Top Old Cities Quotes

Browse top 66 famous quotes and sayings about Old Cities by most favorite authors.

Favorite Old Cities Quotes

1. "She had had the idea that the mineral world was a world of perfect, inanimate forms, with an unchanging mathematical order of crystals and molecules beneath its sprouts and flows and branches. She had thought, when she started thinking, about her own transfiguration as something profoundly unnatural, a move from a world of warm change and decay to a world of cold permanence.But as she became mineral, and looked into the idea of minerals, she saw that there were reciprocities, both physical and figurative."
Author: A.S. Byatt
2. "In any case, if the reader would have a correct idea of the mood of these exiles, we must conjure up once more those dreary evenings, sifting down through a haze of dust and golden light upon the treeless streets filled with teeming crowds of men and women. For, characteristically, the sound that rose towards the terraces still bathed in the last glow of daylight, now that the noises of vehicles and motors--the sole voice of cities in ordinary times--had ceased, was but one vast rumour of low voices and incessant footfalls, the drumming of innumerable soles timed to the eerie whistling of the plague in the sultry air above, the sound of a huge concourse of people marking time, a never-ending, stifling drone that, gradually swelling, filled the town from end to end, and evening after evening gave its truest, mournfullest expression to the blind endurance which had ousted love from all our hearts."
Author: Albert Camus
3. "To the eyes of the American soldiers who drove past, I looked no different from the women around me; and as I thought of it, who could say I was any different? If you no longer have leaves, or bark, or roots, can you go on calling yourself a tree? "I am a peasant," I said to myself, "and not a geisha at all any longer." It was a frightening feeling to look at my hands and see their roughness. To draw my mind away from my fears, I turned my attention again to the truckloads of soldiers driving past. Weren't these the very American soldiers we'd been taught to hate, who had bombed our cities with such horrifying weapons? Now they rode through our neighborhood, throwing pieces of candy to the children."
Author: Arthur Golden
4. "Along the open road on winter nights, homeless, cold, and hungry, one voice gripped my frozen heart: 'Weakness or strength: you exist, that is strength. You don't know where you are going or why you are going, go in everywhere, answer everyone. No one will kill you, any more than if you were a corpse.' In the morning my eyes were so vacant and my face so dead, that the people I met may not even have seen me.In cities, mud went suddenly red and black, like a mirror when a lamp in the next room moves, like treasure in the forest! Good luck, I cried, and I saw a sea of flames and smoke rise to heaven; and left and right, all wealth exploded like a billion thunderbolts."
Author: Arthur Rimbaud
5. "I have a bold plan to break from the Bloomberg years, and end the 'Tale of Two Cities' by providing real opportunity to all New Yorkers, no matter where they live."
Author: Bill De Blasio
6. "When human men hold an object that makes a powerful noise, or has moving parts, or spins around fast, or has a button they can push (which either screws or nails something) they become Gods in their own heads.They can do anything: they can eat through walls and bring buildings together to form mighty empires.They can build floating cities and flying tin cans.But they still can't make their own beds."
Author: Craig Stone
7. "Behold Vo Mimbre," Mandorallen proclaimed with pride, "queen of cities. Upon that rock the tide of Angarak crashed and recoiled and crashed again. Upon this field met they their ruin. The soul and pride of Arendia doth reside within that fortress and the power of the Dark One may not prevail against it.""We've been here before, Mendorallen," Mister Wolf said sourly."
Author: David Eddings
8. "Hold each other hostage to our eccentricities.'"
Author: Dean Koontz
9. "Differences in reading ability between five-year olds and eight-year olds are caused primarily by the older children's possessing more knowledge, not by the differences in their memory capacities, reasoning abilities, or control of eye movements."
Author: E.D. Hirsch Jr.
10. "No reason to feel depressed about being depressed. A depression can be a golden opportunity to collect the pieces and build ourselves anew. Global Souls are always on the move, nomads at heart, connected to various cities, commuters between cultures, both from here and everywhere."
Author: Elif Shafak
11. "...if you identify life with enjoyment I am told there is better brand of it in the cities than in the country parts and there is said to be a very superior brand of it to be had in certain parts of France. Did you ever notice that cats have a lot of it in them when they are quite juveniles?"
Author: Flann O'Brien
12. "Having been tenant long to a rich Lord, Not thriving, I resolved to be bold, And make a suit unto him, to affordA new small-rented lease, and cancell th' old.In heaven at his manour I him sought: They told me there, that he was lately gone About some land, which he had dearly boughtLong since on earth, to take possession.I straight return'd, and knowing his great birth, Sought him accordingly in great resorts; In cities, theatres, gardens, parks, and courts:At length I heard a ragged noise and mirth Of theeves and murderers: there I him espied, Who straight, Your suit is granted, said, and died."
Author: George Herbert
13. "Old Nan nodded. ‘In that darkness, the Others came for the first time,' she said as her needles went click, click, click. ‘They were cold things, dead things, that hated iron and fire and the touch of the sun, and every creature with hot blood in its veins. They swept over holdfasts and cities and kingdoms, felled heroes and armies by the score, riding their pale dead horses and leading hosts of the slain. All the swords of men could not stay their advance, and even maidens and suckling babes found no pity in them. They hunted the maids through frozen forests, and fed their dead servants on the flesh of human children.' (p240)"
Author: George R.R. Martin
14. "The key to the city of Florence was about two feet long, and painted a garish gold.Hamilton was fascinated by it. "Wow! How big is the lock?"Jonah laughed. "There is no lock, cuz. It's an honorary gig. Back in my crib in LA, I've got a whole shed full of keys from different cities. Want to know the kicker? I can't get at them. The gardener lost the key to the shed."
Author: Gordon Korman
15. "Because menare killing the foreststhe fairy tales are running away.The spindle doesn't knowwhom to prick,the little girl's handsthat her father has chopped off,haven't a single tree to catch hold of,the third wish remains unspoken.King Thrushbeard no longer owns one thing.Children can no longer get lost.The number seven means no more than exactly seven.Because men have killed the forests,the fairy tales are trotting off to the citiesand end badly."
Author: Günter Grass
16. "She was, in fact, one of those people of exalted principles; one of those opinionated puritans, of which England produces so many; one of those good and insupportable old maids who haunt the tables d'hôte of every hotel in Europe, who spoil Italy, poison Switzerland, render the charming cities of the Mediterranean uninhabitable, carry everywhere their fantastic manias, their manners of petrified vestals, their indescribable toilets and a certain odor of india-rubber which makes one believe that at night they are slipped into a rubber casing."
Author: Guy De Maupassant
17. "I see a time when the farmer will not need to live in a lonely cabin on a lonely farm. I see the farmers coming together in groups. I see them with time to read, and time to visit with their fellows. I see them enjoying lectures in beautiful halls, erected in every village. I see them gather like the Saxons of old upon the green at evening to sing and dance. I see cities rising near them with schools, and churches, and concert halls, and theaters. I see a day when the farmer will no longer be a drudge and his wife a bond slave, but happy men and women who will go singing to their pleasant tasks upon their fruitful farms. When the boys and girls will not go west nor to the city; when life will be worth living. In that day the moon will be brighter and the stars more glad, and pleasure and poetry and love of life come back to the man who tills the soil."
Author: Hamlin Garland
18. "There had been no crises of incident, or marked movements of experience such as in Felipe's imaginations of love were essential to the fulness of its growth. This is a common mistake on the part of those who have never felt love's true bonds. Once in those chains, one perceives that they are not of the sort full forged in a day. They are made as the great iron cables are made, on which bridges are swung across the widest water-channels,--not of single huge rods, or bars, which would be stronger, perhaps, to look at; but myriads of the finest wires, each one by itself so fine, so frail, it would barely hold a child's kite in the wind: by hundreds, hundreds of thousands of such, twisted, re-twisted together, are made the mighty cables, which do not any more swerve from their place in the air, under the weight and jar of the ceaseless traffic and tread of two cities, than the solid earth swerves under the same ceaseless weight and jar. Such cables do not break."
Author: Helen Hunt Jackson
19. "Above all, one could hold onto everything: the suffering to the quick and its whims, the sticky shadows, somber viscosity of the veil drawn taut around cities, everything could be borne, since legal outings of a few hours might take place, I told myself. Of course, I thought, no point pretending one wasn't dead. But on the other hand, rather than yield to the maneuvers of the conservation instinct, strategies that make us flee the pain within by hiding from ourselves within ourselves from whom we flee, its poppies, its hypnotic operations that the powerful currents of day-to-day life reinforce with a thousand vulgar, pressing duties which turn us from our hearts. do everything, I thought, on the contrary, whatever you can to resist the ingenious temptations of compromises, cling to the suffering, stir up the dread, for the monsters are also the benevolent guardians of the survivor's presence within me"
Author: Hélène Cixous
20. "There are other, savager, and more primeval aspects of Nature than our poets have sung. It is only white man's poetry. Homer and Ossian even can never revive in London or Boston. And yet behold how these cities are refreshed by the mere tradition, or the imperfectly transmitted fragance and flavor of these wild fruits. If we could listen but for an instant to the chaunt of the Indian muse, we should understand why he will not exchange his savageness for civilization. Nations are not whimsical. Steel and blankets are strong temptations; but the Indian does well to continue Indian."
Author: Henry David Thoreau
21. "Cold has a thousand ways of moving in the world: on the sea it gallops like a troop of horses, on the countryside it falls like a swarm of locusts, in the cities like a knife-blade it slashes the streets and penetrates the chinks of unheated houses."
Author: Italo Calvino
22. "The surpluses will have to be expended somehow, and trust the oligarchs to find a way. Magnificent roads will be built. There will be great achievements in science, and especially in art. When the oligarchs have completely mastered the people, they will have time to spare for other things. They will become worshippers of beauty. They will become art-lovers. And under their direction and generously rewarded, will toil the artists. The result will be great art; for no longer, as up to yesterday, will the artists pander to the bourgeois taste of the middle class. It will be great art, I tell you, and wonder cities will arise that will make tawdry and cheap the cities of old time. And in these cities will the oligarchs dwell and worship beauty"
Author: Jack London
23. "My films are expressive of a culture that has had the possibility of attaining material fulfillment while at the same time finding itself unable to accomplish the simple business of conducting human lives. We have been sold a bill of goods as a substitute for life. What is needed is reassurance in human emotions; a re-evaluation of our emotional capacities."
Author: John Cassavetes
24. "Throats in a dreadful silence. The infection will spread outward from that point. Old ladies will crack skulls with their deadly handbags. Cars will plunge down the crowded sidewalks. Drivers will be torn out of their cars and stomped. It will spread to all the huge cities of the world, and by dawn of the next day there will be a horrid silence of sprawled bodies and tumbled vehicles, gutted buildings and a few wisps of smoke. And through that silence will prowl a few, a very few of the most powerful ones, ragged and bloody, slowly tracking each other down."
Author: John D. MacDonald
25. "Bugs would eat the wax. Chaw the old canvas. And one day there will be a mutation, and we will have new ones that can digest concrete, dissolve steel and suck up the acid puddles, fatten on magic plastics, lick their slow way through glass. Then the cities will tumble and man will be chased back into the sea from which he came..."
Author: John D. MacDonald
26. "But wherever we are, we must all, in our daily lives, live up to the age-old faith that peace and freedom walk together. In too many of our cities today, the peace is not secure because freedom is incomplete." (John F. Kennedy, June 10, 1963, American University speech)"
Author: John F. Kennedy
27. "Who hasn't grown up knowing the bitchy cheerleader, a dumb jock, the computer nerd, an overbearing mother, a distant father, a misunderstood old person, or an alienated artist, writer, musician, or dancer? If everybody knows these people, are they really clichés or merely categories? Maybe the various cities, towns, neighborhoods, and blocks are really replicating microcosms? The same strands woven together to create one large tapestry of life?"
Author: Karen Wojcik Berner
28. "What was unfolding in Mumbai was unfolding elsewhere, too. In the age of global market capitalism, hopes and grievances were narrowly conceived, which blunted a sense of common predicament. Poor people didn't unite; they competed ferociously amongst themselves for gains as slender as they were provisional. And this undercity strife created only the faintest ripple in the fabric of the society at large. The gates of the rich, occasionally rattled, remained unbreached. The politicians held forth on the middle class. The poor took down one another, and the world's great, unequal cities soldiered on in relative peace."
Author: Katherine Boo
29. "Multiculturalism may well be our saviour, wresting us out from the straitjacket of our history, thrusting the old continent into an environment where other ethnicities, less cynical and more positive, will play a big role in its future."
Author: Loretta Napoleoni
30. "You know," said Al in a daze of hunger and cold, "when you see this, you realize that despite all the crap that goes on in the cities, despite all the words and accusations, the country has balance and momentum. The whole thing is symmetrical and beautiful; it works. The cities are like bulbs on a Christmas tree. They may bum, swell, and shatter, but the green stays green. Look at it," he said, eyes fixed on the horizon, not unmoved by the motion of the train. "Look at it. It's alive."
Author: Mark Helprin
31. "Once I told Ha?anala about the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah. . . . I told her how Abraham bargained with God for the lives of ten righteous men who might have lived there. She said to me, ?Abraham should have taken the babies from the cities. The babies were innocent.?"
Author: Mary Doria Russell
32. "Soon enough his head would be swimming with tales of derring-do and high adventure, tales of beautiful maidens kissed, of evildoers shot with pistols or fought with swords, of bags of gold, of diamonds as big as the tip of your thumb, of lost cities and of vast mountains, of steam-trains and clipper ships, of pampas, oceans, deserts, tundra."
Author: Neil Gaiman
33. "The Seven Cities of Gold always fascinated me. Southwestern U.S. history especially fascinates me. The whole spur of the Spanish exploration of the Southwestern U.S. was the search for these mythical Seven Cities of Gold."
Author: Neil Peart
34. "So to hold it they were compelled to dismantle many cities in the country, for in truth there is no safe way to retain them otherwise than by ruining them. And he who becomes master of a city accustomed to freedom and does not destroy it, may expect to be destroyed by it, for in rebellion it has always the watchword of liberty and its ancient privileges as a rallying point, which neither time nor benefits will ever cause it to forget. And whatever you may do or provide against, they never forget that name or their privileges unless they are disunited or dispersed, but at every chance they immediately rally to them,"
Author: Niccolò Machiavelli
35. "The older Puritans had trampled down all fleshly impulses; these newer Puritans trampled no less self-righteously upon the spiritual cravings. But in the increasingly spiritistic inclination of physics itself, Behaviorism and Fundamentalism had found a meeting place. Since the ultimate stuff of the physical universe was now said to be multitudinous and arbitrary "quanta" of the activity "spirits", how easy was it for the materialistic and the spiritistic to agree? At heart, indeed, they were never very far apart in mood, though opposed in doctrine. The real cleavage was between the truly spiritual view on the one hand, and the spiritistic and materialistic on the other. Thus the most materialistic of Christian sects and the most doctrinaire of scientific sects were not long in finding a formula to express their unity, their denial of all those finer capacities which had emerged to be the spirit of man."
Author: Olaf Stapledon
36. "It's still a load. If there was balance, the soldier boys would all be dead, and we'd be sitting pretty in the middle of the Drowned Cities, shipping marble and steel and copper and getting paid Red Chinese for every kilo. We'd be rich and they'd be dead, if there was such a thing as the Scavenge God, or his scales. And that goes double for the Deepwater priests. They're all full of it. Nothing balances out."
Author: Paolo Bacigalupi
37. "Households, cities, countries, and nations have enjoyed great happiness when a single individual has taken heed of the Good and Beautiful. Such people not only liberate themselves; they fill those they meet with a free mind."
Author: Philo
38. "Ask me, then, if I believe in the spirit of the things as they were used, and I'll say yes. They're all here. All the things which had uses. All the mountains which had names. And we'll never be able to use them without feeling uncomfortable. And somehow the mountains will never sound right to us; we'll give them new names, but the old names are there, somewhere in time, and the mountains were shaped and seen under those names. The names we'll give to the canals and mountains and cities will fall like so much water on the back of a mallard. No matter how we touch Mars, we'll never touch it. And then we'll get mad at it, and you know what we'll do? We'll rip it up, rip the skin off, and change it to fit ourselves."
Author: Ray Bradbury
39. "Every sensitive person carries in himself old cities enclosed by ancient walls"
Author: Robert Walser
40. "How reprehensible it is when those blessed with commodities insist on ignoring the poor. Better to torment them, force them into indentured servitude, inflict compulsion and blows—this at least produces a connection, fury and a pounding heart, and these too constitute a form of relationship. But to cower in elegant homes behind golden garden gates, fearful lest the breath of warm humankind touch you, unable to indulge in extravagances for fear they might be glimpsed by the embittered oppressed, to oppress and yet lack the courage to show yourself as an oppressor, even to fear the ones you are oppressing, feeling ill at ease in your own wealth and begrudging others their ease, to resort to disagreeable weapons that require neither true audacity nor manly courage, to have money, but only money, without splendor: That's what things look like in our cities at present"
Author: Robert Walser
41. "Go for broke. Always try and do too much. Dispense with safety nets. Take a deep breath before you begin talking. Aim for the stars. Keep grinning. Be bloody-minded. Argue with the world. And never forget that writing is as close as we get to keeping a hold on the thousand and one things--childhood, certainties, cities, doubts, dreams, instants, phrases, parents, loves--that go on slipping , like sand, through our fingers."
Author: Salman Rushdie
42. "I mean it. Aside from the old coastal cities, which in Australia are still very young themselves, what you have is a vast stretch of wilderness, wholly natural, with all the horror that nature brings to the table when she dines.""You make it sound like we'll barely survive," Clare said."Oh, I'm sure we will, at least the journey to Port Darwin. From there we won't have to struggle with anything more lethal than a train carriage, I hope. My point is that this is a young country in an old land. And those who don't walk with respect in the wilderness do have a tendency to get eaten."
Author: Sam Starbuck
43. "I discovered news of old horrors in old books; read intelligence of old atrocities in old periodicals; always in the back of my mind, every day a bit louder, I heard the seashell drone of some growing, coalescing force; I seemed to smell the bitter ozone aroma of lightings-to-come."
Author: Stephen King
44. "The old hunger for voyages fed at his heart....To go alone...into strange cities; to meet strange people and to pass again before they could know him; to wander, like his own legend, across the earth--it seemed to him there could be no better thing than that."
Author: Thomas Wolfe
45. "Hickock whistled and rolled his eyes. "Wow!" he said, and then, summoning his talent for something very like total recall, he began an account of the long ride--the approximately ten thousand miles he and Smith had covered in the past six weeks. He talked for an hour and twenty-five minutes--from two-fifty to four-fifteen--and told, while Nye attempted to list them, of highways and hotels, motels, rivers, towns, and cities, a chorus of entwining names: Apache, El Paso, Corpus Christi, Santillo, San Luis Potosi, Acapulco, San Diego, Dallas, Omaha, Sweetwater, Stillwater, Tenville Junction, Tallahassee, Needles, Miami, Hotel Nuevo Waldorf, Somerset Hotel, Hotel Simone, Arrowhead Motel, Cherokee Motel, and many, many more. He gave them the name of the man in Mexico to whom he'd sold his own 1940 Chevrolet, and confessed that he had stolen a newer model in Iowa."
Author: Truman Capote
46. "But that is who we are, that is where we come from. We are the offspring of metropolitan annihilation and destruction, of the war of all against all, of the conflict of each individual with every other individual, of a system governed by fear, of the compulsion to produce, of the profit of one to the detriment of others, of the division of people into men and women, young and old, sick and healthy, foreigners and Germans, and of the struggle for prestige. Where do we come from? From isolation in individual row-houses, from the suburban concrete cities, from prison cells, from the asylums and special units, from media brainwashing, from consumerism, from corporal punishment, from the ideology of nonviolence, from depression, from illness, from degradation, from humiliation, from the debasement of human beings, from all the people exploited by imperialism."
Author: Ulrike Meinhof
47. "WE two boys together clinging,One the other never leaving,Up and down the roads going, North and South excursions making,Power enjoying, elbows stretching, fingers clutching,Arm'd and fearless, eating, drinking, sleeping, loving.No law less than ourselves owning, sailing, soldiering, thieving,threatening,Misers, menials, priests alarming, air breathing, water drinking, onthe turf or the sea-beach dancing,Cities wrenching, ease scorning, statutes mocking, feeblenesschasing,Fulfilling our foray."
Author: Walt Whitman
48. "You came to tell us that the great cities are in favour of the gold standard; we reply that the great cities rest upon our broad and fertile plains. Burn down your cities and leave our farms, and your cities will spring up again as if by magic. But destroy out farms and the grass will grow in the city...You shall not press down upon the brow of labour this crown of thorns. You shall not crucify mankind upon a cross of gold."
Author: William Jennings Bryan
49. "Prophet may you be!If I be false, or swerve a hair from truth,when time is old and hath forgot itself,when waterdrops have worn the stones of Troy,and blind oblivion swallowed cities up,and mighty states characterless are gratedto dusty nothing, yet let memory,from false to false, among false maids in love,upbraid my falsehood!"
Author: William Shakespeare
50. "Their language was an old wild language. They had known incredible loves and dark adventures and the twisted streets of alien cities. They had known the green breaking waves of the sea, and the green aisles of the silent forests. They had known war and death and fierce, cruel elation."
Author: Winifred Holtby

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The mystic's idea of deliberately stupefying and stultifying himself is an "abomination unto the Lord." This, by the way, does not conflict with the rules of Yoga. That kind of suppression is comparable to the restrictions in athletic training, or diet in sickness."
Author: Aleister Crowley

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