W. Somerset Maugham Quotes

To acquire the habit of reading is to construct for yourself a refuge from almost all the miseries of life.

We are not the same persons this year as last; nor are those we love. It is a happy chance if we, changing, continue to love a changed person.

It’s a funny thing about life; if you refuse to accept anything but the best, you very often get it.

If a nation values anything more than freedom, it will lose its freedom; and the irony of it is that if it is comfort or money that it values more, it will lose that too.

The secret to life is meaningless unless you discover it yourself.

Nothing in the world is permanent, and we’re foolish when we ask anything to last, but surely we’re still more foolish not to take delight in it while we have it.

The fact that a great many people believe something is no guarantee of its truth.

What makes old age hard to bear is not the failing of one’s faculties, mental and physical, but the burden of one’s memories.

Tolerance is only another name for indifference.

The world is hard and cruel. We are here none knows why, and we go none knows whither. We must be very humble. We must see the beauty of quietness. We must go through life so inconspicuously that Fate does not notice us. And let us seek the love of simple, ignorant people. Their ignorance is better than all our knowledge. Let us be silent, content in our little corner, meek and gentle like them. That is the wisdom of life.

The most valuable thing I have learned from life is to regret nothing.

It’s no use crying over spilt milk, because all of the forces of the universe were bent on spilling it.

The great tragedy of life is not that men perish, but that they cease to love.

The only important thing in a book is the meaning that it has for you.

There is nothing so degrading as the constant anxiety about one’s means of livelihood.

A dictator must fool all the people all the time and there’s only one way to do that, he must also fool himself.

Often the best way to overcome desire is to satisfy it.

Only a mediocre person is always at his best.

The complete life, the perfect pattern, includes old age as well as youth and maturity. The beauty of the morning and the radiance of noon are good, but it would be a very silly person who drew the curtains and turned on the light in order to shut out the tranquillity of the evening. Old age has its pleasures, which, though different, are not less than the pleasures of youth.

The ability to quote is a serviceable substitute for wit.

If you don’t change your beliefs, your life will be like this forever. Is that good news?

Sometimes a man hits upon a place to which he mysteriously feels that he belongs.

An unfortunate thing about this world is that the good habits are much easier to give up than the bad ones.

One cannot find peace in work or in pleasure, in the world or in a convent, but only in one’s soul.

Throw yourself into the hurly-burly of life. It doesn’t matter how many mistakes you make, what unhappiness you have to undergo. It is all your material … Don’t wait for experience to come to you; go out after experience. Experience is your material.