Leo Tolstoy’s “War and Peace” Quotes (102 Quotes)



    Man lives consciously for himself, but serves as an unconscious instrument for the achievement of historical, universally human goals.





    Pierre was right when he said that one must believe in the possibility of happiness in order to be happy, and I now believe in it. Let the dead bury the dead, but while I'm alive, I must live and be happy.

    When an apple has ripened and falls, why does it fall? Because of its attraction to the earth, because its stalk withers, because it is dried by the sun, because it grows heavier, because the wind shakes it, or because the boy standing below wants to eat it?

    But despite the fact that the doctors treated him, bled him, and gave him medicines to drink -- he recovered.

    It was necessary that millions of men in whose hands lay the real power -- the soldiers who fired, or transported provisions and guns -- should consent to carry out the will of these weak individuals...


    For a few seconds they looked silently into each other's eyes, and the distant and impossible suddenly became near, possible, and inevitable.

    Millions of men, renouncing their human feelings and reason, had to go from west to east to slay their fellows, just as some centuries previously hordes of men had come from the east to the west slaying their fellows.

    Though the doctors treated him, let his blood, and gave him medications to drink, he nevertheless recovered.


    Human science fragments everything in order to understand it, kills everything in order to examine it.

    Power is the sum total of the wills of the mass, transfered by express or tactic agreement to rulers chosen by the masses.



    It was only at her prayers that she felt able to think calmly and clearly either of Prince Andrey or Anatole, with a sense that her feelings for them were as nothing compared with her feel of worship and awe of God.


    For if we allow that human life is always guided by reason, we destroy the premise that life is possible at all.

    Napoleon, the man of genius, did this! But to say that he destroyed his army because he wished to, or because he was very stupid, would be as unjust as to say that he had brought his troops to Moscow because he wished to and because he was very clever and a genius

    To us, it is incomprehensible that millions of Christian men killed and tortured each other because Napoleon was ambitious or Alexander was firm, or because England's policy was astute or the Duke of Oldenburg was wronged. We cannot grasp what connection such circumstances have the with the actual fact of slaughter and violence: why because the Duke was wronged, thousands of men from the other side of Europe killed and ruined the people of Smolensk and Moscow and were killed by them.

    All the stories and descriptions of that time without exception peak only of the patriotism, self-sacrifice, despair, grief, and heroism of the Russians. But in reality it was not like that...The majority of the people paid no attention to the general course of events but were influenced only by their immediate personal interests.

    I don't give a damn unless I'm fond of a person;but I'd sacrifice my life for those I am fond of; the rest I'd throttle if they stood in my way...And you may not believe me but if I still set a value on life it is only because I still hope one day to meet such a heavenly creature who will regenarate me, purify me and elevate me. But you don't understand that.



    But she was not even grateful to him for it; nothing good on Pierre's part seemed to her to be an effort, it seemed so natural for him to be kind to everyone that there was no merit in his kindness.




    More Leo Tolstoy Quotations (Based on Topics)


    Life - Man - Love - World - Happiness - People - Mind - God - Truth - Christianity - Death & Dying - Good & Evil - War & Peace - Time - Reasoning - History - Work & Career - Beauty - Joy & Excitement - View All Leo Tolstoy Quotations

    More Leo Tolstoy Quotations (By Book Titles)


    - Anna Karenina
    - War and Peace

    Related Authors


    Franz Kafka - Tom Clancy - Salman Rushdie - Robertson Davies - Richard Bach - Louisa May Alcott - Katherine Dunn - J. D. Salinger - Anne Bronte - Aldous Huxley


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