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24 Of The Most Beautiful Quotes By Hans Christian Andersen

It's International Children's Book Day in honor of Hans Christian Andersen's birthday.

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2. "The angel plucks a large handful of flowers, and they carry it with them up to God, where the flowers bloom more brightly than they ever did on earth."

— "The Angel"

3. "The matches glowed with a light that was brighter than the noon-day, and her grandmother had never appeared so large or so beautiful. She took the little girl in her arms, and they both flew upwards in brightness and joy far above the earth, where there was neither cold nor hunger nor pain, for they were with God."

— "The Little Match Girl"

4. "To be born in a duck's nest, in a farmyard, is of no consequence to a bird, if it is hatched from a swan's egg."

— "The Ugly Duckling"

5. "Death continued to stare at the emperor with his cold, hollow eyes, and the room was fearfully still. Suddenly there came through the open window the sound of sweet music. Outside, on the bough of a tree, sat the living nightingale. She had heard of the emperor's illness, and was therefore come to sing to him of hope and trust. And as she sung, the shadows grew paler and paler; the blood in the emperor's veins flowed more rapidly, and gave life to his weak limbs; and even Death himself listened, and said, 'Go on, little nightingale, go on.'"

— "The Nightingale"


7. "As before, every one saw Karen's red shoes, and all the carved figures too bent their gaze upon them. When Karen knelt at the chancel she thought only of the shoes; they floated before her eyes, and she forgot to say her prayer or sing her psalm."

— "The Red Shoes"

8. "The prince took her for his wife, for he knew that in her he had found a true princess. And the pea was preserved in the cabinet of curiosities, where it is still to be seen unless some one has stolen it. And this, mind you, is a real story."

— "The Real Princess"

9. "The birches, waving in the wind, looked as full of life as in summer and as wondrously beautiful. Where the sun shone, everything glittered and sparkled as if diamond dust had been strewn about; and the snowy carpet of the earth seemed covered with diamonds from which gleamed countless lights, whiter even than the snow itself."

— "The Snowman"

10. "Yes, it is wonderful to be alive! Indeed, the Bottle inwardly sang of all this, as do young poets, who frequently also know nothing about the things of which they sing."

— "The Bottle Neck"

12. "Strange to say, when she wanted to move to the right the shoes bore her to the left; and when she wished to dance up the room the shoes persisted in going down the room. Down the stairs they carried her at last, into the street, and out through the town gate. On and on she danced, for dance she must, straight out into the gloomy wood."

— "The Red Shoes"

13. "'Rejoice in thy youth,' said the sunbeam; 'rejoice in thy fresh growth and in the young life that is in thee.'"

— "The Fir Tree"

14. "Nothing gave her so much pleasure as to hear about the world above the sea. She made her old grandmother tell her all she knew of the ships and of the towns, the people and the animals. To her it seemed most wonderful and beautiful to hear that the flowers of the land had fragrance, while those below the sea had none; that the trees of the forest were green; and that the fishes among the trees could sing so sweetly that it was a pleasure to listen to them. Her grandmother called the birds fishes, or the little mermaid would not have understood what was meant, for she had never seen birds."

— "The Little Mermaid"

15. "In the days of Moses and the prophets such a man would have been counted among the wise men of the land; in the Middle Ages he would have been burned at the stake."

— "The Puppet Show Man"


17. "One evening, just as the sun was setting amid radiant clouds, there came a large flock of beautiful birds out of the bushes. The duckling had never seen any like them before. They were swans; and they curved their graceful necks, while their soft plumage shone with dazzling whiteness. They uttered a singular cry as they spread their glorious wings and flew away from those cold regions to warmer countries across the sea."

— "The Ugly Duckling"

18. "The swallow rose in the air and flew over forest and over sea—high above the highest mountains, covered with eternal snow. Thumbelina would have been frozen in the cold air, but she crept under the bird's warm feathers, keeping her little head uncovered, so that she might admire the beautiful lands over which they passed. At length they reached the warm countries, where the sun shines brightly and the sky seems so much higher above the earth."

— "Thumbelina"

19. "How it blazed and burned! It gave out a warm, bright flame like a little candle, as she held her hands over it. A wonderful little light it was. It really seemed to the little girl as if she sat before a great iron stove with polished brass feet and brass shovel and tongs."

— "The Little Match Girl"

20. "If you looked down to the bottom of my soul, you would understand fully the source of my longing and – pity me. Even the open, transparent lake has its unknown depths, which no divers know."

— Letter to Edvard Collin in 1835

22. "Under each arm he carries an umbrella. One of them, with pictures on the inside, he spreads over good children, and then they dream the most charming stories. But the other umbrella has no pictures, and this he holds over the naughty children, so that they sleep heavily and wake in the morning without having dreamed at all."

— "Ole-Luk-Oie the Dream God"

23. "She is flying there where the swarm is thickest. She is the largest of them all and never remains on the earth, but flies up to the dark clouds. Often at midnight she flies through the streets of the town and breathes with her frosty breath upon the windows; then the ice freezes on the panes into wonderful forms that look like flowers and castles."

— "The Snow Queen"

24. "It rolls on unweariedly, and thus what is hard becomes smooth. I will be just as unwearied. Thanks for your lesson, you clear rolling waves; my heart tells me that one day you will lead me to my dear brothers."

— "The Wild Swans"

Did we miss your favorite Hans Christian Andersen quote? Add yours in the comments below!

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