Literary Birthday – 18 July – William Makepeace Thackeray

William Makepeace Thackeray was born 18 July 1811, and died 24 December 1863.


  1. Mother is the name for God in the lips and hearts of little children.
  2. The two most engaging powers of an author are to make new things familiar, familiar things new.
  3. You read the past in some old faces.
  4. If a secret history of books could be written, and the author’s private thoughts and meanings noted down alongside of his story, how many insipid volumes would become interesting, and dull tales excite the reader!
  5. Good humour may be said to be one of the very best articles of dress one can wear in society.
  6. I never knew whether to pity or congratulate a man on coming to his senses.
  7. Except for the young or very happy, I can’t say I am sorry for any one who dies.
  8. Bravery never goes out of fashion.
  9. The world is a looking-glass, and gives back to every man the reflection of his own face.
  10. There are a thousand thoughts lying within a man that he does not know till he takes up the pen to write.

William Makepeace Thackeray was an English novelist of the 19th century. He was famous for his satirical works depicting life in English society, including the novel, Vanity Fair.

Source for image: Jesse Harrison Whitehurst, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons  https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:William_Makepeace_Thackeray_by_Jesse_Harrison_Whitehurst-crop.jpg

by Amanda Patterson

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Posted on: 18th July 2013