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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 ]

I feel like one who treads alone
  Some banquet hall deserted,
    Whose lights are fled, whose garlands dead,
      And all but he departed.
      - Thomas Moore, Oft in the Stilly Night

My retirement was now become solitude; the former is, I believe, the best state for the mind of man, the latter almost the worst. In complete solitude, the eye wants objects, the heart wants attachments, the understanding wants reciprocation. The character loses its tenderness when it has nothing to strengthen it, its sweetness when it has nothing to soothe it.
      - Hannah More

Until I truly loved, I was alone.
      - Lady Caroline Sheridan Norton (Caroline Elizabeth Sarah Norton),
        The Lady of La Garage (pt. II, l. 381)

A certain degree of solitude seems necessary to the full growth and spread of the highest mind; and therefore must a very extensive intercourse with men stifle many a holy germ, and scare away the gods, who shun the restless tumult of noisy companies and the discussion of petty interests.
      - Novalis (pseudonym of Frederich Leopold von Hardenberg)

You must show him . . . by leaving him severely alone.
      - Charles Stewart Parnell,
        in a speech at Ennis

Solitude's the nurse of woe.
      - Thomas Parnell

Far in a wild, unknown to public view,
  From youth to age a reverend hermit grew;
    The moss his bed, the cave his humble cell,
      His food the fruits, his drink the crystal well,
        Remote from man, with God he pass'd the days;
          Prayer all his business, all his pleasure praise.
      - Thomas Parnell, The Hermit

Haughtiness lives under the same roof with solitude.
      - Plato (originally Aristocles}

Whosoever is delighted in solitude, is either a wild beast or a god.
      - Plato (originally Aristocles}, Protag
         (I, 337)

Wholesome solitude, the nurse of sense!
      - Alexander Pope

Through the lone groves would pace in solemn mood,
  Wooing the pensive charms of solitude.
      - Henry James Pye, Alfred
         (book III, line 57)

Solitude, though it may be silent as light, is like light, the mightiest of agencies; for solitude is essential to man. All men come into this world alone; all leave it alone.
      - Thomas De Quincey ("The Opium Eater")

Shall I, like an hermit, dwell
  On a rock or in a cell?
      - Sir Walter Raleigh (1), Poem,
        see Cayley's "Life of Raleigh", vol. I

Solitude is the home of the strong; silence, their prayer.
      - Pere Gustave Delacroix de Ravignan

All weighty things are done in solitude, that is, without society. The means of improvement consist not in projects, or in any violent designs, for these cool, and cool very soon, but in patient practicing for whole long days, by which I make the thing clear to my highest reason.
      - Jean Paul Friedrich Richter (Johann Paul Richter) (used ps. Jean Paul)

We could not endure solitude were it not for the powerful companionship of hope, or of same unseen one.
      - Jean Paul Friedrich Richter (Johann Paul Richter) (used ps. Jean Paul)

That which happens to the soil when it ceases to be cultivated by the social man happens to man himself when he foolishly forsakes society for solitude; the brambles grow up in his desert heart.
      - Antoine de Rivarol, Comte de Rivarol

Through the wide world he only is alone who lives not for another.
      - Samuel Rogers

Then never less alone than when alone.
      - Samuel Rogers, Human Life (l. 759)

Solitude vivifies; isolation kills.
      - Joseph Roux

The city does not take away, neither does the country give, solitude; solitude is within us.
      - Joseph Roux

When, musing on companions gone,
  We doubly feel ourselves alone.
      - Sir Walter Scott, Marmion
         (canto II, introduction)

And when Solitude leads us into all manner of evil.
  [Lat., Atque ubi omnia nobis mala solitudo persuadet.]
      - Seneca (Lucius Annaeus Seneca), Epistle
         (25),
        quoting Galgacus, leader of the Britains

Away, away, from men and towns,
  To the wild wood and the downs,
    To the silent wilderness.
      - Percy Bysshe Shelley

I love all waste and solitary places.
      - Percy Bysshe Shelley


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