Literature has always been an incredible way to escape the stresses and challenges of everyday life. Within the pages of a good story, you can transport yourself to another world full of adventure, intrigue, and mystery. Most of the time the lessons and morals of classic books are universal and inspirational for audiences of all ages.
Everybody can use a good jolt of inspiration now and again. So, here are some of the most inspirational quotes to come from classic literature. After all, there is a reason they’re considered “classics.”
“Even the darkest night will end, and the sun will rise.” – Les Misérables by Victor Hugo
Victor Hugo’s 1862 historical novel Les Misérables is not necessarily known for being a happy story. It follows a group of characters amid the French Revolution. The title literally translates to “The Miserable Ones.” It is, however, an inspirational story, as it follows the life and redemption of former convict Jean Valjean.
This particular quote comes at the end of the novel, when many characters are at their lowest point. Hugo leaves the audience with hope by saying, “Even the darkest night will end, and the sun will rise.”
When everything seems to have gone wrong, it is best to keep that in mind. Things can only get better at that point, and at the end of the day they always do. Les Misérables was published in 1962, but it remains as relevant today as the day it was written.
“His grief he will not forget; but it will not darken his heart, it will teach him wisdom.” -The Return of the King by J.R.R. Tolkien
The Lord of The Rings is just as popular today as it was when it was published in 1954. J.R.R. Tolkien’s fantasy epic has resonated with fans for generations because of how universally relevant the messages remain to this day. Although the story is full of war, monsters, and fantasy mayhem, it is also filled to the brim with messages of hope and inspiration for when times get dark.
The quote comes from the third book in The Lord of the Rings trilogy, titled The Return of the King. The Lord of the Rings features good versus evil, hope, friendship, and persevering when it seems all hope is lost. The trick is to keep going anyway.
This quote comes from the character Aragorn as he reflects on the near-death experience of his friend Merry. He is assuring those around him that although Merry has been through a great ordeal, he will remain positive, and grow from the experience rather than let it change him. Something we would also be wise to listen to all these years later.
“You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view … until you climb into his skin and walk around in it.” -To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
The character of Atticus Finch is one of the most quoted in the history of American literature, and for good reason. Throughout the story of Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird, Atticus serves as a beacon of good for his daughter, Scout, in a world where justice isn’t always served.
To Kill a Mockingbird was released in 1960 and was an instant success. It resonated with the American people so quickly that it wasn’t long before it made its way into most school curriculums. There was also a film adaptation only 2 years later.
Atticus says these words to his daughter so that she understands why things happen that don’t always make sense. Sometimes, you need to force yourself to see the world through other people’s eyes, even when that seems impossible. Before you judge those around you for what they did, we must first try to see if we can find out why.
Reading is a great way to escape the stresses of the world while keeping your mind and spirit energized. Inspiration can come from anywhere, but classic literature is nearly unbeatable. Get out there and find inspiration in your favorite story.
Looking to avoid stress in ways other than reading? Check out our blog on three easy ways to eliminate stress.