Inspirational Quotations by Charles Baudelaire (#679)

Inspirational Quotations by Charles Baudelaire

Today marks the birthday of Charles Baudelaire (1821–67,) French poet, essayist, and critic.

Baudelaire had an unhappy life. He was born to a wealthy family in Paris and got expelled from military school. After he squandered much of his inheritance on clothes, sex, and drugs, his family seized the remainder and disbursed it in small allowances.

Baudelaire started writing essays, criticism, and translations to fund his indulgences. He wrote acclaimed translations of American author Edgar Allan Poe. Baudelaire lived in the worst neighborhoods of Paris and switched apartments frequently to escape creditors. He struggled with poor health throughout his life and died at 46. The posthumous publication of much of his writing allowed his mother to settle his many debts.

At 36, Baudelaire published his only collection of lyric poetry, Les Fleurs de Mal (1857, The Flowers of Evil,) considered one of the greatest collections of French poetry. The book’s adulation of free love, drunkenness, world-weariness, and despair has influenced generations of bohemian artists. Baudelaire gained instant celebrity as a poète maudit (cursed poet) when six of the 101 poems in Les Fleurs de Mal were censored out for their moral and sexual themes, which were then considered obscene and scandalous.

Inspirational Quotations by Charles Baudelaire

There are moments of existence when time and space are more profound, and the awareness of existence is immensely heightened.
Charles Baudelaire

Everything that is beautiful and noble is the product of reason and calculation.
Charles Baudelaire

Nothing can be done except little by little.
Charles Baudelaire

It is necessary to work, if not from inclination, at least from despair. Everything considered, work is less boring than amusing oneself.
Charles Baudelaire

There are as many kinds of beauty as there are habitual ways of seeking happiness.
Charles Baudelaire

Inspiration comes of working every day.
Charles Baudelaire

Time is an avid gambler who has no need to cheat to win every time.
Charles Baudelaire

Life is a hospital in which every patient is possessed by the desire of changing his bed. One would prefer to suffer near the fire, and another is certain he would get well if he were by the window.
Charles Baudelaire

Every man who does not accept the conditions of life sells his soul.
Charles Baudelaire

The habit of doing one’s duty drives away fear.
Charles Baudelaire

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