The House of Mirth was was written by Edith Wharton and published as a book in October of 1905. (Earlier in that year it was serialized in Scribner’s Magazine.) The novel tells the tale of socialite Lily Bart as she deals with issues of money, a woman’s place in society and social expectations.
Need some advice or perspective? Here are 40 great quotes from literature that may help. These are some of our favorites from our words of wisdom quote collection.
- The mind has many watchdogs; sometimes they bark unnecessarily, but a wise man never ignores their warning. ~ A Fall of Moondust by Arthur C. Clarke
- Words spoken cannot be recalled. ~ He Knew He Was Right by Anthony Trollope
- People often claim to hunger for truth, but seldom like the taste when it’s served up. ~ A Clash of Kings by George R. R. Martin
- Fair speech may hide a foul heart. ~ The Two Towers by J. R. R. Tolkien
- It is always the unusual which alarms. ~ The Forsyte Saga by John Galsworthy
- It is not violence that best overcomes hate-nor vengeance that most certainly heals injury. ~ Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte
- Courage is fire, and bullying is smoke. ~ Count Alarcos: A Tragedy by Benjamin Disraeli
- There is nothing either good or bad but thinking makes it so. ~ Hamlet, Prince of Denmark by William Shakespeare
- “Words,” said the host, at length, “is worse’n bullets. You never know what they’ll hit.” ~ The Night Horseman by Max Brand
- Never forget what you are, for surely the world will not. Make it your strength. Then it can never be your weakness. Armor yourself in it, and it will never be used to hurt you. ~ A Game of Thrones by George R. R. Martin
- “When you’ve learned to laugh at the things that should be laughed at, and not to laugh at those that shouldn’t, you’ve got wisdom and understanding.” ~ Anne of the Island by Lucy Maud Montgomery
- The fool wonders, the wise man asks. ~ Count Alarcos: A Tragedy by Benjamin Disraeli
- “All things are ready, if our minds be so.” ~ Henry V by William Shakespeare
- “No one is ever too old to do a foolish thing.” ~ Uncle Silas by J. Sheridan Le Fanu
- “Would the world ever have been made if its maker had been afraid of making trouble? Making life means making trouble.” ~ Pygmalion by George Bernard Shaw
- Cheerfulness, it would appear, is a matter which depends fully as much on the state of things within as on the state of things without and around us. ~ Shirley by Charlotte Bronte
- “Just breathing isn’t living!” ~ Pollyanna by Eleanor H. Porter
- “Self-love, my liege, is not so vile a sin, As self-neglecting.” ~ Henry V by William Shakespeare
- The mind is its own place, and in it self
Can make a Heaven of Hell, a Hell of Heaven. ~ Paradise Lost by John Milton
- To be conscious that you are ignorant is a great step to knowledge. ~ Sybil by Benjamin Disraeli
- “Next to trying and winning, the best thing is trying and failing.” ~ Anne of Green Gables by Lucy Maud Montgomery
- “Nobody can spoil a life, my dear. That’s nonsense. Things happen, but we bob up.” ~ The Forsyte Saga by John Galsworthy
- Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen nineteen and six, result happiness. Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty pounds ought and six, result misery. ~ David Copperfield by Charles Dickens
- “Do you know anything on earth which has not a dangerous side if it is mishandled and exaggerated? “ ~ The Land of Mist by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
- The bird that would soar above the level plain of tradition and prejudice must have strong wings. ~ The Awakening by Kate Chopin
- You cannot make a man by standing a sheep on its hind-legs. But by standing a flock of sheep in that position you can make a crowd of men. ~ Zuleika Dobson by Sir Max Beerbohm
- Unwelcome truths are not popular. ~ The Valley of Fear by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
- “And, above all things, never think that you’re not good enough yourself. A man should never think that. My belief is that in life people will take you very much at your own reckoning.” ~ The Small House at Allington by Anthony Trollope
- How quick come the reasons for approving what we like! ~ Persuasion by Jane Austen
- Gossip is a sort of smoke that comes from the dirty tobacco-pipes of of those who diffuse it: it proves nothing but the bad taste of the smoker. ~ Daniel Deronda by George Eliot
- “The chief proof of man’s real greatness lies in his perception of his own smallness.” ~ The Sign of the Four by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
- She could not explain in so many words, but she felt that those who prepare for all the emergencies of life beforehand may equip themselves at the expense of joy. ~ Howards End by E. M. Forster
- He has spent his life best who has enjoyed it most. ~ The Way of All Flesh by Samuel Butler
- Ignorance is the parent of fear. ~ Moby Dick by Herman Melville
- “Its matter was not new to me, but was presented in a new aspect. It shook me in my habit – the habit of nine-tenths of the world – of believing that all was right about me, because I was used to it.” ~ Dombey and Son by Charles Dickens
- A man will tell you that he has worked in a mine for forty years unhurt by an accident as a reason why he should apprehend no danger, though the roof is beginning to sink. ~ Silas Marner by George Eliot
- The world is a looking-glass, and gives back to every man the reflection of his own face. Frown at it, and it will in turn look sourly upon you; laugh at it and with it, and it is a jolly kind companion; and so let all young persons take their choice. ~ Vanity Fair by William Makepeace Thackeray
- Old habit of mind is one of the toughest things to get away from in the world. It transmits itself like physical form and feature. ~ A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court by Mark Twain
- “We learn from failure, not from success!” ~ Dracula by Bram Stoker
- Conventionality is not morality. Self-righteousness is not religion. To attack the first is not to assail the last. ~ Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte
This morning I tried to find a quote to post about the Seahawks and the Super Bowl. It was hard to find a quote that worked and I almost rejected this one. After all, wouldn’t a quote from Anne of Green Gables be to “girly” to use to describe the heartbreaking loss of the Seahawks? I decided to go with it anyway.
Out of all the teams that tried to get to the Super Bowl this year only two teams made it. Only one of those teams was there for the second year in a row. The lesson is to not be so afraid of losing that you’re afraid to try.
And besides, there’s always next year. Go Hawks!
We’ve added a new feature. Our Random Words of Wisdom Quote page gives you sage thinking from some trusted sources. Maybe you’ll get a quote from Charles Dickens, Mark Twain or George Eliot. Our Words of Wisdom collection also contains entries from unexpected sources like Bram Stoker and Algernon Blackwood. I wonder what quote you’ll get?