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Virginia Woolf Quotes (269 Quotes)


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  • Did it matter then, she asked herself, walking towards Bond Street, did it matter that she must inevitably cease completely? All this must go on without her; did she resent it; or did it not become consoling to believe that death ended absolutely?
    (Virginia Woolf, "Mrs. Dalloway")

  • Lord, lord, the snobbery of the English!
    (Virginia Woolf, "Mrs. Dalloway")

  • Still, life had a way of adding day to day
    (Virginia Woolf, "Mrs. Dalloway")

  • A million candles burnt in him without his being at the trouble of lighting a single one
    (Virginia Woolf, "Orlando")

  • Heaven has mercifully decreed that the secrets of all hearts are hidden so that we are lured on for ever to suspect something, perhaps, that does not exist.
    (Virginia Woolf, "Orlando")


  • There was a serenity about him always that had the look of innocence, when, technically, the word was no longer applicable.
    (Virginia Woolf, "Orlando")

  • He lay on his chair with his hands clasped above his paunch not reading, or sleeping, but basking like a creature gorged with existence.
    (Virginia Woolf, "To the Lighthouse")

  • She felt... how life, from being made up of little separate incidents which one lived one by one, became curled and whole like a wave which bore one up with it and threw one down with it, there, with a dash on the beach.
    (Virginia Woolf, "To the Lighthouse")

  • Fear no more, says the heart, committing its burden to some sea, which sighs collectively for all sorrows, and renews, begins, collects, lets fall
    (Virginia Woolf, "Mrs. Dalloway")

  • Love and religion! thought Clarissa, going back into the drawing room, tingling all over. How detestable, how detestable they are!
    (Virginia Woolf, "Mrs. Dalloway")

  • Straightening himself and stealthily fingering his pocket-knife he started after her to follow this woman, this excitement, which seemed even with its back turned to shed on him a light which connected them, which singled him out, as if the random uproar of the traffic had whispered through hallowed hands his name, not Peter, but his private name which he called himself in his own thoughts.
    (Virginia Woolf, "Mrs. Dalloway")

  • A woman knows very well that, though a wit sends her his poems, praises her judgment, solicits her criticism, and drinks her tea, this by no means signifies that he respects her opinions, admires her understanding, or will refuse, though the rapier is denied him, to run through the body with his pen.
    (Virginia Woolf, "Orlando")

  • I have sought happiness through many ages and not found it.
    (Virginia Woolf, "Orlando")

  • To evade such temptations is the first duty of the poet. For as the ear is the antechamber to the soul, poetry can adulterate and destroy more surely then lust or gunpowder. The poet's, then, is the highest office of all. His words reach where others fall short. A silly song of Shakespeare's has done more for the poor and the wicked than all the preachers and philanthropists in the world.
    (Virginia Woolf, "Orlando")

  • He looked very old. He looked, James thought, getting his head now against the Lighthouse, now against the waste of waters running away into the open, like some old stone lying on the sand; he looked as if he had become physically what was always at the back of both of their minds-that loneliness which was for both of them the truth about things.
    (Virginia Woolf, "To the Lighthouse")


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