Quotations by W. Somerset Maugham

86 Found
Displaying 1 through 50


Born: Sunday, January 25, 1874
Died: Thursday, December 16, 1965 (91 years old)
Profession: Playwright
Nationality: British


A man marries to have a home, but also because he doesn't want to be bothered with sex and all that sort of thing.
- W. Somerset Maugham
(Keywords: Home, Sex, Man, Want)

An unfortunate thing about this world is that the good habits are much easier to give up than the bad ones.
- W. Somerset Maugham
(Keywords: Habits, World)

Any nation that thinks more of its ease and comfort than its freedom will soon lose its freedom; and the ironical thing about it is that it will lose its ease and comfort too.
- W. Somerset Maugham
(Keywords: Comfort, Freedom, Nation, Will)

Anyone can tell the truth, but only very few of us can make epigrams.
- W. Somerset Maugham
(Keywords: Truth, Epigrams)

At a dinner party one should eat wisely but not too well, and talk well but not too wisely.
- W. Somerset Maugham
(Keywords: Party, Talk)

Beauty is an ecstasy; it is as simple as hunger. There is really nothing to be said about it. It is like the perfume of a rose: you can smell it and that is all.
- W. Somerset Maugham
(Keywords: Beauty, Ecstasy, Hunger, Nothing)

Considering how foolishly people act and how pleasantly they prattle, perhaps it would be better for the world if they talked more and did less.
- W. Somerset Maugham
(Keywords: People, Act, World)

Death doesn't affect the living because it has not happened yet. Death doesn't concern the dead because they have ceased to exist.
- W. Somerset Maugham
(Keywords: Death, Concern, Living)

Death is a very dull, dreary affair, and my advice to you is to have nothing whatsoever to do with it.
- W. Somerset Maugham
(Keywords: Death, Advice, Nothing)

Every production of an artist should be the expression of an adventure of his soul.
- W. Somerset Maugham
(Keywords: Soul, Adventure, Artist, Expression, Production)

Excess on occasion is exhilarating. It prevents moderation from acquiring the deadening effect of a habit.
- W. Somerset Maugham
(Keywords: Habit, Effect, Excess, Moderation)

Few misfortunes can befall a boy which bring worse consequence than to have a really affectionate mother.
- W. Somerset Maugham
(Keywords: Mother)

Habits in writing as in life are only useful if they are broken as soon as they cease to be advantageous.
- W. Somerset Maugham
(Keywords: Life, Habits, Writing)

Have common sense and stick to the point.
- W. Somerset Maugham
(Keywords: Common sense)

I can imagine no more comfortable frame of mind for the conduct of life than a humorous resignation.
- W. Somerset Maugham
(Keywords: Life, Mind, Resignation)

I made up my mind long ago that life was too short to do anything for myself that I could pay others to do for me.
- W. Somerset Maugham
(Keywords: Life, Mind)

I would sooner read a time-table or a catalogue than nothing at all. They are much more entertaining than half the novels that are written.
- W. Somerset Maugham
(Keywords: Time, Nothing)

I'll give you my opinion of the human race in a nutshell... their heart's in the right place, but their head is a thoroughly inefficient organ.
- W. Somerset Maugham
(Keywords: Heart, Opinion, Race, Right)

If a nation values anything more than freedom, it will lose its freedom, and the irony of it is that if it is comfort or money that it values more, it will lose that too.
- W. Somerset Maugham
(Keywords: Money, Values, Comfort, Freedom, Irony, Nation, Will)

If you don't change your beliefs, your life will be like this forever. Is that good news?
- W. Somerset Maugham
(Keywords: Change, Life, Beliefs, News, Will)

If you want to eat well in England, eat three breakfasts.
- W. Somerset Maugham
(Keywords: England, Want)

Imagination grows by exercise, and contrary to common belief, is more powerful in the mature than in the young.
- W. Somerset Maugham
(Keywords: Imagination, Belief, Exercise)

Impropriety is the soul of wit.
- W. Somerset Maugham
(Keywords: Soul, Wit)

In Hollywood, the women are all peaches. It makes one long for an apple occasionally.
- W. Somerset Maugham
(Keywords: Women, Hollywood)

In the country the darkness of night is friendly and familiar, but in a city, with its blaze of lights, it is unnatural, hostile and menacing. It is like a monstrous vulture that hovers, biding its time.
- W. Somerset Maugham
(Keywords: Time, Country, Darkness, Night)

It is an illusion that youth is happy, an illusion of those who have lost it.
- W. Somerset Maugham
(Keywords: Illusion, Youth)

It is not true that suffering ennobles the character; happiness does that sometimes, but suffering for the most part, makes men petty and vindictive.
- W. Somerset Maugham
(Keywords: Happiness, Men, Character, Suffering)

It is not wealth one asks for, but just enough to preserve one's dignity, to work unhampered, to be generous, frank and independent.
- W. Somerset Maugham
(Keywords: Work, Wealth, Dignity)

It is salutary to train oneself to be no more affected by censure than by praise.
- W. Somerset Maugham
(Keywords: Censure, Praise)

It is unsafe to take your reader for more of a fool than he is.
- W. Somerset Maugham
(Keywords: Fool)

It is well known that Beauty does not look with a good grace on the timid advances of Humour.
- W. Somerset Maugham
(Keywords: Beauty, Grace)

It seems that the creative faculty and the critical faculty cannot exist together in their highest perfection.
- W. Somerset Maugham
(Keywords: Perfection)

It was such a lovely day I thought it a pity to get up.
- W. Somerset Maugham
(Keywords: Thought, Day, Pity)

It wasn't until late in life that I discovered how easy it is to say "I don't know."
- W. Somerset Maugham
(Keywords: Life)

It's a funny thing about life; if you refuse to accept anything but the best, you very often get it.
- W. Somerset Maugham
(Keywords: Funny, Life)

It's no good trying to keep up old friendships. It's painful for both sides. The fact is, one grows out of people, and the only thing is to face it.
- W. Somerset Maugham
(Keywords: People, Fact, Old, Trying)

It's very hard to be a gentleman and a writer.
- W. Somerset Maugham
(Keywords: Gentleman, Writer)

Let us develop the resources of our land, call forth its powers, build up its institutions, promote all its great interests, and see whether we also, in our day and generation, may not perform something worthy to be remembered.
- W. Somerset Maugham
(Keywords: Day, Land, May)

Like all weak men he laid an exaggerated stress on not changing one's mind.
- W. Somerset Maugham
(Keywords: Men, Mind, Stress)

Love is only a dirty trick played on us to achieve continuation of the species.
- W. Somerset Maugham
(Keywords: Love)

Marriage is a very good thing, but I think it's a mistake to make a habit out of it.
- W. Somerset Maugham
(Keywords: Marriage, Mistake, Habit)

Men have an extraordinarily erroneous opinion of their position in nature; and the error is ineradicable.
- W. Somerset Maugham
(Keywords: Men, Nature, Error, Opinion)

Money is like a sixth sense without which you cannot make a complete use of the other five.
- W. Somerset Maugham
(Keywords: Money, Sense)

Money is the string with which a sardonic destiny directs the motions of its puppets.
- W. Somerset Maugham
(Keywords: Money, Destiny)

My own belief is that there is hardly anyone whose sexual life, if it were broadcast, would not fill the world at large with surprise and horror.
- W. Somerset Maugham
(Keywords: Life, Belief, Horror, World)

No egoism is so insufferable as that of the Christian with regard to his soul.
- W. Somerset Maugham
(Keywords: Soul, Christian)

Old age has its pleasures, which, though different, are not less than the pleasures of youth.
- W. Somerset Maugham
(Keywords: Age, Old, Youth)

Old age is ready to undertake tasks that youth shirked because they would take too long.
- W. Somerset Maugham
(Keywords: Age, Old, Youth)

Only a mediocre person is always at his best.
- W. Somerset Maugham

People ask for criticism, but they only want praise.
- W. Somerset Maugham
(Keywords: People, Criticism, Praise, Want)



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