Herman Melville

(1 August 1819 – 28 September 1891 / New York City, New York)

Herman Melville Quotes

  • ''contempt is as frequently produced at first sight as love.''
    Herman Melville (1819-1891), U.S. author. Omoo (1846), ch. 20, The Writings of Herman Melville, vol. 2, eds. Harrison Hayford, Hershel Parker, and G. Thomas Tanselle (1968).
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  • ''At sea a fellow comes out. Salt water is like wine, in that respect.''
    Herman Melville (1819-1891), U.S. author. Letter, May 28, 1860, to Evert A. Duyckinck. Correspondence, vol. 14, The Writings of Herman Melville, ed. Lynn Horth (1993).
  • ''There is a savor of life and immortality in substantial fare. Like balloons, we are nothing till filled.''
    Herman Melville (1819-1891), U.S. author. Mardi (1849), ch. 55, The Writings of Herman Melville, vol. 3, eds. Harrison Hayford, Hershel Parker, and G. Thomas Tanselle (1970).
  • ''To be hated cordially, is only a left-handed compliment.''
    Herman Melville (1819-1891), U.S. author. Omoo (1846), ch. 50, The Writings of Herman Melville, vol. 2, eds. Harrison Hayford, Hershel Parker, and G. Thomas Tanselle (1968).
  • ''It is with fiction as with religion: it should present another world, and yet one to which we feel the tie.''
    Herman Melville (1819-1891), U.S. author. The Confidence-Man (1857), ch. 33, The Writings of Herman Melville, vol. 10, eds. Harrison Hayford, Hershel Parker, and G. Thomas Tanselle (1984).
  • ''Praise when merited is not a boon: yet to a generous nature, is it pleasant to utter it.''
    Herman Melville (1819-1891), U.S. author. letter, [between 7 Apr. and 21 July 1886?], to [W. Clark Russell?].. Correspondence, vol. 14, The Writings of Herman Melville, ed. Lynn Horth (1993).
  • ''The dinner-hour is the summer of the day: full of sunshine, I grant; but not like the mellow autumn of supper.''
    Herman Melville (1819-1891), U.S. author. Mardi (1849), ch. 181, The Writings of Herman Melville, vol. 3, eds. Harrison Hayford, Hershel Parker, and G. Thomas Tanselle (1970). Spoken by King Media.
  • ''A thorough tar is unfit for any thing else; and what is more, this fact is the best evidence of his being a true sailor.''
    Herman Melville (1819-1891), U.S. author. Omoo (1846), ch. 29, The Writings of Herman Melville, vol. 2, eds. Harrison Hayford, Hershel Parker, and G. Thomas Tanselle (1968).
  • ''Where does any novelist pick up any character? For the most part, in town, to be sure.''
    Herman Melville (1819-1891), U.S. author. The Confidence-Man (1857), ch. 44, The Writings of Herman Melville, vol. 10, eds. Harrison Hayford, Hershel Parker, and G. Thomas Tanselle (1984).
  • ''In things abstract, men but differ in the sounds that come from their mouths, and not in the wordless thoughts lying at the bottom of their beings.''
    Herman Melville (1819-1891), U.S. author. Mardi (1849), ch. 135, The Writings of Herman Melville, vol. 3, eds. Harrison Hayford, Hershel Parker, and G. Thomas Tanselle (1970). Spoken by Babbalanja, the philosopher.

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Best Poem of Herman Melville

Art

In placid hours well-pleased we dream
Of many a brave unbodied scheme.
But form to lend, pulsed life create,
What unlike things must meet and mate:
A flame to melt--a wind to freeze;
Sad patience--joyous energies;
Humility--yet pride and scorn;
Instinct and study; love and hate;
Audacity--reverence. These must mate,
And fuse with Jacob's mystic heart,
To wrestle with the angel--Art.

Read the full of Art

Immolated

Children of my happier prime,
When One yet lived with me, and threw
Her rainbow over life and time,
Even Hope, my bride, and mother to you!
O, nurtured in sweet pastoral air,
And fed on flowers and light and dew
Of morning meadows -spare, ah, spare
Reproach; spare, and upbraid me not
That, yielding scarce to reckless mood,

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