Quotations From CHARLES BAUDELAIRE

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  • The man who says his evening prayer is a captain posting his sentinels. He can sleep.
    Charles Baudelaire (1821-1867), French poet. My Heart Laid Bare, sect. 116 (written c. 1865), published in Intimate Journals (1887), trans. by Christopher Isherwood (1930), revised by Don Bachardy (1989).

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  • There are moments of existence when time and space are more profound, and the awareness of existence is immensely heightened.
    Charles Baudelaire (1821-1867), French poet, critic. My Heart Laid Bare, XI (1887).

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  • The more a man cultivates the arts the less he fornicates. A more and more apparent cleavage occurs between the spirit and the brute.
    Charles Baudelaire (1821-1867), French poet. Published in Intimate Journals, sect. 91 (1887), trans. by Christopher Isherwood (1930), rev. by Don Bachardy (1989). My Heart Laid Bare (c. 1865).
  • Love is a taste for prostitution. In fact, there is no noble pleasure that cannot be reduced to Prostitution.
    Charles Baudelaire (1821-1867), French poet, critic. My Heart Laid Bare, I (1887).

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  • I can barely conceive of a type of beauty in which there is no Melancholy.
    Charles Baudelaire (1821-1867), French poet, critic. My Heart Laid Bare, X (1887).

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  • It is time to get drunk! So as not to be the martyred slaves of Time, get drunk; get drunk without stopping! On wine, on poetry, or on virtue, as you wish.
    Charles Baudelaire (1821-1867), French poet, critic. Little Poems in Prose (Paris Spleen), "Get Drunk," (1864).

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  • We have psychologized like the insane, who make their insanity greater by striving to understand it.
    Charles Baudelaire (1821-1867), French poet, critic. Samuel Cramer, in La Fanfarlo (1847), trans. 1986. On poets of his generation.
  • A frenzied passion for art is a canker that devours everything else.
    Charles Baudelaire (1821-1867), French poet. repr. In Complete Works, vol. 2, ed. Yves-Gérard le Dantec, rev. by Claude Pichois (1976). L'Ecole Païenne (1852).

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  • Imagination is an almost divine faculty which, without recourse to any philosophical method, immediately perceives everything: the secret and intimate connections between things, correspondences and analogies.
    Charles Baudelaire (1821-1867), French poet, critic. New Notes on E. Poe, part III (1859).

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  • Nature ... is nothing but the inner voice of self-interest.
    Charles Baudelaire (1821-1867), French poet. repr. In Selected Writings on Art and Artists, ed. P.E. Charvet (1972). "The Painter of Modern Life," sct. 11, L'Art Romantique (1869).

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