Great Throughts Treasury

A database of quotes

Related Quotes

Italian Proverbs

When wine sinks, words swim.

Atheism | Better | Commitment | God | Life | Life | Reason | Right | Story | Suffering | Truth | Unique | God |

J. B. S. Haldane, fully John Burdon Sanderson Haldane

In the development and the maintenance of a living organism the coordination is very clear. The development of each part can be shown to be dependent on that of other parts, including the immediate environment; and the more closely development and maintenance are studied the more evident does this become. But the particular manner in which the parts and the environment influence one another is such that the specific structure and activities of the organism are maintained. They are unmistakably developed and maintained as a whole, and this is what we mean when we say that the organism lives a specific life. The conception of its life enables us to predict the general behavior of its parts so long as it is alive, and in particular it enables us to predict the general manner of its reproduction from a rudimentary part of the same organism? it is this co-ordinated maintenance that we call life.

Life | Life | Man |

J. R. R. Tolkien, fully John Ronald Reuel Tolkien

Every writer making a secondary world wishes in some measure to be a real maker, or hopes that he is drawing on reality: hopes that the peculiar quality of this secondary world (if not all the details) are derived from Reality, or are flowing into it.

Man |

J. R. R. Tolkien, fully John Ronald Reuel Tolkien

Any corner of that county (however fair or squalid) is in an indefinable way 'home' to me, as no other part of the world is. There was a willow hanging over the mill-pool and I learned to climb it. It belonged to a butcher on the Stratford Road, I think. One day they cut it down. They didn't do anything with it: the log just lay there. I never forgot that.

Existence | Hope | Important | Man | Woman |

J. R. R. Tolkien, fully John Ronald Reuel Tolkien

But it is the way of my people to use light words at such times and say less than they mean. We fear to say too much. It robs us of the right words when a jest is out of place.

Chance | Good | Little | Reason | Rest | Slavery | Will | Woman |

J. R. R. Tolkien, fully John Ronald Reuel Tolkien

Don't ever laugh at live Dragons, Bilbo you fool!

Change | Reason | Relationship |

J. R. R. Tolkien, fully John Ronald Reuel Tolkien

Criticism - however valid or intellectually engaging - tends to get in the way of a writer who has anything personal to say. A tightrope walker may require practice, but if he starts a theory of equilibrium he will lose grace (and probably fall off).

Focus | Knowledge | Mind | Reason | Research | Unique | Work | Following |

J. L. Balsford

Pray not too often for great favors, for we stand most in need of small ones.

Inspiration | Little | Mystery | Research | Work | World |

J. R. R. Tolkien, fully John Ronald Reuel Tolkien

A hunted man sometimes wearies of distrust and longs for friendship.

Mystery |

J. B. Priestly, fully John Boynton Priestly

Our trouble is that we drink too much tea. I see in this the slow revenge of the Orient, which has diverted the Yellow River down our throats.

Man | Reading | Will |

J. R. R. Tolkien, fully John Ronald Reuel Tolkien

Aragorn threw back his cloak. The elven-sheath glittered as he grasped it, and the bright blade of And£ril shone like a sudden flame as he swept it out. 'Elendil!' he cried. 'I am Aragorn, son of Arathorn, and am called Elessar, the Elfstone, D£nadan, the heir of Isildur Elendil's son of Gondor. Here is the Sword that was Broken and is forged again! Will you aid me or thwart me? Choose swiftly!

Control | Enough | Improvement | Labor | Money | People | Reason | Responsibility | Slavery | Child | Think |

J. R. R. Tolkien, fully John Ronald Reuel Tolkien

If you mean you think it is my job to go into the secret passage first, O Thorin Thrain?s son Oakenshield, may your beard grow ever longer, he said crossly, say so at once and have done!

Man |

J. R. R. Tolkien, fully John Ronald Reuel Tolkien

I shall have to go. But- and here Frodo looked hard at Sam- if you really care about me, you will have to keep that DEAD secret. See? If you don't, if you even breathe a word of what you've heard here, then I hope Gandalf will turn you into a spotted toad and fill the garden full of grass snakes. Sam fell on his knees, trembling. Get up, Sam! Said Gandalf. I have thought of something better than that. Something to keep you quiet, and punish you properly for listening. You shall go away with Mr. Frodo! Me, sir! cried Sam, springing up like a dog invited for a walk. Me go and see Elves and all! Hooray! he shouted, and then burst into tears.

God | Mystery | God |

J. R. R. Tolkien, fully John Ronald Reuel Tolkien

I wonder if people will ever say, Let's hear about Frodo and the Ring. And they'll say, Yes, that's one of my favorite stories. Frodo was really courageous, wasn't he, Dad? Yes, m'boy, the most famousest of hobbits. And that's saying a lot.

Man |

J. R. R. Tolkien, fully John Ronald Reuel Tolkien

In those days of our tale, there were still some people who had both elves and heroes of the North for ancestors and Elrond, the master of the house, was their chief. He was as noble and as fair in face as an elf lord, as strong as a warrior, as wise as a wizard, as venerable as a king of dwarves and as kind as summer.

Man | Wise |

J. R. R. Tolkien, fully John Ronald Reuel Tolkien

I?ll bet I?m the first person to compare Bill Johnson to an old elf!

Man |

J. R. R. Tolkien, fully John Ronald Reuel Tolkien

I would rather share one lifetime with you than face all the Ages of this world alone.

Man | Wise |

J. R. R. Tolkien, fully John Ronald Reuel Tolkien

If I am to understand that you are enquiring whether I am of Jewish origin, I can only reply that I regret that I appear to have no ancestors of that gifted people. My great-great-grandfather came to England in the eighteenth century from Germany: the main part of my descent is therefore purely English, and I am an English subject?which should be sufficient. I have been accustomed, nonetheless, to regard my German name with pride, and continued to do so throughout the period of the late regrettable war, in which I served in the English army. I cannot, however, forbear to comment that if impertinent and irrelevant inquiries of this sort are to become the rule in matters of literature, then the time is not far distant when a German name will no longer be a source of pride.

Man | Woman | Worth |