The uneducated person perceives only the individual phenomenon, the partly educated person the rule, and the educated person the exception.
Mankind is getting smarter every day. Actually, it only seems so. At least we are making progress. We’re progressing, to be sure, ever more deeply into the forest.
Whoever places his trust into a system will soon be without a home. While you are building your third story, the two lower ones have already been dismantled.
Prose talks and poetry sings.
Ideas are not thoughts; the thought respects the boundaries that the idea ignores thereby failing to realize itself.
You even called me stupid in your verse, and I’m almost agreeing, for where stupidity is involved, you are quite an expert, friend.
Science and art, or by the same token, poetry and prose differ from one another like a journey and an excursion. The purpose of the journey is its goal, the purpose of an excursion is the process.
Go, forget me – why should sorrow, O’er that brow a shadow fling? Go, forget me – and tomorrow, brightly smile and sweetly sing. Smile – though I shall not be near thee; Sing – though I shall never hear thee.
It’s the misfortune of German authors that not a single one of them dares to expose his true character. Everyone thinks that he has to be better than he is.
Poetry, it is often said and loudly so, is life’s true mirror. But a monkey looking into a work of literature looks in vain for Socrates.