110+ Herman Melville Quotes On Death, Sea And Adventure

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Top 10 Herman Melville Quotes (BEST)

  1. Of all the preposterous assumptions of humanity over humanity, nothing exceeds most of the criticisms made on the habits of the poor by the well-housed, well- warmed, and well-fed.
  2. Of all the preposterous assumptions of humanity over humanity, nothing exceeds most of the criticisms made on the habits of the poor by the well-housed, well-warmed, and well-fed.
  3. It is better to fail in originality than to succeed in imitation.
  4. Dream tonight of peacock tails, Diamond fields and spouter whales. Ills are many, blessing few, But dreams tonight will shelter you.
  5. Toil is man's allotment; toil of brain, or toil of hands, or a grief that's more than either, the grief and sin of idleness.
  6. Meditation and water are wedded for ever.
  7. Aye, aye! and I'll chase him round Good Hope, and round the Horn, and round the Norway Maelstrom, and round perdition's flames before I give him up.
  8. It is better to fail in originality, than to succeed in imitation. He who has never failed somewhere, that man can not be great. Failure is the true test of greatness.
  9. There is a savor of life and immortality in substantial fare. Like balloons, we are nothing till filled.
  10. No philosophers so thoroughly comprehend us as dogs and horses.

Herman Melville Image Quotes

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quote by Herman Melville

Meditation and water are wedded for ever. — Herman Melville

quote by Herman Melville

Give me a condor's quill! Give me Vesuvius crater for an inkstand! — Herman Melville

Herman Melville Short Quotes

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  • Give me a condor's quill! Give me Vesuvius crater for an inkstand!
  • We cannot live only for ourselves. A thousand fibers connect us with our fellow men.
  • I know not all that may be coming, but be it what it will, I'll go to it laughing.
  • All wars are boyish, and are fought by boys.
  • Talk not to me of blasphemy, man; I'd strike the sun if it insulted me.
  • They talk of the dignity of work. The dignity is in leisure.
  • Everyone knows that in most people's estimation, to do anything cooly is to do it genteelly.
  • An utterly fearless man is a far more dangerous comrade than a coward.
  • In a multitude of acquaintances is less security, than in one faithful friend.
  • Aid my disillusionment, my friend!
 quote It is better to fail in originality than to succeed in imitation.
It is better to fail in originality than to succeed in imitation.

Herman Melville Quotes On Love

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Let us only hate hatred; and once give love a play, we will fall in love with a unicorn. — Herman Melville

As for me, I am tormented with an everlasting itch for things remote. I love to sail forbidden seas, and land on barbarous coasts. — Herman Melville

To the last, I grapple with thee; From Hell's heart, I stab at thee; For hate's sake, I spit my last breath at thee. — Herman Melville

Personal prudence, even when dictated by quite other than selfish considerations, surely is no special virtue in a military man; while an excessive love of glory, impassioning a less burning impulse, the honest sense of duty, is the first. — Herman Melville

contempt is as frequently produced at first sight as love. — Herman Melville

Love is both Creator's and Saviour's gospel to mankind; a volume bound in rose-leaves, clasped with violets, and by the beaks of humming-birds printed with peach-juice on the leaves of lilies. — Herman Melville

In metropolitan cases, the love of the most single-eyed lover, almost invariably, is nothing more than the ultimate settling of innumerable wandering glances upon some one specific object. — Herman Melville

And the visible world seems formed in love, the invisible spheres were formed in fright. — Herman Melville

People seem to have a great love for names. For to know a great many names seems to look like knowing a good many things. — Herman Melville

See how elastic our prejudices grow when once love comes to bend them. — Herman Melville

Herman Melville Quotes On Death

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It is only when caught in the swift, sudden turn of death, that mortals realise the silent, subtle, ever-present perils of life. — Herman Melville

Death is only a launching into the region of the strange Untried; it is but the first salutation to the possibilities of the immense Remote, the Wild, the Watery, the Unshored. — Herman Melville

Some dying men are the most tyrannical; and certainly, since they will shortly trouble us so little for evermore, the poor fellows ought to be indulged. — Herman Melville

In our man-of-war world, Life comes in at one gangway and Death goes overboard at the other. Under the man-of-war scourge, cursesmix with tears; and the sigh and the sob furnish the bass to the shrill octave of those who laugh to drown buried griefs of their own. — Herman Melville

O Death, the Consecrator! Nothing so sanctifies a name As to be written--Dead. Nothing so wins a life from blame, So covers it from wrath and shame, As doth the burial-bed. — Herman Melville

The terrors of truth and dart of death To faith alike are vain. — Herman Melville

Old age is always wakeful; as if, the longer linked with life, the less man has to do with aught that looks like death. — Herman Melville

We may have civilized bodies and yet barbarous souls. We are blind to the real sights of this world; deaf to its voice; and dead to its death. And not till we know, that one grief outweighs ten thousand joys will we become what Christianity is striving to make us. — Herman Melville

None but a good man is really a living man, and the more good any man does, the more he really lives. All the rest is death, or belongs to it. — Herman Melville

We die, because we live. — Herman Melville

Herman Melville Quotes On Sea

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At last the anchor was up, the sails were set, and off we glided. It was a sharp, cold Christmas; and as the short northern day merged into night, we found ourselves almost broad upon the wintry ocean, whose freezing spray cased us in ice, as in polished armor. — Herman Melville

An intense copper calm, like a universal yellow lotus, was more and more unfolding its noiseless measureless leaves upon the sea. — Herman Melville

Of all nature's animated kingdoms, fish are the most unchristian, inhospitable, heartless, and cold-blooded of creatures. — Herman Melville

Let America add Mexico to Texas, and pile Cuba upon Canada; let the English overswarm all India, and hang out their blazing banner from the sun; two thirds of this terraqueous globe are the Nantucketer's. For the sea is his; he owns it. — Herman Melville

But the past is passed; why moralize upon it? Forget it. See, yon bright son has forgotten it all, and the blue sea, and the blue sky; these have turned over new leaves. Because they have no memory . . . because they are not human. — Herman Melville

Towards thee I roll, thou all-destroying but unconquering whale... from hell's heart I stab at thee. — Herman Melville

There are two places in the world where men can most effectively disappear - the city of London and the South Seas. — Herman Melville

Let me look into a human eye; it is better than to gaze into sea or sky; better than to gaze upon God. — Herman Melville

I am tormented with an everlasting itch for things remote. I love to sail forbidden seas. — Herman Melville

As a man-of-war that sails through the sea, so this earth that sails through the air. We mortals are all on board a fast-sailing,never-sinking world-frigate, of which God was the shipwright; and she is but one craft in a Milky-Way fleet, of which God is the Lord High Admiral. — Herman Melville

Herman Melville Quotes On Life

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There never was a great man yet who spent all his life inland. — Herman Melville

For as this appalling ocean surrounds the verdant land, so in the soul of man there lies one insular Tahiti, full of peace and joy, but encompassed by all the horrors of the half known life. — Herman Melville

Life’s a voyage that’s homeward bound. — Herman Melville

The sailor is frankness, the landsman is finesse. Life is not a game with the sailor, demanding the long head — Herman Melville

Stay true to the dreams of thy youth. — Herman Melville

There are certain queer times and occasions in this strange mixed affair we call life when a man takes his whole universe for a vast practical joke. — Herman Melville

The sweetest joys of life grow in the very jaws of its perils. — Herman Melville

When I think of this life I have led; the desolation of solitude it has been; the masoned, walled-town of a Captain's exclusiveness, which admits but small entrance to any sympathy from the green country without -- oh, weariness! heaviness! Guinea-coast slavery of solitary command! — Herman Melville

We die of too much life. — Herman Melville

Many sensible things banished from high life find an asylum among the mob. — Herman Melville

Herman Melville Quotes On World

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There is no quality in this world that is not what it is merely by contrast. Nothing exists in itself. — Herman Melville

In this world of lies, Truth is forced to fly like a scared white doe in the woodlands; and only by cunning glimpses will she reveal herself, as in Shakespeare and other masters of the great Art of Telling the Truth, even though it be covertly, and by snatches. — Herman Melville

You cannot spill a drop of American blood without spilling the blood of the whole world.... We are not a nation, so much as a world. — Herman Melville

Why, ever since Adam, who has got to the meaning of this great allegory -- the world? Then we pygmies must be content to have out paper allegories but ill comprehended. — Herman Melville

Some years ago - never mind how long precisely - having little or no money in my purse, and nothing particular to interest me on shore, I thought I would sail about a little and see the watery part of the world. — Herman Melville

All the world over, the picturesque yields to the pocketesque. — Herman Melville

In our own hearts, we mold the whole world's hereafters; and in our own hearts we fashion our own gods. — Herman Melville

Genius, all over the world, stands hand in hand, and one shock of recognition runs the whole circle round. — Herman Melville

Ah, happiness courts the light so we deem the world is gay. But misery hides aloof so we deem that misery there is none. — Herman Melville

In this world, shipmates, sin that pays its way can travel freely, and without passport; whereas Virtue, if a pauper, is stopped at all frontiers. — Herman Melville

Herman Melville Quotes On True

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It is not down in any map; true places never are. — Herman Melville

There are some enterprises in which a careful disorderliness is the true method. — Herman Melville

Are not half our lives spent in reproaches for foregone actions, of the true nature and consequences of which we were wholly ignorant at the time? — Herman Melville

Amity itself can only be maintained by reciprocal respect, and true friends are punctilious equals. — Herman Melville

True Work is the necessity of poor humanity's earthly condition. The dignity is in leisure. Besides, 99 hundredths of all the work done in the world is either foolish and unnecessary, or harmful and wicked. — Herman Melville

For small erections may be finished by their first architects; grand ones, true ones, ever leave the copestone to posterity. God keep me from ever completing anything. This whole book is but a draught—nay, but the draught of a draught. Oh, Time, Strength, Cash, and Patience! — Herman Melville

That mortal man who hath more of joy than sorrow in him, that mortal man cannot be true--not true, or undeveloped. — Herman Melville

It is not down in any map, true places never are. — Herman Melville

A true military officer is in one particular like a true monk. Not with more self-abnegation will the latter keep his vows of monastic obedience than the former his vows of allegiance to martial duty. — Herman Melville

The western spirit is, or will yet be (for no other is, or can be) the true American one. — Herman Melville

Herman Melville Quotes On Book

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To produce a mighty book, you must choose a mighty theme. — Herman Melville

A book in a man's brain is better off than a book bound in calf - at any rate it is safer from criticism. — Herman Melville

To produce a mighty book, you must choose a mighty theme. No great and enduring volume can ever be written on the flea, though many there be that have tried it. — Herman Melville

For whatever is truly wondrous and fearful in man, never yet was put into words or books. — Herman Melville

If some books are deemed most baneful and their sale forbid, how, then, with deadlier facts, not dreams of doting men? Those whom books will hurt will not be proof against events. Events, not books, should be forbid. — Herman Melville

Dollars damn me; and the malicious Devil is forever grinning in upon me, holding the door ajar. ... What I feel most moved to write, that is banned - it will not pay. Yet, altogether, write the other way I cannot. So the product is a final hash, and all my books are botches. — Herman Melville

I have written a wicked book, and feel spotless as the lamb. — Herman Melville

Book! You lie there; the fact is, you books must know your places. You'll do to give us the bare words and facts, but we come in to supply the thoughts. — Herman Melville

Herman Melville Famous Quotes And Sayings

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quote by Herman Melville

Meditation and water are wedded for ever. — Herman Melville

When beholding the tranquil beauty and brilliancy of the ocean’s skin, one forgets the tiger heart that pants beneath it; and would not willingly remember that this velvet paw but conceals a remorseless fang. — Herman Melville

Swerve me? The path to my fixed purpose is laid with iron rails, whereon my soul is grooved to run. Over unsounded gorges, through the rifled hearts of mountains, under torrents' beds, unerringly I rush! Naught's an obstacle, naught's an angle to the iron way! — Herman Melville

A hermitage in the forest is the refuge of the narrow-minded misanthrope; a hammock on the ocean is the asylum for the generous distressed. — Herman Melville

Hope is the struggle of the soul, breaking loose from what is perishable, and attesting her eternity. — Herman Melville

Faith, like a jackal, feeds among the tombs, and even from these dead doubts she gathers her most vital hope. — Herman Melville

Any appellative at all savouring of arbitrary rank is unsuitable to a man of liberal and catholic mind. — Herman Melville

Seat thyself sultanically among the moons of Saturn, and take high abstracted man alone; and he seems a wonder, a grandeur, and a woe. But from that same point, take mankind in mass, and for the most part, they seem a mob of unnecessary duplicates, both contemporary and hereditary. — Herman Melville

But are sailors, frequenters of fiddlers' greens, without vices? No; but less often than with landsmen do their vices, so called, partake of crookedness of heart, seeming less to proceed from viciousness than exuberance of vitality after long constraint: frank manifestations in accordance with natural law. — Herman Melville

He piled upon the whale's white hump the sum of all the general rage and hate felt by his whole race from Adam down; and then, as if his chest had been a mortar, he burst his hot heart's shell upon it. — Herman Melville

Better be an old maid, a woman with herself as a husband, than the wife of a fool; and Solomon more than hints that all men are fools; and every wise man knows himself to be one. — Herman Melville

That author who draws a character, even though to common view incongruous in its parts, as the flying-squirrel, and, at differentperiods, as much at variance with itself as the caterpillar is with the butterfly into which it changes, may yet, in so doing, be not false but faithful to facts. — Herman Melville

Of all insults, the temporary condescension of a master to a slave is the most outrageous and galling. That potentate who most condescends, mark him well; for that potentate, if occasion come, will prove your uttermost tyrant. — Herman Melville

Are there no Moravians in the Moon, that not a missionary has yet visited this poor pagan planet of ours, to civilise civilisation and christianise Christendom? — Herman Melville

I never fancied broiling fowls; - though once broiled, judiciously buttered, and judgmatically salted and peppered, there is no one who will speak more respectfully, not to say reverentially, of a broiled fowl than I will. — Herman Melville

Start her, now; give 'em the long and strong stroke, Tashtego. Start her, Tash, my boy-start her, all; but keep cool, keep cool-cucumbers is the word-easy, easy-only start her like grim death and grinning devils, and raise the buried dead perpendicular out of their graves, boys-that's all. Start her! — Herman Melville

Let us speak, though we show all our faults and weaknesses, - for it is a sign of strength to be weak, to know it, and out with it - not in a set way and ostentatiously, though, but incidentally and without premeditation. — Herman Melville

When the passage "All men are born free and equal," when that passage was being written were not some of the signers legalised owners of slaves? — Herman Melville

Benevolent desires, after passing a certain point, can not undertake their own fulfillment without incurring the risk of evils beyond those sought to be remedied. — Herman Melville

Yet habit - strange thing! what cannot habit accomplish? — Herman Melville

Beneath those stars is a universe of gliding monsters. — Herman Melville

The path to my fixed purpose is laid with iron rails whereon my soul is grooved to run — Herman Melville

People think that if a man has undergone any hardship, he should have a reward; but for my part, if I have done the hardest possible day's work, and then come to sit down in a corner and eat my supper comfortably --why, then I don't think I deserve any reward for my hard day's work --for am I not now at peace? Is not my supper good? — Herman Melville

One trembles to think of that mysterious thing in the soul, which seems to acknowledge no human jurisdiction, but in spite of the individual's own innocence self, will still dream horrid dreams, and mutter unmentionable thoughts. — Herman Melville

Do not presume, well-housed, well-warmed, and well-fed, to criticize the poor — Herman Melville

The sailor is frankness, the landsman is finesse. Life is not a game with the sailor, demanding the long head--no intricate game of chess where few moves are made in straight-forwardness and ends are attained by indirection, an oblique, tedious, barren game hardly worth that poor candle burnt out in playing it. — Herman Melville

He who has never failed somewhere, that man can not be great. — Herman Melville

Whenever we discover a dislike in us, toward any one, we should ever be a little suspicious of ourselves. — Herman Melville

The eyes are the gateway to the soul. — Herman Melville

Niggards are oftentimes neat. — Herman Melville

All wars are boyish, and are fought by boys, The champions and enthusiasts of the state: Turbid ardors and vain joys Not barrenly abate-- Stimulants to the power mature, Preparatives of fate. — Herman Melville

Honor lies in the mane of a horse. — Herman Melville

Truth is ever incoherent, and when the big hearts strike together, the concussion is a little stunning. — Herman Melville

There is nothing so slipperily alluring as sadness; we become sad in the first place by having nothing stirring to do; we continue in it, because we have found a snug sofa at last. — Herman Melville

The symmetry of form attainable in pure fiction can not so readily be achieved in a narration essentially having less to do with fable than with fact. Truth uncompromisingly told will always have its ragged edges. — Herman Melville

I try all things, I achieve what I can. — Herman Melville

At my years, and with my disposition, or rather, constitution, one gets to care less and less for everything except downright goodfeeling. Life is so short, and so ridiculous and irrational (from a certain point of view) that one knows not what to make of it, unless--well, finish the sentence for yourself. — Herman Melville

Let faith oust fact; let fancy oust memory; I look deep down and do believe. — Herman Melville

Man is a money-making animal, which propensity too often interferes with his benevolence. — Herman Melville

Man, in the ideal, is so noble and so sparkling, such a grand and glowing creature, that over any ignominious blemish in him all his fellows should run to throw their costliest robes. — Herman Melville

A good laugh is a mighty good thing, and rather too scarce a good thing. — Herman Melville

Genius is full of trash. — Herman Melville

There is no Champollion to decipher the Egypt of every man's and every being's face. Physiognomy, like every other human science,is but a passing fable. — Herman Melville

We cannot live for ourselves alone. — Herman Melville

I will frankly confess that after passing a few weeks in the valley of the Marquesas, I formed a higher estimate of human nature than I had ever before entertained. But, alas, since then I have been one of the crew of a man-of- war, and the pent-up wickedness of five hundred men has nearly overturned all my previous theories. — Herman Melville

Out of the trunk, the branches grow; out of them, the twigs. So, in productive subjects, grow the chapters. — Herman Melville

When among wild beasts, if they menace you, be a wild beast. — Herman Melville

It is the horrible texture of a fabric that should be woven of ships' cables and hawsers. A Polar wind blows through it, and birds of prey hover over it. — Herman Melville

For, as when the red-cheeked, dancing girls, April and May, trip home to the wintry, misanthropic woods; even the barest, ruggedest, most thunder-cloven old oak will at least send forth some few green sprouts, to welcome such glad-hearted visitants . . . — Herman Melville

That great America on the other side of the sphere, Australia. — Herman Melville

There's something ever egotistical in mountain-tops and towers, and all other grand and lofty things. — Herman Melville

There is something wrong about the man who wants help. There is somewhere a deep defect, a want, in brief, a need, a crying need, somewhere about that man. — Herman Melville

In time of peril, like the needle to the loadstone, obedience, irrespective of rank, generally flies to him who is best fitted to command. — Herman Melville

Roll on, thou deep and dark blue ocean, roll! Ten thousand blubber-hunters sweep over thee in vain. — Herman Melville

Say what some poets will, Nature is not so much her own ever-sweet interpreter, as the mere supplier of that cunning alphabet, whereby selecting and combining as he pleases, each man reads his own peculiar lesson according to his own peculiar mind and mood. — Herman Melville

Life Lessons by Herman Melville

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  1. Herman Melville taught us to be resilient in the face of adversity, as demonstrated by his perseverance in writing despite facing many rejections.
  2. He also showed us the importance of self-reflection and introspection, as evidenced by his ability to explore the depths of the human experience in his works.
  3. Lastly, Melville taught us to be courageous in our convictions and to never give up on our dreams, no matter how difficult the journey may be.

In Conclusion

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