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German poet
(1749 - 1832)
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Take life too seriously, and what is it worth? If the morning wake us to no new joys, if the evening bring us not the hope of new pleasure, is it worthwhile to dress and undress?
      - [Pleasure]

Talents are best nurtured in solitude; character is best formed in the stormy billows of the world.
      - [Talent]

That which history can give us best is the enthusiasm which it raises in our hearts.
      - [History]

The angles even
  Draw strength from gazing on its glance,
    Though none its meaning fathom may;
      The world's unwither'd countenance
        Is bright as at creation's day.
      - [Sun]

The artist who is not also a craftsman is no good; but, alas, most of our artists are nothing else.
      - [Artists]

The beautiful is a manifestation of secret laws of Nature, which, but for this appearance, had been forever concealed from us.
      - [Beauty]

The best thing which we derive from history is the enthusiasm that it raises in us.
      - [Enthusiasm]

The childhood of immortality.
      - [Life]

The company of chaste women is the proper atmosphere of good manners.
      - [Manners]

The confidant of my vices is my master, though he were my valet.
      - [Familiarity]

The connoisseur of art must be able to appreciate what is simply beautiful, but the common run of people is satisfied with ornament.
      - [Art]

The day is committed to error and floundering; success and achievement are matters of long range.
      - [Success]

The decline of literature indicates the decline of the nation. The two keep pace in their downward tendency.
      - [Literature]

The destiny of any nation at any given time depends on the opinions of its young men under five-and-twenty.
      - [Youth]

The flowers of life are but visionary. How many pass away and leave no trace behind! How few yield any fruit,--and the fruit itself, how rarely does it ripen! And yet there are flowers enough; and is it not strange, my friend, that we should suffer the little that does really ripen to rot, decay, and perish unenjoyed?
      - [Fruits]

The further one advances in experience, the closer one comes to the unfathomable; the more one learns to utilize experience, the more one recognizes that the unfathomable is of no practical value.
      - [Experience]

The happy do not believe in miracles.
      - [Miracles]

The highest problem of every art is, by means of appearances, to produce the illusion of a loftier reality.
      - [Art]

The iron hand of necessity commands, and her stern decree is supreme law, to which the gods even must submit. In deep silence rules the uncounselled sister of eternal fate. Whatever she lays upon thee, endure; perform whatever she commands.
      - [Necessity]

The little done vanishes from the sight of man, who looks forward to what is still to do.
      - [Excelsior]

The living, visible garment of God.
      - [Nature]

The man who acts never has any conscience; no one has any conscience but the man who thinks.
      - [Conscience]

The march of intellect, which licks all the world into shape, has even reached the devil.
      - [Intellect]

The miller imagines that the corn grows only to make his mill turn.
      - [Conceit]

The misfortune in the state is, that nobody can enjoy life in peace, but that everybody must govern; and in art, that nobody will enjoy what has been produced, but that every one wants to reproduce on his own account.
      - [Art]

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