Marie-Henri Beyle (23 January 1783 – 23 March 1842), better known by his pen name Stendhal, was a 19th-century French writer. Best known for the novels Le Rouge et le Noir (The Red and the Black, 1830) and La Chartreuse de Parme (The Charterhouse of Parma, 1839), he is highly regarded for the acute analysis of his characters' psychology and considered one of the earliest and foremost practitioners of realism.

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A good book is an event in my life.

Only great minds can afford a simple style.

One can acquire everything in solitude, except character.

People happy in love have an air of intensity.

A very small degree of hope is sufficient to cause the birth of love.

A wise woman never yields by appointment. It should always be an unforeseen happiness.

Power after love is the first source of happiness.

This is the curse of our age even the strangest aberrations are no cure for boredom.

Far less envy in America than in France and far less wit.

If you don't love me it does not matter anyway I can love for both of us.

Prudery is a kind of avarice the worst of all.

Our true passions are selfish.

To describe happiness is to diminish it.

The pleasures of love are always in proportion to our fears.

The shepherd always tries to persuade the sheep that their interests and his own are the same.

A novel is a mirror carried along a main road.

Life is too short and the time we waste in yawning never can be regained.

To be loved at first sight a man should have at the same time something to respect and something to pity in his face.

A forty-year-old woman is only something to men who have loved her in her youth.

Logic is neither an art nor a science but a dodge.

The French are the wittiest the most charming and up to the present at all events the least musical race on Earth.

The more one pleases everybody the less one pleases profoundly.

Love has always been the most important business in my life I should say the only one.

People who have been made to suffer by certain things cannot be reminded of them without a horror which paralyses every other pleasure even that to be found in reading a story.

Mathematics allows for no hypocrisy and no vagueness.

I think no woman I have had ever gave me so sweet a moment or at so light a price as the moment I owe to a newly heard musical phrase.

If you think of paying court to the men in power your eternal ruin is assured.

It is the nobility of their style which will make our writers of 1840 unreadable forty years from now.

Pleasure is often spoiled by describing it.

True love makes the thought of death frequent easy without terrors, it merely becomes the standard of comparison the price one would pay for many things.

The more a race is governed by its passions the less it has acquired the habit of cautious and reasoned argument the more intense will be its love of music.

The Russians imitate French ways but always at a distance of fifty years.

God's only excuse is that he does not exist.

All religions are founded on the fear of the many and the cleverness of the few.

Friendship has its illusions no less than love.

The man of genius is he and he alone who finds such joy in his art that he will work at it come hell or high water.

The great majority of men especially in France both desire and possess a fashionable woman much in the way one might own a fine horse - as a luxury befitting a young man.

What is really beautiful must always be true.

In love unlike most other passions the recollection of what you have had and lost is always better than what you can hope for in the future.

The first qualification for a historian is to have no ability to invent.

Nothing is so hideous as an obsolete fashion.

Never had he found himself so close to those terrible weapons of feminine artillery.

Women are always eagerly on the lookout for any emotion.

She had caprices of a marvellous unexpectedness and how is any one to imitate a caprice?

Politics in a literary work is like a gun shot in the middle of a concert something vulgar and however something which is impossible to ignore.