Each person is a graveyard of his thoughts. They are most beautiful for us in the moment of their birth; later we can often sense a deep pain that they leave us indifferent where earlier they enchanted us.
(Robert Musil (1880-1942), Austrian author. Diary entry, date uncertain: 1899?-1905/06, vol. I, p. 51, Tagebucher, 2 vols., Ed. Adolf Frise, trans. by Donald C. Rieche, Rowohlt (1976).)
Civil Rights: What black folks are given in the U.S. on the installment plan, as in civil-rights bills. Not to be confused with human rights, which are the dignity, stature, humanity, respect, and freedom belonging to all people by right of their birth.
(Dick Gregory (b. 1932), U.S. comedian, civil rights activist. Dick Gregory's Political Primer (1972).
See also comment by Malcolm X under "race.")
The atmosphere parents wish to create when talking with children about birth and reproduction is warm, honest, and reassuring, one that tells children they are free to ask questions as often as they need to, and you will answer them as lovingly as you know how.
(Joanna Cole (20th century), U.S. author. How You Were Born, p. 8 (1993).)
He knew that he was precisely what he himself would have chosen to be had God consulted him on the subject of his birth; he fully appreciated and approved what had been bestowed, and realized that he couldn't have done the job better himself, in fact he would not have changed a single item.
(Michéal MacLiammóir (1899-1978), Irish actor. "Changes," ch. 4, All for Hecuba (1947).
On first meeting Orson Welles.)
I do not correct my first imaginings by my secondwell, yes, perhaps a word or so, but only to vary, not to delete. I want to represent the course of my humors and I want people to see each part at its birth.
(Michel de Montaigne (1533-1592), French essayist. "Of the Resemblance of Children to Fathers," The Essays (Les Essais), bk. II, ch. 37, Abel Langelier, Paris (1595).)
Hereditary property sophisticates the mind, and the unfortunate victims to it ... swathed from their birth, seldom exert the locomotive faculty of body or mind; and, thus viewing every thing through one medium, and that a false one, they are unable to discern in what true merit and happiness consist.
(Mary Wollstonecraft (1759-1797), British feminist. A Vindication of the Rights of Woman, ch. 9 (1792).)
It is always the moralists who do the most harm. Abortion is the logical outcome of civilization, only the jungle gives birth and moulders away as nature decrees. Man plans.
(Max Frisch (1911-1991), Swiss author, critic. Originally published as Homo faberEin Bericht, Suhrkamp (1957). Homo FaberA Report, p. 102, trans. by Michael Bullock (1977), Abelard-Schuman (1959).
Walter Faber's comments about abortion are ironic, as he falls in love with his own daughter, ignorant of the fact that her mother did not abort her as planned.)