Remorse is an emotional expression of personal regret felt by a person after he or she has committed an act which they deem to be shameful, hurtful, or violent. Remorse is closely allied to guilt and self-directed resentment. When a person regrets an earlier action or failure to act, it may be because of remorse or in response to various other consequences, including being punished for the act or omission.
- Farewell, remorse: all good to me is lost;
Evil, be thou my good.
- The real affliction of old age is remorse.
- Cesare Pavese, The moon and the bonfire, chapter VIII, p. 49.
- High minds, of native pride and force,
Most deeply feel thy pangs, Remorse;
Fear, for their scourge, mean villains have,
Thou art the torturer of the brave!
- Walter Scott, Marmion (1808), Canto III, Stanza 13.
- Abandon all remorse;
On horror's head horrors accumulate.
- It occurred to him that what had appeared perfectly impossible before, namely that he had not spent his life as he should have done, might after all be true. It occurred to him that his scarcely perceptible attempts to struggle against what was considered good by the most highly placed people, those scarcely noticeable impulses which he had immediately suppressed, might have been the real thing, and all the rest false. And his professional duties and the whole arrangement of his life and of his family, and all his social and official interests, might all have been false. He tried to defend all those things to himself and suddenly felt the weakness of what he was defending.
Hoyt's New Cyclopedia Of Practical Quotations
- Quotes reported in Hoyt's New Cyclopedia Of Practical Quotations (1922), p. 665.
- Cruel Remorse! where Youth and Pleasure sport,
And thoughtless Folly keeps her court,—
Crouching 'midst rosy bowers thou lurk'st unseen
Slumbering the festal hours away,
While Youth disports in that enchanting scene;
Till on some fated day
Thou with a tiger-spring dost leap upon thy prey,
And tear his helpless breast, o'erwhelmed with wild dismay.
- Anna Letitia Barbauld, Ode to Remorse, Stanza 6.
- Remorse is as the heart in which it grows;
If that be gentle, it drops balmy dews
Of true repentance; but if proud and gloomy,
It is the poison tree, that pierced to the inmost
Weeps only tears of poison.
- Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Remorse, Act I, scene 1.
- Man, wretched man, whene'er he stoops to sin,
Feels, with the act, a strong remorse within.
- Juvenal, Satires (early 2nd century), Satire XIII, line 1. William Gifford's translation.
- Le remords s'endort durant un destin prospère et s'aigrit dans l'adversité.
- Remorse goes to sleep during a prosperous period and wakes up in adversity.
- Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Confessions, I, II.