Quotations by Yeats, William Butler


Too long a sacrifice
Can make a stone of the heart.
O when may it suffice?

William Butler Yeats (1865-1939) Irish poet and dramatist
“Easter 1916” (4), Michael Robartes and the Dancer (1921)
Added on 1-Feb-04 | Last updated 16-Mar-15
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Turning and turning in the widening gyre
The falcon cannot hear the falconer;
Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,
The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
The best lack all conviction, while the worst
Are full of passionate intensity.

William Butler Yeats (1865-1939) Irish poet and dramatist
“The Second Coming,” l.1-8 (1920)
Added on 1-Feb-04 | Last updated 2-Nov-17
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Things said or done long years ago,
Or things I did not do or say
But thought that I might say or do,
Weigh me down, and not a day
But something is recalled,
My conscience or my vanity appalled.

William Butler Yeats (1865-1939) Irish poet and dramatist
“Vacillation,” The Winding Stair and Other Poems (1933)
Added on 28-Sep-15 | Last updated 28-Sep-15
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More quotes by Yeats, William Butler

Things said or done long years ago,
Or things I did not do or say
But thought that I might say or do,
Weigh me down, and not a day
But something is recalled,
My conscience or my vanity appalled.

William Butler Yeats (1865-1939) Irish poet and dramatist
“Vacillation” (1933)
Added on 31-Dec-13 | Last updated 31-Dec-13
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Too long a sacrifice
Can make a stone of the heart.
O when may it suffice?

William Butler Yeats (1865-1939) Irish poet and dramatist
“Easter 1916,” l. 57–59
Added on 24-Jan-08 | Last updated 24-Jan-08
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Think where man’s glory most begins and ends,
And say my glory was I had such friends.

William Butler Yeats (1865-1939) Irish poet and dramatist
“The Municipal Gallery Revisited,” l.54–55 (1938)
Added on 1-Feb-04 | Last updated 1-Feb-04
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Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire.

William Butler Yeats (1865-1939) Irish poet and dramatist
(Attributed)
Added on 1-Feb-04 | Last updated 1-Feb-04
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The problem with some people is that when they aren’t drunk, they’re sober.

William Butler Yeats (1865-1939) Irish poet and dramatist
(Attributed)
Added on 12-Jul-13 | Last updated 12-Jul-13
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I have believed the best of every man,
And find that to believe it is enough
To make a bad man show him at his best,
Or even a good man swing his lantern higher.

Yeats - believe the best - wist_info quote

William Butler Yeats (1865-1939) Irish poet and dramatist
Deirdre (1907)
Added on 30-Dec-15 | Last updated 30-Dec-15
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I hate journalists. There is nothing in them but tittering jeering emptiness. They have all made what Dante calls the Great Refusal, — that is they have ceased to be self-centered, have given up their individuality…. The shallowest people on the ridge of the earth.

William Butler Yeats (1865-1939) Irish poet and dramatist
Letter to Katharine Tynan (30 Aug 1888)
Added on 1-Sep-07 | Last updated 1-Sep-07
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