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Quotations From IVAN SERGEEVICH TURGENEV

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  • As for work, without it, without painstaking work, any writer or artist definitely remains a dilettante; there's no point in waiting for so-called blissful moments, for inspiration; if it comes, so much the better—but you keep working anyway.
    Ivan Sergeevich Turgenev (1818-1883), Russian author. Letter, June 16, 1876, to V. L. King. Turgenev: Letters, ed. David Lowe (1983).

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  • The word "tomorrow" was invented for indecisive people and for children.
    Ivan Sergeevich Turgenev (1818-1883), Russian author. Narrator, "Andrei Kolosov," (1852).

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  • Love isn't actually a feeling at all—it's an illness, a certain condition of body and soul.... Usually it takes possession of someone without his permission, all of a sudden, against his will—just like cholera or a fever.
    Ivan Sergeevich Turgenev (1818-1883), Russian author. Aleksei Petrovich, "A Correspondence," letter, September, 1842 (1856).

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  • In the end, nature is inexorable: it has no reason to hurry and, sooner or later, it takes what belongs to it. Unconsciously and inflexibly obedient to its own laws, it doesn't know art, just as it doesn't know freedom, just as it doesn't know goodness.
    Ivan Sergeevich Turgenev (1818-1883), Russian author. Narrator, "Enough," ch. 13 (1865).

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  • Sternly, remorselessly, fate guides each of us; only at the beginning, when we're absorbed in details, in all sorts of nonsense, in ourselves, are we unaware of its harsh hand.
    Ivan Sergeevich Turgenev (1818-1883), Russian author. Narrator, "Enough," ch. 13 (1865).

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  • Each individual is more or less dimly aware of his significance, is aware that he's something innately superior, something eternal—and lives, is obligated to live, in the moment and for the moment.
    Ivan Sergeevich Turgenev (1818-1883), Russian author. Narrator, "Enough," ch. 16 (1865).
  • In days of doubt, in days of dreary musings on my country's fate, you alone are my comfort and support, oh great, powerful, righteous, and free Russian language!
    Ivan Sergeevich Turgenev (1818-1883), Russian author. Poems in Prose, "The Russian Language," (1882).

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  • The only people who treasure systems are those whom the whole truth evades, who want to catch it by the tail. A system is just like truth's tail, but the truth is like a lizard. It will leave the tail in your hand and escape; it knows that it will soon grow another tail.
    Ivan Sergeevich Turgenev (1818-1883), Russian author. Letter, January 3, 1857, to Lev Nikolaevich Tolstoy. Turgenev: Letters, ed. David Lowe (1983).

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  • A poet must be a psychologist, but a secret one: he should know and feel the roots of phenomena but present only the phenomena themselves—in full bloom or as they fade away.
    Ivan Sergeevich Turgenev (1818-1883), Russian author. Letter, October 3, 1860, to K.N. Leontiev. Turgenev: Letters, ed. David Lowe (1983).
  • People without firmness of character love to make up a "fate" for themselves; that relieves them of the necessity of having their own will and of taking responsibility for themselves.
    Ivan Sergeevich Turgenev (1818-1883), Russian author. Letter, June 10, 1856, to Countess Elizaveta Lambert. Turgenev: Letters, ed. David Lowe (1983).

    Read more quotations about / on: fate, love, people
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