Goodreads helps you follow your favorite authors. Be the first to learn about new releases!
Start by following Thomas Mann.

Thomas Mann Thomas Mann > Quotes


Thomas Mann quotes Showing 1-30 of 563

“A writer is someone for whom writing is more difficult than it is for other people.”
Thomas Mann, Essays of Three Decades
“Solitude gives birth to the original in us, to beauty unfamiliar and perilous - to poetry. But also, it gives birth to the opposite: to the perverse, the illicit, the absurd.”
Thomas Mann, Death in Venice and Other Tales
“It is love, not reason, that is stronger than death.”
Thomas Mann, The Magic Mountain
“Tolerance becomes a crime when applied to evil.”
Thomas Mann, The Magic Mountain
“In books we never find anything but ourselves. Strangely enough, that always gives us great pleasure, and we say the author is a genius.”
Thomas Mann
“Laughter is a sunbeam of the soul.”
Thomas Mann, The Magic Mountain
“Nothing is more curious and awkward than the relationship of two people who only know each other with their eyes — who meet and observe each other daily, even hourly and who keep up the impression of disinterest either because of morals or because of a mental abnormality. Between them there is listlessness and pent-up curiosity, the hysteria of an unsatisfied, unnaturally suppressed need for communion and also a kind of tense respect. Because man loves and honors man as long as he is not able to judge him, and desire is a product of lacking knowledge.”
Thomas Mann, Death in Venice and Other Tales
“Solitude produces originality, bold and astonishing beauty, poetry. But solitude also produces perverseness, the disproportianate, the absurd and the forbidden.”
Thomas Mann, Death in Venice and Other Tales
“There are so many different kinds of stupidity, and cleverness is one of the worst.”
Thomas Mann, The Magic Mountain
“No man remains quite what he was when he recognizes himself.”
Thomas Mann
“A solitary, unused to speaking of what he sees and feels, has mental experiences which are at once more intense and less articulate than those of a gregarious man. They are sluggish, yet more wayward, and never without a melancholy tinge. Sights and impressions which others brush aside with a glance, a light comment, a smile, occupy him more than their due; they sink silently in, they take on meaning, they become experience, emotion, adventure. Solitude gives birth to the original in us, to beauty unfamiliar and perilous - to poetry. But also, it gives birth to the opposite: to the perverse, the illicit, the absurd.”
Thomas Mann, Death in Venice and Other Tales
“War is only a cowardly escape from the problems of peace.”
Thomas Mann, This I Believe: The Personal Philosophies of One Hundred Thoughtful Men and Women
“Nothing is stranger or more ticklish than a relationship between people who know each other only by sight, who meet and observe each other daily - no hourly - and are nevertheless compelled to keep up the pose of an indifferent stranger, neither greeting nor addressing each other, whether out of etiquette or their own whim.”
Thomas Mann, Death in Venice
“He who loves the more is the inferior and must suffer.”
Thomas Mann
“It is remarkable how a man cannot summarize his thoughts in even the most general sort of way without betraying himself completely, without putting his whole self into it, quite unawares, presenting as if in allegory the basic themes and problems of his life.”
Thomas Mann, The Magic Mountain
“There is only one real misfortune: to forfeit one's own good opinion of oneself. Lose your complacency, once betray your own self-contempt and the world will unhesitatingly endorse it.”
Thomas Mann
“I know I am talking nonsense, but I’d rather go rambling on, and partly expressing something I find it difficult to express, than to keep on transmitting faultless platitudes.”
Thomas Mann, The Magic Mountain
“The observations and encounters of a solitary, taciturn man are vaguer and at the same times more intense than those of a sociable man; his thoughts are deeper, odder and never without a touch of sadness. Images and perceptions that could be dismissed with a glance, a laugh, an exchange of opinions, occupy him unduly, become more intense in the silence, become significant, become an experience, an adventure, an emotion. Solitude produces originality, bold and astonishing beauty, poetry. But solitude also produces perverseness, the disproportionate, the absurd and the forbidden.”
Thomas Mann, Death in Venice
“He probably was mediocre after all, though in a very honorable sense of that word.”
Thomas Mann, The Magic Mountain
“This was love at first sight, love everlasting: a feeling unknown, unhoped for, unexpected--in so far as it could be a matter of conscious awareness; it took entire possession of him, and he understood, with joyous amazement, that this was for life.”
Thomas Mann
“A harmful truth is better than a useful lie.”
Thomas Mann, The Magic Mountain
“A lonely, quiet person has observations and experiences that are at once both more indistinct and more penetrating than those of one more gregarious; his thoughts are weightier, stranger, and never without a tinge of sadness. . . . Loneliness fosters that which is original, daringly and bewilderingly beautiful, poetic. But loneliness also fosters that which is perverse, incongruous, absurd, forbidden.”
Thomas Mann, Death in Venice
“Art is the funnel, as it were, through which spirit is poured into life.”
Thomas Mann
“A man lives not only his personal life, as an individual, but also, consciously or unconsciously, the life of his epoch and his contemporaries. He may regard the general, impersonal foundations of his existence as definitely settled and taken for granted, and be as far from assuming a critical attitude towards them as our good Hans Castorp really was; yet it is quite conceivable that he may none the less be vaguely conscious of the deficiencies of his epoch and find them prejudicial to his own moral well-being. All sorts of personal aims, hopes, ends, prospects, hover before the eyes of the individual, and out of these he derives the impulse to ambition and achievement. Now, if the life about him, if his own time seems, however outwardly stimulating, to be at bottom empty of such food for his aspirations; if he privately recognises it to be hopeless, viewless, helpless, opposing only a hollow silence to all the questions man puts, consciously or unconsciously, yet somehow puts, as to the final, absolute, and abstract meaning in all his efforts and activities; then, in such a case, a certain laming of the personality is bound to occur, the more inevitably the more upright the character in question; a sort of palsy, as it were, which may extend from his spiritual and moral over into his physical and organic part. In an age that affords no satisfying answer to the eternal question of 'Why?' 'To what end?' a man who is capable of achievement over and above the expected modicum must be equipped either with a moral remoteness and single-mindedness which is rare indeed and of heroic mould, or else with an exceptionally robust vitality. Hans Castorp had neither one nor the other of these; and thus he must be considered mediocre, though in an entirely honourable sense.”
Thomas Mann, The Magic Mountain
“Yes, they are carnal, both of them, love and death, and therein lies their terror and their great magic!”
Thomas Mann
“It is most certainly a good thing that the world knows only the beautiful opus but not its origins, not the conditions of its creation; for if people knew the sources of the artist's inspiration, that knowledge would often confuse them, alarm them, and thereby destroy the effects of excellence. strange hours! strangely enervating labor! bizarrely fertile intercourse of the mind with a body!”
Thomas Mann, Death in Venice and Other Tales
“Distance in a straight line has no mystery. The mystery is in the sphere.”
Thomas Mann
“All interest in disease and death is only another expression of interest in life.”
Thomas Mann
“I stand between two worlds. I am at home in neither, and I suffer in consequence. You artists call me a bourgeois, and the bourgeois try to arrest me...I don't know which makes me feel worse.”
Thomas Mann, Tonio Kröger
“Order and simplification are the first steps towards mastery of a subject”
Thomas Mann

« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 18 19

All Quotes | Add A Quote


The Magic Mountain The Magic Mountain
31,048 ratings
Death in Venice Death in Venice
32,445 ratings
Open Preview
Buddenbrooks: The Decline of a Family Buddenbrooks
19,541 ratings
Open Preview
Death in Venice and Other Tales Death in Venice and Other Tales
19,239 ratings
Open Preview