Nathaniel Hawthorne, the renowned American novelist, and short story writer, once expressed, “Words – so innocent and powerless as they are, as standing in a dictionary, how potent for good and evil they become in the hands of one who knows how to combine them.” This profound insight encapsulates the core of Hawthorne’s literary brilliance, as he adeptly employed words to create some of the most enduring works in American literature. In this exploration of Nathaniel Hawthorne quotes, we look at the wisdom and insights woven into his words, illuminating the profound influence of his writings on both the literary world and the human psyche.
- “We dream in our waking moments, and walk in our sleep.”
Meaning: This quote suggests that sometimes our conscious actions are as unreal as our dreams, highlighting the disconnect between our intentions and actions.
- “Oh, for the years I have not lived but only dreamed of living.”
Meaning: This quote expresses a longing for unrealized experiences and missed opportunities in life that exist only as dreams and wishes.
- “Easy reading is damn hard writing.”
Meaning: This quote means that writing something that is easy for others to read and understand is a challenging and demanding task for the writer.
- “I have laughed, in bitterness and agony of heart, at the contrast between what I seem and what I am!”
Meaning: This quote expresses the speaker’s inner turmoil, as they find humor in the stark difference between the facade they present to the world and their true, often painful, inner self.
- “Every individual has a place to fill in the world and is important in some respect, whether he chooses to be so or not.”
Meaning: This quote suggests that every person has a unique role and significance in the world, whether they actively embrace it or not.
- “She had not known the weight until she felt the freedom.”
Meaning: This is one of the popular Nathaniel Hawthorne quotes suggest that the person only realized the burden they were carrying once they experienced the relief of being free from it.
- “There is something truer and more real, than what we can see with the eyes, and touch with the finger.”
Meaning: This quote suggests that there is a deeper truth and reality beyond what our physical senses can perceive. It encourages us to explore the realms of intuition, emotions, and inner perception.
- “Time flies over us, but leaves its shadow behind.”
Meaning: This quote means that time passes quickly, but it leaves a lasting impact or memory in our lives.
- “Death should take me while I am in the mood.”
Meaning: This quote suggests a desire to embrace life fully and not fear death when one is still enjoying and savoring the moments.
- “Happiness is not found in things you possess, but in what you have the courage to release.”
Meaning: This quote suggests that true happiness is not derived from material possessions but from the ability to let go of attachments and find contentment in simplicity and detachment.
- “There are many things in this world that a child must not ask about.”
Meaning: This quote suggests that there are certain topics or truths that are too complex or sensitive for a child’s understanding and should not be inquired about.
- “Shall we never never get rid of this Past? … It lies upon the Present like a giant’s dead body.”
Meaning: This quote conveys the idea that the past can weigh heavily on the present, making it difficult to move forward and progress, much like a burdensome and immovable obstacle.
- “She poured out the liquid music of her voice to quench the thirst of his spirit.”
Meaning: This quote conveys that the speaker’s soothing and melodious words provided emotional nourishment and solace to the listener’s soul.
- “The fiend in his own shape is less hideous than when he rages in the breast of men.”
Meaning: This quote suggests that the evil within people, when unleashed, is even more terrifying than any external villain or monster.
- “The thing you set your mind on is the thing you ultimately become.”
Meaning: This quote means that your focus and determination shape your character and define your ultimate path in life.
Nathaniel Hawthorne quotes go deep into human nature’s complexities and the moral dilemmas we face. His insightful words carry timeless wisdom and explore themes like sin, guilt, and personal responsibility. Hawthorne’s quotes inspire self-reflection and serve as enduring reminders of the lasting impact of his literary contributions.