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Elective Affinities

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Top 10 Best Quotes

“Niemand ist mehr Sklave, als der sich für frei hält, ohne es zu sein. None are more hopelessly enslaved than those who falsely believe they are free.”

“None are more hopelessly enslaved than those who falsely believe they are free”

“There is nothing in which people more betray their character than in what they find to laugh at.”

“Fortunately a human being can comprehend only a certain degree of unhappiness; anything beyond it destroys him or leaves him cold. There are situations in which fear and hope become one and the same, cancel one another out, and lose themselves in a dark insensateness. How else could we know the people we love best to be in continual danger and yet go on with our daily lives as usual?”

“We would not say very much in company if we realized how often we misunderstand what others say.”

“Artists and artisans both demonstrate with perfect clarity that a person is least able to appropriate for himself those things which are most peculiarly his. His works leave him as birds do the best in which they were hatched. In this respect an architect's fate is the strangest of all. How often he employs his whole intellect and warmth of feeling in the creation of rooms from which he must exclude himself. Royal halls owe their splendor to him, and he may not share in the enjoyment of their finest effects. In temples he draws the line between himself and the holy of holies; the steps he built to ceremonies that lift up the heady, he may no longer climb; just as the goldsmith worships only from afar the monstrance which he wrought in the fire and set with jewels. With the keys of the palace the architect hands over all it's comforts to the wealthy man, and has not the least part in them. Surely in this way art must little by little grow away from the artist, if the work, like a child provided for, no longer teaches back to touch its father.”

“Even people who are entirely strange and indifferent to one another will exchange confidences if they live together for a while, and a certain intimacy is bound to develop.”

“But there are times," said Charlotte, "when it is necessary and an act of friendship to write nothing rather than not to write.”

“None are more hopelessly enslaved than those who falsely believe they are free.”

“No one can walk beneath palm trees with impunity, and ideas are sure to change in a land where elephants and tigers are at home.”

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Book Keywords:

kindness, humor, freedom-of-thought, goethe, friendship, tigers, false-belief, error, freedom, enslavement, art, power, silence, creating, customs, reserve, slavery, fear, character, life, roommates, imprisonment, perception, misunderstood, bounds, love, architecture, politics

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