Halldór Laxness

Iceland
23 Apr 1902 // 8 Feb 1998
Writer [Nobel Prize in Literature 1955]

Quotes

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Children should live a wholesome and natural life and go about with a mussel in one corner of their mouths and a shrimp in the other instead of sweets.

World Light
I am not at all impressed... at how far man's wisdom has managed to lead him; besides, it is not very great. What does surprise me, on the other hand, is how high their folly, their downright stupidity even, not to say their complete and utter blindness, has managed to raise them. Other things being equal, I prefer to follow the folly of man, for that has brought him farther than his wisdom.

Paradise Reclaimed
A new generation forgets the specters that may have tormented the old… And yet, always, to all eternity, it is the same specter assailing the same man century after century.
It's a useful habit never to believe more than half of what people tell you, and not to concern yourself with the rest. Rather keep your mind free and your path your own.

Independent People
The most remarkable thing about a man's dreams is that they will all come true; this has always been the case, though no one would care to admit it. And a peculiarity of man's behaviour is that he is not in the least surprised when his dreams come true; it is as if he expected nothing else. The goal to be reached and the determination to reach it are brother and sister, and slumber in the same heart.

Independent People
History is always entirely different to what has happened.

Under the Glacier
The difference between a novelist and a historian is this: that the former tells lies deliberately and for the fun of it; the historian tells lies and imagines he is telling the truth.
People don't have the imagination to understand politicians. People are too innocent.

The Atom Station
A free man can live on fish.Independence is better than meat.

Independent People
When a man has a flower in his life he builds a house.

Independent People
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On Anger: "For every minute you remain angry, you give up sixty seconds of peace of mind."
Essays
On Destiny: "Our destiny exercises its influence over us even when, as yet, we have not learned its nature: it is our future that lays down the law of our today."
Human, All Too Human
On Friendship: "A crowd is not company; and faces are but a gallery of pictures; and talk but a tinkling cymbal, where there is no love."
Essays