Life is a disease temporarily relieved every sixteen hours, by sleep. The complete cure: death.
[Vivre est une maladie dont le sommeil nous soulage toutes les seize heures. C’est un palliatif. La Mort est le remède.]
Products of Perfected Civilization [Produits de la Civilisation Perfectionée], Part 1 “Maxims and Thoughts [Maximes et Pensées],” ch. 2, ¶ 113 (1795) [tr. Parmée (2003), ¶ 91]
(Source (French)). Alternate translations:
Life is a malady in which sleep soothes us every sixteen hours; it is a palliation; death is the remedy.
[Ballou, comp. (1872)]
Living is a disease from the pains of which sleep eases us every sixteen hours; sleep is but a palliative, death alone is the cure.
[tr. Hutchinson (1902)]
Life is a disease from which sleep gives us alleviation every sixteen hours. Sleep is a palliative, Death is the remedy.
[tr. Mathers (1926)]
Living is an ailment which is relieved every sixteen hours by sleep. A palliative Death is the cure.
[tr. Merwin (1969)]
To live is a malady from which sleep vouchsafes us relief every sixteen hours. That is a palliative. The remedy is death.
[tr. Pearson (1973)]
To live is a sickness that sleep comforts every sixteen hours. It's a palliative. Death is the cure.
Life is a sickness to which sleep provides relief every sixteen hours. It's a palliative. The remedy is death.
Added on 6-Sep-23 | Last updated 6-Sep-23
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