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Quotes by Edith Wharton

by Jo-Ann Downey

in Inspiration

Edith Wharton (1862/New York City-1937/France) was a Pulitzer Prize-winning American novelist, short story writer, and designer. Wharton was the first woman to win the Pulitzer Prize for literature in 1921. 

According to Wikipedia, she was one of the few foreigners in France allowed to travel to the front lines during the First World War. Throughout the war she worked tirelessly in charitable efforts for refugees and, in 1916 was named a Chevalier of the Legion of Honour in recognition of her commitment to the displaced. The scope of her relief work included setting up workrooms for unemployed Frenchwomen, organizing concerts to provide work for musicians, opening tuberculosis hospitals and founding the American Hostels for Belgian refugees


“There are two ways of spreading light: to be the candle or the mirror that reflects it.”

“Beware of monotony; it’s the mother of all the deadly sins.”

“If only we’d stop trying to be happy we’d have a pretty good time.”

“I don’t know if I should care for a man who made life easy; I should want someone who made it interesting.”

“In spite of illness, in spite of the archenemy sorry, one can remain alive long past the usual date 0f disintegration if one is unafraid of change, insatiable in intellectual curiosity, interested in big things, and happy in small ways.”

“Life is always a tightrope or a feather bed.  Give me the tightrope.”

“The only thing to do is to hug one’s friend tight and do one’s job.”

photo credit: damaradealla

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