Hoyt & Roberts, comps. Hoyt’s New Cyclopedia of Practical Quotations. 1922.


Oh c’etait le bon temps, j’etais bien malheureuse.
Oh, that was a good time, when I was unhappy.
Sophie Arnould, the actress, accredited with the phrase. Quoted as hers by Rulhière—Épître à Monsieur de Cha—.

Ah, nothing comes to us too soon but sorrow.
Bailey—Festus. Sc. Home.

Night brings out stars as sorrow shows us truths.
Bailey—Festus. Sc. Water and Wood. Midnight.

In omni adversitate fortunæ, infelicissimum genus est infortunii fuisse felicem.
In every adversity of fortune, to have been happy is the most unhappy kind of misfortune.
Boethius—De Consolatione Philosophiæ. Bk. II. Pt. IV.

Sorrow preys upon
Its solitude, and nothing more diverts it
From its sad visions of the other world
Than calling it at moments back to this.
The busy have no time for tears.
Byron—The Two Foscari. Act IV. Sc. 1.

Ah, don’t be sorrowful, darling,
And don’t be sorrowful, pray;
Taking the year together, my dear,
There isn’t more night than day.
Alice Cary—Don’t be Sorrowful, Darling.

For of Fortune’s sharpe adversite,
The worste kynde of infortune is this,
A man to hav bent in prosperite,
And it remembren whan it passed is.
Chaucer—Canterbury Tales. Troylus and Crysseyde. Bk. III. L. 1,625.

Men die, but sorrow never dies;
The crowding years divide in vain,
And the wide world is knit with ties
Of common brotherhood in pain.
Susan Coolidge—The Cradle Tomb in Westminster Abbey.

The path of sorrow, and that path alone,
Leads to the lands where sorrow is unknown
Cowper—To an Afflicted Protestant Lady.

Nessun maggior dolore
Che ricordarsi del tempo felice
Nella miseria.
There is no greater sorrow
Than to be mindful of the happy time
In misery.
Dante—Inferno. V. 121. Longfellow’s Trans. Same in Fortinguerra—Ricciardetto. Ch. XI. St. 83. Marino—Adone. Ch. XIV. St. 100.

Mes malheurs sont comblés, mais ma vertu me reste.
My sorrows are overwhelming, but my virtue is left to me.
Ducis—Hamlet. Last lines.

In the bitter waves of woe,
Beaten and tossed about
By the sullen winds which blow
From the desolate shores of doubt.
Washington Gladden—Ultima Veritas.

Ach! aus dem Glück entwickelt oft sich Schmerz.
Alas! sorrow from happiness is oft evolved.
Goethe—Die Natürliche Tochter. II. 3. 17.

Wer nie sein Brod mit Thränen ass,
Wer nicht die kummervollen Nächte
Auf seinem Bette weinend sass,
Der kennt euch nicht, ihr himmlischen Mächte.
Who never ate his bread in sorrow,
Who never spent the darksome hours
Weeping, and watching for the morrow,—
He knows ye not, ye gloomy Powers.
Goethe—Wilhelm Meister. Bk. II. Ch. XIII.

Since sorrow never comes top late,
And happiness too swiftly flies.
Gray—Ode on a Distant Prospect of Eton College.

I walked a mile with Sorrow
And ne’er a word said she;
But, oh, the things I learned from her
When Sorrow walked with me.
Robert Browning Hamilton—Along the Road.

A happier lot were mine,
If I must lose thee, to go down to earth,
For I shall have no hope when thou art gone,—
Nothing but sorrow. Father have I none,
And no dear mother.
Homer—Iliad. Bk. VI. L. 530. Bryant’s trans.

Sinks my sad soul with sorrow to the grave.
Homer—Iliad. Bk. XXII. L. 543. Pope’s trans.

Oderunt hilarem tristes tristemque jocosi.
The sorrowful dislike the gay, and the gay the sorrowful.
Horace—Epistles. I. 18. 89.

When sparrows build and the leaves break forth
My old sorrow wakes and cries.
Jean Ingelow—Song of Old Love.

Hang sorrow, care ’ll kill a cat.
Ben Jonson—Every Man in his Humour. Act I. Sc. 3.

O, sorrow!
Why dost borrow
Heart’s lightness from the merriment of May?
Keats—Endymion. Bk. IV.

To Sorrow
I bade good-morrow,
And thought to leave her far away behind;
But cheerly, cheerly,
She loves me dearly:
She is so constant to me, and so kind.
Keats—Endymion. Bk. IV.

How beautiful, if sorrow had not made
Sorrow more beautiful than Beauty’s self.
Keats—Hyperion. Bk. I. L. 36.

Our days and nights
Have sorrows woven with delights.
Malherbe—To Cardinal Richelieu. Longfellow’s Trans.

Day-thoughts feed nightly dreams;
And sorrow tracketh wrong,
As echo follows song.
Harriet Martineau—Hymn.

A grace within his soul hath reigned
Which nothing else can bring;
Thank God for all that I have gained
By that high sorrowing.
Monckton Milnes (Lord Houghton).

Weep on; and, as thy sorrows flow,
I’ll taste the luxury of woe.

Ecoute, moribonde! Il n’est pire douleur
Qu’un souvenir heureux dans les jour de malheur.
Listen, dying one! There is no worse sorrow than remembering happiness in the day of sorrow.
Alfred de Musset—Le Saule. (The opposite opinion in his Un Souvenir.)

Con dolor rimembrando il tempo lieto.
With sorrow remembering happy times.
Petrarch—Canzone. 46.

Sorrows remembered sweeten present joy.
Pollok—Course of Time. Bk. I. L. 464.

Do not cheat thy Heart and tell her,
“Grief will pass away,
Hope for fairer times in future,
And forget to-day.”
Tell her, if you will, that sorrow
Need not come in vain;
Tell her that the lesson taught her
Far outweighs the pain.
Adelaide A. Procter—Friend Sorrow.

Die Leiden sind wie die Gewitterwolken; in der Ferne sehen sie schwartz aus, über uns kaum grau.
Sorrows are like thunderclouds—in the distance they look black, over our heads scarcely gray.
Jean Paul Richter—Hesperus. XIV.

Kurz ist der Schmerz, und ewig ist die Freude!
Brief is sorrow, and endless is joy.
Schiller—Die Jungfrau von Orleans. V. 14. 44.

Quæ fuit durum pati,
Miminisse dulce est.
Those things which were hard to bear, are sweet to remember.
Seneca—Hercules Furens. 656.

Curæ leves loquuntur, ingentes stupent.
Light sorrows speak, but deeper ones are dumb.
Seneca—Hippolytus. 607. Thucydides. Bk. VII. Ch. LXXV. Given as from Æschylus. Compare Æschylus—Agamemnon. 860. Ovid—Metamorphoses. VI. 301–312. Herodotus. VII. 147; also III. 14.

Nulla dies mærore caret.
There is no day without sorrow.
Seneca—Troades. 77.

Wherever sorrow is, relief would be:
If you do sorrow at my grief in love,
By giving love, your sorrow and my grief were both extermin’d.
As You Like It. Act III. Sc. 5. L. 86.

When sorrows come, they come not single spies,
But in battalions.
Hamlet. Act IV. Sc. 5. L. 78.

’Tis better to be lowly born,
And range with humble livers in content,
Than to be perk’d up in a glistering grief,
And wear a golden sorrow.
Henry VIII. Act II. Sc. 3. L. 19.

I will instruct my sorrows to be proud.
King John. Act III. Sc. 1. L. 68.

Here I and sorrows sit:
Here is my throne, bid kings come bow to it.
King John. Act III. Sc. 1. L. 73.

Down, thou climbing sorrow.
King Lear. Act II. Sc. 4. L. 57.

Each new morn,
New widows howl, new orphans cry, new sorrows
Strike heaven on the face, that it resounds
As if it felt with Scotland and yell’d out
Like syllable of dolour.
Macbeth. Act IV. Sc. 3. L. 4.

Give sorrow words; the grief that does not speak
Whispers the o’er-fraught heart and bids it break.
Macbeth. Act IV. Sc. 3. L. 209.

Your cause of sorrow
Must not be measur’d by his worth, for then
It hath no end.
Macbeth. Act V. Sc. 8. L. 44.

This sorrow’s heavenly;
It strikes where it doth love.
Othello. Act V. Sc. 2. L. 21.

One sorrow never comes but brings an heir,
That may succeed as his inheritor.
Pericles. Act I. Sc. 4. L. 63.

Sorrow ends not when it seemeth done.
Richard II. Act I. Sc. 2. L. 61.

Joy, being altogether wanting,
It doth remember me the more of sorrow.
Richard II. Act III. Sc. 4. L. 13.

Sorrow breaks seasons and reposing hours,
Makes the night morning, and the noon-tide night.
Richard III. Act I. Sc. 4. L. 76.

Eighty odd years of sorrow have I seen,
And each hour’s joy wrecked with a week of teen.
Richard III. Act IV. Sc. 1. L. 96.

If sorrow can admit society,
Tell o’er your woes again by viewing mine.
Richard III. Act IV. Sc. 4. L. 38.

To weep with them that weep doth ease some deal;
But sorrow flouted at is double death.
Titus Andronicus. Act III. Sc. 1. L. 245.

I have, as when the sun doth light a storm,
Buried this sigh in wrinkle of a smile:
But sorrow, that is couch’d in seeming gladness,
Is like that mirth fate turns to sudden sadness.
Troilus and Cressida. Act I. Sc. 1. L. 37.

Forgive me, Valentine: if hearty sorrow
Be a sufficient ransom for offence,
I tender ’t here: I do as truly suffer,
As e’er I did commit.
Two Gentlemen of Verona. Act V. Sc. 4. L. 74.

Each time we love,
We turn a nearer and a broader mark
To that keen archer, Sorrow, and he strikes.
Alexander Smith—City Poems. A Boy’s Dream.

When sorrow sleepeth, wake it not,
But let it slumber on.
Miss M. A. Stodart—Song.

Time, thy name is sorrow, says the stricken
Heart of life, laid waste with wasting flame
Ere the change of things and thoughts requicken,
Time, thy name.
Swinburne—Time and Life. St. 1.

What shall be done for sorrow
With love whose race is run?
Where help is none to borrow,
What shall be done?
Swinburne—Wasted Love.

Joy was a flame in me
Too steady to destroy.
Lithe as a bending reed,
Loving the storm that sways her—
I found more joy in sorrow
Than you could find in joy.
Sara Teasdale—The Answer.

O sorrow, wilt thou rule my blood,
Be sometimes lovely, like a bride,
And put thy harsher moods aside,
If thou wilt have me wise and good.
Tennyson—In Memoriam. Pt. LVIII.

Smit with exceeding sorrow unto Death.
Tennyson—The Lover’s Tale. L. 597.

That a sorrow’s crown of sorrow is remembering happier things.
Tennyson—Locksley Hall. St. 38. Churton Collins, in Illustrations of Tennyson. P. 62, refers to Pindar—Pythian 4. 510, and Thucydides II. 44, as inspiring these lines.

When I was young, I said to Sorrow,
“Come and I will play with thee!”
He is near me now all day,
And at night returns to say,
“I will come again to-morrow—
I will come and stay with thee.”
Aubrey Thos. De Vere—Song. When I was Young I said to Sorrow.

Past sorrows, let us moderately lament them;
For those to come, seek wisely to prevent them.
John Webster—Duchess of Malfi. Act III. Sc. 2.

Sorrow is held the eldest child of sin.
John Webster—Duchess of Malfi. Act V. Sc. 5.

Where there is sorrow, there is holy ground.
Oscar Wilde—De Profundis.

Hang sorrow, care will kill a cat,
And therefore let’s be merry.

Some natural sorrow, loss, or pain,
That has been and may be again.
Wordsworth—The Solitary Reaper.

So joys remembered without wish or will
Sharpen the keenest edge of present ill.
Wordsworth—Sonnet on Captivity. VI. 172.