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'The Great Gatsby' Quotes

F. Scott Fitzgerald's Famous Novel - A Great Classic

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The Great Gatsby
Urban Romantics/ Flickr CC

The Great Gatsby (1925) is one of the greatest American classics. The novel was written in Paris by F. Scott Fitzgerald, and it has come to be seen as a representation of the Jazz Age. The Great Gatsby relates the story of Jay Gatsby--as told by Nick Carraway. Here are a few quotes from Fitzgerald's Great Gatsby.

Quotes
  • "Whenever you feel like criticizing any one...just remember that all the people in this world haven't had the advantages that you've had."
    - F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby, Ch. 1
     
  • "what foul dust floated in the wake of his dreams that temporarily closed out my interest in the abortive sorrows and short-winded elations of men."
    - F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby, Ch. 1
     
  • "seeking, a little wistfully, for the dramatic turbulence of some irrecoverable football game."
    - F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby, Ch. 1
     
  • "In two weeks it'll be the longest day in the year... Do you always watch for the longest day of the year and then miss it? I always watch for the longest day in the year and then miss it."
    - F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby, Ch. 1
     
  • "Civilization's going to pieces. I've gotten to be a terrible pessimist about things... The idea is if we don't look out the white race will be--will be utterly submerged... It's up to us, who are the dominant race, to watch out or these other races will have control of things."
    - F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby, Ch. 1
     
  • "I hope she'll be a fool--that's the best thing a girl can be in this world, a beautiful little fool... You see, I think everything's terrible anyhow... And I know. I've been everywhere and seen everything and done everything."
    - F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby, Ch. 1
     
  • "All right... I'm glad it's a girl. And I hope she'll be a fool--that's the best thing a girl can be in this world, a beautiful little fool."
    - F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby, Ch. 1
     
  • "a single green light, minute and faraway, that might have been the end of a dock."
    - F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby, Ch. 1
     
  • "This is a valley of ashes--a fantastic farm where ashes grow like wheat into ridges and hills and grotesque gardens; where ashes take the forms of houses and chimneys and rising smoke and, finally, with a transcendent effort, of men who move dimly and already crumbling through the powdery air. Occasionally a line of gray cars crawls along an invisible track, gives out a ghastly creak, and comes to rest, and immediately the ash-gray men swarm up with leaden spades and stir up an impenetrable cloud, which screens their obscure operations from your sight."
    - F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby, Ch. 2
     
  • "He thinks she goes to see her sister in New York. He's so dumb he doesn't know he's alive."
    - F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby, Ch. 2
     
  • "I married him because I thought he was a gentleman...I thought he knew something about breeding, but he wasn't fit to lick my shoe."
    - F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby, Ch. 2
     
  • "He borrowed somebody's best suit to get married in, and never told me about it, and the man came after it one day when he was out... I gave it to him and then I lay down and cried... all afternoon."
    - F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby, Ch. 2
     
  • "I wanted to get out and walk eastward toward the park through the soft twilight, but each time I tried to go I became entangled in some wild, strident argument which pulled me back, as if with ropes, into my chair. Yet high over the city our line of yellow windows must have contributed their share of human secrecy to the casual watcher in the darkening streets... I saw him too, looking up and wondering. I was within and without."
    - F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby, Ch. 2
     
  • "I believe that on the first night I went to Gatsby's house I was one of the few guests who had actually been invited. People were not invited--they went there."
    - F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby, Ch. 3
     
  • "I've been drunk for about a week now, and I thought it might sober me up to sit in a library."
    - F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby, Ch. 3
     
  • "It's a triumph. What thoroughness! What realism! Knew when to stop, too--didn't cut the pages. But what do you want? What do you expect?'"
    - F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby, Ch. 3
     
  • "He smiled understandingly-much more than understandingly. It was one of those rare smiles with a quality of eternal reassurance in it, that you may come across four or five times in life. It faced--or seemed to face--the whole external world for an instant, and then concentrated on you with an irresistible prejudice in your favor. It understood you just as far as you wanted to be understood, believed in you as you would like to believe in yourself."
    - F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby, Ch. 3
     
  • "I felt a haunting loneliness sometimes, and felt it in others--young clerks in the dusk, wasting the most poignant moments of night and life."
    - F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby, Ch. 3
     
  • "It takes two to make an accident."
    - F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby, Ch. 3
     
  • "Everyone suspects himself of at least one of the cardinal virtues, and this is mine: I am one of the few honest people that I have ever known."
    - F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby, Ch. 3

Study Guide

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