The silence that accepts merit as the most natural thing in the world is the highest applause.
(Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), U.S. essayist, poet, philosopher. Address, July 15, 1838, Divinity College, Harvard University, Massachusetts. "Divinity School Address," published in Addresses and Lectures (1849).)
To write is to make oneself the echo of what cannot cease speakingand since it cannot, in order to become its echo I have, in a way, to silence it. I bring to this incessant speech the decisiveness, the authority of my own silence.
(Maurice Blanchot (b. 1907), French literary theorist, author. "The Essential Solitude," ch. 1, The Space of Literature (1955, trans. 1982).)