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The Joy of Summertime, in 15 Quotes

Ah, summer! The sun is shining, the beaches are crowded, and happy kids are covered in sunscreen and ice cream. It’s a special time of year, especially for people living in colder climes, where rain seems far more common than sun. Perhaps that’s why Shakespeare was such a fan of the season, famously writing, “Shall I compare thee to a summer's day? Thou art more lovely and more temperate.”

It’s not everyone’s favorite season, of course. According to some polls, Americans prefer spring and fall over summer, with winter lagging a ways behind (but, as John Steinbeck once wrote, “What good is warmth without cold to give it sweetness?”). Among most school kids and students, however, summer is often the preferred season — because who can argue with a long and fun-filled summer break? Indeed, most people appreciate the season as a time of fun, travel and leisure, when the great outdoors is wide open for exploration.

In honor of the season, here are some 15 quotes about summer, in which such luminaries as Charles Dickens to Oprah Winfrey extol the virtues of this joyous time of year.

The Earth had donned her mantle of brightest green; and shed her richest perfumes abroad. It was the prime and vigor of the year; all things were glad and flourishing.
— Charles Dickens, "Oliver Twist"

Oh, the summer night, has a smile of light, and she sits on a sapphire throne.
— Bryan Procter, poet

Rest is not idleness, and to lie sometimes on the grass under trees on a summer’s day, listening to the murmur of the water, or watching the clouds float across the sky, is by no means a waste of time.
— John Lubbock, politician and scientist

I almost wish we were butterflies and liv'd but three summer days — three such days with you I could fill with more delight than fifty common years could ever contain.
— John Keats

All in all, it was a never to be forgotten summer… one of those summers which, in a fortunate combination of delightful weather, delightful friends, and delightful doing, come as near to perfection as anything can come in this world.
— Lucy Maud Montgomery, author

Summer afternoon — summer afternoon; to me those have always been the two most beautiful words in the English language.
— Henry James

And so with the sunshine and great bursts of leaves growing on the trees, just as things grow in fast movies, I had that familiar conviction that life was beginning over again with the summer.
— F. Scott Fitzgerald, "The Great Gatsby"

Summer was our best season: It was sleeping on the back screened porch in cots, or trying to sleep in the treehouse; summer was everything good to eat; it was a thousand colors in a parched landscape.
— Harper Lee, "To Kill A Mockingbird"

In summer, the song sings itself.
— William Carlos Williams

In the summertime, when the weather is hot, you can stretch right up and touch the sky.
— Ray Dorset, musician

Summer passes and one remembers one’s exuberance.
— Yoko Ono

The beauty of that June day was almost staggering. After the wet spring, everything that could turn green had outdone itself in greenness and everything that could even dream of blooming or blossoming was in bloom and blossom. The sunlight was a benediction.
— Dan Simmons, author

Summer, after all, is a time when wonderful things can happen to quiet people… You can be grateful and easy, with no eyes on you, and no past. Summer just opens the door and lets you out.
— Deb Caletti, author

Summer has a flavor like no other. Always fresh and simmered in sunshine.
— Oprah Winfrey

Photo credit: n1z_m/ Unsplash

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About the Author
Tony Dunnell
Tony is an English writer of non-fiction and fiction living on the edge of the Amazon jungle.
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