Nothing more strongly arouses our disgust than cannibalism, yet we make the same impression on Buddhists and vegetarians, for we feed on babies, though not our own.Robert Louis Stevenson
Man is a creature who lives not upon bread alone, but primarily by catchwords.Robert Louis Stevenson
Don’t judge each day by the harvest you reap but by the seeds that you plant.Robert Louis Stevenson
A friend is a gift you give yourself.Robert Louis Stevenson
Our business in life is not to succeed, but to continue to fail in good spirits.Robert Louis Stevenson
It is a golden maxim to cultivate the garden for the nose, and the eyes will take care of themselves.Robert Louis Stevenson
The cruelest lies are often told in silence.Robert Louis Stevenson
There is only one difference between a long life and a good dinner: that, in the dinner, the sweets come last.Robert Louis Stevenson
I travel not to go anywhere, but to go. I travel for travel’s sake. The great affair is to move.Robert Louis Stevenson
It is not so much for its beauty that the forest makes a claim upon men’s hearts, as for that subtle something, that quality of air that emanation from old trees, that so wonderfully changes and renews a weary spirit.Robert Louis Stevenson
The web, then, or the pattern, a web at once sensuous and logical, an elegant and pregnant texture: that is style, that is the foundation of the art of literature.Robert Louis Stevenson
It is the mark of a good action that it appears inevitable in retrospect.Robert Louis Stevenson
There is no progress whatever. Everything is just the same as it was thousands, and tens of thousands, of years ago. The outward form changes. The essence does not change.Robert Louis Stevenson
We must accept life for what it actually is – a challenge to our quality without which we should never know of what stuff we are made, or grow to our full stature.Robert Louis Stevenson
If a man loves the labour of his trade, apart from any question of success or fame, the gods have called him.Robert Louis Stevenson
All speech, written or spoken, is a dead language, until it finds a willing and prepared hearer.Robert Louis Stevenson
To be what we are, and to become what we are capable of becoming, is the only end of life.Robert Louis Stevenson
Nothing like a little judicious levity.Robert Louis Stevenson
Marriage: A friendship recognized by the police.Robert Louis Stevenson
Everyone lives by selling something.Robert Louis Stevenson
Books are good enough in their own way, but they are a poor substitute for life.Robert Louis Stevenson
To become what we are capable of becoming is the only end in life.Robert Louis Stevenson
There are no foreign lands. It is the traveler only who is foreign.Robert Louis Stevenson
Quiet minds cannot be perplexed or frightened but go on in fortune or misfortune at their own private pace, like a clock during a thunderstorm.Robert Louis Stevenson
Politics is perhaps the only profession for which no preparation is thought necessary.Robert Louis Stevenson
We all know what Parliament is, and we are all ashamed of it.Robert Louis Stevenson
Who is Robert Louis Stevenson?
Robert Louis Stevenson (13 November 1850-3 December 1894) was a Scottish novelist and travel writer, most noted for Treasure Island, Kidnapped, Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde’s Strange Case, and A Child’s Garden of Verses.
Born and educated in Edinburgh, Stevenson suffered for much of his life from serious bronchial trouble but continued to write prolifically and travel widely in defiance of his poor health.
As a young man, he mixed literary circles in London, and was encouraged by Andrew Lang, Edmund Gosse, Leslie Stephen and W. E. Henley, the last of whom at Treasure Island may have provided the model for Long John Silver.
He settled in Samoa in 1890, and died there in 1894. Stevenson ‘s critical reputation has fluctuated since his death, a star in his lifetime, though his works are widely applauded today.
At present he is ranked the world’s 26th most translated author. Stevenson was born to Thomas Stevenson (1818–1887), a leading lighthouse engineer, and his wife Margaret Isabella (born Balfour, 1829–1897), at 8 Howard Place, Edinburgh, Scotland, on 13 November 1850 Robert Lewis Balfour Stevenson was christened. He changed the spelling of “Lewis” to “Louis” at about the age of 18, and he dropped “Balfour” in 1873.
Lighthouse design was the occupation of the family; Thomas ‘s father (Robert’s grandfather) was Robert Stevenson, a civil engineer, and Alan and David’s brothers (Robert’s uncles) were in the same sector. In the same position Thomas’ maternal grandfather Thomas Smith had been in.
However, the family of Robert ‘s mother was gentry, tracing their descent back to the fifteenth-century Alexander Balfour who had owned Inchyra ‘s lands in Fife. His mother’s father, Lewis Balfour (1777–1860), was a minister of the Church of Scotland at nearby Colinton, and her siblings included doctor George William Balfour and marine engineer James Balfour.
Stevenson spent the majority of his boyhood holidays in the house of his maternal grandparents. “I wonder now sometimes what I have inherited from the old minister,” Stevenson wrote. “I have to believe, yes, that he liked preaching sermons, and so I am, even though I never heard it said that any of us liked to hear them.”
Lewis Balfour and his daughter both had thin chests and they always had to live for their wellbeing in colder climates. Stevenson inherited a tendency to cough and fever, exacerbated by the family moving in 1851 to a damp, chilly house on 1 Inverleith Terrace.
When Stevenson was six years old , the family moved again to the sunnier 17 Heriot Row, but the tendency to extreme winter sickness remained with him until he was 11. Illness was a recurring feature of his adult life and left him unusually thin.
Contemporary views were that he had tuberculosis but more recent views are that even sarcoidosis was bronchiectasisor. Stevenson ‘s parents were both devout Presbyterians, but their devotion to Calvinist values was not strict with the household.
Quite fervently religious was his nurse, Alison Cunningham (known as Cummy). Her mixture of Calvinism and folk beliefs for the child was an early source of nightmares and he showed a precocious concern for religion. She she always cared tenderly for him in pain, reading John Bunyan and the Bible to him as he laid sick in bed and hearing the Covenanters’ stories.
In “The Land of Counterpane” in A Child’s Garden of Verses (1885), Stevenson remembered this period of illness, dedicating the book to his nurse