An aphorism is nothing else but the slightest
form of writing raised to the highest level of expressive communication. Carl William Brown




There are three classes into which all the women past seventy that ever I knew were to be divided: 1. That dear old soul; 2. That old woman; 3. That old witch.


Samuel Taylor Coleridge (1772-1834, British poet, critic, philosopher)


One keeps forgetting old age up to the very brink of the grave.


Sidonie Gabrielle Colette (1873-1954, French author)


A man's as old as he's feeling. A woman as old as she looks.


Mortimer Collins (1827-1876, British novelist, poet)


The excess of our youth are checks written against our age and they are payable with interest thirty years later.


Charles Caleb Colton (1780-1832, British sportsman writer)


I'm aiming by the time I'm fifty to stop being an adolescent.


Wendy Cope (1945-, British poet)


Age is a matter of feeling, not of years.


George William Curtis (1824-1892, American journalist)


He is so old that his blood type was discontinued.


Bill Dana


I'm at the age where food has taken the place of sex in my life. In fact, I've just had a mirror put over my kitchen table.


Rodney Dangerfield (1921-, American comedian, actor)


At twenty a man is full of fight and hope. He wants to reform the world. When he is seventy he still wants to reform the world, but he know he can't.


Clarence Darrow (1857-1938, American lawyer)


The really frightening thing about middle age is that you know you'll grow out of it!"


Doris Day (1924-, American singer, film actress)


Middle age is youth without levity, and age without decay.


Daniel Defoe (1661-1731, British author)


Keep on raging -- to stop the aging.


The Delltones


At twenty you have many desires which hide the truth, but beyond forty there are only real and fragile truths -- your abilities and your failings.


Gerard Depardieu (1948-, French screen actor)


I am thirty-three -- the age of the good Sans-culotte Jesus; an age fatal to revolutionists.


Camille Desmoulins (1760-1794, French journalist, revolutionary leader)


Father Time is not always a hard parent, and, though he tarries for none of his children, often lays his hand lightly upon those who have used him well; making them old men and women inexorably enough, but leaving their hearts and spirits young and in full vigor. With such people the gray head is but the impression of the old fellow's hand in giving them his blessing, and every wrinkle but a notch in the quiet calendar of a well-spent life.


Charles Dickens (1812-1870, British novelist)


We turn not older with years, but newer every day.


Emily Dickinson (1830-1886, American poet)


Thirty was so strange for me. I've really had to come to terms with the fact that I am now a walking and talking adult. [Reflecting on his former status as a teen idol]


Matt Dillon (1964-, American actor)


The disappointment of manhood succeeds the delusion of youth.


Benjamin Disraeli (1804-1881, British statesman, Prime Minister)


Youth is a blunder, manhood is a struggle and old age a regret.


Benjamin Disraeli (1804-1881, British statesman, Prime Minister)


For in all the world there are no people so piteous and forlorn as those who are forced to eat the bitter bread of dependency in their old age, and find how steep are the stairs of another man's house. Wherever they go they know themselves unwelcome. Wherever they are, they feel themselves a burden. There is no humiliation of the spirit they are not forced to endure. Their hearts are scarred all over with the stabs from cruel and callous speeches.


Dorothy Dix (1861-1951, American columnist)


The middle years, caught between children and parents, free of neither: the past stretches back too densely, it is too thickly populated, the future has not yet thinned out.


Margaret Drabble (1939-, British novelist)


By the time we hit fifty, we have learned our hardest lessons. We have found out that only a few things are really important. We have learned to take life seriously, but never ourselves.


Marie Dressler (1869-1934, Canadian stage and film actor)


It is not how old you are, but how you are old.


Marie Dressler (1869-1934, Canadian stage and film actor)


My worst fear is that I'll end up living in some run-down duplex on Wilshire wearing pants hiked up to my nipples and muttering under my breath.


Richard Dreyfuss (1947-, American actor)


Old age is an insult. It's like being smacked.


Lawrence Durrell (1912-1990, British author)


Age does not depend upon years, but upon temperament and health. Some men are born old, and some never grow up.


Tryon Edwards (1809-1894, American theologian)


Some men are born old, and some men never seem so. If we keep well and cheerful, we are always young and at last die in youth even when in years would count as old.


Tryon Edwards (1809-1894, American theologian)


It is only necessary to grow old to become more charitable and even indulgent. I see no fault committed by others that I have not committed myself.


Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe (1749-1832, German poet, dramatist, novelist)


I'm saving that rocker for the day when I feel as old as I really am.


Dwight D. Eisenhower (1890-1969, American President (34th))


Few women, I fear, have had such reason as I have to think the long sad years of youth were worth living for the sake of middle age.


George Eliot (1819-1880, British novelist)


In the multitude of middle-aged men who go about their vocations in a daily course determined for them much in the same way as the tie of their cravats, there is always a good number who once meant to shape their own deeds and alter the world a little.


George Eliot (1819-1880, British novelist)


I don't believe one grows older. I think that what happens early on in life is that at a certain age, one stands still and stagnates.


T. S. Eliot (1888-1965, American-born British poet, critic)


The years between fifty and seventy are the hardest. You are always being asked to do things, and yet you are not decrepit enough to turn them down.


T. S. Eliot (1888-1965, American-born British poet, critic)


Nature is full of freaks, and now puts an old head on young shoulders, and then takes a young heart heating under fourscore winters.


Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882, American poet, essayist)


We do not count a man's years until he has nothing else to count.


Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882, American poet, essayist)


The age of a woman doesn't mean a thing. The best tunes are played on the oldest fiddles.


Sigmund Z. Engel


The nearer people approach old age the closer they return to a semblance of childhood, until the time comes for them to depart this life, again like children, neither tired of living nor aware of death.


Desiderius Erasmus (c.1466-1536, Dutch humanist)


If youth knew; if age could.


Henri Estienne (1531-1598, French scholar, publisher)


People between twenty and forty are not sympathetic. The child has the capacity to do but it can't know. It only knows when it is no longer able to do after forty. Between twenty and forty the will of the child to do gets stronger, more dangerous, but it has not begun to learn to know yet. Since his capacity to do is forced into channels of evil through environment and pressures, man is strong before he is moral. The world's anguish is caused by people between twenty and forty.


William Faulkner (1897-1962, American novelist)


Life begins at 40 -- but so do fallen arches, rheumatism, faulty eyesight, and the tendency to tell a story to the same person, three or four times.


William Feather (1888-19, American writer, businessman)


One of the many things nobody ever tells you about middle age is that it's such a nice change from being young.


Dorothy Canfield Fisher (1879-1958, American writer)


In a few days I'll have lived one score and three days in this vale of tears. On I plod -- always bored, often drunk, doing no penance for my faults -- rather do I become more tolerant of myself from day to day, hardening my crystal heart with blasphemous humor and shunning only toothpicks, pathos, and poverty as being the three unforgivable things in life.


F. Scott Fitzgerald (1896-1940, American writer)

Author's website:


One of those men who reach such an acute limited excellence at twenty-one that everything afterward savors of anti-climax.


F. Scott Fitzgerald (1896-1940, American writer)

Author's website:


Thirty -- the promise of a decade of loneliness, a thinning list of single men to know, a thinning brief-case of enthusiasm, thinning hair.


F. Scott Fitzgerald (1896-1940, American writer)

Author's website:


By the time a person has achieved years adequate for choosing a direction, the die is cast; the moment has long since passed which determined the future.


Zelda Fitzgerald (1900-1948, American writer)


A man has every season while a woman only has the right to spring. That disgusts me.


Jane Fonda (1937-, American screen actor)


By the time we've made it, we've had it.


Malcolm S. Forbes (1919-1990, American publisher, businessman)


When you become 100, life changes completely.


Lady Willie Forbus


An old young man, will be a young old man.


Benjamin Franklin (1706-1790, American scientist, publisher, diplomat)


At twenty years of age the will reigns; at thirty, the wit; and at forty, the judgment.


Benjamin Franklin (1706-1790, American scientist, publisher, diplomat)


If you wouldn't live long, live well; for folly and wickedness shorten life.


Benjamin Franklin (1706-1790, American scientist, publisher, diplomat)


Many foxes grow gray but few grow good.


Benjamin Franklin (1706-1790, American scientist, publisher, diplomat)


Those who love deeply never grow old; they may die of old age, but they die young.


Benjamin Franklin (1706-1790, American scientist, publisher, diplomat)


This is a youth-oriented society, and the joke is on them because youth is a disease from which we all recover.


Dorothy Fuldheim


I am immortal! I know it! I feel it!


Margaret Witter Fuller (1810-1850, American writer, lecturer)


I guess I don't so much mind being old, as I mind being fat and old.


Peter Gabriel (1950-, British rock musician)


An important antidote to American democracy is American gerontocracy. The positions of eminence and authority in Congress are allotted in accordance with length of service, regardless of quality. Superficial observers have long criticized the United States for making a fetish of youth. This is unfair. Uniquely among modern organs of public and private administration, its national legislature rewards senility.'


John Kenneth Galbraith (1908-, American economist)


If wrinkles must be written upon our brows, let them not be written upon the heart. The spirit should never grow old.


James A. Garfield (1831-1881, American President (20th))


It is often the case with finer natures, that when the fire of the spirit dies out with increasing age, the power of the intellect is unaltered or increased.


Margaret Gatty


Old age is a shipwreck.


Charles De Gaulle (1890-1970, French president during World War II)


Old age lives minutes slowly, hours quickly; childhood chews hours and swallows minutes.


Malcolm de Ghazal


Seek ye counsel of the aged for their eyes have looked on the faces of the years and their ears have hardened to the voices of Life. Even if their counsel is displeasing to you, pay heed to them.


Kahlil Gibran (1883-1931, Lebanese poet, novelist)


Age does not make us childish, as some say; it finds us true children.


Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe (1749-1832, German poet, dramatist, novelist)


Rejoice that you still have a long time to live, before the thought comes to you that there is nothing more in the world to see.


Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe (1749-1832, German poet, dramatist, novelist)


The older we get the more we must limit ourselves if we wish to be active.


Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe (1749-1832, German poet, dramatist, novelist)


We must not take the faults of our youth with us into old age, for age brings along its own defects.


Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe (1749-1832, German poet, dramatist, novelist)


Among the virtues and vices that make up the British character, we have one vice, at least, that Americans ought to view with sympathy. For they appear to be the only people who share it with us. I mean our worship of the antique. I do not refer to beauty or even historical association. I refer to age, to a quantity of years.


William Golding (1911-1993, British author)


At twenty a man is a peacock, at thirty a lion, at forty a camel, at fifty a serpent, at sixty a dog, at seventy an ape, at eighty a nothing at all.


Baltasar Gracian (1601-1658, Spanish philosopher, writer)


The misery of the middle-aged woman is a gray and hopeless thing, born of having nothing to live for, of disappointment and resentment at having been gypped by consumer society, and surviving merely to be the butt of its unthinking scorn.


Germaine Greer (1939-, Australian feminist writer)


The older woman's love is not love of herself, nor of herself mirrored in a lover's eyes, nor is it corrupted by need. It is a feeling of tenderness so still and deep and warm that it gilds every grass blade and blesses every fly. It includes the ones who have a claim on it, and a great deal else besides. I wouldn't have missed it for the world.


Germaine Greer (1939-, Australian feminist writer)


You're only young once, but you can be immature forever.


John Greier


It really costs me a lot emotionally to watch myself on-screen. I think of myself, and feel like I'm quite young, and then I look at this old man with the baggy chins and the tired eyes and the receding hairline and all that.


Gene Hackman (1930-, American actor)


The value of old age depends upon the person who reaches it. To some men of early performance it is useless. To others, who are late to develop, it just enables them to finish the job.


Thomas Hardy (1840-1928, British novelist, poet)


A woman would rather visit her own grave than the place where she has been young and beautiful after she is aged and ugly.


Corra May Harris (1869-1935, American author)


Middle Age is that perplexing time of life when we hear two voices calling us, one saying, "Why not?" and the other, "Why bother?"


Sidney J. Harris (1917-, American journalist)


Old age, believe me, is a good and pleasant thing. It is true you are gently shouldered off the stage, but then you are given such a comfortable front stall as spectator.


Jane Harrison (1850-1928, British classical scholar, writer)


The change of life is the time when you meet yourself at a crossroads and you decide whether to be honest or not before you die.


Katharine Butler Hathaway


There are only three ages for women in Hollywood-- Babe, District Attorney, and Driving Miss Daisy.


Goldie Hawn (1945-, American actress)


Men who have reached and passed forty-five, have a look as if waiting for the secret of the other world, and as if they were perfectly sure of having found out the secret of this.


Benjamin Haydon (1786-1846, British artist)


Age is not important unless you're a cheese.


Helen Hayes (1900-1993, American actress)


The worst old age is that of the mind.


William Hazlitt (1778-1830, British essayist)


To be happy, we must be true to nature, and carry our age along with us.


William Hazlitt (1778-1830, British essayist)


As you get older it is harder to have heroes, but it is sort of necessary.


Ernest Hemingway (1898-1961, American writer)


He that is not handsome at 20, nor strong at 30, nor rich at 40, nor wise at 50, will never be handsome, strong, rich or wise.


George Herbert (1593-1632, British metaphysical poet)


I wake up every morning at nine and grab for the morning paper. Then I look at the obituary page. If my name is not on it, I get up.


Harry Hershfield


Every man who has lived for fifty years has buried a whole world or even two; he has grown used to its disappearance and accustomed to the new scenery of another act: but suddenly the names and faces of a time long dead appear more and more often on his way, calling up series of shades and pictures kept somewhere, "just in case," in the endless catacombs of the memory, making him smile or sigh, and sometimes almost weep.


Alexander Herzen (1812-1870, Russian journalist, political thinker)


Nobody expects to trust his body overmuch after the age of fifty.


Edward Hoagland (1932-, American novelist, essayist)


The end comes when we no longer talk with ourselves. It is the end of genuine thinking and the beginning of the final loneliness.


Eric Hoffer (1902-1983, American author, philosopher)


To grow old is to grow common. Old age equalizes -- we are aware that what is happening to us has happened to untold numbers from the beginning of time. When we are young we act as if we were the first young people in the world.


Eric Hoffer (1902-1983, American author, philosopher)


To be 70 years young is sometimes far more cheerful and hopeful than to be 40 years old.


Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr. (1841-1935, American judge)


A person is always startled when he hears himself called old for the first time.


Oliver Wendell Holmes (1809-1894, American author, wit, poet)


Age, like distance lends a double charm.


Oliver Wendell Holmes (1809-1894, American author, wit, poet)


I don't generally feel anything until noon, then it's time for my nap.


Bob Hope (1903-2003, American comedian, actor)


Middle age is when your age starts to show around your middle.


Bob Hope (1903-2003, American comedian, actor)


You know you're getting old when the candles cost more than the cake.


Bob Hope (1903-2003, American comedian, actor)


Growing old is not growing up.


Doug Horton


A young man is a theory, an old man is a fact.


Edgar Watson Howe (1853-1937, American journalist, author)


Those who search beyond the natural limits will retain good hearing and clear vision, their bodies will remain light and strong, and although they grow old in years they will remain able-bodied and flourishing; and those who are able-bodied can govern to


Huang Ti (BC 2700?-2600?, Chinese "Yellow Emperor")


Forty is the old age of youth, fifty is the youth of old age.


Victor Hugo (1802-1885, French poet, dramatist, novelist)


Talking is the disease of age.


Ben Johnson (1572-1637, British clergyman, poet, painter)


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