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John Oliver Hobbes

  • Ideals, my dear Golightly, are the root of every evil. When a man forgets his ideals he may hope for happiness, but not till then.

  • Men astonish themselves far more than they astonish their friends.

  • Talking to you is only thinking to myself — made easier.

  • In life there are no Unities, but three Incomprehensibles: Destiny, Man, and Woman.

  • He did not speak again till just before he died, when he kissed his wife's hand with singular tenderness and called her 'Elizabeth.' She had been christened Augusta Frederica; but then, as the doctors explained, dying men often make these mistakes.

  • He longed to make a mark, or, to express it more vulgarly, cut a figure. Now, fortunately or unfortunately, the number of figures which can be cut in the world is practically unlimited; the only difficulty is to cut precisely the kind of figure one would wish.

  • ... love comes to man through his senses — to woman through her imagination.

  • 'Ah,' said that gentleman, ever ready to discuss one friend with another — in fact, it was chiefly for this pleasure that he made them ...

  • ... he fell too ready victim to circumstances: he helped to build the altar for his own sacrifice.

  • Men heap together the mistakes of their lives and create a monster which they call Destiny.

  • All is vanity, and discovering it — the greatest vanity.

  • 'A man's way of loving is so different from a woman's,' sighed Anna. 'There ain't nothing,' said Mrs. Grimmage, 'there ain't nothing that makes them so sulky and turns them against you so soon as saying anything like that.'

  • If the gods have no sense of humor they must weep a great deal.

  • All forced virtue is degrading in it effect.

  • A quart of doubt to an ounce of truth is the safest brew.

  • What is beautiful is right: what is unbeautiful is wrong.

  • It is our imagination, not our conscience, which makes us better than the beasts of the field.

  • Disillusions all come from within ... from the failure of some dear and secret hope. The world makes no promises; we only dream it does; and when we wake, we cry!

  • ... entertainment for entertainment's sake is the most expensive form of death ...

  • Faults! I adore faults! I can never find too many in any creature.

  • To die for one's great ideas is glorious — and easy. The horror is to outlive them. That is our worst capability.

  • Those who have made unhappy marriages walk on stilts, while the happy ones are on a level with the crowd. No one sees 'em!

  • A statesman's words, like butcher's meat, should be well weighed.

  • We must know the measure of a man's desires before we can sound the depth of his regrets.

  • People get to like a soul, but a satisfactory hat makes an impression at first sight.

  • There is no misery quite so wearing as the misery of a false position. It seems to slay the body and the soul.

    • John Oliver Hobbes,
    • in J.M. Richards, The Life of John Oliver Hobbes ()
  • There never was a woman so ill-suited to public life as I am. I have had to whip myself, as it were, into society, and the loneliness of it all has been terrific.

    • John Oliver Hobbes,
    • in J.M. Richards, The Life of John Oliver Hobbes ()

John Oliver Hobbes, English novelist, playwright, essayist

(1867 - 1906)

Real name: Pearl Mary Teresa Richards Craigie.