Great Throughts Treasury

A database of quotes

Marriage

"A gentleman who had been very unhappy I marriage, married immediately after his wife died: Johnson said, it was the triumph of hope over experience." - James Boswell

"Success in marriage does not come merely through finding the right mate, but through being the right mate." - Barnett Brickner

"Whoever undertakes a long Journey, if he be wise, makes it his Business to find out an agreeable Companion. How cautious then should He be, who is to take a Journey for Life, whose Fellow-Traveler must not part with him but at the Grave; his Companion at Bed and Board and Sharer of all the Pleasures and Fatigues of his Journey; as the Wife must be to the Husband! She is no such Sort of Ware, that a Man can be rid of when he pleases: When once that’s purchas’d, no Exchange, no Sale, no Alienation can be made: She is an inseparable Accident to Man: Marriage is a Noose, which, fasten’d about the Neck, runs the closer, and fits more uneasy by our struggling to get loose: ‘Tis a Gordian Knot which none can unty, and being twisted with our Thread of Life, nothing but the Schyth of Death can cut it." - Miguel de Cervantes, fully Miguel de Cervantes Saaversa

"The very nearest approach to domestic happiness on earth is in the cultivation on both sides of absolute unselfishness. Never both be angry at once. Never talk at one another, either alone or in company. Never speak loud to one another unless the house is on fire. Let each; one strive to yield oftenest to the wishes of the other. Let self-denial be the daily aim and practice of each. Never find fault unless it is perfectly certain that a fault has been committed, and always speak lovingly. Never taunt with a past mistake. Neglect the whole world besides rather than one another. Never allow a request to be repeated. Never make a remark at the expense of each other, it is a meanness. Never part for a day without loving words to think of during absence. Never meet without a loving welcome. Never let the sun go down upon any anger or grievance. Never let any fault you have committed go by until you have frankly confessed it and asked forgiveness. Never forget the happy hours of early love. Never sigh over what might have been, but make the best of what is. Never forget that marriage is ordained of God, and that His blessing alone can make it what it should ever be. Never be contented till you know you are both walking in the narrow way. Never let your hopes stop short of the eternal home." - Edward Watke, Jr.

"All ought to refrain from marriage who cannot avoid abject poverty for their children; for poverty is not only a great evil, but tends to its own increase by leading to recklessness in marriage." - Charles Darwin, fully Charles Robert Darwin

"Little children are still the symbol of the eternal marriage between love and duty." - George Eliot, pen name of Mary Ann or Marian Evans

"Whether it's marriage or business, patience is the first rule of success." - William Feather

"There is a French saying: “Love is the dawn of marriage, and marriage is the sunset of love.”" - J. de Finod

"The only thing that brings a mother undiluted satisfaction is her relation to a son; it is quite the most complete relationship between human beings, and the one that is the most free from ambivalence. The mother can transfer to her son all the ambition which she has had to surpress in herself, and she can hope to get from him the satisfaction of all that has remained to her of her masculinity complex. Even a marriage is not firmly assured until the woman has succeeded in making her husband into her child and in acting the part of a mother towards him." - Sigmund Freud, born Sigismund Schlomo Freud

"The sort of marriage where the couple never have a row, cannot bear “unpleasantness,” the sort of family that is endlessly and determinedly “happy” cannot lead to growth, nor any genuine form of “being.” “Being” is about acknowledging one’s pain, and not trying to conceal it from oneself, or inflict it upon others." - Monica Furlong

"The best arguments in favor of marriage and family life are not that they promote happiness and reduce loneliness, though at their best they do these things, but that they create a situation in which facing the truth about ourselves - our self-deceiving, touchy, vain, inflated selves - becomes more difficult to avoid than it is anywhere else." - Monica Furlong

"Marriage is the strictest tie of perpetual friendship, and there can be no friendship without confidence, and no confidence without integrity; and he must expect to be wretched, who pays to beauty, riches, or politeness that regard which only virtue and piety can claim." -

"What counts in making a happy marriage is not so much how compatible you are, but how you deal with incompatibility." - George Levinger

"Who are happy in marriage? Those with so little imagination that they cannot picture a better state, and those so shrewd that they prefer quiet slavery to hopeless rebellion." - H. L. Mencken, fully Henry Louis Mencken

"Marriage is not and should not be an interminable conversation. The happy marriage allows for privileged silences." - Lady Mary Wortley Montagu

"Love hates people to be attached to each other except by himself, and takes a laggard part in relations that are set up and maintained under another title, as marriage is. Connections and means have, with reason, as much weight in it as graces and beauty, or more. We do not marry for ourselves, whatever we say; we marry must as much or more for our posterity, for our family. The practice and benefit of marriage concerns our race very far beyond us. Therefore I like this fashion of arranging it rather by a third hand than by our own, and by the sense of other rather than by our own. How opposite is all this to the conventions of love!" - Michel de Montaigne, fully Lord Michel Eyquem de Montaigne

"Marriage is not a union merely between two creatures - it is a union between two spirits; and the intention of that bond is to perfect the nature of both, by supplementing their deficiencies with the force of contrast, giving to each sex those excellencies in which it is naturally deficient; to the one, strength of character and firmness of moral will; to the other, sympathy, meekness, tenderness; and just so solemn and glorious as these ends are for which the union was intended, just so terrible are the consequences if it be perverted and abused; for there is no earthly relationship which has so much power to ennoble and exalt." -

"I believe marriage to be the best and most important relation that can exist between two human beings. If it has not often been realized hitherto, that is chiefly because husband and wife have regarded themselves as each other’s policeman. If marriage is to achieve its possibilities, husbands and wives must learn to understand that whatever the law may say, in their private lives they must be free." -

"It is... possible for a civilized man and woman to be happy in marriage, although if this is to be the case a number of conditions must be fulfilled. There must be a feeling of complete equality on both sides; there must be no interference with mutual freedom; there must be the most complete physical and mental intimacy; and there must be a certain similarity in regard to standards of values." -

"It takes two to make a marriage a success and only one a failure." - Lord Samuel, Herbert Louis Samuel, First Viscount Samuel

"With regard to marriage, it is plain that it is in accordance with reason, if the desire of connection is engendered not merely by external form, but by a love of begetting children and wisely educating them; and if, in addition, the love both of the husband and wife has for its cause not external form merely, but chiefly liberty of mind." -

"Faith is the marriage of God and the Soul." -

"Marriage should combat without respite or mercy that monster which devours everything - habit." - Honoré de Balzac

"Marriage always demands the greatest understanding of the art of insincerity possible between two human beings." - Vicki Baum, fully Hedwig "Vicki" Baum

"Of all serious things, marriage is the funniest." -

"Happiness in marriage is not a gift, but an opportunity. It is an obligation, not an experiment." - Barnett Brickner

"A man unattached and without wife, if he have any genius at all, may raise himself above his original position, may mingle with the world of fashion, and hold himself on a level with the highest; this is less easy for him who is engaged; it seems as if marriage put the whole world in their proper rank." - Jean de La Bruyère

"Nothing in life is as good as the marriage of true minds between a man and woman. As good? It is life itself." - Pearl S. Buck, fully Pearl Sydenstricker Buck, also known by her Chinese name Sai Zhenzhu

"The alternative to recalling and interpreting dreams is not always pleasant. Individuals cannot expect to drift forever. If they do not puzzle out their identity, and the direction of their lives by the aid of their dreams, then they may be brought, by the relentless action of their own pent-up souls, into some crisis which requires that they come to terms with themselves. It may be a medical crisis. It may be the end of a marriage or of a job. It may be depression or withdrawal." - Edgar Cayce, known as the "Sleeping Prophet"

"Marriage is not a finished affair. No matter to what age you live, love must be continuously consolidated. Being considerate, thoughtful and respectful without ulterior motives is the key to a satisfactory marriage." - Chinese Family Planning Center Pamphlet NULL

"The very nearest approach to domestic happiness on earth is in the cultivation on both sides of absolute unselfishness. Never both be angry at once. Never talk at one another, either alone or in company. Never speak loud to one another unless the house is on fire. Let each; one strive to yield oftenest to the wishes of the other. Let self-denial be the daily aim and practice of each. Never find fault unless it is perfectly certain that a fault has been committed, and always speak lovingly. Never taunt with a past mistake. Neglect the whole world besides rather than one another. Never allow a request to be repeated. Never make a remark at the expense of each other, it is a meanness. Never part for a day without loving words to think of during absence. Never meet without a loving welcome. Never let the sun go down upon any anger or grievance. Never let any fault you have committed go by until you have frankly confessed it and asked forgiveness. Never forget the happy hours of early love. Never sigh over what might have been, but make the best of what is. Never forget that marriage is ordained of God, and that His blessing alone can make it what it should ever be. Never be contented till you know you are both walking in the narrow way. Never let your hopes stop short of the eternal home." -

"The magic of marriage is that it creates meaningful goals to work for, struggle for, sacrifice for. It is the joint struggle that gives the relationship its meaning, and keeps people alive." - Henry Gregor Felsen

"It is not marriage that fails: it is people that fail. All that marriage does is to show people up." - Harry Emerson Fosdick

"Inspirations never go in for long engagements; they demand immediate marriage to action." - Brendan Francis Behan

"Keep your eyes wide open before marriage, half shut afterwards." - Benjamin Franklin

"If there are quarrels between the parents or if their marriage is unhappy, the ground will be prepared in their children for the severest predisposition to a disturbance of sexual development or to neurotic illness." - Sigmund Freud, born Sigismund Schlomo Freud

"Marriage today must... be concerned not with the inviolable commitment of constancy and unending passion, but with the changing patterns of liberty and discovery." - Carolyn Gold Heilbrun, pen name Amanda Cross

"Seldom, or perhaps never, does a marriage develop into an individual relationship smoothly and without crises; there is no coming to consciousness without pain." - Carl Jung, fully Carl Gustav Jung

"In every house of marriage there's room for an interpreter." - Stanley Kunitz, fully Stanley Jasspon Kunitz

"Marriage by its best title is a monopoly." - Charles Lamb

"Marriage is an opportunity for happiness, not a gift. It is a step bay which two imperfect individuals unite their forces in the struggle for happiness." - Henry C. Link

"A happy marriage is a long conversation that always seems to be too short." - André Maurois, born born Emile Salomon Wilhelm Herzog

"A successful marriage is an edifice that must be rebuilt every day." - André Maurois, born born Emile Salomon Wilhelm Herzog

"Marriage is the only thing that affords a woman the pleasure of company and the perfect sensation of solitude at the same" -

"The ideal mother, like the ideal marriage, is a fiction." - Milton R. Sapirstein

"Men should keep their eyes wide open before marriage, and half shut afterward." - Madeleine Scuderi, also Madeleine de Scudéry, aka Sapho

"Of all actions of a man's life, his marriage does least concern other people, yet of all actions of our life, 'tis most meddled with by other people." - John Selden

"Marriage resembles a pair of shears, so joined that they cannot be separated; often moving in opposite directions, yet always punishing anyone who comes between them." - Sydney Smith

"Marriage is one long conversation, checkered by disputes." - Robert Louis Stevenson, fully Robert Louis Balfour Stevenson