To the Lighthouse Quotes

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Never did anybody look so sad. Bitter and black, halfway down, in the darkness, in the shaft which ran from the sunlight to the depths, perhaps a tear formed; a tear fell; the waves swayed this way and that, received it, and were at rest. Never did anybody look so sad.

51

The sigh of all the seas breaking in measure round the isles soothed them; the night wrapped them; nothing broke their sleep, until, the birds beginning and the dawn weaving their thin voices in to its whiteness

47

But nevertheless, the fact remained, it was almost impossible to dislike anyone if one looked at them.

43

If Shakespeare had never existed, he asked, would the world have differed much from what it is today? Does the progress of civilization depend upon great men? Is the lot of the average human being better now that in the time of the Pharaohs?

43

Well, we must wait for the future to show.

43

They came to her, naturally, since she was a woman, all day long with this and that; one wanting this, another that; the children were growing up; she often felt she was nothing but a sponge sopped full of human emotions.

33

I am drowning, my dear, in seas of fire.

31

How then did it work out, all this? How did one judge people, think of them? How did one add up this and that and conclude that it is liking one felt, or disliking?

28

For nothing was simply one thing.

23

so that the monotonous fall of the waves on the beach, which for the most part beat a measured and soothing tattoo to her thoughts seemed consolingly to repeat over and over again...

22

The strange thing about life is that though the nature of it must have been apparent to every one for hundreds of years, no one has left any adequate account of it.

20

It seemed to her such nonsense-inventing differences, when people, heaven knows, were different enough without that.

19

Life is difficult; facts uncompromising; and the passage to that fabled land where our brightest hopes are extinguished, our frail barks founder in darkness, one that needs, above all, courage, truth, and the power to endure.

18

But what after all is one night? A short space, especially when the darkness dims so soon, and so soon a bird sings, a cock crows, or a faint green quickens, like a turning leaf, in the hollow of the wave.

18

Nevertheless, the fact remained, it was impossible to dislike any one if one looked at them.

18

There is a coherence in things, a stability; something... is immune from change and shines out... in the face of the flowing, the fleeting, the spectral, like a ruby.

16

Oh, but she never wanted James to grow a day older or Cam either. These two she would have liked to keep for ever just as the way they were, demons of wickedness, angels of delight, never to see them grow up into long-legged monsters.

15

Does Nature supplement what man advanced? Or does she complete what he began?

14

The spring without a leaf to toss, bare and bright like a virgin fierce in her chastity, scornful in her purity, was laid out on fields wide-eyed and watchful and entirely careless of what was done or thought by the beholders.

14

But this was one way of knowing people, she thought: to know the outline, not the detail, to sit in one's garden and look at the slopes of a hill running purple down into the distant heather.

14

His immense self-pity, his demand for sympathy poured and spread itself in pools at their feet, and all she did, miserable sinner that she was, was to draw her skirts a little closer round her ankles, lest she should get wet.

8

So that was the Lighthouse, was it? No, the other was also the Lighthouse. For nothing was simply one thing

8

Not as oneself did one find rest ever, in her experience (she accomplished here something dexterous with her needles) but as a wedge of darkness.

8

So boasting of her capacity to surround and protect, there was scarcely a shell of herself left for her to know herself by; all was so lavished and spent;

8

Women made civilisation impossible with all their charm all their silliness.

7

Nothing need be said; nothing could be said.

7

I suppose that I did for myself what psychoanalysts do for their patients. I expressed some very long felt and deeply felt emotion. And in expressing it I explained it and then laid it to rest.

7

And again she felt alone in the presence of her old antagonist, life.

7

When she looked in the glass and saw her hair grey her cheek sunk, at fifty, she thought, possibly she might have managed things better--her husband; money; his books. But for her own part she would never for a single second regret her decision, evade difficulties, or slur over duties

6

She did not know. She did not mind...She had a sense of being past everything, through everything, out of everything...-and one could be in it, or one could be out of it, and she was out of it.

6

These two she would have liked to keep for ever just as they were, demons of wickedness, angels of delight, never to see them grow up into long-legged monsters.

6

How could any Lord have made this world?... there is no reason, order, justice: but suffering, death, the poor. There was no treachery too base for this world to commit... No happiness lasted.

6

And then she said to herself, brandishing her sword at life, nonsense.

5

Heaven be praised, no one had heard her cry that ignominious cry, stop pain, stop! She had not obviously taken leave of her senses. No one had seen her step off her strip of board into the waters of annihilation.

5

It flattered her, where she was most susceptible of flattery, to think how, wound about in their hearts, however long they lived she would be woven...

5

Such she often felt herself--struggling against terrific odds to maintain her courage; to say: "But this is what I see; this is what I see," and so to clasp some miserable remnant of her vision to her breast, which a thousand forces did their best to pluck from her.

5

Punctuality is one of the minor virtues which we do not acquire until later in life.

5

What is the meaning of life?... A simple question; one that tended to close in on one with years. The great revelation had never come. The great revelation perhaps never did come. Instead there were little daily miracles, illuminations, matches struck unexpectedly in the dark.

5

The house was left; the house was deserted. It was left like a shell on a sandhill to fill with dry salt grains now that life had left it. The long life seemed to have set in; the trifling airs, nibbling, the clammy breaths, fumbling, seemed to have triumphed. ..

5

Poor little place,' he murmured with a sigh.She heard him. He said the most melancholy things, but she noticed that directly he had said them he always seemed more cheerful than usual. All this phrase-making was a game, she thought, for if she had said half what he said, she would have blown her brains out by now.

5

She had done the usual trick - been nice. She would never know him. He would never know her. Human relations were all like that, she thought, and the worst were between men and women. Inevitably these were extremely insincere.

5

But the stillness and the brightness of the day were as strange as the chaos and tumult of night, with the trees standing there, and the flowers standing there, looking before them, looking up, yet beholding nothing, eyeless, and so terrible.

5

One wanted fifty pairs of eyes to see with, she reflected. Fifty pairs of eyes were not enough to get round that one woman with, she thought.

5

The brain is always thinking, but who is it who is thinking?

5

. . . she could not help knowing it, the torch of her beauty; she carried it erect into any room that she entered; and after all, veil it as she might, and shrink from the monotony of bearing that it imposed on her, her beauty was apparent.

4

So loveliness reigned and stillness, and together made the shape of loveliness itself, a form from which life had parted; solitary like a pool at evening, far distant, seen from a train window, vanishing so quickly that the pool, pale in the evening, is scarcely robbed of its solitude, though once seen.

4

She was off like a bird, bullet, or arrow, impelled by what desire, shot by whom, at what directed, who could say?

4

Had they not been taken, she asked, to circuses when they were children? Never, he answered, as if she asked the very thing he wanted; had been longing all these days to say, how they did not go to circuses.

4

There was silence. Then as if to refresh the power of destruction, the wind rose and the waves rose and through the house there lifted itself a sullen wave of doom which curled and crashed and the whole earth seemed ruining and washing away in water.

4

Perhaps it was better not to see pictures: they only made one hopelessly discontented with one's own work.

4