Henry James

American author

Lived from: 1843-1916

Category: Writers (Contemporary)

Quotes: Henry James

Quotes 16 till 30 of 43.

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    In museums and palaces we are alternate radicals and conservatives.
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    It is art that makes life, makes interest, makes importance and I know of no substitute whatever for the force and beauty of its process.
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    It is, I think, an indisputable fact that Americans are, as Americans, the most self-conscious people in the world, and the most addicted to the belief that the other nations of the earth are in a conspiracy to under value them.
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    It takes a great deal of history to produce a little literature.
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    Live all you can; it's a mistake not to. It doesn't so much matter what you do in particular, so long as you have your life. If you haven't had that what have you had?
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    Money's a horrid thing to follow, but a charming thing to meet.
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    Of course you're always at liberty to judge the critic. Judge people as critics, however, and you'll condemn them all!
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    One might enumerate the items of high civilization, as it exists in other countries, which are absent from the texture of American life, until it should become a wonder to know what was left.
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    Our doubt is our passion, and our passion is our task.
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    People talk about the conscience, but it seems to me one must just bring it up to a certain point and leave it there. You can let your conscience alone if you're nice to the second housemaid.
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    She had an unequalled gift... of squeezing big mistakes into small opportunities.
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    Summer afternoon - summer afternoon; to me those have always been the two most beautiful words in the English language.
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    The face of nature and civilization in this our country is to a certain point a very sufficient literary field. But it will yield its secrets only to a really grasping imagination. To write well and worthily of American things one need even more than elsewhere to be a master.
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    The fatal futility of Fact.
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    The historian, essentially, wants more documents than he can really use; the dramatist only wants more liberties than he can really take.