Quotations About / On: CHILDHOOD
Everything in Italy that is particularly elegant and grand ... borders upon insanity and absurdityor at least is reminiscent of childhood.
(Alexander Herzen (1812-1870), Russian journalist, political thinker. Trans. by Constance Garnett (1924-1927). "Miscellaneous Pieces: Beyond the Alps," vol. 3, pt. 8, My Past and Thoughts (1921).)
All our pursuits, from childhood to manhood, are only trifles of different sorts and sizes, proportioned to our years and views.
(Samuel Richardson (1689-1761), British novelist. Third edition, London (1751). Lovelace, in Clarissa, vol. 4, p. 263, AMS Press (1990).)
I cannot think of any need in childhood as strong as the need for a father's protection.
(Sigmund Freud (1856-1939), Austrian psychiatrist. repr. in Complete Works, vol. 21, eds. James Strachey and Anna Freud (1961). Civilization and Its Discontents (1931).)
Friendships in childhood are usually a matter of chance, whereas in adolescence they are most often a matter of choice.
(David Elkind (20th century), U.S. child psychologist and author. Parenting Your Teenager in the 90's, ch. 2 (1993).)
I never meet anyone nowadays who admits to having had a happy childhood. Everyone appears to think happiness betokens a lack of sensitivity.
(Jessamyn West (1907-1984), U.S. novelist and autobiographer. The Life I Really Lived, part 1 (1979).)
One of the luckiest things that can happen to you in life is, I think, to have a happy childhood.
(Agatha Christie (1890-1976), British mystery writer. As quoted in Wit and Wisdom for the Peanut Butter Gang, by H. Jackson Brown (1994).)
Dear, sweet, unforgettable childhood! Why does this irrevocable time, forever departed, seem brighter, more festive and richer than it actually was?
(Anton Pavlovich Chekhov (1860-1904), Russian author, playwright. The bishop's thoughts in The Bishop, Works, vol. 10, p. 188, "Nauka" (1976).)
I am convinced that, except in a few extraordinary cases, one form or another of an unhappy childhood is essential to the formation of exceptional gifts.
(Thornton Wilder (1897-1975), U.S. novelist, dramatist. Interview in Writers at Work, First Series, ed. Malcolm Cowley (1958).)
Some men have a necessity to be mean, as if they were exercising a faculty which they had to partially neglect since early childhood.
(F. Scott Fitzgerald (1896-1940), U.S. author. "Notebook O," The Crack-Up, ed. Edmund Wilson (1945).)
In the man whose childhood has known caresses and kindness, there is always a fibre of memory that can be touched by gentle issues.
(George Eliot [Mary Ann (or Marian) Evans] (20th century), British novelist. Ed. By Carolyn Warner. The Last Word, ch. 26 (1992).)