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Graham Greene quotes Showing 1-30 of 924

“Champagne, if you are seeking the truth, is better than a lie detector.”
Graham Greene
“You know what the fellow said – in Italy, for thirty years under the Borgias, they had warfare, terror, murder and bloodshed, but they produced Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci and the Renaissance. In Switzerland, they had brotherly love, they had five hundred years of democracy and peace – and what did that produce? The cuckoo clock.”
Graham Greene, The Third Man
“The sense of unhappiness is so much easier to convey than that of happiness. In misery we seem aware of our own existence, even though it may be in the form of a monstrous egotism: this pain of mine is individual, this nerve that winces belongs to me and to no other. But happiness annihilates us: we lose our identity.”
Graham Greene, The End of the Affair
“Writing is a form of therapy; sometimes I wonder how all those who do not write, compose, or paint can manage to escape the madness, melancholia, the panic and fear which is inherent in a human situation.”
Graham Greene, Ways of Escape
“Like some wines our love could neither mature nor travel.”
Graham Greene, The Comedians
“It's a strange thing to discover and to believe that you are loved when you know that there is nothing in you for anybody but a parent or a God to love.”
Graham Greene, The End of the Affair
“A story has no beginning or end: arbitrarily one chooses that moment of experience from which to look back or from which to look ahead.”
Graham Greene, The End of the Affair
“Hate is a lack of imagination.”
Graham Greene, The Power and the Glory
“I had to touch you with my hands, I had to taste you with my tongue; one can't love and do nothing.”
Graham Greene, The End of the Affair
“Innocence is a kind of insanity”
Graham Greene, The Quiet American
“But it is impossible to go through life without trust; that is to be imprisoned in the worst cell of all, oneself.”
Graham Greene, The Ministry of Fear
“I don't care a damn about men who are loyal to the people who pay them, to organizations...I don't think even my country means all that much. There are many countries in our blood, aren't there, but only one person. Would the world be in the mess it is if we were loyal to love and not to countries?”
Graham Greene, Our Man in Havana
“If only it were possible to love without injury – fidelity isn’t enough: I had been faithful to Anne and yet I had injured her. The hurt is in the act of possession: we are too small in mind and body to possess another person without pride or to be possessed without humiliation. In a way I was glad that my wife had struck out at me again – I had forgotten her pain for too long, and this was the only kind of recompense I could give her. Unfortunately the innocent are always involved in any conflict. Always, everywhere, there is some voice crying from a tower. ”
Graham Greene
“I hate you, God. I hate you as though you actually exist.”
Graham Greene, The End of the Affair
tags: god, hate
“Her face looked ugly in the attempt to avoid tears; it was an ugliness which bound him to her more than any beauty could have done. It isn't being happy together, he thought as though it were a fresh discovery, that makes one love--it's being unhappy together.”
Graham Greene, The Ministry of Fear
“Insecurity is the worst sense that lovers feel; sometimes the most humdrum desireless marriage seems better. Insecurity twists meanings and poisons trust.”
Graham Greene, The End of the Affair
“I measured love by the extent of my jealousy.”
Graham Greene, The End of the Affair
“People who like quotes love meaningless generalizations”
Graham Greene
“You cannot conceive, nor can I, of the appalling strangeness of the mercy of God.”
Graham Greene, Brighton Rock
“Pain is easy to write. In pain we're all happily individual. But what can one write about happiness?”
Graham Greene, The End of the Affair
“I can never think of you as a friend. You can do without a friend.”
Graham Greene, The End of the Affair
“We forget very easily what gives us pain.”
Graham Greene, The Ministry of Fear
“Point me out the happy man and I will point you out either extreme egotism, selfishness, evil -- or else an absolute ignorance.”
Graham Greene, The Heart of the Matter
“Most things disappoint till you look deeper.”
Graham Greene
“I became aware that our love was doomed; love had turned into a love affair with a beginning and an end. I could name the very moment when it had begun, and one day I knew I should be able to name the final hour. When she left the house I couldn't settle to work. I would reconstruct what we had said to each other; I would fan myself into anger or remorse. And all the time I knew I was forcing the pace. I was pushing, pushing the only thing I loved out of my life. As long as I could make believe that love lasted I was happy; I think I was even good to live with, and so love did last. But if love had to die, I wanted it to die quickly. It was as though our love were a small creature caught in a trap and bleeding to death; I had to shut my eyes and wring its neck.”
Graham Greene, The End of the Affair
tags: love
“Time has its revenges, but revenge seems so often sour. Wouldn’t we all do better not trying to understand, accepting the fact that no human being will ever understand another, not a wife with a husband, nor a parent a child? Perhaps that’s why men have invented God – a being capable of understanding. ”
Graham Greene, The Quiet American
“I have loved no part of the world like this and I have loved no women as I love you. You're my human Africa. I love your smell as I love these smells. I love your dark bush as I love the bush here, you change with the light as this place does, so that one all the time is loving something different and yet the same. I want to spill myself out into you as I want to die here.”
Graham Greene, The End of the Affair
“When we are not sure, we are alive.”
Graham Greene
“Of two hearts one is always warm and one is always cold: the cold heart is more precious than diamonds: the warm heart has no value and is thrown away.”
Graham Greene, The Heart of the Matter
“You needn't be so scared. Love doesn't end. Just because we don't see each other...”
Graham Greene, The End of the Affair
tags: love

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