Beauty is a precarious trace that eternity causes to appear to us and that it takes away from us. A manifestation of eternity, and a sign of death as well. Often it seems to me to be an evil flower of nothingness, or else the cry of the world as it dies, or a desperate, sumptuous prayer.
EUGENE IONESCO, Present Past / Past Present
The beautiful things of the earth become more dear as they elude pursuit.
THOMAS HARDY, Desperate Remedies
Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.
MARGARET HUNGERFORD, Molly Bawn
- A thing of beauty is a joy for ever:
- Its loveliness increases; it will never
- Pass into nothingness.
Beauty when most unclothed is clothed best.
PHINEAS FLETCHER, Sicelides
Love built on beauty, soon as beauty, dies.
Everything has its beauty, but not everyone sees it.
Beautiful things may be admired, if not loved.
L. FRANK BAUM, The Tin Woodman of Oz
Rarely do great beauty and great virtue dwell together.
Beauty is the gift from God.
- For beauty being the best of all we know
- Sums up the unsearchable and secret aims
- Of nature.
ROBERT BRIDGES, The Growth of Love
It is amazing how complete is the delusion that beauty is goodness.
LEO TOLSTOY, The Kreutzer Sonata
Beauty always comes with dark thoughts.
NIGHTWISH, "Wish I Had An Angel"
Beauty is a terrible and awful thing! It is terrible because it has not been fathomed, for God sets us nothing but riddles. Here the boundaries meet and all contradictions exist side by side.
FYODOR DOSTOEVSKY, The Brothers Karamazov
- Beauty is nothing but the beginning of terror
- which we are barely able to endure and are awed
- because it serenely disdains to annihilate us.
- Each single angel is terrifying.
RAINER MARIA RILKE, Duino Elegies
Beauty, n. The power by which a woman charms a lover and terrifies a husband.
AMBROSE BIERCE, The Devil's Dictionary
- Much that is beautiful must be discarded
- So that we may resemble a taller
- Impression of ourselves.
JOHN ASHBERY, "Illustration"
The absence of flaw in beauty is itself a flaw.
HAVELOCK ELLIS, Impressions and Comments
There is no excellent beauty that hath not some strangeness in the proportion.
It is foolish to wish for beauty. Sensible people never either desire it for themselves or care about it in others. If the mind be but well cultivated, and the heart well disposed, no one ever cares for the exterior.
Beautiful peaches are not always the best flavored; neither are handsome women the most amiable.
WILLIAM SCOTT DOWNEY, Proverbs
Beauty soon grows familiar to the lover, Fades in his eye, and palls upon the sense.
Beauty is power; a smile is its sword.
I find beauty in unusual things, like hanging your head out the window or sitting on a fire escape.
SCARLETT JOHANSSON, Seventeen Magazine, May 2007
It is better to be beautiful than to be good. But ... it is better to be good than to be ugly.
OSCAR WILDE, The Picture of Dorian Gray
- If you get simple beauty and nought else,
- You get about the best thing God invents.
ROBERT BROWNING, Fra Lippo Lippi
At some point in life the world's beauty becomes enough. You don't need to photograph, paint or even remember it. It is enough. No record of it needs to be kept and you don't need someone to share it with or tell it to. When that happens that letting go you let go because you can.
- What do I care if you are good?
- Be beautiful! and be sad!
CHARLES BAUDELAIRE, Flowers of Evil
- Beauty is Nature's coin, must not be hoarded,
- But must be current, and the good thereof
- Consists in mutual and partaken bliss.
It's important for all types of women to know that you don't have to fit a prototype of what one person thinks is beautiful in order to be beautiful or feel beautiful.... People think, Sexy, big breasts, curvy body, no cellulite. It's not that. Take the girl at the beach with the cellulite legs, wearing her bathing suit the way she likes it, walking with a certain air, comfortable with herself. That woman is sexy. Then you see the perfect girl who's really thin, tugging at her bathing suit, wondering how her hair looks. That's not sexy.
JENNIFER LOPEZ, Readers Digest, Aug. 2003
- Beauty is like life itself: a dawn mist
- the sun burns off. It gives no peace, no rest.
GREGORY ORR, The Caged Owl: New & Selected Poems
Beauty itself soon fades, and when a woman has beauty and nothing else, well, it's like putting all the goods in the shop window, isn't it? And the moment she loses her good looks--poor creature! what is she? Just a mere bit of faded finery to be thrown aside.
HENRY ARTHUR JONES, Her Tongue
Sculptors, poets, painters, musicians--they're the traditional purveyors of Beauty. But it can as easily be created by a gardener, a farmer, a plumber, a careworker.
CHARLES DE LINT, The Onion Girl
What is lovely never dies, But passes into other loveliness, Star-dust, or sea-foam, flower or winged air.
THOMAS BAILEY ALDRICH, A Shadow of the Night
- Horns to bulls wise Nature lends;
- Horses she with hoofs defends;
- Hares with nimble feet relieves;
- Dreadful teeth to lions gives;
- Fishes learn through streams to slide;
- Birds through yielding air to glide;
- Men with courage she supplies;
- But to women these denies.
- What then gives she? Beauty, this
- Both their arms and armour is:
- She, that can this weapon use,
- Fire and sword with ease subdues.
Most people tend to think the best of those who are blessed with beauty; we have difficulty imagining that physical perfection can conceal twisted emotions or a damaged mind.
Some women are born beautiful, others achieve beauty, and still others are on good terms with the society editors.
ROBERT ELLIOTT GONZALES, Poems and Paragraphs
Though beauty is, with the most apt similitude, I had almost said with the most literal truth, called a flower that fades and dies almost in the very moment of its maturity; yet there is, methinks, a kind of beauty which lives even to old age; a beauty that is not in the features, but, if I may be allowed the expression, shines through them. As it is not merely corporeal it is not the object of mere sense, nor is it to be discovered but by persons of true taste and refined sentiment.
FULKE GREVILLE, Maxims, Characters, and Reflections
There are various orders of beauty, causing men to make fools of themselves in various styles.
Where Beauty was, nothing ever ran quite straight, which, no doubt, was why so many people looked on it as immoral.
JOHN GALSWORTHY, The Forsyte Saga
Beauty can be consoling, disturbing, sacred, profane; it can be exhilarating, appealing, inspiring, chilling. It can affect us in an unlimited variety of ways. Yet it is never viewed with indifference: beauty demands to be noticed; it speaks to us directly like the voice of an intimate friend. If there are people who are indifferent to beauty, then it is surely because they do not perceive it.
Whatever it is that pulls the pin, that hurls you past the boundaries of your own life into a brief and total beauty, even for a moment, it is enough.
JEANETTE WINTERSON, Gut Symmetries
Beauty had this penalty -- it came too readily, came too completely. It stilled life -- froze it. One forgot the little agitations; the flush, the pallor, some queer distortion, some light or shadow, which made the face unrecognisable for a moment and yet added a quality one saw for ever after. It was simpler to smooth that all out under the cover of beauty.
VIRGINIA WOOLF, To the Lighthouse
At the heart of all beauty lies something inhuman.
ALBERT CAMUS, The Myth of Sisyphus
Let but a single flash of reality -- the glimpse of a woman from afar or from behind -- enable us to project the image of Beauty before our eyes, and we imagine that we have recognised it, our hearts beat, and we will always remain half-persuaded that it was She, provided that the woman has vanished: it is only if we manage to overtake her that we realise our mistake.
MARCEL PROUST, Within a Budding Grove
Judge nothing by the appearance. The more beautiful the serpent, the more fatal its sting.
WILLIAM SCOTT DOWNEY, Proverbs
Beauty spins and the mind moves. To catch beauty would be to understand how that impertinent stability in vertigo is possible. But no, delight need not reach so far. To be running breathlessly, but not yet arrived, is itself delightful, a suspended moment of living hope.
ANNE CARSON, preface, Eros the Bittersweet
Beauty is certainly a soft, smooth, slippery thing, and therefore of a nature which easily slips in and permeates our souls.
We delight in the beauty of the butterfly, but rarely admit the changes it has gone through to achieve that beauty.
MAYA ANGELOU, attributed, The Butterfly's Daughter
I found a money back guarantee on a beauty cream. Rushed down to the store. They took one look at me and paid me in advance.
PHYLLIS DILLER, stand-up routine, 1978
Beauty is but a lease from nature.
Natural beauty takes at least two hours in front of a mirror.
PAMELA ANDERSON, Esquire, Jan. 2005
- Is the fume-track of necessity. This thought
- Is therapeutic. If, after several
- Applications, you do not find
- Relief, consult your family physician.
ROBERT PENN WARREN, "Island of Summer"
Thus was beauty sent from heaven--the lovely mistress of truth and good in this dark world.
MARK AKENSIDE, The Pleasures of Imagination
The beauty of the world which is so soon to perish, has two edges, one of laughter, one of anguish, cutting the heart asunder.
VIRGINIA WOOLF, A Room of One's Own
It's amazing how lovely common things become, if one only knows how to look at them.
LOUISA MAY ALCOTT, Marjorie's Three Gifts
The spirit in man has been created in accordance with the image of beauty, so that whenever it either hears or sees anything beautiful, it may have a propensity towards it, and seek for communion with it.
MUHAMMAD AL-GHAZALI, The Alchemy of Happiness
Beauty's voice speaks gently: it creeps only into the most awakened souls.
FRIEDRICH NIETZSCHE, Thus Spoke Zarathustra
- The angel Beauty walks her radiant way:
- O, follow her! She never leads astray.
ALBERT LAIGHTON, "Beauty"