O. Henry quotes

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O. Henry

Birthdate: 11. September 1862
Date of death: 5. June 1910

William Sydney Porter , better known by his pen name O. Henry, was an American short story writer. His stories are known for their surprise endings. Wikipedia

Works

„Life is made up of sobs, sniffles, and smiles, with sniffles predominating.“

—  O. Henry, book The Gift of the Magi

The Four Million (1906)
Source: "The Gift of the Magi"
Context: There was clearly nothing to do but flop down on the shabby little couch and howl. So Della did it. Which instigates the moral reflection that life is made up of sobs, sniffles, and smiles, with sniffles predominating.

„I know you. I have heard of you all my life. I know now what a scourge you have been to your country. Instead of killing fools you have been murdering the youth and genius that are necessary to make a people live and grow great.“

—  O. Henry

"The Fool-Killer"
The Voice of the City (1908)
Context: I know you. I have heard of you all my life. I know now what a scourge you have been to your country. Instead of killing fools you have been murdering the youth and genius that are necessary to make a people live and grow great. You are a fool yourself, Holmes; you began killing off the brightest and best of our countrymen three generations ago, when the old and obsolete standards of society and honor and orthodoxy were narrow and bigoted. You proved that when you put your murderous mark upon my friend Kerner — the wisest chap I ever knew in my life.

„But in a last word to the wise of these days let it be said that of all who give gifts these two were the wisest. Of all who give and receive gifts, such as they are wisest. Everywhere they are wisest. They are the magi.“

—  O. Henry, book The Four Million

"The Gift of the Magi"
The Four Million (1906)
Context: The magi, as you know, were wise men — wonderfully wise men — who brought gifts to the Babe in the manger. They invented the art of giving Christmas presents. Being wise, their gifts were no doubt wise ones, possibly bearing the privilege of exchange in case of duplication. And here I have lamely related to you the uneventful chronicle of two foolish children in a flat who most unwisely sacrificed for each other the greatest treasures of their house. But in a last word to the wise of these days let it be said that of all who give gifts these two were the wisest. Of all who give and receive gifts, such as they are wisest. Everywhere they are wisest. They are the magi.

„Man is too thoroughly an egoist not to be also an egotist; if he love, the object shall know it. During a lifetime he may conceal it through stress of expediency and honour, but it shall bubble from his dying lips, though it disrupt a neighbourhood. It is known, however, that most men do not wait so long to disclose their passion.“

—  O. Henry, book Whirligigs

"Blind Man's Holiday"
Whirligigs (1910)
Context: Man is too thoroughly an egoist not to be also an egotist; if he love, the object shall know it. During a lifetime he may conceal it through stress of expediency and honour, but it shall bubble from his dying lips, though it disrupt a neighbourhood. It is known, however, that most men do not wait so long to disclose their passion. In the case of Lorison, his particular ethics positively forbade him to declare his sentiments, but he must needs dally with the subject, and woo by innuendo at least.

„I hated Kerner, and one day I met him and we became friends.“

—  O. Henry

"The Fool-Killer"
The Voice of the City (1908)
Context: I hated Kerner, and one day I met him and we became friends. He was young and gloriously melancholy because his spirits were so high and life had so much in store for him. Yes, he was almost riotously sad. That was his youth. When a man begins to be hilarious in a sorrowful way you can bet a million that he is dyeing his hair.

„When a man begins to be hilarious in a sorrowful way you can bet a million that he is dyeing his hair.“

—  O. Henry

"The Fool-Killer"
The Voice of the City (1908)
Context: I hated Kerner, and one day I met him and we became friends. He was young and gloriously melancholy because his spirits were so high and life had so much in store for him. Yes, he was almost riotously sad. That was his youth. When a man begins to be hilarious in a sorrowful way you can bet a million that he is dyeing his hair.

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„The true adventurer goes forth aimless and uncalculating to meet and greet unknown fate. A fine example was the Prodigal Son—when he started back home.“

—  O. Henry, book The Four Million

"The Green Door" http://books.google.com/books?id=dKk_AAAAYAAJ&q=%22The+true+adventurer+goes+forth+aimless+and+uncalculating+to+meet+and+greet+unknown+fate+A+fine+example+was+the+Prodigal+Son+when+he+started+back+home%22&pg=PA151#v=onepage
The Four Million (1906)

„Pull up the shades so I can see New York. I don't want to go home in the dark.“

—  O. Henry

Last words, quoting a 1907 song by Harry Williams. (5 June 1910) Quoted in O. Henry Biography, ch. 9, Charles Alphonso Smith (1916).
Variant: Turn up the lights — I don't want to go home in the dark.

„Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetuer adipiscing elit. Etiam egestas wisi a erat. Morbi imperdiet, mauris ac auctor dictum.“

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