Poet, author, and one of the first Romantic in the 19th, I was totally into him in high school and when I studied theater. Here are some of my favorite quotes from his plays (On ne badine pas avec l'amour, Lorenzaccio, Les Caprices de Marianne..) or his autobiography/novel "Confession of a child of the century"
  1. "I don't know where my road is going, but I know that I walk better when I hold your hand."
  2. Verity is nudity
  3. "A happy memory is perhaps on this earth truer than happiness itself."
  4. If love is a play, this play, as old as the world, fiasco or not, it is, all in all, the least bad thing that has so far been found. The roles are trite, I admit, but if the play had no value the whole universe wouldn’t know it by heart.
    In Fantasio
  5. "All men are liars, fickle, chatterers, hypocrites, proud or cowardly, despicable, sensual ; all women faithless, tricky, vain, inquisitive, and depraved. The world is only a bottomless cesspool, where the most shapeless sea-beasts climb and writhe on mountains of slime.
    But there is in the world a thing holy and sublime — the union of two of these beings, imperfect and frightful as they are. One is often deceived in love, often wounded, often unhappy ; but one loves, and on the brink of the grave one turns to look back and says : I have suffered often, sometimes I have been mistaken, but I have loved. It is I who have lived, and not a spurious being bred of my pride and my sorrow" (from On be badine pas avec l'amour)
  6. "What a frightful weapon is human thought! It is our defense and our safeguard, the most precious gift that God has made us. It is ours and it obeys us; we may launch it forth into space, but, once outside of our feeble brains, it is gone; we can no longer control it."
    In The Confession of a Child of the Century
  7. "In my flowery dreams there's always you. I do not regret it one bit."
  8. life is a deep sleep of which love is the dream
  9. Man is a pupil, pain is his teacher.
  10. Romanticism is the abuse of adjectives
  11. How glorious it is – and also how painful – to be an exception.
  12. You can't love nor hate, and you are like the roses of Bengale, Marianne, without thorn and without perfume (...) A flower without perfume isn't any less beautiful; quite the opposite, they are the prettiest that God made