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Nathaniel Hawthorne Quotes


Nathaniel Hawthorne Born in Salem on 4th July 1804 Nathaniel Hawthorne came from a long line of puritans ever since his great great great grandfather William Hathorne emigrated from England. William became a judge in Salem and woe betide any poor soul ever to stand trial in his court as he garnered a reputation for harsh sentencing. Williams son John Hathorne became notorious as the judge who never repented his actions after the infamous Salem witch trials. Nathaniels father (Nathaniel Snr) followed an old Salem tradition by choosing a life at sea and eventually captained a brig called Nabby which saw him die at the wheel from yellow fever when young Nathaniel Hawthorne was just four years old. To this day Salem is still infamously remembered for the witch trials and Nathaniel carried a haunted fascination of his ancestry with him that influenced him to focus much of his best novels on ladies who suffered at that hands of their puritanical circumstances. Hawthornes writing was steeped in dark romanticism and his best works stemmed from the psychological effects of sin, guilt and repentance. He hit a purple patch in the decade beginning 1850 when he penned his most successful books to date. The romantic novels The Scarlet Letter (1850), The House of the Seven Gables (1851), The Blithedale Romance (1852) and The Marble Faun (1860) were to propel Hawthorne to perpetual fame and to be lauded as one of the greatest American novelist of his time. He started off as a short story writer but soon progressed to novels and he even wrote a biography of his lifelong friend Franklin Pierce who was the 14th president of the United States. As with all great writers comes also great quotes, so here is my compilation of 12 of the best Nathaniel Hawthorne quotes.
  • Mini Bio
  • Name: Nathaniel Hawthorne
  • Born: 4th July 1804, Salem, Massachusetts, U.S.
  • Died: 19th May 1864, Plymouth, New Hampshire, U.S.
  • Occupation: Novelist and writer
  • Alma mater: Bowdoin College located in Brunswick, Maine, U.S.
  • Inspiration: The puritanical age of subservience especially of women
  • Trivia: Nathaniel was born with the surname Hathorne but added the 'w' to disassociate himself from his ancestry which included his great great grandfather who was the judge at the infamous Salem witch trials

"Easy reading is damn hard writing"

Nathaniel Hawthorne

"Words - so innocent and powerless as they are, as standing in a dictionary, how potent for good and evil they become in the hands of one who knows how to combine them"

Nathaniel Hawthorne

"Happiness in this world, when it comes, comes incidentally. Make it the object of pursuit, and it leads us a wild-goose chase, and is never attained"

Nathaniel Hawthorne

"The world owes all its onward impulses to men ill at ease. The happy man inevitably confines himself within ancient limits"

Nathaniel Hawthorne

"I have not lived, but only dreamed about living"

Nathaniel Hawthorne

"Dream as it is, is more powerful than a thousand realities"

Nathaniel Hawthorne

"Moonlight is sculpture; Sunlight is painting"

Nathaniel Hawthorne

"Happiness is not found in things you possess, but in what you have the courage to release"

Nathaniel Hawthorne

"Economics and art are strangers"

Nathaniel Hawthorne

"The thing you set your mind on is the thing you ultimately become"

Nathaniel Hawthorne

"Echo is the voice of a reflection in a mirror"

Nathaniel Hawthorne

"To do nothing is the way to be nothing"

Nathaniel Hawthorne

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Nathaniel Hawthorne quote