Maurice Maeterlinck, fully Count Maurice Polydore Marie Bernard Maeterlinck

Maurice
Maeterlinck, fully Count Maurice Polydore Marie Bernard Maeterlinck
1862
1949

Belgian Poet, Playwright, Dramatist, Essayist, Nobel Prize in Literature

Author Quotes

There is no other means of escaping from one's consciousness than to deny it, to look upon it as an organic disease of the terrestrial intelligence - a disease which we must endeavor to cure by an action which must appear to us an action of violent and willful madness, but which, on the other side of our appearances, is probably an action of health.

They believe that nothing will happen because they have closed their doors.

To be happy is only to have freed one's soul from the unrest of unhappiness.

We are alone, absolutely alone on this chance planet: and, amid all the forms of life that surround us, not one, excepting the dog, has made an alliance with us.

We are never the same with others as when we are alone. We are different, even when we are in the dark with them.

You know, my brothers, the nature of our business. The child you see before you, thanks to a talisman stolen from the powers of Earth, is able to take possession of the Blue Bird and thus to snatch from us the secret which we have kept since the origin of life... Now we know enough of Man to entertain no doubt as to the fate which he reserves for us once he is in possession of this secret. That is why it seems to me that any hesitation would be both foolish and criminal... It is a serious moment; the child must be done away with before it is too late...

Happiness is rarely absent; it is we that know not of its presence.

Our reason may prove what it will: our reason is only a feeble ray that has issued from Nature.

Happiness will never be any greater than the idea we have of it.

Remember that happiness is as contagious as gloom. It should be the first duty of those who are happy to let others know of their gladness.

He's not quite blue yet, but that will come, you shall see! ? Take him off quick to your little girl...

Silence is the element in which great things fashion themselves together... Speech is too often... the act of quite stifling and suspending thought, so that there is none to conceal... Speech is of Time, silence is of Eternity... It is idle to think that, by means of words, any real communication can ever pass from one man to another.

How strangely do we diminish a thing as soon as we try to express it in words.

The future is a world limited by ourselves; in it we discover only what concerns us and, sometimes, by chance, what interests those whom we love the most.

A truth that disheartens because it is true is of more value than the most stimulating of falsehoods.

I have done what I could do in life, and if I could not do better, I did not deserve it. In vain I have tried to step beyond what bound me.

The natural and primitive relationship of soul to soul is a relationship of beauty. For beauty is the only language of the soul... It has no other life, it can produce nothing else.

All our knowledge merely helps us to die a more painful death than the animals that know nothing. A day will come when science will turn upon its error and no longer hesitate to shorten our woes. A day will come when it will dare and act with certainty; when life, grown wiser, will depart silently at its hour, knowing that it has reached its term.

I knew that if I was captured by the Germans I would be shot at once, since I have always been counted as an enemy of Germany because of my play, Le Bourgmestre de Stillemonde, which dealt with the conditions in Belgium during the German Occupation of 1918.

The truth that seems discouraging does in reality only transform the courage of those strong enough to accept it; and, in any event, a truth that disheartens, because it is true, is still of far more value than the most stimulating of falsehoods.

An act of goodness is of itself an act of happiness. No reward coming after the event can compare with the sweet reward that went with it.

I know that you are looking for the Blue Bird, that is to say, the great secret of things and of happiness, so that Man may make our servitude still harder... I do not hear the Animals... Where are they?... All this concerns them as much as us... We, the Trees, must not assume the responsibility alone for the grave measures that have become necessary... On the day when Man hears that we have done what we are about to do, there will be terrible reprisals... It is right, therefore, that our agreement should be unanimous, so that our silence may be the same.

There comes no adventure but wears to our soul the shape of our everyday thoughts.

And, should they stand still one day, become fixed and remain motionless, it will not be that they have encountered calamity, nullity or death; but they will have entered into a thing so fair, so great, so happy and bathed in such certainties that they will for ever prefer it to all the prodigious chances of an infinity which nothing can impoverish.

If the bee disappeared off the face of the earth, man would only have four years left to live.

Author Picture
First Name
Maurice
Last Name
Maeterlinck, fully Count Maurice Polydore Marie Bernard Maeterlinck
Birth Date
1862
Death Date
1949
Bio

Belgian Poet, Playwright, Dramatist, Essayist, Nobel Prize in Literature