Tolstoy Quotes

Quotes tagged as "tolstoy" Showing 1-30 of 116
Leo Tolstoy
“Everyone thinks of changing the world, but no one thinks of changing himself.”
Leo Tolstoy

Leo Tolstoy
“I've always loved you, and when you love someone, you love the whole person, just as he or she is, and not as you would like them to be.”
Leo Tolstoy, Anna Karenina

P.G. Wodehouse
“Freddie experienced the sort of abysmal soul-sadness which afflicts one of Tolstoy's Russian peasants when, after putting in a heavy day's work strangling his father, beating his wife, and dropping the baby into the city's reservoir, he turns to the cupboards, only to find the vodka bottle empty.”
P.G. Wodehouse , The Best of Wodehouse: An Anthology

Woody Allen
“I took a speed-reading course and read War and Peace in twenty minutes. It involves Russia.”
Woody Allen

Leo Tolstoy
“He stepped down, avoiding any long look at her as one avoids long looks at the sun, but seeing her as one sees the sun, without looking.”
Leo Tolstoy, Anna Karenina

Gretchen Rubin
“Nothing,' wrote Tolstoy, 'can make our life, or the lives of other people, more beautiful than perpetual kindness.”
Gretchen Rubin, The Happiness Project: Or Why I Spent a Year Trying to Sing in the Morning, Clean My Closets, Fight Right, Read Aristotle, and Generally Have More Fun

Leo Tolstoy
“And not only the pride of intellect, but the stupidity of intellect. And, above all, the dishonesty, yes, the dishonesty of intellect. Yes, indeed, the dishonesty and trickery of intellect.”
Leo Tolstoy, Anna Karenina

Leo Tolstoy
“Just as a painter needs light in order to put the finishing touches to his picture, so I need an inner light, which I feel I never have enough of in the autumn.”
Leo Tolstoy

Leo Tolstoy
“if they hadn’t both been pretending, but had had what is called a heart-to-heart talk, that is, simply told each other just what they were thinking and feeling, then they would just have looked into each other’s eyes, and Constantine would only have said: ‘You’re dying, dying, dying!’ – while Nicholas would simply have replied: ‘I know I’m dying, but I’m afraid, afraid, afraid!’ That’s all they would have said if they’d been talking straight from the heart. But it was impossible to live that way, so Levin tried to do what he’d been trying to do all his life without being able to, what a great many people could do so well, as he observed, and without which life was impossible: he tried to say something different from what he thought, and he always felt it came out false, that his brother caught him out and was irritated by it.”
Leo Tolstoy

J.G. Ballard
“In the post-Warhol era a single gesture such as uncrossing one's legs will have more significance than all the pages in War and Peace.”
J.G. Ballard, The Atrocity Exhibition

Yevgeny Zamyatin
“The world is kept alive only by heretics: the heretic Christ, the heretic Copernicus, the heretic Tolstoy. Our symbol of faith is heresy. (“Tomorrow”)”
Yevgeny Zamyatin

Fyodor Dostoyevsky
Anna Karenina is sheer perfection as a work of art. No European work of fiction of our present day comes anywhere near it. Furthermore, the idea underlying it shows that it is ours, ours, something that belongs to us alone and that is our own property, our own national 'new word'or, at any rate, the beginning of it.”
Fyodor Dostoyevsky

Sherman Alexie
“Gordie, the white boy genius, gave me this book by a Russian dude named Tolstoy, who wrote, 'Happy families are all alike; every unhappy family is unhappy in its own way.' Well, I hate to argue with a Russian genius, but Tolstoy didn't know Indians, and he didn't know that all Indian families are unhappy for the same exact reasons: the frikkin' booze.”
Sherman Alexie, The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian

Leo Tolstoy
“The Lord had given them the day and the Lord had given them the strength. And the day and the strength had been dedicated to labor, and the labor was its reward. Who was the labor for? What would be its fruits? These were irrelevant and idle questions.”
Leo Tolstoy, Anna Karenina

Leo Tolstoy
“Several times I asked myself, "Can it be that I have overlooked something, that there is something which I have failed to understand? Is it not possible that this state of despair is common to everyone?" And I searched for an answer to my questions in every area of knowledge acquired by man. For a long time I carried on my painstaking search; I did not search casually, out of mere curiosity, but painfully, persistently, day and night, like a dying man seeking salvation. I found nothing.”
Leo Tolstoy

Louis Menand
“There is history the way Tolstoy imagined it, as a great, slow-moving weather system in which even tsars and generals are just leaves before the storm. And there is history the way Hollywood imagines it, as a single story line in which the right move by the tsar or the wrong move by the general changes everything. Most of us, deep down, are probably Hollywood people. We like to invent “what if” scenarios--what if x had never happened, what if y had happened instead?--because we like to believe that individual decisions make a difference: that, if not for x, or if only there had been y, history might have plunged forever down a completely different path. Since we are agents, we have an interest in the efficacy of agency.”
Louis Menand

Fyodor Dostoyevsky
“An artist must know the reality he is depicting in its minutest detail. In my opinion we have only one shining example of that - Count Leo Tolstoy.”
Fyodor Dostoyevsky

Leo Tolstoy
“In my considered opinion, salary is payment for goods delivered and it must conform to the law of supply and demand. If, therefore, the fixed salary is a violation of this law - as, for instance, when I see two engineers leaving college together and both equally well trained and efficient, and one getting forty thousand while the other only earns two thousand , or when lawyers and hussars, possessing no special qualifications, are appointed directors of banks with huge salaries - I can only conclude that their salaries are not fixed according to the law of supply and demand but simply by personal influence. And this is an abuse important in itself and having a deleterious effect on government service.”
Leo Tolstoy, Anna Karenina

“Art is bad when ‘you see the intent and get put off.’ (Goethe) In Tolstoy one is unaware of the intent, and sees only the thing itself.
from the book, On Retranslating A Russian Classic Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy”
Joel Carmichael

David Adams Richards
“I was nothing more than a thug with Tolstoy in my pocket.”
David Adams Richards, Mercy Among the Children

Leo Tolstoy
“Levin felt more and more that all his thoughts about marriage, all his dreams of how he would arrange his life, were mere childishness, and that it was something he had not understood before, and now understood still less, though it was being accomplished over him; spasms were rising higher and higher in his breast, and disobedient tears were coming to his eyes.”
Leo Tolstoy, Anna Karenina

Leo Tolstoy
“Spring was a long time unfolding. During the last weeks of Lent the weather was clear and frosty. In the daytime it thawed in the sun, but at night it went down to seven below; there was such a crust that carts could go over it where there was no road. There was still snow at Easter. Then suddenly, on Easter Monday, a warm wind began to blow, dark clouds gathered, and for three days and nights warm, heavy rain poured down. On Thursday the wind dropped, and a thick grey mist gathered, as if concealing the mysteries of the changes taking place in nature. Under the mist waters flowed, ice blocks cracked and moved off, the muddy, foaming streams ran quicker, and on the eve of Krasnaya Gorka the mist scattered, the dark clouds broke up into fleecy white ones, the sky cleared, and real spring unfolded. In the morning the bright sun rose and quickly ate up the thin ice covering the water, and the warm air was all atremble, filled with the vapours of the reviving earth. The old grass and the sprouting needles of new grass greened, the buds on the guelder-rose, the currants and the sticky, spiritous birches swelled, and on the willow, all sprinkled with golden catkins, the flitting, newly hatched bee buzzed. Invisible larks poured trills over the velvety green fields and the ice-covered stubble, the peewit wept over the hollows and marshes still filled with brown water; high up the cranes and geese flew with their spring honking. Cattle, patchy, moulted in all but a few places, lowed in the meadows, bow-legged lambs played around their bleating, shedding mothers, fleet-footed children ran over the drying paths covered with the prints of bare feet, the merry voices of women with their linen chattered by the pond, and from the yards came the knock of the peasants’ axes, repairing ploughs and harrows. The real spring had come.”
Leo Tolstoy, Anna Karenina

Leo Tolstoy
“At each flash of lightning not only the Milky Way but the bright stars also disappeared, but as soon as the lightning died out they reappeared in the same places, as if thrown by some unerring hand.”
Leo Tolstoy, Anna Karenina

Pauline Melville
“Anna rolled her eyes and threw her head back and for a moment Emma looked at her and saw in her eager face something strange and diabolical and enchanting.”
Pauline Melville, The Master of Chaos

Maxim Gorky
“-Men De har virkelig lest meget; - der kan De se hvor skadelig det er!”
Maxim Gorky, Gorky's Tolstoy and Other Reminiscences: Key Writings by and about Maxim Gorky

Maxim Gorky
“Jeg hadde aldri et inntrykk av - og jg tror at jeg ikke tar feil - at Lev Nikolaevitsj ikke var særlig glad i å tale om litteratur; men han var alltid levende interessert i forfatterens person.”
Maxim Gorky, Reminiscences (of Leo Tolstoy; Anton Chekhov; Leonid Andreyev; Alexander Blok; & Letter to Constantin Stanislavsky)

Maxim Gorky
“-Det er ikke sant, slikt skriver man bare i kloke bøker.”
Maxim Gorky, Reminiscences (of Leo Tolstoy; Anton Chekhov; Leonid Andreyev; Alexander Blok; & Letter to Constantin Stanislavsky)

Maxim Gorky
“-men Gorkij leser for meget; heller ikke det er bra - det kommer av manglende selvtillit.”
Maxim Gorky, Reminiscences of Tolstoy, Chekhov and Andreev

“Doğrudan da unudulmaz kəlamlar deyirdilər. Lakin onların qoçaqlığı ilə kapitanın qoçaqlığı arasında böyük fərq vardır. Bu fərq ondan ibarətdir ki, hansı bir şəraitdə olursa olsun böyük kəlam hətta mənim qəhrəmanımın qəlbində hərəkətə gəlsə də, əminəm ki, bu kəlamı o söyləməzdi. Birincisi ona görə ki, bçyük kəlamı söyləməklə bu kəlamı söyləməkdən o qorxardı. İkincisi də ona görə ki, bir adam özündə böyük iş görmək güvvəsini hiss edirsə daha heç bir söz lazım deyil. Mənim fikrimcə bu rus qoçaqlığının xüsusi və yüksək cəhətidir. Belə bir vəziyyətdən sonra köhnəlmiş fransız cəngavərliyini yamsılamaq, iddiasında başqa bir şeyi olmayan bayağı fransız cümlələrini eşidəndə rus qəlbi necə də ağrımasın?”
Lev Tolstoi

“The king's heart is in the hands of the Lord. The king is history slave. History, that is, the unconscious general swarm life of mankind, uses every moment of the life of things as a tool for its own purposes”
Tolstoy Lev Nikolaevich

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