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SOLITUDE
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[ Also see Absence Abstract Alone Companionship Contentment Desolation Enjoyment Fear Idleness Isolation Leisure Loneliness Meditation Nature Oblivion Obscurity Parting Privacy Quiet Repose Rest Retirement Silence Society World ]

To be exempt from the passions with which others are tormented, is the only pleasing solitude.
      - Joseph Addison

He is his own best friend, and takes delight in privacy whereas the man of no virtue or ability is his own worst enemy and is afraid of solitude.
      - Aristotle

Luther deters me from solitariness; but he does not mean from a sober solitude that rallies our scattered strengths and prepares us against any new encounter from without.
      - Francis Atterbury

Solitude has a healing consoler, friend, companion: it is work.
      - Berthold Auerbach

He that lives alone lives in danger; society avoids many dangers.
      - Marcus Aurelius Antoninus (Marcus Aurelius)

But little do men perceive what solitude is, and how far its extendeth. For a crowd is not company; and faces are but a gallery of pictures; and talk but a tinkling cymbal, where there is no love.
      - Francis Bacon

It had been hard to have put more truth and untruth together in a few words than in that speech, "Whosoever is delighted with solitude is either a wild beast or a god."
      - Francis Bacon

The worst solitude is to be destitute of sincere friendship.
      - Francis Bacon

We must certainly acknowledge that solitude is a fine thing; but it is a pleasure to have some one who can answer, and to whom we can say, from time to time, that solitude is a fine thing.
      - Honore de Balzac

Converse with men makes sharp the glittering wit,
  But God to man doth speak in solitude.
      - John Stuart Blackie,
        Sonnet--Highland Solitude

There is no man alone, because every man is a microcosm, and carries the whole world about him.
      - Sir Thomas Browne

There is no such thing as solitude, nor anything that can be said to be alone and by itself but God, who is His own circle, and can subsist by Himself.
      - Sir Thomas Browne

Still this great solitude is quick with life.
  Myriads of insects, gaudy as the flowers
    They flutter over, gentle quadrupeds,
      And birds, that scarce have learned the fear of man,
        Are here, and sliding reptiles of the ground,
          Startlingly beautiful. The graceful deer
            Bounds to the wood at my approach. The bee
 * * * * *
Fills the savannas with his murmurings.
      - William Cullen Bryant

All that poets sing, and grief hath known, of hopes laid waste, knells in that word "alone."
      - Edward George Earle Lytton Bulwer-Lytton, 1st Baron Lytton

Birds sing in vain to the ear, flowers bloom in vain to the eye, of mortified vanity and galled ambition. He who would know repose in retirement must carry into retirement his destiny, integral and serene, as the Caesars transported the statue of Fortune into the chamber they chose for their sleep.
      - Edward George Earle Lytton Bulwer-Lytton, 1st Baron Lytton

How many have found solitude, not only, as Cicero calls it, the pabulum of the mind, but the nurse of their genius! How many of the world's most sacred oracles have been uttered, like those of Dodona, from the silence of deep woods!
      - Edward George Earle Lytton Bulwer-Lytton, 1st Baron Lytton

In early youth, if we find it difficult to control our feelings, so we find it difficult to vent them in the presence of others. On the spring side of twenty, if anything affects us, we rush to lock ourselves up in our room, or get away into the street or the fields; in our earlier years we are still the savages of nature, and we do as the poor brutes do. The wounded stag leaves the herd; and if there is anything on a dog's faithful heart, he slinks away into a corner.
      - Edward George Earle Lytton Bulwer-Lytton, 1st Baron Lytton

Alone!--That worn-out word,
  So idly spoken, and so coldly heard;
    Yet all that poets sing, and grief hath known,
      Of hope laid waste, knells in that word--Alone!
      - Edward George Earle Lytton Bulwer-Lytton, 1st Baron Lytton,
        New Timon (pt. II)

I am as one who is left alone at a banquet, the lights dead and the flowers faded.
      - Edward George Earle Lytton Bulwer-Lytton, 1st Baron Lytton,
        The Last Days of Pompeii (ch. V)

An entire life of solitude contradicts the purpose of our being, since death itself is scarcely an idea of more terror.
      - Edmund Burke

Unsociable humors are contracted in solitude, which will, in the end, not fail of corrupting the understanding as well as the manners, and of utterly disqualifying a man for the satisfactions and duties of life. Men must be taken as they are, and we neither make them or ourselves better by flying from or quarreling with them.
      - Edmund Burke

Be not solitary, be not idle.
      - Robert Burton

It is solitude should teach us how to die.
      - Lord Byron (George Gordon Noel Byron)

Solitude has but one disadvantage--it is apt to give one too high an opinion of one's self. In the world we are sure to be often reminded of every known or supposed defect we may have.
      - Lord Byron (George Gordon Noel Byron)

But 'midst the crowd, the hum, the shock of men,
  To hear, to see, to feel, and to possess,
    And roam along, the world's tired denizen,
      With none who bless us, none whom we can bless.
      - Lord Byron (George Gordon Noel Byron),
        Childe Harold (canto II, st. 26)


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