The Best Ivan Terrible quotes

Ivan Terrible quotes thumbnail

Ivan the Terrible was one of the most interesting and complex figures in Russian history. He was both loved and hated by his people, and his reign was marked by bloodthirsty violence and dramatic changes. This quotes compilation looks at Ivan’s life and times, and tries to shed some light on the man behind the legend.

Here are the most inspiring Life, Love, Individual quotes from Ivan Terrible, and much more.


About Ivan Terrible

birth of the author

25 August 1530

death of the author

28 March 1584 Moscow, Tsardom Of Russia

religion of the author

Russian Orthodox


Ivan Ilych’s life had been most simple and most ordinary and therefore most terrible. — Leo Tolstoy

What’s terrible is that there’s nothing terrible, that the very essence of life is petty, uninteresting, and degradingly trite. — Ivan Turgenev

Take what you can yourself, and don’t let others get you into their hands; to belong to oneself, that is the whole thing in life. — Ivan Turgenev

Belonging to oneself––the whole essence of life lies in that. — Ivan Turgenev

And it’s true that I lost my life here, over this curtain, as if I was storming a fortress. Can it be? How terrible and how stupid! It can’t be! Can’t be, but is. — Leo Tolstoy

I lost my life over that curtain as I might have done when storming a fort. Is that possible? How terrible and how stupid. It can’t be true! It can’t, but it is. — Leo Tolstoy

I walked in the meadows of green grieving for my life. — Ivan Turgenev

Nature creates while destroying, and doesn’t care whether it creates or destroys as long as life isn’t extinguished, as long as death doesn’t lose its rights. — Ivan Turgenev

There was no deceiving himself: something terrible, new, and more important than anything before in his life, was taking place within him of which he alone was aware. — Leo Tolstoy

There are some moments in life, some feelings; one can only point to them and pass by. — Ivan Turgenev

We Russians have assigned ourselves no other task in life but the cultivation of our own personalities, and when we’re barely past childhood, we set to work to cultivate them, those unfortunate personalities. — Ivan Turgenev

All human beings hang by a thread, an abyss may open under their feet at any moment, and yet they have to go and invent all sortsof difficulties for themselves and spoil their lives. — Ivan Turgenev


In my case there was no first love. I began with the second. — Ivan Turgenev

I believe love produces a certain flowering of the whole personality which nothing else can achieve. — Ivan Turgenev

What did I hope for, what did I expect, what rich future did I foresee, when the phantom of my first love, rising up for an instant, barely called forth one sigh, one mournful sentiment? — Ivan Turgenev

Love, I thought, is stronger than death or the fear of death. Only by it, by love, life holds together and advances. — Ivan Turgenev

People without firmness of character love to make up a fate for themselves; that relieves them of the necessity of having their own will and of taking responsibility for themselves. — Ivan Turgenev

What was Ivan the Terrible’s childhood like?

Ivan’s father died when he was three, and his mother died—possibly by poison—before his eighth birthday.



Death’s an old joke, but each individual encounters it anew. — Ivan Turgenev

Each individual is more or less dimly aware of his significance, is aware that he’s something innately superior, something eternal––and lives, is obligated to live, in the moment and for the moment. — Ivan Turgenev

Life deceives everyone except the individual who doesn’t contemplate it, the individual who demands nothing from it, the individual who serenely accepts its few gifts and serenely makes the most of them. — Ivan Turgenev

Redundant Thematics

In Ivan Terrible Statements


The word tomorrow was invented for indecisive people and for children. — Ivan Turgenev

That’s what children are for–that their parents may not be bored. — Ivan Turgenev

Whatever a person may pray for, that person prays for a miracle. Every prayer comes down to this–Almighty God, grant that two times two not equal four. — Ivan Turgenev

Inspiring Phrases From Ivan Terrible

Behind me there are already so many memories (…) Lots of memories, but no point in remembering them, and ahead of me a long, long road with nothing to aim for … I just don’t want to go along it. — Ivan Turgenev

I share no man’s opinions; I have my own. — Ivan Turgenev

I look up to heaven only when I want to sneeze. — Ivan Turgenev

Oh, gentle feelings, soft sounds, the goodness and the gradual stilling of a soul that has been moved; the melting happiness of the first tender, touching joys of love–where are you? — Ivan Turgenev

Every man’s happiness is built on the unhappi–ness of another. — Ivan Turgenev

Who among us has the strength to oppose petty egoism, those petty good feelings, pity and remorse? — Ivan Turgenev

Nothing is worse and more hurtful than a happiness that comes too late. It can give no pleasure, yet it deprives you of that most precious of rights–the right to swear and curse at your fate! — Ivan Turgenev


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