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Only those things are beautiful which are inspired by madness and written by reason.
      - Andre Gide

Literature, taken in all its bearings, forms the grand line of demarcation between the human and the animal kingdoms.
      - William Godwin

Literature is a fragment of a fragment. Of all that ever happened, or has been said, but a fraction has been written; and of this but little is extant.
      - Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

The decline of literature indicates the decline of the nation. The two keep pace in their downward tendency.
      - Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Whatever the skill of any country be in sciences, it is from excellence in polite learning alone that it must expect a character from posterity.
      - Oliver Goldsmith

Our poetry in the eighteenth century was prose; our prose in the seventeenth, poetry.
      - A.W. Hare and J.C. Hare, Guesses at Truth

Literature, like nobility, runs in the blood.
      - William Hazlitt (1)

Literary history is the great morgue where all seek the dead ones whom they love, or, to whom they are related.
      - Heinrich Heine

All modern American literature comes from one book by Mark Twain called "Huckleberry Finn."
      - Ernest Hemingway, Green Hills of Africa

It is the life in literature that acts upon life.
      - Josiah Gilbert Holland (used pseudonym Timothy Titcomb)

Experience enables me to depose to the comfort and blessing that literature can prove in seasons of sickness and sorrow.
      - Thomas Hood

The land of literature is a fairy land to those who view it at a distance, but, like all other landscapes, the charm fades on a nearer approach, and the thorns and briars become visible.
      - Washington Irving

It takes a great deal of history to produce a little literature.
      - Henry James, Jr.

National literature begins with fables and ends with novels.
      - Joseph Joubert

The death of Dr. Hudson is a loss to the republick of letters.
      - William King (2), Letter

No literature is complete until the language in which it is written is dead.
      - Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Literature, properly to called, draws its sap from the deep soil of human nature's common and everlasting sympathies, the gathered leaf-mould of countless generations, and not from any top dressing capriciously scattered over the surface.
      - James Russell Lowell

The riches of scholarship, the benignities of literature, defy fortune and outlive calamity. They are beyond the reach of thief or moth or rust. As they cannot be inherited, so they cannot, be alienated.
      - James Russell Lowell

Cut quarrels out of literature, and you will have very little history or drama or fiction or epic poetry left.
      - Robert Lynd

A nation's literature is always the biography of its humanity.
      - Lord Edward Robert Bulwer Lytton, 1st Earl of Lytton ("Owen Meredith")

In the modern languages there was not, six hundred years ago, a single volume which is now read. The library of our profound scholar must have consisted entirely of Latin books.
      - Thomas Babington Macaulay

. . . A man of the world amongst men of letters, a man of letters amongst men of the world.
      - Thomas Babington Macaulay,
        On Sir William Temple

A great literature is chiefly the product of inquiring minds in revolt against the immovable certainties of the nation.
      - Henry Louis Mencken

The republic of letters.
  [Fr., La republique des lettres.]
      - Moliere (pseudonym of Jean Baptiste Poquelin),
        Le Mariage force (sc. 6)

Literature is the expression of society.
      - Charles Nodier

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