Charles Lamb

(10 February 1775 – 27 December 1834 / London)

Charles Lamb Quotes

  • ''Credulity is the man's weakness, but the child's strength.''
    Charles Lamb (1775-1834), British essayist and critic. Essays of Elia, Witches and other Night Fears (1823).
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  • ''I have been trying all my life to like Scotchmen, and am obliged to desist from the experiment in despair.''
    Charles Lamb (1775-1834), British essayist, critic. "Imperfect Sympathies," The Essays of Elia (1820-1823).
  • ''A poor relation is the most irrelevant thing in nature, a piece of impertinent correspondency, an odious approximation, a haunting conscience, a preposterous shadow, lengthening in the noon-tide of our prosperity.... He is known by his knock.''
    Charles Lamb (1775-1834), British essayist, critic. Last Essays of Elia, "Poor Relations," (1833). Opening lines of essay.
  • ''A pun is not bound by the laws which limit nicer wit. It is a pistol let off at the ear; not a feather to tickle the intellect.''
    Charles Lamb (1775-1834), British essayist, critic. Last Essays of Elia, "Popular Fallacies: That the Worst Puns are the Best," (1833).
  • ''Nothing puzzles me more than time and space; and yet nothing troubles me less, as I never think about them.''
    Charles Lamb (1775-1834), British essayist, critic. letter, Jan. 2, 1810, to Thomas Manning. Letters of Charles and Mary Lamb, vol. 3, ed. E.W. Marrs (1978).
  • ''The man must have a rare recipe for melancholy, who can be dull in Fleet Street.''
    Charles Lamb (1775-1834), British essayist, critic. letter, Feb. 15, 1802, to Thomas Manning. Letters of Charles and Mary Lamb, vol. 2, ed. E.W. Marrs (1976).
  • ''But cards are war, in disguise of a sport.''
    Charles Lamb (1775-1834), British essayist, critic. "Mrs. Battle's Opinions on Whist," Essays of Elia (1820-1823).
  • ''The red-letter days, now become, to all intents and purposes, dead-letter days.''
    Charles Lamb (1775-1834), British essayist, critic. "Oxford in the Vacation," Essays of Elia (1820-1823).
  • ''The teller of a mirthful tale has latitude allowed him. We are content with less than absolute truth.''
    Charles Lamb (1775-1834), British essayist, critic. "Stage Illusion," The Last Essays of Elia (1833).
  • ''In everything that relates to science, I am a whole Encyclopaedia behind the rest of the world.''
    Charles Lamb (1775-1834), British essayist, critic. The Essays of Elia, "The Old and the New Schoolmaster," (1820-1823).

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Best Poem of Charles Lamb

Blindness

In a stage-coach, where late I chanced to be,
A little quiet girl my notice caught;
I saw she looked at nothing by the way,
Her mind seemed busy on some childish thought.


I with an old man's courtesy addressed
The child, and called her pretty dark-eyed maid,
And bid her turn those pretty eyes and see
The wide extended prospect. 'Sir,' she said,


'I cannot see the prospect, I am blind.'
Never did tongue of child utter a sound
So mournful, as her words fell on my ear.
Her mother then related how she found


Her child was sightless. On a ...

Read the full of Blindness

The Old Familiar Faces

I HAVE had playmates, I have had companions,
In my days of childhood, in my joyful school-days--
All, all are gone, the old familiar faces.

I have been laughing, I have been carousing,
Drinking late, sitting late, with my bosom cronies--
All, all are gone, the old familiar faces.

I loved a Love once, fairest among women:

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