hard to be a man loves a woman and do nothing. There is a single way to learn the pleasures of love, without love becomes an obstacle is married

There can be only one permanent revolution ? a moral one; the regeneration of the inner man. How is this revolution to take place? Nobody knows how it will take place in humanity, but every man feels it clearly in himself. And yet in our world everybody thinks of changing humanity, and nobody thinks of changing himself.

There was something in her higher than what surrounded her. There was in her the glow of the real diamond among glass imitations. This glow shone out in her exquisite, truly enigmatic eyes. The weary, and at the same time passionate, glance of those eyes, encircled by dark rings, impressed one by its perfect sincerity. Everyone looking into those eyes fancied he knew her wholly, and knowing her, could not but love her.

The workmen's revolution, with the terrors of destruction and murder, not only threatens us, but we have already been living upon its verge during the last thirty years, and it is only by various cunning devices that we have been postponing the crisis... The hatred and contempt of the oppressed people are increasing, and the physical and moral strength of the richer classes are decreasing: the deceit which supports all this is wearing out, and the rich classes have nothing wherewith to comfort themselves.

There is an Eastern fable, told long ago, of a traveler overtaken on a plain by an enraged beast. Escaping from the beast he gets into a dry well, but sees at the bottom of the well a dragon that has opened its jaws to swallow him. And the unfortunate man, not daring to climb out lest he should be destroyed by the enraged beast, and not daring to leap to the bottom of the well lest he should be eaten by the dragon, seizes s twig growing in a crack in the well and clings to it. His hands are growing weaker and he feels he will soon have to resign himself to the destruction that awaits him above or below, but still he clings on. Then he sees that two mice, a black one and a white one, go regularly round and round the stem of the twig to which he is clinging and gnaw at it. And soon the twig itself will snap and he will fall into the dragon's jaws. The traveler sees this and knows that he will inevitably perish; but while still hanging he looks around, sees some drops of honey on the leaves of the twig, reaches them with his tongue and licks them. So I too clung to the twig of life, knowing that the dragon of death was inevitably awaiting me, ready to tear me to pieces; and I could not understand why I had fallen into such torment. I tried to lick the honey which formerly consoled me, but the honey no longer gave me pleasure, and the white and black mice of day and night gnawed at the branch by which I hung. I saw the dragon clearly and the honey no longer tasted sweet. I only saw the unescapable dragon and mice, and I could not tear my gaze from them. And this is not a fable but the real unanswerable truth intelligible to all. The deception of the joys of life which formerly allayed my terror of the dragon now no longer deceived me. No matter how often I may be told, You cannot understand the meaning of life so do not think about it, but live, I can no longer do it: I have already done it too long. I cannot now help seeing day and night going round and bringing me to death. That is all I see, for that alone is true. All else is false. The two drops of honey which diverted my eyes from the cruel truth longer than the rest: my love of family, and of writing -- art as I called it -- were no longer sweet to me. Family... said I to myself. But my family -- wife and children -- are also human. They are placed just as I am: they must either live in a lie or see the terrible truth. Why should they live? Why should I love them, guard them, bring them up, or watch them? That they may come to the despair that I feel, or else be stupid? Loving them, I cannot hide the truth from them: each step in knowledge leads them to the truth. And the truth is death.

There was within him a deep unexpressed conviction that all would be well, but that one must not trust to this and still less speak about it, but must only attend to one's own work. And he did his work, giving his whole strength to the task.

The younger sister was piqued, and in turn disparaged the life of a tradesman, and stood up for that of a peasant. I would not change my way of life for yours, said she. We may live roughly, but at least we are free from anxiety. You live in better style than we do, but though you often earn more than you need, you are very likely to lose all you have. You know the proverb, ?Loss and gain are brothers twain.? It often happens that people who are wealthy one day are begging their bread the next. Our way is safer. Though a peasant?s life is not a fat one, it is a long one. We shall never grow rich, but we shall always have enough to eat. The elder sister said sneeringly: Enough? Yes, if you like to share with the pigs and the calves! What do you know of elegance or manners! However much your good man may slave, you will die as you are living-on a dung heap-and your children the same. Well, what of that? replied the younger. Of course our work is rough and coarse. But, on the other hand, it is sure; and we need not bow to anyone. But you, in your towns, are surrounded by temptations; today all may be right, but tomorrow the Evil One may tempt your husband with cards, wine, or women, and all will go to ruin. Don?t such things happen often enough?

There is infinite movement within one moment of rest.

There will be today, there will be tomorrow, there will be always, and there was yesterday, and there was the day before.

The strongest of all warriors are these two - Time and Patience.

Then he thought himself unhappy, but happiness was all in the future; now he felt that the best happiness was already in the past.

There is no condition of human beings get used to, especially around the lives of everyone sees the same conditions.

Therefore, all these causes-billions of causes-coincided so as to bring about what happened. And consequently none of them was the exclusive cause of the event, but the event had to take place simply because it had to take place.

The study was slowly lit up as the candle was brought in. The familiar details came out: the stag's horns, the bookshelves, the looking-glass, the stove with its ventilator, which had long wanted mending, his father's sofa, a large table, on the table an open book, a broken ash-tray, a manuscript-book with his handwriting. As he saw all this, there came over him for an instant a doubt of the possibility of arranging this new life, of which he had been dreaming on the road. All these traces of his life seemed to clutch him, and to say to him: 'No, you're not going to get away from us, and you're not going to be different, but you're going to be the same as you've always been; with doubts, everlasting dissatisfaction with yourself, vain efforts to amend, and falls, and everlasting expectations, of a happiness which you won't get, and which isn't possible for you.

Then I remembered the first lesson God had set me: Learn what dwells in man. And I understood that in man dwells Love! I was glad that God had already begun to show me what He had promised, and I smiled for the first time.

There is no greatness where there is not simplicity.

Therein is the whole business of one's life; that soul which is to seek out and save in the Perishing.

The subject of history is the life of peoples and of humanity. To catch and pin down in words--that is, to describe directly the life, not only of humanity, but even of a single people, appears to be impossible.

Then remember what they had heard about the soldiers fell on the battlefield. When the fire was heard in the sanctuary and do anything Dshmnand not fun trying to find it easier to bear the risk. Like all the soldiers who were at the Pierre wanted to get rid of the evils of life. One was in Namjvyy one would forget his gambling, the law, and he was one Znbarh one horse rooted one Mybakht policy, the time spent hunting, one takes refuge in the arms of the state and the struggle was . All of them are created equal. It is important to live any way we can get rid of. Just be faced with life Khvfangyz escaped this life.

There is no happiness in existence, there are only flashes of happiness.

These joys were so trifling as to be as imperceptible as grains of gold among the sand, and in moments of depression she saw nothing but the sand; yet there were brighter moments when she felt nothing but joy, saw nothing but the gold.

The superfluity of the comforts of like destroys all joy in satisfying one's needs, while great freedom in the choice of occupation... is just what makes the choice of occupation insoluble difficult and destroys the need and even the possibility of having an occupation.

Then she thought of how life could still be happy, and how tormentingly she loved and hated him, and how terribly her heart was pounding.

Author Picture
First Name
Leo
Last Name
Tolstoy, aka Count Lev Nikolayevich Tolstoy or Tolstoi
Birth Date
1828
Death Date
1910
Bio

Russian Essayist, Realistic Fiction Novelist and Playwright, best known for novels "War and Peace" and "Anna Karenina"