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Catherine de Gasparin

  • [On sadness:] Do not expect a rigorous classification. I am not good at numbering sorrows; and besides, you would not thank me for doing so.

  • Take care! the moment you are different from the rest of the world, everybody is surprised, and the surprise of other people is curiosity, and curiosity is capable of cruelly audacious dealing.

  • We the oppressed — you, me — may we not perhaps be also in our turn someone's oppressor?

  • Have you never experienced it, that dread of letting yourself be seen as you are!

  • ... the saddest thing under the sky is a soul incapable of sadness.

  • The world does not willingly admit of complete beings; rather it draws up categories, insists upon types. This is more convenient; as soon as you get one end of a thing you get all; class it, number it, off-hand; the catalogue will not get revised.

  • You say that prejudice is cruel! This comes from her being both blind and deaf. She closes her eyes that she may stab you boldly; she knows very well that if once she were to look at you, she could not do it. She stops her ears not to hear your supplications nor your cry of agony .... If, at least, she could leave you some traces of your own self! If, in destroying she would not disfigure you! If you might remain a man amongst men, likeable, warm, cordial; if she did not transform you into a hateful object!

  • Money is to such an extent the rule of the present age, that it is hardly possible to escape from its yoke ... money flies here, money flies there, constructs, demolishes, makes and unmakes positions; falls upon some in a very cataract, and crushes them; deserts others, and leaves them to starve; heaps up gold, hollows out graves, mingles everything, confuses everything, without order, and without plan in this age where so much is made of it.

Catherine de Gasparin, Swiss writer

(1813 - 1894)

Full name: Catherine-Valérie Boissier de Gasparin. Sometimes signed her work as Countess de Gasparin.