Quotes Categories

Joseph Conrad Quotes

(1857-1924), Polish-born British Novelist

A noble man compares and estimates himself by an idea which is higher than himself; and a mean man, by one lower than himself. The one produces aspiration; the other ambition, which is the way in which a vulgar man aspires.

Category: Ambition

There is nothing more enticing, disenchanting, and enslaving than the life at sea.

Category: Army And Navy

An artist is a man of action, whether he creates a personality, invents an expedient, or finds the issue of a complicated situation.

Category: Arts And Artists

Any work that aspires, however humbly, to the condition of art should carry its justification in every line.

Category: Arts And Artists

They talk of a man betraying his country, his friends, his sweetheart. There must be a moral bond first. All a man can betray is his conscience.

Category: Betrayal

Facing it, always facing it, that's the way to get through. Face it.

Category: Courage

History repeats itself, but the special call of an art which has passed away is never reproduced. It is as utterly gone out of the world as the song of a destroyed wild bird.

Category: Crafts

Criticism, that fine flower of personal expression in the garden of letters.

Category: Critics And Criticism

I have wrestled with death. It is the most unexciting contest you can imagine. It takes place in an impalpable grayness, with nothing underfoot, with nothing around, without spectators, without clamor, without glory, without the great desire of victory, without the great fear of defeat.

Category: Death And Dying

A man that is born falls into a dream like a man who falls into the sea. If he tries to climb out into the air as inexperienced people endeavor to do, he drowns.

Category: Dreams

It is very difficult to be wholly joyous or wholly sad on this earth. The comic, when it is human, soon takes upon itself a face of pain; and some of our grieves... have their source in weaknesses which must be recognized with smiling compassion as the common inheritance of us all.

Category: Emotions

The conquest of the earth, which mostly means the taking it away from those who have a different complexion or slightly flatter noses than ourselves, is not a pretty thing when you look into it.

Category: Empire

You shall judge a man by his foes as well as by his friends.

Category: Enemies

The belief in a supernatural source of evil is not necessary; men alone are quite capable of every wickedness.

Category: Evil

Danger lies in the writer becoming the victim of his own exaggeration, losing the exact notion of sincerity, and in the end coming to despise truth itself as something too cold, too blunt for his purpose -- as, in fact, not good enough for his insistent emotion. From laughter and tears the descent is easy to sniveling and giggles.

Category: Exaggeration