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Gustave Flaubert Quotes

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One can be the master of what one does, but never of what one feels.
Gustave Flaubert (Letter to Louise Colet, 1852)
One must not always think that feeling is everything. Art is nothing without form.
Gustave Flaubert (Letter to Louise Colet, 1846)
The heart, like the stomach, wants a varied diet.
Gustave Flaubert
I have the handicap of being born with a special language to which I alone have the key.
Gustave Flaubert (Letter to Louise Colet, 1853)
An author in his book must be like God in the universe, present everywhere and visible nowhere.
Gustave Flaubert (Letter to Louise Colet, 1853)
Do not read as children do to enjoy themselves, or, as the ambitious do to educate themselves. No, read to live.
Gustave Flaubert (Letter to Mademoiselle Leroyer de Chantepie, 1857)
Everything you invent is true: you can be sure of that. Poetry is a subject as precise as geometry.
Gustave Flaubert (Letter to Louise Colet, 1853)
Success is a consequence and must not be a goal. 
Gustave Flaubert
We shouldn't maltreat our idols: the gilt comes off on our hands.
Gustave Flaubert (Madame Bovary, 1856)
Life must be a constant education; one must learn everything, from speaking to dying.
Gustave Flaubert
What is the beautiful, if not the impossible.
Gustave Flaubert
I have come to have the firm conviction that vanity is the basis of everything, and finally that what one calls conscience is only inner vanity.
Gustave Flaubert
Of all possible debauches, traveling is the greatest that I know; that's the one they invented when they got tired of all the others.
Gustave Flaubert (Letter to Ernest Chevalier, 1851)
Woman is a vulgar animal from whom man has created an excessively beautiful ideal.
Gustave Flaubert
And they talked about the mediocrity of provincial life, so suffocating, so fatal to all noble dreams.
Gustave Flaubert (Madame Bovary, 1856)
The future is the worst thing about the present. 
Gustave Flaubert
Stupidity is something unshakable; nothing attacks it without breaking itself against it; it is of the nature of granite, hard and resistant.
Gustave Flaubert
A friend who dies, it's something of you who dies.
Gustave Flaubert
Nothing is more humiliating than to see idiots succeed in enterprises we have failed in.
Gustave Flaubert (Sentimental Education, 1869)
One must always hope when one is desperate, and doubt when one hopes. 
Gustave Flaubert
I believe that if one always looked at the skies, one would end up with wings.
Gustave Flaubert
If you knew all the dreams I've dreamed!
Gustave Flaubert (Madame Bovary, 1856)
Happiness is a monstrosity! Punished are those who seek it. 
Gustave Flaubert
There is no truth. There is only perception.
Variant: There is no truth except in its relation, that is to say, the fashion in which we perceive the objects.
Gustave Flaubert
One becomes a critic when one cannot be an artist, just as a man becomes a stool pigeon when he cannot be a soldier.
Gustave Flaubert (Letter to Louise Colet, 1846)
One mustn't ask apple trees for oranges, France for sun, women for love, life for happiness.
Gustave Flaubert
Our ignorance of history causes us to slander our own times.
Gustave Flaubert (Letter to George Sand, 1871)
Our duty is to feel what is great and love what is beautiful - not to accept all the social conventions and the infamies they impose on us.
Gustave Flaubert (Madame Bovary, 1856)
And so I will take back up my poor life, so plain and so tranquil, where phrases are adventures and the only flowers I gather are metaphors.
Gustave Flaubert (Letter to Elisa Schlesinger, 1857)
The artist must be in his work as God is in creation, invisible and all-powerful; one must sense him everywhere but never see him.
Gustave Flaubert (Letter to Mademoiselle Leroyer de Chantepie, 1857)
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Gustave Flaubert Biography

Born: December 12, 1821
Died: May 8, 1880

Gustave Flaubert was a French novelist and writer. He is best known for his approach to writing and his very succesful novels such as Madame Bovary.

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