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Robertson Davies Quotes


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Men who look young, act young, and everlastingly harp on the fact that they are young-but who nevertheless think and act with a degree of caution what would be excessive in their grandfathers-are the curses of the world.
[Fear]
 

No people in the world can make you feel so small as the English.
 

Nothing is so easy to fake as the inner vision.
 

Only a fool expects to be happy all the time.
 

Pornography is rather like trying to find out about a Beethoven symphony by having somebody tell you about it and perhaps hum a few bars.
 

Students today are a pretty solemn lot. One of the really notable achievements of the twentieth century has been to make the young old before their time.
 

The critic is the duenna in the passionate affair between playwrights, actors and audiences - a figure dreaded, and occasionally comic, but never welcome, never loved.
 

The drama may be called that part of theatrical art which lends itself most readily to intellectual discussion: what is left is theater.
 

The eye sees only what the mind is prepared to comprehend.
[Observation]
 

The great book for you is the book that has the most to say to you at the moment when you are reading. I do not mean the book that is most instructive, but the book that feeds your spirit. And that depends on your age, your experience, your psychological and spiritual need.
 

The greatest gift that Oxford gives her sons is, I truly believe, a genial irreverence toward learning, and from that irreverence love may spring.
 

The love of truth lies at the root of much humor.
[Humor]
 

The most original thing a writer can do is write like himself. It is also his most difficult task.
[Writers And Writing]
 

The quality of what is said inevitably influences the way in which it is said, however inexperienced the writer.
 

The world is full of people whose notion of a satisfactory future is, in fact, a return to the idealized past.
[The Future]
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Their very conservatism is secondhand, and they don't know what they are conserving.
[Politics]
 

There is no nonsense so gross that society will not, at some time, make a doctrine of it and defend it with every weapon of communal stupidity.
 

To be a book-collector is to combine the worst characteristics of a dope fiend with those of a miser.
 

Tristan and Isolde were lucky to die when they did. They'd have been sick of all that rubbish in a year.
 

We wanted to meet him, for though we were neither of us naive people we had not wholly lost our belief that it is delightful to meet artists who have given us pleasure.
 


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