"One measure of a civilization, either of an age or of a single individual, is what that age or person really wishes to do. A man'shope measures his civilization. The attainability of the hope measures, or may measure, the civilization of his nation and time."
"I knew very well that this hope was chimerical. I was like a pauper who mingles fewer tears with his dry bread if he tells himselfthat at any moment a stranger will bequeath to him his fortune. We must all, in order to make reality more tolerable, keep alive in us a few little follies."
"For women who do not love us, as for the "disappeared", knowing that we no longer have any hope does not prevent us form continuing to wait. We live on our guard, on watch; women whose son has gone asea on a dangerous exploration imagine at any minute, although it has long been certain that he has perished, that he will enter, miraculously saved, and healthy."
"Hope is the most sensitive part of a poor wretch's soul; whoever raises it only to torment him is behaving like the executioners in Hell who, they say, incessantly renew old wounds and concentrate their attention on that area of it that is already lacerated."
"Each say following another, either hastening or putting off our death--what pleasure does it bring? I count that man worthless whois cheered by empty hopes. No, a noble man must either live or die well."
"What means the fact--which is so common, so universal--that some soul that has lost all hope for itself can inspire in another listening soul an infinite confidence in it, even while it is expressing its despair?"