Welcome to the web’s most comprehensive site of quotations by women. 44,578 quotations are searchable by topic, by author's name, or by keyword. Many of them appear in no other collection. And new ones are added continually.

See All TOPICS Available:
See All AUTHORS Available:

Search by Topic:

  • topic cats
  • topic books
  • topic moon

Find quotations by TOPIC (coffee, love, dogs)
or search alphabetically below.

Search by Last Name:

  • Quotes by Zora Neale Hurston
  • Quotes by Louisa May Alcott
  • Quotes by Chingling Soong

Find quotations by the AUTHOR´S LAST NAME
or alphabetically below.

Search by Keyword:

  • keyword fishing
  • keyword twilight
  • keyword Australie

Childhood

  • Childhood is the one prison from which there's no escape, the one sentence from which there's no appeal. We all serve our time.

  • What a child doesn't receive he can seldom later give.

  • Childhood is only the beautiful and happy time in contemplation and retrospect: to the child it is full of deep sorrows, the meaning of which is unknown.

    • George Eliot,
    • letter (1844), in J.W. Cross, ed., George Eliot's Life as Related in Her Letters and Journals ()
  • Childhood is a short season.

    • Helen Hayes,
    • with Marion Glasserow Gladney, Loving Life ()
  • Childhood is but change made gay and visible ...

  • If you've had a happy childhood, nobody can take that away from you ...

  • One of the luckiest things that can happen to you in life is, I think, to have a happy childhood

  • To children childhood holds no particular advantage.

  • A happy childhood is one of the best gifts that parents have it in their power to bestow...

  • For most of us, dreams come true only after they do not matter. Only in childhood do we ever have the chance of making dreams come true when they mean everything.

  • Childhood is the kingdom where nobody dies.

  • It's never too late for a happy childhood.

  • ... the gardens of our childhood are all beautiful.

  • I never meet anyone nowadays who admits to having had a happy childhood.

  • Those who cannot remember clearly their own childhood are poor educators.

  • ... the older I grow the more earnestly I feel that the few intense joys of childhood are the best that life has to give.

  • Childhood is less clear to me than to many people: when it ended I turned my face away from it for no reason that I know about, certainly without the usual reason of unhappy memories. For many years that worried me, but then I discovered that the tales of former children are seldom to be trusted. Some people supply too many past victories or pleasures with which to comfort themselves, and other people cling to pains, real and imagined, to excuse what they have become.

  • The child in us is always there, you know, and it's the best part of us, the winged part that travels farthest.

  • The actual American childhood is less Norman Rockwell and Walt Disney than Nathaniel Hawthorne and Edgar Allan Poe.

  • I have not much interest in anyone's personal history after the tenth year, not even my own. Whatever one was going to be was all prepared for before that.

  • Childhood is the fiery furnace in which we are melted down to essentials and that essential shaped for good.

  • Our children ... are not treated with sufficient respect as human beings, and yet from the moment they are born they have this right to respect. We keep them children for too long, their world separate from the real world of life.

  • The childhood of the individual and the race is full of fears, and panic-stricken attempts to avert what is feared by placating the gods with painful sacrifices.

    • Rebecca West,
    • "'Journey's End' Again," Ending in Earnest ()
  • ... one does not need to remain in bondage to the first wax imprint made on childhood sensibilities. One need not be branded by the first pattern. Once the deforming mirror is smashed, there is a possibility of wholeness; there is a possibility of joy.

    • Anaïs Nin,
    • 1932, The Diary of Anaïs Nin, vol. 1 ()
  • If childhood is still a state, it is now chiefly a state of confusion.

  • The ability to forget a sorrow is childhood's most enchanting feature.

  • Growing up is the best revenge.

  • Do you remember your childhood? I am always coming across these marvelous accounts by writers who declare that they remember 'everything.' I certainly don't. The dark stretches, the blanks, are much bigger than the bright glimpses. I seem to have spent most of my time like a plant in a cupboard.

  • Oh! to be a child again. My only treasures, bits of shell and stone and glass. To love nothing but maple sugar. To fear nothing but a big dog. To go to sleep without dreading the morrow. To wake up with a shout. Not to have seen a dead face. Not to dread a living one. To be able to believe.

  • I rarely think about my childhood. It's a slippery thing I can't keep hold of for long — it slithers out of my grasp. And a lot of the time I remember what was missing instead of what was there. I am a chronicler of absence.

  • We look at the world once, in childhood, / The rest is memory.

  • After a cruel childhood, one must reinvent oneself. Then reimagine the world.

  • The spirituality of my childhood is the one I would most like to have restored. It was pure and fresh and honest. I read God everywhere!

  • ... pictures made in childhood are painted in bright hues ...

  • We are not so sure anything is evil or good any more. But when you are a child, you know. The ogre and the princess have their right place. You make no excuses for the ogre. You do not say that, after all, the ogre was raised in a bad environment; that, after all, his mother spoiled him; that, after all, he has his good side. Evil is evil and good is good ...

  • Hurts of childhood live on; in one form or other they are there to the end.

  • It's never too late to have a happy childhood.

  • If the physical perfection of childhood could last, what a possesssion it would be for humanity!

  • All the famous people had had an awful time. One of them had a drunken father. Another had a stammer. Another had to wash hundreds of dirty bottles. They had all had what was called a difficult childhood. Clearly you had to have one if you wanted to become famous.

  • The way in which each human infant is transformed into the finished adult, into the complicated individual version of his city and his century is one of the most fascinating studies open to the curious minded.

    • Margaret Mead,
    • 1929, in Edward Rice, Margaret Mead: A Portrait ()
  • The barb in the arrow of childhood's suffering is this: its intense loneliness, its intense ignorance.

  • The first six years of our life make us; all that is added later is veneer ...

  • There is something very appealing about a room which one occupied as a child; it brings back one's childhood more vividly than anything else I know.

  • I sometimes think it's a mistake to have been happy when one was a child. One should always want to go on, not back.

  • ... my childhood grew thin and flat, paperlike. It was tired and threadbare, and in low moments it didn't look like it would last until I was grown up.

  • Childhood is long and narrow like a coffin, and you can't get out of it on your own.

  • None of us ever escape the first few years of our lives. They make a mould into which we are cast, and though it may be broken, and we turned loose, some remnant of it, some intangible evil or lovely thing or both, will remain with us, like the odor to a flower, or the smoothness to a piece of ivory. It is part of the immortality of youth.

  • A happy childhood is perhaps the most-fortunate gift in life.

  • A happy childhood can't be cured. Mine'll hang around my neck like a rainbow, that's all, instead of a noose.

  • ... a childhood is what anyone wants to remember of it. It leaves behind no fossils, except perhaps in fiction.

  • But childhood, prolonged, cannot remain a fairyland. It becomes a hell.

    • Louise Bogan,
    • "Childhood's False Eden" (1940), Selected Criticism ()
  • ... strangers seem uncomfortable when you question them about their childhood. But really, what else are you going to talk about in line at the liquor store? Childhood trauma seems like the natural choice, since it's the reason why most of us are in line there to begin with.

  • Childhood is the province of the imagination and when I immerse myself in it, I re-create it as it was, as it could have been, as I wanted — and didn't want — it to be.

    • Joyce Carol Oates,
    • in Lucinda Franks, "The Emergence of Joyce Carol Oates," New York Times Magazine ()
  • The memories of childhood have a strange shuttling quality, and areas of darkness ring the spaces of light. The memories of childhood are like clear candles in an acre of night, illuminating fixed scenes from surrounding darkness.

  • When we talk of leaving our childhood behind us, we might as well say that the river flowing onward to the sea had left the fountain behind.

  • ... childhood's garden had been barred and there was no return. In some measure this simple truth is known to every adolescent.

  • A sibling is the lens through which you see your childhood.

  • Don't we all look back in longing, those of us who had happy childhoods? Because the greatest loss we ever know is not the loss of family or place or money, it is the loss of innocence. There is forever a hollow place in our hearts once we realize that darkness rings the campfire.

  • It's never too late to have a happy childhood.

  • If eternal life can be given / let me have it again as a child / among those whom I did not love / enough, while they lived.

  • Do you know anyone who would — secretly, sincerely, in his innermost self — really prefer to return to childhood?

  • ... in all our efforts to provide 'advantages' we have actually produced the busiest, most competitive, highly pressured and over-organized generation of youngsters in our history — and possibly the unhappiest. We seem hell-bent on eliminating much of childhood.

  • Childhood happens only once. There are no do-overs.

  • My childhood is very vivid to me, and I don't feel very different now from the way I felt then. It would appear I am the very same person, only with wrinkles.

  • No one knows you like a person with whom you've shared a childhood. No one will ever understand you in quite the same way.

  • I hated childhood, and spent it sitting behind a book waiting for adulthood to arrive.

    • Anne Tyler,
    • in Janet Sternburg, ed., The Writer on Her Work, vol. 1 ()
  • What we remember from childhood we remember forever — permanent ghosts, stamped, imprinted, eternally seen.

    • Cynthia Ozick,
    • "The Shock of Teapots," Metaphor and Memory ()
  • I believe that the experience of childhood is irretrievable. All that remains, for any of us, is a headful of brilliant frozen moments, already dangerously distorted by the wisdoms of maturity.

  • ... the hills of one's youth are all mountains ...

  • So much of growing up is an unbearable waiting. A constant longing for another time. Another season.

  • ... childhood was not a time in a person's life, but a country, a country under siege, from which certain individuals were taken too soon and never allowed to return. All people were exiled eventually, but whatever happened to them there marked them all their days.

  • All memories fashioned at the level of a child's eye were unreliable in scale ...

  • Pictures of my life stretch back into what must have been my very earliest childhood. ... They are not movies, then, nor are they talkies, but they are quite distinctly feelies.

  • ... the myth of childhood happiness flourishes so wildly not because it satisfies the needs of children but because it satisfies the needs of adults. In a culture of alienated people, the belief that everyone has at least one good period in life free of care and drudgery dies hard. And obviously you can't expect it in your old age. So it must be you've already had it.

  • ... what one loves in childhood stays in the heart forever.

  • Few persons can relate the story of their childhood without idealizing, or distorting, or overdramatizing the facts.

  • The impressions of childhood are never obliterated.

    • Mother Frances Xavier Cabrini,
    • 1902, in Giovanni Serpentelli, ed., The Travels of Mother Frances Xavier Cabrini As Related in Several of Her Letters ()
  • How loyal our childhood demons are, / growing old with us in the same house ...

  • We carry our childhoods / in our arms.

    • Linda Pastan,
    • "Funerary Tower: Han Dynasty," The Five Stages of Grief ()
  • Whoever you are when you are seven years old is where you stay.

    • Leah Adler,
    • in Mariana Cook, Mothers and Sons ()
  • Those who would seek to know the cause of the feelings and actions of men and women must go back to childhood and its impressions.

  • Childhood remembrances are always a drag / if you're Black.

  • Childhood comes at a time in your life when you are too young to understand what you are going through. And you're too young to understand that you are too young to understand.

  • So the first step out of childhood is made all at once, without looking before or behind, without caution, and nothing held in reserve.