Wide World of Quotes > Robert Louis Stevenson Quotes


Robert Louis Stevenson
Scottish novelist, essayist and poet
(1850-94)



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Fifteen men on the dead man's chest --
Yo-ho-ho, and a bottle of rum!
Drink and the devil had done for the rest --
Yo-ho-ho, and a bottle of rum!
-- Treasure Island (1883)

How that personage haunted my dreams, I need scarcely tell you. On stormy nights, when the wind shook the four corners of the house and the surf roared along the cove and up the cliffs, I would see him in a thousand forms, and with a thousand diabolical expressions. Now the leg would be cut off at the knee, now at the hip; now he was a monstrous kind of a creature who had never had but the one leg, and that in the middle of his body. To see him leap and run and pursue me over hedge and ditch was the worst of nightmares. And altogether I paid pretty dear for my monthly fourpenny piece, in the shape of these abominable fancies.
-- Treasure Island (1883)

I lived on rum, I tell you. It's been meat and drink, and man and wife, to me.
-- Treasure Island (1883)

I have never seen the sea quiet round Treasure Island. The sun might blaze overhead, the air be without a breath, the surface smooth and blue, but still these great rollers would be running along all the external coast, thundering and thundering by day and night; and I scarce believe there is one spot in the island where a man would be out of earshot of their noise.
-- Treasure Island (1883)

Of Silver we have heard no more. That formidable seafaring man with one leg has at last gone clean out of my life; but I dare say he met his old Negress, and perhaps still lives in comfort with her and Captain Flint. It is to be hoped so, I suppose, for his chances of comfort in another world are very small.
-- Treasure Island (1883)

For my part, I travel not to go anywhere, but to go. I travel for travel's sake. The great affair is to move.
-- Travels with a Donkey in the Cévennes (1878)

There is no duty we so much much underrate as the duty of being happy.
-- Virginibus Puerisque (1881), "An Apology for Idlers"

Wealth I ask not, hope nor love,
Nor a friend to know me;
All I ask, the heaven above
And the road below me.
-- "The Vagabond", in: Songs of Travel and Other Verses (1896)


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The selection of the above quotes and the writing of the accompanying notes was performed by the author David Paul Wagner.

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