Quotes by Freya Stark

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Freya Madeleine Stark (1893-1993) was famous for writing of her travels in the Middle East. She was one of the first Western women to travel through the Arabian deserts (Hadhramaut).

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There can be no happiness if the things we believe in are different from the things we do.

The great and almost only comfort about being a woman is that one can always pretend to be more stupid than one is and no one is surprised.
Perhaps the best function of parenthood is to teach the young creature to love with safety, so that it may be able to venture unafraid when later emotion comes; the thwarting of the instinct to love is the root of all sorrow and not sex only but divinity itself is insulted when it is repressed. To disapprove, to condemn --the human soul shrivels under barren righteousness.
The slightest living thing answers a deeper need than all the works of man because it is transitory. It has an evanescence of life, or growth, or change: it passes, as we do, from one stage to the another, from darkness to darkness, into a distance where we, too, vanish out of sight. A work of art is static; and its value and its weakness lie in being so: but the tuft of grass and the clouds above it belong to our own travelling brotherhood.
Pain and fear and hunger are effects of causes which can be foreseen and known: but sorrow is a debt which someone else makes for us.
Absence is one of the most useful ingredients of family life, and to dose it rightly is an art like any other.
I have met charming people, lots who would be charming if they hadn't got a complex about the British and everyone has pleasant and cheerful manners and I like most of the American voices. On the other hand I don't believe they have any God and their hats are frightful. On balance I prefer the Arabs.