20 Lonely Quotes: All From Masterpieces

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When faced with loneliness and solitude, sometimes it is comforting to read materials on this topic that echo with our own feelings and perhaps offer a new perspective.

In this article the most inspiring 20 lonely quotes from world literature are selected, aimed to help us take a better look at this phenomenon.

1. Norwegian Wood

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Nobody likes being alone that much. I don’t go out of my way to make friends, that’s all. It just leads to disappointment.

Haruki Murakami

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2. The Little Prince

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“Where are the people?” resumed the little prince at last. “It’s a little lonely in the desert…” “It is lonely when you’re among people, too,” said the snake.

Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

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3. The Catcher in the Rye

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The first thing I did when I got off at Penn Station, I went into this phone booth. I felt like giving somebody a buzz but as soon as I was inside, I couldn’t think of anybody to call up. My brother D.B. was in Hollywood. My kid sister Phoebe was out. Then I thought of giving Jane Gallagher’s mother a buzz. Then I thought of calling this girl Sally Hayes. I thought of calling Carl Luce. So I ended up not calling anybody. I came out of the booth, after about twenty minutes or so.

J.D. Salinger

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4. The stranger

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For the first time, in that night alive with signs and stars, I opened myself to the gentle indifference of the world. Finding it so much like myself—so like a brother, really—I felt that I had been happy and that I was happy again. For everything to be consummated, for me to feel less alone, I had only to wish that there be a large crowd of spectators the day of my execution and that they greet me with cries of hate.

Albert Camus

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5. The Great Gatsby

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At the enchanted metropolitan twilight I felt a haunting loneliness sometimes, and felt it in others – poor young clerks who loitered in front of windows waiting until it was time for a solitary restaurant dinner – young clerks in the dusk, wasting the most poignant moments of night and life.

F. Scott Fitzgerald

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6. The light that failed

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We’re all islands shouting lies to each other across seas of misunderstanding.
Rudyard Kipling

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7. Kokoro

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“I am a lonely man,” he said again that evening. “And is it not possible that you are also a lonely person? But I am an older man, and I can live with my loneliness, quietly. You are young, and it must be difficult to accept your loneliness. You must sometimes want to fight it.”
“But I am not at all lonely.”
“Youth is the loneliest time of all. Otherwise, why should you come so often to my house?”

Natsume Sōseki

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8. The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle

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But even so, every now and then I would feel a violent stab of loneliness. The very water I drink, the very air I breathe, would feel like long, sharp needles. The pages of a book in my hands would take on the threatening metallic gleam of razor blades. I could hear the roots of loneliness creeping through me when the world was hushed at four o’clock in the morning.

Haruki Murakami

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9. Death in Venice

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A lonely, quiet person has observations and experiences that are at once both more indistinct and more penetrating than those of one more gregarious; his thoughts are weightier, stranger, and never without a tinge of sadness. . . . Loneliness fosters that which is original, daringly and bewilderingly beautiful, poetic. But loneliness also fosters that which is perverse, incongruous, absurd, forbidden.

Thomas Mann

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10. Rice, excerpt from What Is Not Yours Is Not Yours

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To you who eat a lot of rice because you’re lonely,
To you who sleep a lot because you’re bored,
To you who cry a lot because you are sad, I write this down.

Chew on your feelings that are cornered like you would chew on rice.
Anyway, life is something that you need to digest.

Helen Oyeyemi

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11. Little Women

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I am lonely, sometimes, but I dare say it’s good for me…

Little Women by Louisa May Alcott

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12. Lady Chatterley’s Lover 

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It’s no good trying to get rid of your own aloneness. You’ve got to stick to it all your life. Only at times, at times, the gap will be filled in. At times! But you have to wait for the times. Accept your own aloneness and stick to it, all your life. And then accept the times when the gap is filled in, when they come. But they’ve got to come. You can’t force them.

D.H. Lawrence

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13. Jane Eyre

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The trouble is not that I am single and likely to stay single, but that I am lonely and likely to stay lonely.

Charlotte Brontë

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14. Emma

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Blessed with so many resources within myself the world was not necessary to me. I could do very well without it.

Emma by Jane Austen

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15. The Notebooks of Leonardo Da Vinci

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If you are alone you belong entirely to yourself. If you are accompanied by even one companion you belong only half to yourself or even less in proportion to the thoughtlessness of his conduct and if you have more than one companion you will fall more deeply into the same plight.

Leonardo Da Vinci

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16. Reflections 

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We must become so alone, so utterly alone, that we withdraw into our innermost self. It is a way of bitter suffering. But then our solitude is overcome, we are no longer alone, for we find that our innermost self is the spirit, that it is God, the indivisible. And suddenly we find ourselves in the midst of the world, yet undisturbed by its multiplicity, for our innermost soul we know ourselves to be one with all being.

Hermann Hesse

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17. Following the Equator: A Journey Around the World

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Be good and you will be lonesome.

Mark Twain

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18. Heart of Darkness

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No, it is impossible; it is impossible to convey the life-sensation of any given epoch of one’s existence–that which makes its truth, its meaning–its subtle and penetrating essence. It is impossible. We live, as we dream–alone.

Joseph Conrad

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19. The House on Mango Street 

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Not a flat. Not an apartment in back. Not a man’s house. Not a daddy’s. A house all my own. With my porch and my pillow, my pretty purple petunias. My books and my stories….Only a house quiet as snow, a space for myself to go, clean as paper before the poem.

Sandra Cisneros

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20. East of Eden

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All great and precious things are lonely.

John Steinbeck

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That’s all. As mentioned above, thinking of loneliness as a pleasure or an unavailable phase to self development rather than a problem would be a healthier mentality. I hope that you enjoy the selected lonely quotes.

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