Saturday, April 25, 2009


Questioning is one way to knowledge and I've always asked myself questions. Last week, the question for me was: why do I read? I came up with a couple of answers and quotes and thought I should share. For me:

I read to escape into unknown worlds to meet known and unknown people...
I've traveled the world twice over,
Met the famous; saints and sinners,
Poets and artists, kings and queens,
Old stars and hopeful beginners,
I've been where no-one's been before,
Learned secrets from writers and cooks
All with one library ticket
To the wonderful world of books.
~ Anonymous ~

Reading is a path into history unknown: past and future...

Books are the legacies that a great genius leaves to
mankind, which are delivered down from generation to
generation as presents to the posterity of those who are yet unborn,
~ Joseph Addison ~

To be called vast, well know a bit of everything...

If you read a lot of books you are considered well read. But if you watch a lot of TV, you're not considered well viewed.
Lily Tomlin

Read not to contradict and confute; nor to believe and take for granted;
nor to find talk and discourse; but to weigh and consider.
Some books are to be tasted, others to be swallowed,
and some few to be chewed and digested:
that is, some books are to be read only in parts,
others to be read, but not curiously, and some few
to be read wholly, and with diligence and attention
~ Francis Bacon ~
Books are faithful friends...

He that loves a book will never want a faithful friend,
a wholesome counselor, a cheerful companion, an effectual comforter.
By study, by reading, by thinking, one may innocently
divert and pleasantly entertain himself,
as in all weathers, as in all fortunes.
~ Barrow ~

A book is good company.
It is full of conversation without loquacity.
It comes to your longing with full instruction,
but pursues you never.
~ Henry Ward Beecher ~

To view reality and escape from it...

All the best stories in the world are but one story in reality -- the story of escape.
It is the only thing which interests us all and at all times, how to escape.
~ Arthur Christopher Benson ~

When we read a story, we inhabit it.
The covers of the book are like a roof and four walls.
What is to happen next will take place within the four walls of the story.
And this is possible because the story's voice makes everything its own.
~ John Berger ~

There is no Frigate like a Book
To take us Lands away,
Nor any Coursers like a Page
Of prancing Poetry.
~ Emily Dickinson ~
To read is to live and to live is to read...

To read is to empower
To empower is to write
To write is to influence
To Influence is to change
To change is to live.
~ Jane Evershed ~

Read in order to live.
~ Gustave Flaubert ~

Let us hear from you: why do you read? Also share your favourite 'reading' quotes (would love quotes from Africans too)...


  1. Books help fill the void that my lack of travel and going out creates. With books, I cross paths with words and my diction grows up. With books, I find humor, information. With books my imaginative capacity is enlarged and I get to 'meet' people.

    A book is the most effective weapon against intolerance and ignorance.”
    - Lyndon Baines Johnson

  2. Do i really know why i read. i know as a kid, my mother forced me to read a lot, she said the books must not have pictures for me to read them, she made me read things fall apart when i was 8 or 9. she got me addicted to reading, and now i just can't stay without reading, if i don't see novels, then i read textbooks, no textbooks, then magazines, none of these then maybe billboards, fliers, i am just a reading addict and i think books improve me a lot. sorry i do not know any reading quotes

  3. i started reading coz my Dad'ld make me read and summarise what i read, went on because i fell in love, with the library; it was my escape from boring classes in Q.C, it was the one place i felt most comfy, with the huge shelves filled with thousands (i think) of fiction nd non-fiction, now i read because i know no other life, because words are a part of me, over the years they've been the one constant in my life...

  4. interesting blog you have here; well done!

  5. In the world of books i lose myself, and then i find myself, then i lose myself and then i find myself wanting to be lost all over again! Books take me places i may never ordinarily have been and introduce me to people i may never meet... So why do i read? because books are like my life!