Quotes from Pan

Knut Hamsun ·  181 pages

Rating: (5.8K votes)


“I love three things," I then say. "I love a dream of love I once had, I love you, and I love this patch of earth."

"And which do you love best?"

"The dream.”
― Knut Hamsun, quote from Pan


“Do not forget, some give little, and it is much for them, others give all, and it costs them no effort; who then has given most?”
― Knut Hamsun, quote from Pan


“The other one he loved like a slave, like a madman and like a beggar. Why? Ask the dust on the road and the falling leaves, ask the mysterious God of life; for no one knows such things. She gave him nothing, no nothing did she give him and yet he thanked her. She said: Give me your peace and your reason! And he was only sorry she did not ask for his life.”
― Knut Hamsun, quote from Pan


“There was a rock in front of my hut, a tall, gray rock. By its looks it seemed to be well-disposed toward me...”
― Knut Hamsun, quote from Pan


“You are right; I am not good at moving in society. Be merciful. You do not understand me; I live in the woods by choice--that is my happiness. Here, where I am all alone, it can hurt no one that I am as I am; but when I go among others, I have to use all my will power to be as I should.”
― Knut Hamsun, quote from Pan



“A shaft of sweetness shoots through me from top to toe when the sun rises; I shoulder my gun in silent exaltation.”
― Knut Hamsun, quote from Pan


“A maiden was imprisoned in a stone tower. She loved a lord. Why? Ask the wind and the stars, ask the god of life; for no one else knows these things. And the lord was her friend and her lover; but time passed, and one fine day he saw someone else and his heart turned away. As a youth he loved the maiden. Often he called her his bliss and his dove, and her embrace was hot and heaving. He said, Give me your heart! And she did so. He said, May I ask you for something, my love? And she answered, in raptures, Yes. She gave him all, and yet he never thanked her. The other one he loved like a slave, like a madman and a beggar. Why? Ask the dust on the road and the falling leaves, ask life’s mysterious god; for no one else knows these things. She gave him nothing, no, nothing did she give him, and yet he thanked her. She said, Give me your peace and your sanity. And he only grieved that she didn’t ask for his life. And the maiden was put in the tower. . . .”
― Knut Hamsun, quote from Pan


“I believe I can read a little in the souls of those around me; maybe it is not so. Oh, when I have a good day I feel as if I can peer deep into other people’s souls, although I don’t have a particularly good head on my shoulders. We sit in a room, some men and women and I, and I seem to see what is going on in the hearts of these people and what they think of me. I put something into every flashing glance of their eyes; occasionally the blood rushes to their cheeks so they turn red, at other times they pretend to be looking another way while still watching me out of the corner of their eyes. There I sit observing all this, and nobody suspects that I see through every soul. For several years I have thought I could read the souls of everybody. Maybe it is not so. . . .”
― Knut Hamsun, quote from Pan


“A veces añoro lugares que ni siquiera sé que existen.”
― Knut Hamsun, quote from Pan


“Det kan regne og storme, det er ikke derpaa det kommer an, ofte kan en liten Glæde bemægtige sig en paa en Regnveirsdag og faa en til at gaa avsides med sin Lykke. Man stiller sig da op og gir sig til at se ret frem, nu og da ler man tyst og ser sig omkring. Hvad tenker man paa? En klar Rute i et Vindu, en Solstraale i Ruten, en Utsigt til en liten Bæk og kanske til en blaa Rift på Himlen. Det behøver ikke at være mere.”
― Knut Hamsun, quote from Pan



“Gladness is intoxicating. I fire my gun and an unforgettable echo answers from crag to crag, floats out over the sea and rings in some sleepless helmsman’s ears. What am I glad about? A thought that comes to me, a memory, a sound in the forest, a human being. I think of her—I close my eyes and stand still on the road and think of her, counting the minutes.”
― Knut Hamsun, quote from Pan


“¿no cree usted, señorita, que los seres humanos de esta región se parecen al corto verano? ¿que son tan efímeros y fascinantes como él?”
― Knut Hamsun, quote from Pan


“Engang kom han med skjorten åpen og han var tykt lodden på brystet. Det er som en eng å lægge sig i! tænkte jeg, for jeg var så ung. Jeg kysset ham nogen ganger, det er på det jeg vet at jeg aldrig har oplevet noget lignende.”
― Knut Hamsun, quote from Pan


“U jesen može se katkad videti, kako zvezde padaju. Eto, mislim ja tada u svojoj samoći, možda se to trza čitav jedan svet tamo gore? Svet se raspada u komade pred mojim očima? I meni – je palo u deo, da u svom životu vidim smrt zvezda!”
― Knut Hamsun, quote from Pan


“I de siste Dager har jeg tænkt og tænkt paa Nordlandssommerens evige Dag. Jeg sitter her og tænker paa den og paa en Hytte som jeg bodde i og paa Skogen bak Hytten og jeg gir mig til at skrive noget ned for at forkorte Tiden og for min Fornøielses Skyld.”
― Knut Hamsun, quote from Pan



“Ritengo di essere capace di leggere un poco nell'animo delle persone che mi circondano. Forse non è così. Nelle mie giornate migliori ho l'impressione di scrutare in fondo all'animo altrui, anche se non sono poi una gran testa. Siamo seduti in una stanza, qualche uomo, qualche donna e io. e mi sembra di vedere quel che accade dentro queste persone, e cosa pensano di me. Attribuisco un significato ad ogni cenno che appare nei loro occhi, a volte il sangue sale alle loro guance e le fa arrossire, altre volte fingono di guardare da un'altra parte e invece mi tengono d'occhio di nascosto. E io sto li e osservo tutto questo e nessuno sospetta che metto a nudo ogni anima.”
― Knut Hamsun, quote from Pan


“Det var gode tider, dagene blev længere og luften mere skjær, jeg rustet mig for to dager og drev tilfjælds, til fjældtinderne, jeg traf renlapper og fik ost av dem, små fete oster med urteagtig smak. Jeg var der mere end en gang.”
― Knut Hamsun, quote from Pan


“Fra min Hytte kunde jeg se et Virvar av Øer og Holmer og Skjær, litt av Sjøen, nogen blaanende Fjældtinder, og bak Hytten laa Skogen, en uhyre Skog. Jeg blev fuld av Glæde og Tak ved Duften av Røtter og Løv, av den fete Os av Furuen, som minder om Lukten av Marv; først i Skogen kom alt indeni mig i Stilhet, min Sjæl blev egal og fuld av Magt.”
― Knut Hamsun, quote from Pan


“Jeg gik Dag efter Dag i Aaserne med Æsop ved min Side og jeg ønsket intet heller end at faa vedbli at gaa der Dag efter Dag, skjønt det endnu laa Sne og bløt Sørpe over den halve Mark.”
― Knut Hamsun, quote from Pan


“Til andre Tider kan selv usædvanlige Oplevelser ikke formaa at rykke en ut av en jævn og fattig Stemning; midt i en Ballsal kan man sitte sikker, likegyldig og upaavirket. For det er ens eget Indre som er Sorgens eller Glædens Kilde.”
― Knut Hamsun, quote from Pan



“Og intet Rop, intet Menneskes Ord hørtes noget Sted, ingenting, men bare det tunge Sus omkring mit Hode.”
― Knut Hamsun, quote from Pan


“Det sætter en søt Stripe gjennem mig fra øverst til nederst naar Solen staar op; jeg kaster Børsen paa Akslen under en tyst Jubel.”
― Knut Hamsun, quote from Pan


“En Mil nedenunder mig saa jeg Havet; Fjældsiderne var vaate og sorte av Vand som rislet nedover dem, dryppet og rislet under samme bittelille Melodi. Disse smaa Melodier langt inde i Fjældene kortet mig mangen Stund naar jeg sat og saa mig om. Nu risler den lille endeløse Tone her i sin Ensomhet, tænkte jeg, og ingen hører den og ingen tænker paa den, men allikevel risler den her for sig selv hele Tiden, hele Tiden! Og jeg syntes ikke længer at Fjældet var aldeles øde naar jeg hørte denne Rislen.”
― Knut Hamsun, quote from Pan


“Light dresses, blue eyes, the tinkling of glasses, the sea, the white sails. We sang snatches of song. And our cheeks became rosy.”
― Knut Hamsun, quote from Pan


“But it doesn’t matter. Nothing matters now.” And the sound of her voice in the forest was just like a little tremulous song.   And the leaves turn even more yellow, fall is approaching; more stars have appeared in the sky, and from now on the moon looks like a shadow of silver dipped in gold.”
― Knut Hamsun, quote from Pan



“- Jeg elsker tre ting, sier jeg så. Jeg elsker en kjærlighetsdrøm jeg hadde engang, jeg elsker dig og jeg elsker denne plet jord.

- Og hvad elsker du mest?

-Drømmen.”
― Knut Hamsun, quote from Pan


“After an hour my senses begin to vibrate in a definite rhythm, I tune into the great stillness, I tune in. I gaze at the crescent moon sitting like a white shell in the sky, and I have a feeling of love for it, I feel I’m blushing. It’s the moon, I say softly and passionately, it’s the moon! And my heart beats toward it with a gentle throbbing. It lasts for several minutes. It blows a little, a strange wind is coming, an unusual blast of air. What is it? I look around and see no one. The wind calls me and my soul bows in answer to the call,37 I feel myself lifted out of my sphere, pressed to an invisible breast, my eyes are moist with tears, I tremble—God is somewhere near looking at me. This lasts for another few minutes. I turn my head, the strange blast of air is gone, and I see something like the back of a spirit wandering soundlessly through the forest. . . .”
― Knut Hamsun, quote from Pan


“Wasn’t Pan sitting in a tree watching to see how I would comport myself? Wasn’t his belly open, and wasn’t he hunched over so that he seemed to be drinking from his own belly? But all this he did only so he could cock his eye and watch me, and the whole tree shook from his silent laughter when he saw that my thoughts were running away with me.”
― Knut Hamsun, quote from Pan


“Jeg traf ham en morgen før jagttid, han var fem og tyve år og kom fra fjærne reiser, han spaserte ved min side i haven og da han berørte mig med sin arm begyndte jeg å elske ham.”
― Knut Hamsun, quote from Pan


“...porque es tu propio interior el que constituye la fuente del dolor y de la alegría.”
― Knut Hamsun, quote from Pan



About the author

Knut Hamsun
Born place: in Lom, Gudbrandsdal, Norway
Born date August 4, 1859
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