Title Image - Quotes by Author Ernest HemingwayPhoto Credit: WikiMedia Commons

Welcome to our collection of quotes (with shareable picture quotes) by Ernest Hemingway. We hope you enjoy pondering them and that you will share them widely.

Wikipedia Summary for Ernest Hemingway

Ernest Miller Hemingway (July 21, 1899 – July 2, 1961) was an American novelist, short-story writer, journalist, and sportsman. His economical and understated style—which he termed the iceberg theory—had a strong influence on 20th-century fiction, while his adventurous lifestyle and his public image brought him admiration from later generations. Hemingway produced most of his work between the mid-1920s and the mid-1950s, and he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1954. He published seven novels, six short-story collections, and two nonfiction works. Three of his novels, four short-story collections, and three nonfiction works were published posthumously. Many of his works are considered classics of American literature.

Hemingway was raised in Oak Park, Illinois. After high school, he was a reporter for a few months for The Kansas City Star before leaving for the Italian Front to enlist as an ambulance driver in World War I. In 1918, he was seriously wounded and returned home. His wartime experiences formed the basis for his novel A Farewell to Arms (1929).

In 1921, Hemingway married Hadley Richardson, the first of four wives. They moved to Paris where he worked as a foreign correspondent and fell under the influence of the modernist writers and artists of the 1920s' "Lost Generation" expatriate community. His debut novel The Sun Also Rises was published in 1926. He divorced Richardson in 1927. He married Pauline Pfeiffer. They divorced after he returned from the Spanish Civil War (1936–1939), which he covered as a journalist and which was the basis for his novel For Whom the Bell Tolls (1940). Martha Gellhorn became his third wife in 1940. He and Gellhorn separated after he met Mary Welsh in London during World War II. Hemingway was present with Allied troops as a journalist at the Normandy landings and the liberation of Paris.

Hemingway maintained permanent residences in Key West, Florida (in the 1930s) and in Cuba (in the 1940s and 1950s). He almost died in 1954 after plane crashes on successive days, with injuries leaving him in pain and ill health for much of the rest of his life. In 1959, he bought a house in Ketchum, Idaho where, in mid-1961, he died by suicide with a shotgun.

We would be together and have our books and at night be warm in bed together with the windows open and the stars bright.

--Ernest Hemingway

The world breaks everyone and afterwards many are strong at the broken places.

--Ernest Hemingway

There's nothing noble in being superior to your fellow men. True nobility is being superior to your former self.

--Ernest Hemingway

A cat has absolute emotional honesty, human beings, for one reason or another, may hide their feelings, but a cat does not.

--Ernest Hemingway

Live the full life of the mind, exhilarated by new ideas, intoxicated by the romance of the unusual.

--Ernest Hemingway

It is good to have an end to journey toward; But it is the journey that matters, in the end.

--Ernest Hemingway

The cat has complete emotional honesty -- an attribute not often found in humans.

--Ernest Hemingway

To be a successful father, there's one absolute rule: when you have a kid, don't look at it for the first two years.

--Ernest Hemingway

But man is not made for defeat, he said. A man can be destroyed but not defeated.

--Ernest Hemingway

You are so brave and quiet, I forget you are suffering.

--Ernest Hemingway

Everything you have is to give.

--Ernest Hemingway

All good books have one thing in common, they are truer than if they had really happened.

--Ernest Hemingway

To be a successful father there's one absolute rule: when you have a kid, don't look at it for the first two years.

--Ernest Hemingway

Work could cure almost anything.

--Ernest Hemingway

The first draft of anything is garbage.

--Ernest Hemingway

The only thing that could spoil a day was people.

--Ernest Hemingway

Show the readers everything, tell them nothing.

--Ernest Hemingway

Before you quit, you have to try.

--Ernest Hemingway

We are all broken. That's how the light gets in.

--Ernest Hemingway

What is the definition of guts? Grace under pressure.

--Ernest Hemingway

If the wind rises it can push us against the flood when it comes.

--Ernest Hemingway

The world breaks everyone and afterward many are strong at the broken places.

--Ernest Hemingway

The road to Hell is paved with unbought stuffed dogs.

--Ernest Hemingway

We have to get used to the idea that at the most important crossroads in our life there are no signs.

--Ernest Hemingway

'For Whom the Bell Tolls' was a problem which I carried on each day. I knew what was going to happen in principle. But I invented what happened each day I wrote.

--Ernest Hemingway

Better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all.

--Ernest Hemingway

When people talk, listen completely.

--Ernest Hemingway

But, he thought, I keep them with precision. Only I have no luck any more. But who knows? Maybe today. Every day is a new day. It is better to be lucky. But I would rather be exact. Then when luck comes you are ready.

--Ernest Hemingway

The fools think I am writing algebra but what I am really writing is geometry.

--Ernest Hemingway

Modern life ... is often a mechanical oppression and liquor is the only mechanical relief.

--Ernest Hemingway

They arrested us after breakfast.

--Ernest Hemingway

Intelligence is so damn rare and the people who have it often have such a bad time with it that they get bitter or propagandistic and then it's not much use.

--Ernest Hemingway

I love to write. But it has never gotten any easier to do and you can't expect it to if you keep trying for something better than you can do.

--Ernest Hemingway

Writing is the clumsy attempt to find symbols for wordlessness.

--Ernest Hemingway

The cynical ones are the best companions. But the best of all are the cynical ones when they are still devout; or after; when having been devout, then cynical, they become devout again by cynicism.

--Ernest Hemingway

All the contact I have had with politics has left me feeling as though I had been drinking out of spitoons.

--Ernest Hemingway

Now he would never write the things that he had saved to write until he knew enough to write them well. Well, he would not have to fail at trying to write them either. Maybe you could never write them, and that was why you put them off and delayed the starting. Well he would never know, now.

--Ernest Hemingway

But perhaps he had enough animal strength and detached intelligence that he could make another start.

--Ernest Hemingway

The coward dies a thousand deaths, the brave but one?'
'Of course. Who said it?'
'I don't know.'
'He was probably a coward,' she said. He knew a great deal about cowards but nothing about the brave. The brave dies perhaps two thousand deaths if he's intelligent. He simply doesn't mention them.

--Ernest Hemingway

The fun of talk is to explore, but much of it and all that is irresponsible should not be written. Once written you have to stand by it. You may have said it to see whether you believed it or not.

--Ernest Hemingway

The questioners had that beautiful detachment and devotion to stern justice of men dealing in death without being in any danger of it.

--Ernest Hemingway

I knew that now, reading it in the oversensitized state of my mind after too much brandy, I would remember it somewhere, and afterward it would seem as though it had really happened to me.

--Ernest Hemingway

When I am working on a book or a story, I write every morning as soon after first light as possible. There is no one to disturb you, and it is cool or cold, and you come to your work and warm as you write.

--Ernest Hemingway

Home is where the heart is, home is where the fart is.
Come let us fart in the home.
There is no art in a fart.
Still a fart may not be artless.
Let us fart and artless fart in the home.

--Ernest Hemingway

Best of all he loved the fall
the leaves yellow on the cottonwoods
leaves floating on the trout streams
and above the hills the high blue windless skies…now he will be a part of them forever.

--Ernest Hemingway

Hail nothing full of nothing, nothing is with thee.

--Ernest Hemingway

Gradually, then suddenly.

--Ernest Hemingway

Having books published is very destructive to writing. It is even worse than making love too much. Because when you make love too much at least you get a damned clarte that is like no other light. A very clear and hollow light.

--Ernest Hemingway

There is seven-eights of it under water for every part that shows. Anything you know you can eliminate and it only strengthens your iceberg. It is the part that doesn't show. If a writer omits something because he does not know it then there is a hole in the story.

--Ernest Hemingway

I had an inheritance from my father, It was the moon and the sun. And though I roam all over the world, The spending of it's never done.

--Ernest Hemingway

You never kill anyone you want to kill in a war, he said to himself.

--Ernest Hemingway

I wonder. Of course maybe that isn't what they figure to do. Maybe they aren't going to do any such thing. But it's natural that's what they would do and I heard that word.

--Ernest Hemingway

The sinews of war are five -- men, money, materials, maintenance and morale.

--Ernest Hemingway

Before we take to the sea, we walk on land... Before we create, we must understand.

--Ernest Hemingway

We're always lucky,' I said and like a fool I did not knock on wood.

--Ernest Hemingway

If you're looking for messages, try Western Union.

--Ernest Hemingway

Night life is when everybody says what the hell and you do not remember who paid the bill.

--Ernest Hemingway

Religion is the opium of the poor.

--Ernest Hemingway

Listen, I told him. Don't be so tough so early in the morning. I'm sure you've cut plenty of people's throats. I haven't even had my coffee yet.

--Ernest Hemingway

They can't yank a novelist like they can a pitcher. A novelist has to go the full nine, even if it kills him.

--Ernest Hemingway

He had never quarreled much with this woman, while with the women that he loved he had quarreled so much they had finally, always, with the corrosion of the quarreling, killed what they had together. He had loved too much, demanded too much, and he wore it all out.

--Ernest Hemingway

Creation's probably overrated. After all, God made the world in only six days and rested on the seventh.

--Ernest Hemingway

The dentuso is cruel and able and strong and intelligent. But I was more intelligent than he was. Perhaps not, he thought. Perhaps I was only better armed.

--Ernest Hemingway

It's all nonsense. It's only nonsense. I'm not afraid of the rain. I'm not afraid of the rain. Oh, oh, God, I wish I wasn't. She was crying. I comforted her and she stopped crying. But outside it kept on raining.

--Ernest Hemingway


I am thee and thou art me and all of one is the other.

--Ernest Hemingway

He was violating the second rule of the two rules for getting on well with people that speak Spanish; give the men tobacco and leave the women alone.

--Ernest Hemingway

Poor Faulkner. Does he really think big emotions come from big words? He thinks I don't know the ten-dollar words. I know them all right. But there are older and simpler and better words, and those are the ones I use.

--Ernest Hemingway

Once in Africa I lost the corkscrew and we were forced to live off food and water for weeks.

--Ernest Hemingway

Everything you have is to give. Thou art a phenomenon of philosophy and an unfortunate man.

--Ernest Hemingway

Use short sentences. Use short first paragraphs. Use vigorous English. Be positive, not negative.

--Ernest Hemingway

I always try to write on the principle of the iceberg. There is seven-eighths of it underwater for every part that shows.

--Ernest Hemingway

For a poet he threw a very accurate milk bottle.

--Ernest Hemingway

For sale. Baby shoes. Never worn.

--Ernest Hemingway

You did not do so badly for something worthless,' he said to his left hand. 'But there was a moment when I could not find you.

--Ernest Hemingway

For sale: baby shoes, never worn.

--Ernest Hemingway

Cheer up,' I said. 'All countries look just like the moving pictures.

--Ernest Hemingway

A writer should write what he has to say and not speak it.

--Ernest Hemingway

And how much better to die in all the happy period of undisillusioned youth, to go out in a blaze of light, than to have your body worn out and old and illusions shattered.

--Ernest Hemingway

In stating as fully as I could how things really were, it was often very difficult and I wrote awkwardly and the awkwardness is what they called my style. All mistakes and awkwardness are easy to see, and they called it style.

--Ernest Hemingway

When I am working on a book or a story I write every morning as soon after first light as possible. There is no one to disturb you and it is cool or cold and you come to your work and warm as you write.

--Ernest Hemingway

How do you tell a valuable French book?' 'First there are the pictures. Then it is a question of the quality of the pictures. Then it is the binding. If a book is good, the owner will have it bound properly. All books in English are bound, but bound badly. There is no way of judging them.

--Ernest Hemingway

Anger was washed away in the river along with any obligation.

--Ernest Hemingway

In America, they make such things of wire and of sponge-rubber, such as you use in the sets of tanks. You never know there, whether there is any truth in the matter, unless you are a bad boy as I am.

--Ernest Hemingway

I would take anything I love and throw it off the highest cliff you ever saw and not wait to hear it bounce.

--Ernest Hemingway

Ay, he said aloud. There is no translation for this word and perhaps it is just a noise such as a man might make, involuntarily, feeling the nail go through his hands and into the wood.

--Ernest Hemingway

Once writing has become your major vice and greatest pleasure only death can stop it. Financial security then is a great help as it keeps you from worrying.

--Ernest Hemingway

His (the writer's) standard of fidelity to the truth should be so high that his invention, out of his experience, should produce a truer account than anything factual can be.

--Ernest Hemingway

I would like to take the great DiMaggio fishing, the old man said. They say his father was a fisherman. Maybe he was as poor as we are and would understand.

--Ernest Hemingway

Perhaps I should not have been a fisherman, he thought. But that was the thing that I was born for.

--Ernest Hemingway

Shooting gives me a good feeling. It is faster than baseball and you are out on one strike.

--Ernest Hemingway

You can either buy clothes or buy pictures, she said. It's that simple. No one who is not very rich can do both. Pay no attention to your clothes and no attention at all to the mode, and buy your clothes for comfort and durability, and you will have the clothes money to buy pictures.

--Ernest Hemingway

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