21 Important 'As I Lay Dying' Quotes From William Faulkner

Willian Faulkner is a famous author.
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The American author William Faulkner wrote 'As I Lay Dying'.

This book was his fifth novel and was considered to be one of the best during the 20th century literature period. This novel follows the stream of consciousness method of writing, and the chapters vary in length too.

The specialty of this novel is that it is narrated from 15 different people’s points of view. The whole story revolves around Addie Bundren’s death and how the family goes through life’s challenges. At the same time, they wanted to fulfill Addie Bundren’s last wish to be buried in her hometown of Jefferson, Mississippi. William Faulkner uses various techniques to present this novel while every chapter is narrated by one character. In the beginning, Addie is alive but very ill, and later on, she passes away, which unfolds another half of the story.

Though the novel received a lot of appreciation for its tone and writing style, it was also banned. It was taken out from the school curriculum by the One Kentucky district for portraying God’s name in vain, obscenity, and mentions of abortion. Though, this novel is still widely read by many adults for its complexity in emotions and writing style. Here are 21 Important ‘As I Lay Dying’ quotes from William Faulkner, you'll be surprised by many of the book’s misconceptions.

If you like this article, take a look at William Faulkner quotes and John Steinbeck quotes.

Best 'As I Lay Dying' Quotes – William Faulkner

'As I Lay Dying' is one of the most famous William Faulkner texts. The novel is enjoyed by students of literature all over the world. Here are some of the best quotes from 'As I Lay Dying' from some of the most prominent 'As I Lay Dying' characters for your perusal.

'As I Lay Dying' is one of his most famous works.

1. “I don't know what I am. I don't know if I am or not. Jewel knows he is . . . Yet the wagon is, because when the wagon is was, Addie Bundren will not be. And Jewel is, so Addie Bundren must be. And I then must be . . ..”

- William Faulkner, ‘As I Lay Dying’.

2. “...the reason for living was to get ready to stay dead a long time.”

- William Faulkner, ‘As I Lay Dying’.

3. “We go on, with a motion so soporific, so dreamlike as to be uninferant of progress, as though time and not space were decreasing between us and it.”

- Darl, William Faulkner, ‘As I Lay Dying’.

4. “I knew that nobody but a luckless man could ever need a doctor in the face of a cyclone.”

- Peabody, William Faulkner, ‘As I Lay Dying’.

5. “Jewel, fifteen feet behind me, looking straight ahead, steps in a single stride through the window. Still staring straight ahead, his pale eyes like wood set into his wooden face, he crosses the floor in four strides with the rigid gravity of a cigar store Indian dressed in patched overalls and endued with life from the hips down.”

- William Faulkner, ‘As I Lay Dying’.

6. “Sometimes I lose faith in human nature for a time; I am assailed by doubt.”

- William Faulkner, ‘As I Lay Dying’.

7. “I believe in God, God. God, I believe in God.”

- William Faulkner, ‘As I Lay Dying’.

8. “It takes two people to make you, and one people to die. That’s how the world is going to end.”

- William Faulkner, ‘As I Lay Dying’.

Fascinating 'As I Lay Dying' Quotations

If you are enjoy quality writing, then here is a window of opportunity for you. Read on to enjoy some of the best 'As I Lay Dying' Darl quotes as well as from other prominent characters in the book.

9. “See what a good one I am making for you. I told him to go somewhere else.”

- William Faulkner, ‘As I Lay Dying’.

10. “People to whom sin is just a matter of words, to them salvation is just words too.”

- William Faulkner, ‘As I Lay Dying’.

11. “You cannot swim for new horizons until you have courage to lose sight of the shore.”

- William Faulkner, ‘As I Lay Dying’.

12. “Always dream and shoot higher than you know you can do. Do not bother just to be better than your contemporaries or predecessors. Try to be better than yourself.”

- William Faulkner, ‘As I Lay Dying’.

13. “The quilt is drawn up to her chin, hot as it is, with only her two hands and her face outside. She is propped on the pillow, with her head raised so she can see out the window, and we can hear him every time he takes up the adze or the saw. If we were deaf we could almost watch her face and hear him, see him. Her face is wasted away so that the bones draw just under the skin in white lines. Her eyes are like two candles when you watch them gutter down into the sockets of iron candlesticks...But the eternal and the everlasting salvation and grace is not upon her.”

- William Faulkner, ‘As I Lay Dying’.

14. “Life was created in the valleys. It blew up onto the hills on the old terrors, the old lusts, the old despairs. That’s why you must walk up the hills so you can ride down.”

- William Faulkner, ‘As I Lay Dying’.

15. “The wagon moves; the mules’ ears begin to bob. Behind us, above the house, motionless in tall and soaring circles, they diminish and disappear.”

- William Faulkner, ‘As I Lay Dying’.

16. “I give that money. I thought that if I could do without eating, my sons could do without riding. God knows I did”

- William Faulkner, ‘As I Lay Dying’.

Amazing 'As I Lay Dying' Book Quotes

Whether it be a son, daughter, mother, brother, sister or father, the book covers various facets of human relationships and in a way touches your heart. Here are some of the best 'As I Lay Dying' quotes for you. Missing these would be a sin and your loss, so do given them a reading.

17. “It was not her. I was there, looking. I saw. I thought it was her, but it was not. It was not my mother. She went away when the other one laid down in her bed and drew the quilt up. She went away. “Did she go as far as town?” “She went further than town.” “Did all those rabbits and possums go further than town.”

- William Faulkner, ‘As I Lay Dying’.

18. “My mother is a fish.”

- William Faulkner, ‘As I Lay Dying’.

19. “Sometimes I think it aint none of us pure crazy and aint none of us pure sane until the balance of us talks him that-a-way. It’s like it aint so much what a fellow does, but it’s the way the majority of folks is looking at him when he does it.”

- Cash Bundren, ‘As I Lay Dying’.

20. “What you got in you aint nothing to what I got in me, even if you are a woman too.”

- William Faulkner, ‘As I Lay Dying’.

21. “I could just remember how my father used to say that the reason for living was to get ready to stay dead a long time…”

- William Faulkner, ‘As I Lay Dying’.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly quotes for everyone to enjoy! If you liked our suggestions for 'As I Lay Dying' quotes, then why not take a look at [Hemingway love quotes] and [Thomas Wolfe quotes].

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