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Quotes of the day: Victor Hugo

Published Wednesday, February 26, 2014 @ 12:32 AM EST
Feb 26 2014

Victor Marie Hugo (February 26, 1802 - May 22, 1885) was a French poet, novelist, and dramatist of the Romantic movement. He is considered one of the greatest and best known French writers. In France, Hugo's literary fame comes first from his poetry but also rests upon his novels and his dramatic achievements. Outside France, his best-known works are the novels Les Misérables, 1862, and Notre-Dame de Paris (The Hunchback of Notre-Dame), 1831. Though a committed royalist when he was young, Hugo's views changed as the decades passed; he became a passionate supporter of republicanism, and his work touches upon most of the political and social issues and artistic trends of his time. He was buried in the Panthéon. (Click here for full Wikipedia article)


A creditor is worse than a slave-owner; for the master owns only your person, but a creditor owns your dignity, and can command it.

A library implies an act of faith

Adversity makes men, and prosperity makes monsters.

An intelligent hell would be better than a stupid paradise.

As the purse is emptied, the heart is filled.

Forty is the old age of youth; fifty is the youth of old age.

Great blunders are often made, like large ropes, of a multitude of fibers.

It is man's consolation that the future is to be a sunrise instead of a sunset.

Liberation is not deliverance.

Life, misfortunes, isolation, abandonment, poverty, are battlefields which have their heroes; obscure heroes, sometimes greater than the illustrious heroes.

Men hate those to whom they have to lie.

Mirrors, those revealers of the truth, are hated; that does not prevent them from being of use.

Music expresses that which cannot be said and on which it is impossible to be silent.

One resists the invasion of armies; one does not resist the invasion of ideas.

Philosophy is the microscope of thought. Everything desires to flee from it, but nothing escapes it.

Popularity? It is glory's small change.

Social problems overstep frontiers. The sores of the human race, those great sores which cover the globe, do not halt at the red or blue lines traced upon the map.

The desert is where God is and Man is not.

The ones who live are the ones who struggle.

The supreme happiness of life is the conviction that one is loved; loved for oneself, or better yet, loved despite oneself.

There is always more misery among the lower classes than there is humanity in the higher.

There is no such thing as a little country. The greatness of a people is no more determined by their number than the greatness of a man is determined by his height.

To love is to act.

To put everything in balance is good, to put everything in harmony is better.

To reform a man, you must begin with his grandmother.

We are all under sentence of death, but with a sort of indefinite reprieve.

When God desires to destroy a thing, he entrusts its destruction to the thing itself. Every bad institution of this world ends by suicide.

You insist on the example (of the death penalty). Why? For what it teaches. What do you want to teach with your example? That thou shalt not kill. And how do you teach thou shalt not kill? By killing.

Categories: Quotes of the day, Victor Hugo


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