Travel makes one modest. You see what a tiny place you occupy in the world.

— Gustave Flaubert

The most attractive Gustave Flaubert quotes that are easy to memorize and remember

Do not read, as children do, to amuse yourself, or like the ambitious, for the purpose of instruction. No, read in order to live.


The most glorious moments in your life are not the so-called days of success, but rather those days when out of dejection and despair you feel rise in you a challenge to life, and the promise of future accomplishments.


Stupidity is something unshakable; nothing attacks it without breaking itself against it; it is of the nature of granite, hard and resistant.


Human speech is like a cracked kettle on which we tap crude rhythms for bears to dance to, while we long to make music that will melt the stars.


A man is a critic when he cannot be an artist, in the same way that a man becomes an informer when he cannot be a soldier.


I tried to discover, in the rumor of forests and waves, words that other men could not hear, and I pricked up my ears to listen to the revelation of their harmony.


There is not a particle of life which does not bear poetry within it


Are the days of winter sunshine just as sad for you, too? When it is misty, in the evenings, and I am out walking by myself, it seems to me that the rain is falling through my heart and causing it to crumble into ruins.


To be stupid, selfish, and have good health are three requirements for happiness, though if stupidity is lacking, all is lost.


Read in order to live.


The whole dream of democracy is to raise the proletarian to the level of stupidity attained by the bourgeois.


Be regular and orderly in your life, so that you may be violent and original in your work.


About Gustave Flaubert

Quotes 274 sayings
Nationality French
Profession Novelist
Birthday October 16

The hearts of women are like those little pieces of furniture with secret hiding - places, full of drawers fitted into each other; you go a lot of trouble, break your nails, and in the bottom find some withered flower, a few grains of dust - or emptiness!


It’s hard to communicate anything exactly and that’s why perfect relationships between people are difficult to find.


The deplorable mania of doubt exhausts me. I doubt about everything, even my doubts.


What an awful thing life is, isn’t it? It’s like soup with lots of hairs floating on the surface. You have to eat it nevertheless.


One's duty is to feel what is great, cherish the beautiful, and to not accept the conventions of society with the ignominy that it imposes upon us.


I like prostitution. My heart has never failed to pound at the sight of one of those provocatively dressed women walking in the rain under the gaslamps, just as the sight of monks in their robes and girdles touches some ascetic, hidden corner of my soul.


The one way of tolerating existence is to lose oneself in literature as in a perpetual orgy.


Life must be a constant education; one must learn everything, from speaking to dying.


What better occupation, really, than to spend the evening at the fireside with a book, with the wind beating on the windows and the lamp burning bright...Haven't you ever happened to come across in a book some vague notion that you've had, some obscure idea that returns from afar and that seems to express completely your most subtle feelings?


All you have to do to make something interesting is to look at it long enough.


There is no truth. There is only perception.


For every bourgeois, in the heat of youth, if only for a day, for a minute, has believed himself capable of immense passions, of heroic enterprises. The most mediocre libertine has dreamed of oriental princesses; every rotary carries about inside him the debris of a poet.


Success is a consequence and must not be a goal.


A superhuman will is needed in order to write, and I am only a man.


Stupidity consists in wanting to reach conclusions.

We are a thread, and we want to know the whole cloth.


Our ignorance of history causes us to slander our own times.

The ordinary person today lives better than a king did a century ago but is ungrateful!


It's a delicious thing to write. To be no longer yourself but to move in an entire universe of your own creating.


How you measure the performance of your managers directly affects the way they act.


You forget everything. The hours slip by. You travel in your chair through centuries you seem seem to see before you, your thoughts are caught up in the story, dallying with the details or following the course of the plot, you enter into characters, so that it seems as if it were your own heart beating beneath their costumes.


Oh, if I had been loved at the age of seventeen, what an idiot I would be today.

Happiness is like smallpox: if you catch it too soon, it can completely ruin your constitution.


Only three things are infinite. The sky in its stars, the sea in its drops of water, and the heart in its tears.


Earth has its boundaries, but human stupidity is limitless.


Exuberance is better than taste.


Writing history is like drinking an ocean and pissing a cupful.


Everything one invents is true, you may be perfectly sure of that. Poetry is as precise as geometry.


I go from exasperation to a state of collapse, then I recover and go from prostration to Fury, so that my average state is one of being annoyed.


I am irritated by my own writing. I am like a violinist whose ear is true, but whose fingers refuse to reproduce precisely the sound he hears within.


The future is the worst thing about the present.


Doubt … is an illness that comes from knowledge and leads to madness.


The only way to avoid being unhappy is to close yourself up in Art and to count for nothing all the rest.


After a person dies, there is always something like a feeling of stupefaction, so difficult is it to comprehend this unexpected advent of nothingness and to resign oneself to believing it.


We must laugh and cry, enjoy and suffer, in a word, vibrate to our full capacity … I think that’s what being really human means.


Through small apertures we glimpse abysses whose sombre depths turn us faint.

And yet over the whole there hovers an extraordinary tenderness.


I sometimes feel a great ennui, profound emptiness, doubts which sneer in my face in the midst of the most spontaneous satisfactions. Well, I would not exchange all that for anything, because it seems to me, in my conscience, that I am doing my duty, that I am obeying a superior fatality, that I am following the Good and that I am in the Right.


Coffee: Induces wit. Good only if it comes through Havre. After a big dinner party it is taken standing up. Take it without sugar - very swank: gives the impression you have lived in the East.


She wanted to die, but she also wanted to live in Paris.


But an infinity of passions can be contained in a minute, like a crowd in a tiny space.