"Beauty is all about us, but how many are blind to it , people take little pleasure in the natural and quiet and simple things of life,"

            Pablo Casals


"One does not see anything until one sees its beauty."

Oscar Wilde (1889)


"Man is hungry for beauty. There is a void."

Oscar Wilde, (1889)


"Beauty is unbearable, drives us to despair, offering us for a minute the glimpse of an eternity that we should like to stretch out over the whole of time."

-Albert Camus


"The three wishes of every man: to be healthy, to be rich by honest means, and to be beautiful."



"Nothing is more beautiful than to know everything."



"beauty is a sacred thing....only rarely does an evil soul dwell in a beautiful body, and so outward beauty is a true sign of inner can be said that in some manner the good and the beautiful are identical, especially in the human body. and the proximate cause of physical beauty is, in my opinion, the beauty of the soul."

Baldassare Castiglione 1561


"Beauty evokes wonderment, delicious longing and trembling with delight, so when you see that you yourself are beautiful within, what do you feel! What is the Dionysiac exultation that thrills through your being? The surging upwards of your psyche? These are the emotions of someone enchanted by the spell of love."



"The hunger for beauty is still a legitimate appetite."

Mario Vargas Llosa 


"Beauty and folly are old companions."

-Ben Franklin


"God is Beauty.
Beauty will save us."



"It is told that once Anada, the beloved disciple of the Buddha, saluted his master and said: "Half of the holy life, O master, is friendship with the beautiful, association with the beautiful, communion with the beautiful." "Say no so, Ananda, say not so!" the master replied

   "It is not half the holy life;

           It is the whole of the holy life."

-Samyutta Nikaya


"The sense of truth no matter how subjective is necessary for the experience of beauty

            Lawrence Durrell


"(Yes I know. You haven't the slightest idea what I'm  talking about. Beauty has long since disappeared. It has slipped beneath the surface of the noise, the noise of words, sunk deep as Atlantis. The only thing left of it is the word, whose meaning loses clarity from year to year.)

-Milan Kundera


"All of us had been trained by Kelly Johnson and believed fanatically in his insistence that an airplane that looked beautiful would fly the same way."

-Ben Rich



"Beauty is the first test: there is no permanent place in this world for ugly mathematics."

-G.H. Hardy

A Mathematician's Apology


"From Beautiful images we shall go to Beautiful thoughts...from Beautiful thoughts to a Beautiful life and from a Beautiful life to absolute Beauty."



"There must be a return to beauty and therefore, art must be beautiful, hopeful, and full of promise. It must lift the consciousness of all. It must inspire mankind to sense the limitless possibilities of the ever-evolving soul."

            Herman Raymond


"The complex problem of beauty is bound up with the problem of truth, and I cannot separate them. "

            John Farlelgh


"I cannot say often enough how much I value beauty as a quality that gives power and takes first place in human relations; appears in the foreground, seduces and prepossesses our judgments, exercises great authority, and is marvelously impressive."

-Michel De Montaigne



"There in our very nature a very radical and widespread tendency to observe beauty, and to value it. No account of the principles of the mind can be at all adequate that passes over so conspicuous a faculty."

-George Santayana


"Cary Grant once warned the then young director Peter Bogdanovich, who was at the time living with Cybill Shepherd, to stop telling people he was in love. "And above all," Grant warned, "stop telling them you're happy." When Bogdanovich asked why, Cary Grant answered "because they're not in love, and they're not happy.....Just remember, Peter, people do not like beautiful people."

New York Times Oct 23,2005


"Everything which originates from pure love is lit with the radiance of beauty. "

            Simone Weil


"Beauty is a greater recommendation than any letter of introduction."




"Beauty itself is a gospel, a radiance that encircles the world like a halo."

     Ruth Harwood


"Philosophers ponder it and pornographers proffer it. Asked why people desire physical beauty, Aristotle said, "No one that is not blind could ask that question." Beauty ensnares hearts, captures minds, and stirs up emotional wildfires. From Plato to pinups, images of human beauty have catered to a limitless desire to see and imagine an ideal human form.

   But we live in the age of ugly beauty, when beauty is morally suspect and ugliness has a gritty allure. Beauty is equal parts flesh and imagination: we imbue it with out dreams, saturate it with our longings. But to spin this another way, reverence for beauty is just an escape from reality, it is the perpetual adolescent in us refusing to accept a flawed world. We wave it away with a cliché, "Beauty is in the eye of the beholder," meaning that beauty is whatever pleases us (with the subtext that it is inexplicable). But defined this way, beauty is meaningless-as Gertrude Stein once said about her childhood home, Oakland, California, "There is no there there."

Nancy Etcoff

Survival of the Pettiest


"How beautiful upon the mountains,
How beautiful upon the downs,
How beautiful in the village post-office
On the pavements of towns-
How beautiful in the huge print of newspapers,
Beautiful while telegraph wires hum,
While telephone bells wildly jingle,
The news that peace has come-
That peace has come at last-that all wars cease.
How beautiful upon the mountains are the footsteps
Of the messengers of peace!"

            Alice Duer Miller
            The White Cliffs


"O, she doth teach the torches to burn bright!
It seems she hangs upon the cheek of night
Like a rich jewel in an Ethiop's ear;
Beauty too rich for use , for earth too dear! "
So shows a snowy dove trooping with crows,
as yonder lady 0' er her fellows shows.
The measure dove , I 'wi11 watch her place of stand,
And, touching hers, make blessed my rude hand.
Did my heart love till now? Forswear it, sight!
For I ne'er saw true beauty till this night."

            Romeo from Romeo and Juliet


"So perhaps the old tri-unity of Truth, Goodness and Beauty is not simply the decorous and antiquated formula it seemed to us at the time of our self-confident materialistic youth. "



"Justice, truth, and beauty are sisters and comrades. With three such beautiful words we have no need to look for any others. "

            Simone Weil



"Beauty-and let us not forget that I am speaking of beauty as of strength from every point of view, physical, intellectual and moral-is not a nullity; the correlative of strength it is a virtue, a power, an I-know-not-what of which it is easier to point out the action than define the essence....Beauty in women is more efficacious than strength in men, given that, as a rule, beauty leads strength..."

Pierre-Joseph Proudhon


"Beauty is a terrible and frightening thing. It is terrible because it has not been fathomed, for God makes nothing but riddles . "



"Beauty is a witch."

Shakespeare Much Ado About Nothing,


"There is nothing so lovely as to be beautiful. Beauty is a gift of God and we should cherish it as such."

Marie De Sevigne (1626-1696)


"Beauty is mysterious as well as terrible. God and the Devil are fighting there, and the battlefield is the human heart."



"Everyone hated him, but they all coveted his sparkling smile, and more than suspected that all that most people really long for in their heart of hearts, is the unattainable and fleeting glow of personal beauty. "

Frederic Prokosch     
The Seven Who Fled      Harper & Bros. 1937


"A thing can only be beautiful if it is true."



'Let us,-not mince words; anything marvelous is always beautiful, in fact only the marvelous is beautiful."

            Andre Breton

"The marvels of creation remain as inexhaustible and magnificent as on the first day."

            Jean Picart Le Doux


"He who has looked at Beauty face to face, pledges himself to death. "

            (ancient Celtic statement)


"Beauty is from the antithetical self, and a woman can scarce but hate it, for not only does it demand a painful daily service, but it calls for the denial or the dissolution of the self."


"Seen as God sees them, all things are alive and beautiful."



"It is taken for granted that what is meant by the word beauty is known and understood by every one. And yet not only is this not known, but after whole mountains of books have been written on the subject by the most learned and profound thinkers, the question, What is beauty? remains to this day quite unsolved, and in each new work on aesthetics is answered in a new way."

            Leo Tolstoy


"In Beauty we are united 

Through Beauty we pray

With Beauty we conquer'"

            Nicholas Roerich


"The Teleology of the Universe is directed to the production of Beauty.....The type of Truth required for the final stretch of Beauty is a discovery and not a recapitulation....Apart from Beauty, Truth is neither good, nor bad....Truth matters because of Beauty."

            Alfred North Whitehead
            Adventures of Ideas


"God is beauty.""

            St. Francis of Assisi


"And if, my dear Socrates, man's life is ever worth the living, it is when he has attained this vision of the very soul of beauty. And once you have seen it, you will never be seduced again by the charm of gold, of dress, of comely boys, or lads just ripening to manhood; you will care nothing for the beauties that used to take your breath away and kindle such a longing in you, and many others like you, Socrates, to be always at the side of the beloved and feasting your eyes upon him, so that you would be content, if it were possible, to deny yourself the grosser necessities of meat and drink, so long as you were with him. But if it were given to man to gaze on beauty's very self-unsullied, unalloyed, and freed from the moral taint that haunts the frailer loveliness of flesh and blood-if, I say, it were given to man to see the heavenly beauty face to face, would you call his, an unenviable life, whose eyes had been opened to the vision, and who had gazed upon it in true contemplation until it had become his own forever?...And remember that it is only when he discerns beauty itself through what makes it visible that a man will be quickened with the true, and not the seeming virtue-for it is virtue's self that quickens him, not virtue's semblance. And when he has brought forth and reared this perfect virtue, he shall be called the friend of God, and if ever it is given to man to put on immortality, it shall be given to him."

Diotima to Socrates


"Western ideals of female beauty are globalizing rapidly, a trend revealed in local variations in plastic surgery. Iranian women favor nasal surgery, Chinese women have eyelid enhancement and leg-lengthening, while in Fiji liposuction is favored. Television is the main carrier of the ideals. In Fiji television was introduced in 1995 and three years later the previously unrecorded condition of bulimia was afflicting 11.9 percent of teenage girls."

Kevin Rushby

Paradise: A History of the Idea That Rules The World



Book: "Encyclopedia of Aesthetics" ed in Chief Michael Kelly

Book: "The Quest for Human Beauty: An Illustrated History" by Julian Robinson

Book: "Venus in Exile" by Wendy Steiner

Book: "Peculiar Beauty: Three Centuries of Charmingly Absurd Advice" Ed. by Bonnie Downing

Book: "The Beauty Myth: How Images of Beauty are Used Against Women" by Naomi Wolf

Book: "Survival of the Prettiest: The Science of Beauty" by Nancy Etcoff

Book: "Inventing Beauty" by Teresa Jordan

Book: "Inventing Beauty: A History of the Innovations That Have Made Us Beautiful" by Teresa Riodan

Book: "History of Beauty" ed by Umberto Eco

Book: "Why beauty Is Truth: A History of Symmetry" by Ian Stewart


© 2007




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