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Carmen Sylva

  • 'Tis the ignorant who boast.

    • Carmen Sylva,
    • in Carmen Sylva and Alma Strettell, Legends From River and Mountain ()
  • My greatest wish is to write in such a manner that all may think they have written it themselves.

  • Never can a room look comfortable without books ... Books ought to be scattered all over the house, even in the passages, in the bedroom, les livres du chevet, everywhere.

  • [Written in 1901:] Nothing has been so deplorable for countries as centralization. I am afraid when I see Germany grow so powerful, and centralizing in Berlin; it is the beginning of the end!

  • I always say: 'Put one little word into your life and before every bit of work you have to do.' And that word is 'For!' For someone or something, you could do anything. Martyrs and learned men have shown it. 'For" is the whole secret of life. 'For' is the mainspring of life.

  • One doesn't know one's self what grain one sows, that works on and on, through one and through many lives, transmitted from heart to heart and from lips to lips.

  • I am quite above physical death and believe it to be only the birth throes for a much purer life in a much purer draping.

  • It seems enormous to me that we have the idea of eternity, of justice, of purity, of beauty, when everything that we see is so far from all that! Who has put those visions into our heads? The soul that knows so much more than what it sees; the soul that comes from far and goes far, and to whom limits make no difference!

  • You can never make someone punctual who is not, or quick who is slow, or lively who wants to plod on carefully. I have learnt that every fault is an exaggerated quality, nothing else.

Carmen Sylva, Romanian queen consort

(1843 - 1916)

Real name: Pauline Elisabeth Ottilie Luise zu Wied. Or Elisabeth of Wied. Known as Queen Elisabeth of Roumania. She used Carmen Sylva (sometimes seen Carmen-Sylva) for her writing.