Title Image - Quotes by Author Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

Welcome to our collection of quotes (with shareable picture quotes) by Antoine de Saint-Exupery. We hope you enjoy pondering them and that you will share them widely.

Wikipedia Summary for Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

Antoine Marie Jean-Baptiste Roger, comte de Saint-Exupéry, simply known as de Saint-Exupéry (UK: , US: , French: [ɑ̃twan də sɛ̃t‿ɛɡzypeʁi]; 29 June 1900 – 31 July 1944), was a French writer, poet, aristocrat, journalist and pioneering aviator. He became a laureate of several of France's highest literary awards and also won the United States National Book Award. He is best remembered for his novella The Little Prince (Le Petit Prince) and for his lyrical aviation writings, including Wind, Sand and Stars and Night Flight.

Saint-Exupéry was a successful commercial pilot before World War II, working airmail routes in Europe, Africa, and South America. He joined the French Air Force at the start of the war, flying reconnaissance missions until France's armistice with Germany in 1940. After being demobilised from the French Air Force, he travelled to the United States to help persuade its government to enter the war against Nazi Germany.

Saint-Exupéry spent 28 months in America, during which he wrote three of his most important works, then joined the Free French Air Force in North Africa—although he was far past the maximum age for such pilots and in declining health. He disappeared and is believed to have died while on a reconnaissance mission from Corsica over the Mediterranean on 31 July 1944.

Prior to the war, Saint-Exupéry had achieved fame in France as an aviator. His literary works posthumously boosted his stature to national hero status in France, including The Little Prince which has been translated into 300 languages. He earned further widespread recognition with international translations of his other works. His 1939 philosophical memoir Terre des hommes (titled Wind, Sand and Stars in English) became the name of an international humanitarian group; it was also used as the central theme of Expo 67 in Montreal, Quebec. His birthplace of Lyon also named its main airport after him.

You become responsible, forever, for what you have tamed.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

The soldier's body becomes a stock of accessories that are not his property.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

For, to conceited men, all other men are admirers.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

A civilization is built on what is required of men, not on that which is provided for them.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

It was the contemplation of God that created men who were equal, for it was in God that they were equal.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

But eyes are blind. You have to look with the heart.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

And that heart which was a wild garden was given to him who only loved trim lawns. And the imbecile carried the princess into slavery.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

But games always cover something deep and intense, else there would be no excitement in them, no pleasure, no power to stir us.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

Friendship is born from an identity of spiritual goals -- from common navigation toward a star.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

It is the duty of the ship's captain to make port, cost what it may.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

It is not a question of living dangerously. That formula is too arrogant, too presumptuous. I don't care much for bull-fighters. It's not the danger I love. I know what I love. It is life itself.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

We are forever responsible for that which we have tamed.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

I remembered the fox. One runs the risk of crying a bit if one allows oneself to be tamed.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

What does tamed mean? It's something that's been too often neglected. It means to create ties.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

You risk tears if you let yourself be tamed.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry


If France is to be judged, judge her not by the effects of her defeat but by her readiness to sacrifice herself.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

Even our misfortunes are a part of our belongings.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

Living is being born slowly. It would be a little too easy if we could borrow ready-made souls.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

Only the children know what they are looking for.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

Longer Version:

Only the children know what they are looking for. They waste their time over a rag doll and it becomes very important to them; and if anybody takes it away from them, they cry.


Let a man in a garret but burn with enough intensity and he will set fire to the world.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

To become a man is to be responsible; to be ashamed of miseries that you did not cause.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

Good taste is a virtue of the keepers of museums. If you scorn bad taste, you will have neither painting nor dancing, neither palaces nor gardens.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

I shall never again admire a merely brave man.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

Once we are bound together to our brothers by a common good that is outside us, then we can breathe. Experience teaches us that love is not to gaze at one another but to gaze in the same direction. There is no comradeship except through unity on the same rope, climbing towards the same peak.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

We understand … that what constitutes the dignity of a craft is that it creates a fellowship, that it binds men together and fashions for them a common language.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

To be a man is to feel that one's own stone contributes to building the edifice of the world.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

It is not for us to forecast the future, but to shape it.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

Peace dies when the framework is ripped apart. When there is no longer a place that is yours in the world. When you know no longer where your friend is to be found.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

Mad is the man who is forever gritting his teeth against that granite block, complete and changeless, of the past.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

Nothing can match the treasure of common memories.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

Longer Version:

Nothing can match the treasure of common memories, of trials endured together, of quarrels and reconciliations and generous emotions. It is idle, having planted an acorn in the morning, to expect that afternoon to sit in the shade of the oak.


You cannot plant an acorn in the morning, and expect that afternoon to sit in the shade of an oak.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

The flower you single out is a rejection of all other flowers; nevertheless, only on these terms is it beautiful.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

The magic of the craft has opened for me a world in which I shall confront, within two hours, the black dragons and the crowned crests of a coma of blue lightnings, and when night has fallen I, delivered, shall read my course in the starts.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

Truths may clash without contradicting each other.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

Demagoguery enters at the moment when, for want of a common denominator, the principle of equality degenerates into the principle of identity.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

Real love begins where nothing is expected in return.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

Love does not cause suffering: what causes it is the sense of ownership, which is love's opposite.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

If I had fifty-three minutes to spend as I liked, I should walk at my leisure toward a spring of fresh water.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

You will have five hundred million little bells, and I shall have five hundred million springs of fresh water.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

All of us have had the experience of a sudden joy that came when nothing in the world had forewarned us of its coming -- a joy so thrilling that if it was born of misery we remembered even the misery with tenderness.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

The friend within the man is that part of him which belongs to you and opens to you a door which never, perhaps, is opened to another. Such a friend is true, and all he says is true; and he loves you even if he hates you in other mansions of his heart.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

Navigating by the compass in a sea of clouds over Spain is all very well, it is very dashing, but -- you want to remember that below the sea of clouds lies eternity.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

I was too young to know how to love her.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

I don't believe you! Flowers are weak creatures. They are naive. They reassure themselves as best they can. They believe that their thorns are terrible weapons.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

There is no hope of joy except in human relations.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

We live not by things, but by the meaning of things. It is needful to transmit the passwords from generation to generation.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

Action and personal happiness have no truck with each other; they are eternally at war.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

Experience will guide us to the rules. You cannot make rules precede practical experience.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

Pure logic is the ruin of the spirit.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

Cries of despair, misery, sobbing grief are a kind of wealth.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

If you want to build a boat, do not instruct the men to saw wood, stitch the sails, prepare the tools and organize the work, but make them long for setting sail and travel to distant lands.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

One day, I watched the sun setting forty-four times......You know...when one is so terribly sad, one loves sunsets.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

The essential things in life are seen, not with the eyes but with the heart.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

Defeat may prove to have been the only path to resurrection, despite its ugliness.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

True love is visible not to the eyes but to the heart, for eyes may be deceived.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

He who must travel happily must travel light.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

What do we mean by setting a man free? You cannot free a man who dwells in a desert and is an unfeeling brute.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

If you tame me, it would be as if the sun came to shine on my life.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

Longer Version:

If you tame me, then we shall need each other. To me, you will be unique in all the world. To you, I shall be unique in all the world…if you tame me, it will be as if the sun came to shine on my life. I shall know the sound of a step that will be different from all the others. Other steps send me hurrying back underneath the ground. Yours will call me, like music, out of my burrow.



You're beautiful, but you're empty.... No one could die for you.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

Nobody grasped you by the shoulder while there was still time. Now the clay of which you were shaped has dried and hardened, and naught in you will ever awaken the sleeping musician, the poet, the asronomer that possibly inhabited you in the beginning.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

That is the hardest thing of all. It is much harder to judge yourself than to judge others. If you succeed in judging yourself, it's because you're truly a wise man.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

The dignity of the individual demands that he be not reduced to vassalage by the largesse of others.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry


You're not a man, you're a mushroom!

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

When the body sinks into death, the essence of man is revealed. Man is a knot, a web, a mesh into which relationships are tied. Only those relationships matter. The body is an old crock that nobody will miss. I have never known a man to think of himself when dying. Never.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

For there is but one problem -- the problem of human relations. We forget that there is no hope or joy except in human relations.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

It is only with the heart that one can see rightly.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

Longer Version:

It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye.


Attitude is a paintbrush. It colors everything!

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

Behind all seen things lies something vaster; everything is but a path, a portal or a window opening on something other than itself.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

What place would you advise me to visit now? he asked. The planet Earth, replied the geographer. It has a good reputation.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

And now here is my secret, a very simple secret: it is only with the heart that one can see rightly, what is essential is invisible to the eye.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

Nothing comes of severity if there be no leanings towards a change of heart. And if there be natural leanings towards a change of heart, what need for severity?

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

If I were to command a general to turn into a seagull, and if the general did not obey, that would not be the general's fault. It would be mine.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

True, it is evil that a single man should crush the herd, but see not there the worse form of slavery, which is when the herd crushes out the man.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

The Beauty of the Mountain is hidden for all those who try to discover it from the top, supposing that, one way or an other, one can reach this place directly. The Beauty of the Mountain reveals only to those who climbed it.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

Are wars... anything but the means whereby a nation's problems are set, where creation is stimulated -- there you have adventure. But there is no adventure in heads-or-tails, in betting that the toss will come out of life or death. War is not an adventure. It is a disease. It is like typhus.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

When one is building a ship, one does not begin with gathering timber and cutting planks, but rather by arousing in people the yearning for the great wide sea.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

Defeat is a thing of weariness, of incoherence, of boredom, and above all futility.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

He who never says no is no true man.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

The strong are strengthened by reverses; the trouble is that the true meaning of events scores next to nothing in the match we play with men. Appearances decide our gains or losses and the points are trumpery. And a mere semblance of defeat may hopelessly checkmate us.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

You know... when you are sad you love the sunsets.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

I am very fond of sunsets. Come, let us go look at a sunset.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

Night, when words fade and things come alive.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

Look at the sky. Ask yourselves: Has the sheep eaten the flower, yes or no? And you will see how everything changes.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

Water, thou hast no taste, no color, no odor; canst not be defined, art relished while ever mysterious. Not necessary to life, but rather life itself, thou fillest us with a gratification that exceeds the delight of the senses.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

The tree is a slow, enduring force straining to win the sky.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

If you are to be, you must begin by assuming responsibility. You alone are responsible for every moment of your life, for every one of your acts.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

We are prudent people. We are afraid to let go of our petty reality in order to grasp at a great shadow.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

The machine does not isolate man from the great problems of nature but plunges him more deeply into them.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

You do not explain the tree by telling of the water it has drunk, the minerals it has absorbed, and the sunlight that strengthened it.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

I will appoint captains to rule my cities, for it is in the compelling zest of high adventure and of victory, and in creative action, that man finds his supreme joys.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

Charity never humiliated him who profited from it, nor ever bound him by the chains of gratitude, since it was not to him but to God that the gift was made.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

The airplane has unveiled for us the true face of the earth.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

I wonder, he said, whether the stars are set alight in heaven so that one day each one of us may find his own again.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

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