Giacomo Leopardi

29 Jun 1798 // 14 Jun 1837
Poet / Philosopher


Things Said About Us in Our Absence (1)

We are seldom right to consider ourselves offended by things said about us in our absence or with no intention that they should come to our ears. Because if we try to remember and examine carefully o...

It is Very Undesirable to Speak a Great Deal about Oneself (2)

It is very undesirable to speak a great deal about oneself. But young people, when they have lively natures, and their spirits are raised above the common level, are the less able to keep themselves ...

Experience of the World Teaches Us to Appreciate rather than to Depreciate (3)

As he advances every day in his practical knowledge of life, a man loses some of that severity which makes it difficult for young people, always looking for perfection, and expecting to find it, and ...

Achievements and Suffering (4)

He who with trouble and sufferings, or even only after waiting a long time, has achieved something desirable, if he sees another achieve the same thing easily and quickly, does not in fact lose anyth...

To Change Opinion (5)

No one who, against other people's opinion, has predicted the outcome of something exactly as it then turns out, should think that those who opposed him, once they see what has happenned, will say he...

Pleasure and Boredom in Conversation (6)

We do not feel any lively and lasting pleasure in conversation, except in so far as we are allowed to talk about ourselves, and of the things which occupy us, or which relate to us in some way. Any o...

Secrets Are Never Kept (7)

One of the serious errors into which people fall every day is to believe that a secret of theirs is being kept. And not only the secret which they reveal in confidence, but even that which without th...

Majority and Minority (8)

In abstruse matters the minority always sees better than the majority, while the majority sees better in things that are evident. It is absurd in questions of metaphysics to bring into play what is c...

Old Age is the Supreme Evil (9)

Death is not an evil, because it frees us from all evils, and while it takes away good things, it takes away also the desire for them. Old age is the supreme evil, because it deprives us of all pleas...



On Anger: "For every minute you remain angry, you give up sixty seconds of peace of mind."
On Destiny: "Our destiny exercises its influence over us even when, as yet, we have not learned its nature: it is our future that lays down the law of our today."
Human, All Too Human
On Friendship: "A crowd is not company; and faces are but a gallery of pictures; and talk but a tinkling cymbal, where there is no love."