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100 Best Fernando Pessoa Quotes From The Portuguese Poet

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Fernando Pessoa is considered to be one of the greatest figures of Portuguese literature.

Pessoa's work brought Portuguese literature to the forefront of Europe. His work gained popularity all over Europe going as far as inspiring several poets and enthusiasts of literature.

Pessoa lived in Durban since the age of seven, where he became fluent in English in both reading and writing. Pessoa was as creative as one could be. He not only wrote under his own name but also wrote under approximately seventy-five other names. Three of those that stand out are Ricardo Reis, Alberto Caeiro, and Alvaro de Campos. During his lifetime he only released three poetry books in English. His first poetry book in Portuguese “Mensagem” was released in 1934. And shortly after the release of “Mensagem”, he passed away in 1935.

For more related content take a look at [Emily Dickenson quotes] and Keats quotes.

Quotes From Fernando Pessoa On Life

Best quotes by Fernando Pessoa on life and its challenges.

1. “To feel today what one felt yesterday isn’t to feel - it’s to remember today what was felt yesterday, to be today’s living corpse of what yesterday was lived and lost.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

2. “Direct experience is the evasion, or hiding place of those devoid of imagination.”

― Fernando Pessoa, ‘A Factless Autobiography’.

3. “Time, which grays hair and wrinkles faces, also withers violent affections, and much more quickly.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

4. “Given that we cannot know all the elements in a problem, we never can solve it.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

5. “Every man who deserves to be famous knows it is not worth the trouble.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

6. “Man shouldn’t be able to see his own face. That’s what’s most terrible. Nature gave him the possibility of not seeing it, as well as the incapacity of not seeing his own eyes.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

7. “I sleep and I unsleep. On the other side of me, beyond where I lie down, the silence of the house touches infinity. I hear time falling, drop by drop, and no falling drop is heard falling.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

8. “I will be what I want. But I will have to want what I’ll be. Success is in having success, not conditions for success.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

9. “In any spirit that isn’t deformed there is the belief in God. In any spirit that is not deformed there isn’t the belief in a particular God.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

10. “I seek and don’t find myself. I belong to chrysanthemum hours, neatly lined up in flowerpots.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

11. “As we wash our body so we should wash destiny, change life as we change clothes.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

14. “What I achieve is not the product of an act of my will but of my will’s surrender. I begin because I don’t have the strength to think; I finish because I don’t have the courage to quit.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

15. “Success consists in being successful, not in having potential for success. Any wide piece of ground is the potential site of a palace, but there’s no palace till it’s built.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

16. “Talking to people makes me feel like sleeping. Only my ghostly and imaginary friends, only the conversations I have in my dreams, are genuinely real and substantial.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

17. “I prefer to be taken seriously for what I’m not, remaining humanly unknown, with naturalness and all due respect.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

18. “To love is to tire of being alone; it is therefore a cowardice, a betrayal of ourselves.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

Famous Fernando Pessoa Quotes

Fernando Pessoa quotes are awe-inspiring.

Some of these famous quotes from Pessoa are something else!

19. “To think is to destroy. The very process of thought indicates it for the same thought, as thinking is decomposing.”

― Fernando Pessoa, ‘A Factless Autobiography’.

20. “The end is low, like all quantitative ends, personal or not, and it can be attained and verified.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

21. “To know nothing about yourself is to live. To know yourself badly is to think.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

22. “Whenever someone tells me he dreamed, I wonder if he realizes that he has never done anything but dream.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

23. “I sometimes think that I enjoy suffering. But the truth is I would prefer something else.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

24. “The sea with an end can be Greek or Roman: the endless sea is Portuguese.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

25. “Sometimes, when I wake up at night, I feel invisible hands weaving my destiny.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

26. “To know how to think with emotions and to feel with intellect.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

27. “I always live in the present. The future I can’t know. The past I no longer have.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

28. “There are no norms. All people are exceptions to a rule that doesn’t exist.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

29. “The first function of life is action, just as the first property of things is motion.”

― Fernando Pessoa, ‘The Education Of The Stoic’.

30. “One never lives so intensely as when one has been thinking hard.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

31. “Everyone has his vanity, and each one’s vanity is his forgetting that there are others with an equal soul.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

32. "There is no clever idea that can gain general acceptance without being mixed up with a little stupidity beforehand."

― Fernando Pessoa.

33. “I have all the conditions for happiness, save happiness. The conditions are detached from one another.”

― Fernando Pessoa, ‘The Education Of The Stoic’.

Inspirational Literature Quotes

Best quotes about literature and art that will inspire you!

34. “This world is for those who are born to conquer it, Not for those who dream that are able to conquer it, even if they’re right.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

35. “Art gives us the illusion of liberation from the sordid business of being.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

36. “The end of lower art is to please, the end of average art is to raise the top, the end of superior art is to free.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

37. “Why is art beautiful? Because it’s useless. Why is life ugly? Because it’s all ends and purposes and intentions.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

38. “To have opinions is to sell out to yourself. To have no opinions is to exist. To have every opinion is to be a poet.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

39. “To write is to forget. Literature is the pleasantest way of ignoring life.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

40. “Literature is the most agreeable way of ignoring life.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

41. “I’ve never done anything but dream. This, and this alone, has been the meaning of my life. My only real concern has been my inner life.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

42. “If I write what I feel, it’s to reduce the fever of feeling. What I confess is unimportant, because everything is unimportant.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

43. “I’ve written sentences whose sound, read out loud or silently, can only be of something that acquired absolute exteriority and a full-fledged soul.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

44. “I read and am liberated. I acquire objectivity. I cease being myself and so scattered.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

45. “When the right words were said, all was done; the rest was the sand that had always been.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

46. “These pages are not my confession; they’re my definition. And I feel, as I begin to write it, that I can write it with some semblance of truth.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

47. “I was a poet animated by philosophy, not a philosopher with poetic faculties”

― Fernando Pessoa.

48. “Whoever, when he dies, leaves on paper a beautiful line of poetry has left the heavens richer and the earth too.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

'The Book Of Disquiet' Quotes

Quotes from the book of disquiet are inspirational.

Fernando Pessoa quotes from 'The Book Of Disquiet'.

49. “There are ships sailing to many ports, but not a single one goes where life is not painful.”

― Fernando Pessoa, 'The Book Of Disquiet'.

50. “I’d woken up early, and I took a long time getting ready to exist.”

― Fernando Pessoa, ‘The Book Of Disquiet’.

51. “My soul is impatient with itself, as with a bothersome child; its restlessness keeps growing and is forever the same. Everything interests me, but nothing holds me.”

― Fernando Pessoa, ‘The Book Of Disquiet’.

52. “I wasn’t meant for reality, but life came and found me.”

― Fernando Pessoa, ‘The Book Of Disquiet’.

53. “We worship perfection because we can’t have it; if we had it, we would reject it. Perfection is inhuman, because humanity is imperfect.”

― Fernando Pessoa, ‘The Book Of Disquiet’.

54. “We never love anyone. What we love is the idea we have of someone. It’s our own concept—our own selves—that we love.”

― Fernando Pessoa, ‘The Book Of Disquiet’.

55. “I feel as if I’m always on the verge of waking up.”

― Fernando Pessoa, ‘The Book Of Disquiet’.

56. “My dreams are a stupid shelter, like an umbrella against lightning.”

― Fernando Pessoa, ‘The Book Of Disquiet’.

57. “I’m sick of everything, and of the everythingness of everything.”

― Fernando Pessoa, ‘The Book Of Disquiet’.

58. “A poem is the expression of ideas or feelings a language no one uses, because no one talks in verse.”

― Fernando Pessoa, ‘The Book Of Disquiet’.

59. “I don’t know what I feel or what I want to feel. I don’t know what to think or what I am.”

― Fernando Pessoa, ‘The Book Of Disquiet’.

60. “I carry my awareness of defeat like a banner of victory.”

― Fernando Pessoa, ‘The Book Of Disquiet’.

61. “Whether or not they exist we are slaves to our gods.”

― Fernando Pessoa, ‘The Book Of Disquiet’.

62. “Blessed are those who entrust their lives to no one.”

― Fernando Pessoa, ‘The Book Of Disquiet’.

63. “I know nothing and my heart aches.”

― Fernando Pessoa, ‘The Book Of Disquiet’.

64. “There are ships sailing to many ports, but not a single one goes to where life is not painful; nor is there a port of call where it is possible to forget.”

― Fernando Pessoa, ‘The Book Of Disquiet’.

65. “I realize that I was all error and deviation, that I never lived, that I existed only in so far as I filled time with consciousness and thought.”

― Fernando Pessoa, ‘The Book Of Disquiet’.

66. “Could it think, the heart would stop beating.”

― Fernando Pessoa, ‘The Book Of Disquiet’.

Fernando Pessoa Poem Quotes

Fernando Pessoa quotes from his poems.

67. “The earth is made of heaven.

The lie has no nest.

No one was ever lost.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

68. “Ah, it could be you, being me!

Have your joyful unconsciousness,

And the awareness of it!”

― Fernando Pessoa.

69. “Without madness what is man,

But a wholesome beast,

postponed corpse that begets?”

― Fernando Pessoa.

70. “The magical mirror in which I saw myself has been broken,

And only a piece of me I see in each fatal fragment

Only a piece of you and me!”

― Fernando Pessoa.

71. “I am nothing.

I’ll never be anything.

I couldn’t want to be something.

Apart from that, I have in me all the dreams in the world.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

72. “I have no ambitions nor desires

To be a poet is not my ambition,

It’s simply my way of being alone.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

73. “God gave the sea the danger and the abyss,

but it was in it that He mirrored the sky.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

74. “I am beginning to know myself. I do not exist.

I am the gap between what I want to be and others have done to me.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

75. “The poet is a pretender.

He pretends so completely,

that he even pretends that it is pain

the pain he really feels.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

76. “Life is what we make of it.

Travel is the traveler.

What we see isn’t what we see but what we are.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

Short Quotes

Some great short quotes by Fernando Pessoa.

77. “Faithful to the word given and the idea had.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

78. “Our personality should be impenetrable even to ourselves.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

79. “I lack the divine simplicity of being only what I appear to be.”

― Fernando Pessoa.    

80. “The slope takes you to the windmill, but effort takes you nowhere.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

81. “We are two abysses — a well staring at the sky.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

82. “Sailing is necessary, living is not necessary.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

83. “I don’t write in Portuguese. I write myself.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

84. “To choose ways of not acting was ever the concern and scruple of my life.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

85. “At first, it’s unfamiliar, then it strikes root.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

86. “Be what I think? But I think about being so many things!”

― Fernando Pessoa.

87. “Nature is the difference between the soul and God.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

88. “I take with me the conscience of defeat as a victory banner.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

89. “I’m a man for whom the outside world is an inner reality.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

90. “Teach nothing, for you still have everything to learn.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

91. “All is worthwhile if the soul is not small.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

92. “Not pleasure, not glory, not power: freedom, only freedom.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

93. “To narrate is to create, for living is just being lived.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

94. “I feel as if I’m always on the verge of waking up.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

95. “The chill of what I won’t feel gnaws at my present heart.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

96. “I asked for very little from life, and even this little was denied me.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

97. “The essence of what I desire is simply this: to sleep away life.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

98. “The inventor of the mirror poisoned the human heart.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

99. “My joy is as painful as my pain.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

100. “In the very corner of my soul there is an altar to a different god.”

― Fernando Pessoa.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly quotes for everyone to enjoy! If you liked our suggestions for Fernando Pessoa quotes then why not take a look at [E.E Cummings quotes] and William Blake quotes?

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