Robert Louis Stevenson Quotes

Most popular Robert Louis Stevenson Quotes

Wine is bottled poetry.

wine

Youth is wholly experimental.
— Robert Louis Stevenson
The essence of love is kindness.
— Robert Louis Stevenson
To forget oneself is to be happy.
— Robert Louis Stevenson
Every man has a sane spot somewhere.
— Robert Louis Stevenson
No man is useless while he has a friend.
— Robert Louis Stevenson
The cruelest lies are often told in silence.

lies speak your mind

Old and young, we are all on out last cruise.

youth & age

Old and young, we are all on our last cruise.
An aim in life is the only fortune worth finding.
— Robert Louis Stevenson

purpose of life

Keep your fears to yourself, but share your courage.
— Robert Louis Stevenson

courage fear

Make the most of the best and the least of the worst.
— Robert Louis Stevenson
There can be no fairer ambition than to excel in talk.
— Robert Louis Stevenson
The price we have to pay for money is paid in liberty.

money

Give us grace and strength to forbear and to persevere.
— Robert Louis Stevenson
To be idle requires a strong sense of personal identity.
— Robert Louis Stevenson

identity laziness

Is there anything in life so disenchanting as attainment?

achievement

Let any man speak long enough, and he will get believers.
— Robert Louis Stevenson
Marriage is one long conversation, chequered by disputes.

conversation marriage

The most beautiful adventures are not those we go to seek.

adventure

To love is the great Amulet that makes this world a garden.
— Robert Louis Stevenson
Every man is his own doctor of divinity, in the last resort.
— Robert Louis Stevenson
Courage, the footstool of the Virtues, upon which they stand.

courage

Vanity dies hard; in some obstinate cases it outlives the man.

vanity

Everybody, soon or late, sits down to a banquet of consequences.
— Robert Louis Stevenson

consequences

There is no duty we so much underrate as the duty of being happy.

duty

There is no duty we so much understand as the duty of being happy.
— Robert Louis Stevenson
There are no foreign lands. It is the traveller only who is foreign.
— Robert Louis Stevenson

Travel

Give me the young man who has brains enough to make a fool of himself.
— Robert Louis Stevenson
A bottle of good wine, like a good act, shines ever in the retrospect.

wine

Ten thousand bad traits cannot make a single good one any the less good.
— Robert Louis Stevenson

character

It is the mark of a good action that it appears inevitable in retrospect.

action

The difficulty of literature is not to write, but to write what you mean.
— Robert Louis Stevenson
Marriage is like life in this — that it is a battle, and not a bed of roses.
— Robert Louis Stevenson
Don't judge each day by the harvest you reap but by the seeds that you plant.
— Robert Louis Stevenson

wise

I lived on rum, I tell you.  It's been meat and drink, and man and wife, to me.

alcohol

A man must not deny his manifest abilities, for that is to evade his obligations.

ability

Each has his own tree of ancestors, but at the top of all sits Probably Arboreal.

ancestry

The world is so full of a number of things, I'm sure we should all be happy as kings.
— Robert Louis Stevenson
Politics is perhaps the only profession for which no preparation is thought necessary.

politics

The world is so full of a number of things,
I'm sure we should all be as happy as kings.

the world

To be what we are, and to become what we are capable of becoming is the only end of life.
— Robert Louis Stevenson
To be what we are, and to become what we are capable of becoming, is the only end of life.

authenticity potential

Books are good enough in their own way but they are a mighty bloodless substitute for life.
— Robert Louis Stevenson

books

Books are good enough in their own way, but they are a mighty bloodless substitute for life.
— Robert Louis Stevenson
You can read Kant by yourself, if you wanted to; but you must share a joke with someone else.
— Robert Louis Stevenson

humor

All speech, written or spoken, is a dead language, until it finds a willing and prepared hearer.

listening speech words

Science carries us into zones of speculation, where there is no habitable city for the mind of man.
— Robert Louis Stevenson
I am in the habit of looking not so much to the nature of a gift as to the spirit in which it is offered.
— Robert Louis Stevenson
It is perhaps a more fortunate destiny to have a taste for collecting shells than to be born a millionaire.
— Robert Louis Stevenson

contentment wealth

If a man love the labor of any trade, apart from any question of success or fame, the gods have called him.

work

For my part, I travel not to go anywhere, but to go. I travel for travel's sake. The great affair is to move.
— Robert Louis Stevenson

Travel

So long as we love we serve; so long as we are loved by others, I would almost say that we are indispensable.
— Robert Louis Stevenson

love service

There is only one difference between a long life and a good dinner: that, in the dinner, the sweets come last.
— Robert Louis Stevenson

food life

The habit of being happy enables one to be freed, or largely freed, from the domination of outward conditions.
— Robert Louis Stevenson
For there is a fellowship more quiet even than solitude, and which, rightly understood, is solitude made perfect.

solitude

Perpetual devotion to what a man calls his business is only to be sustained by perpetual neglect of many other things.

business

Perpetual devotion to what a man calls his business, is only to be sustained by perpetual neglect of many other things.
— Robert Louis Stevenson

business

Fiction is to the grown man what play is to the child; it is there that he changes the atmosphere and tenor of his life.

fiction

An aim in life is the only fortune worth the finding; and it is not to be found in foreign lands, but in the heart itself.

purpose of life

To me there is no duty we so underrate as the duty of being happy. By being happy, we sow anonymous benefits upon the world.
— Robert Louis Stevenson
You start a question, and it's like starting a stone.  You sit quietly on top of a hill; and the stone goes, starting others.

asking questions

Hope looks for unqualified success; but Faith counts certainly on failure, and takes honorable defeat to be a form of victory.
— Robert Louis Stevenson
There's no music like a little river's. It plays the same tune over and over again, and yet does not weary of it like fiddlers.
— Robert Louis Stevenson
To know what you prefer, instead of humbly saying Amen to what the world tells you you ought to prefer, is to have kept your soul alive.

authenticity be yourself individuality

Quiet minds cannot be perplexed or frightened but go on in fortune or misfortune at their own private pace, like a clock during a thunderstorm.
— Robert Louis Stevenson

fortune

So long as we love we serve; so long as we are loved by others, I would almost say that we are indispensable; and no man is useless while he has a friend.
— Robert Louis Stevenson
It is better to lose health like a spendthrift than to waste it like a miser. It is better to live and be done with it, then to die daily in the sick-room.

health

The ideal story is that of two people who go into love step for step, with a fluttered consciousness, like a pair of children venturing together in a dark room.

stories

It is a golden maxim to cultivate the garden for the nose, and the eyes will take care of themselves.  Nor must the ear be forgotten: without birds, a garden is a prison yard.

garden

An aspiration is a joy for ever, a possession as solid as a landed estate, a fortune which we can never exhaust and which gives us year by year a revenue of pleasurable activity.

aspiration

And what would it be to grow old?  For, after a certain distance, every step we take in life we find the ice growing thinner below our feet, and all around us and behind us we see our contemporaries going through.

old age

Dogs live with man as courtiers round a monarch, steeped in the flattery of his notice and enriched with sinecures.  To push their favor in this world of pickings and caresses is, perhaps, the business of their lives.

dogs

Talk is by far the most accessible of pleasures. It costs nothing in money, it is all profit, it completes our education, founds and fosters our friendships, and can be enjoyed at any age and in almost any state of health.
— Robert Louis Stevenson

talking

Anyone can carry his burden, however hard, until nightfall. Anyone can do his work, however hard, for one day. Anyone can live sweetly, patiently, lovingly, purely, till the sun goes down. And this is all life really means.
— Robert Louis Stevenson

purpose of life

Life, at any moment and in any view, is as dangerous as a sinking ship; and yet it is man's handsome fashion to carry umbrellas, to wear india-rubber overshoes, to begin vast works, and to conduct himself in every way as if he might hope to be eternal.
— Robert Louis Stevenson Fables

life

Every book is, in an intimate sense, a circular letter to the friends of him who writes it.  They alone take his meaning; they find private messages, assurances of love, and expressions of gratitude, dropped at every corner.  The public is but a generous patron who defrays the postage.

books

A man is successful who has lived well, laughed often, and loved much, who has gained the respect of intelligent people and the love of children; who has filled his niche and accomplished his task; who leaves the world better than he found it, whether by an improved poppy, a perfect poem, or a rescued soul; who never lacked appreciation of earth's beauty or failed to express it; who looked for the best in others and gave the best he had.
— Robert Louis Stevenson
That man is successful who has lived well, laughed often, and loved much, who has gained the respect of the intelligent men and the love of children; who has filled his niche and accomplished his task; who leaves the world better than he found it, whether by an improved poppy, a perfect poem, or a rescued soul; who never lacked appreciation of earth's beauty or failed to express it; who looked for the best in others and gave the best he had.
— Robert Louis Stevenson

success