(added September '02)

No medicine is more valuable, none more efficacious, none better suited to the cure of all our temporal ills than a friend to whom we may turn for consolation in time of trouble, and with whom we may share our happiness in time of joy.
--Saint Ailred of Rivaulx (1109-1166)

Wherever you may be, it is your friends who make your world.

The road to a friend's house is never long.
--Danish proverb

Some people weave burlap into the fabric of our lives, and some weave gold thread.  Both contribute to make the whole picture beautiful and unique.

Friendship consists in forgetting what one gives, and remembering what one receives.
--Dumas The Younger

If you love something, let it go.  If it comes back, it's yours.  If it doesn't, it never really was in the first place.

Some people come into our lives and quickly go.  Some stay for awhile and leave footprints on our hearts...and we are never, ever the same.

To love another person is to help them love God.
--Soren Kierkegaard

The real friend is another self.

Friendship is a single soul dwelling in two bodies.

Friendship is the source of the greatest pleasures, and without friends even the most agreeable pursuits become tedious.
--Saint Thomas Aquinas

Friendship is the only cement that will ever hold the world together.
--Woodrow Wilson

We are all travelers in the desert of life, and the best we can find on our journey is an honest friend.
--Robert Louis Stevenson

The making of friends who are real friends is the best token we have of a man's success in life.
--Edward E. Hale

There is no wilderness like a life without friends.
--Baltasar Gracian

Robbing life of friendship is like robbing the world of the sun.

The most beautiful discovery true friends make is that they can grow separately without growing apart.
--Elizabeth Foley

Other people are like a mirror which reflects back on us the kind of image we cast.
--Bishop Fulton J. Sheen

Think where man's glory most begins and ends, 
And say my glory was I had such friends.
--W.B. Yeats

The best portion of a good man's life is his little, nameless, unremembered acts of kindness and of love.
William Wordsworth

Friendship is Love without his wings!
--Lord Byron

Your friendship is the light I carry with me in my heart wherever I wander.

Friendship:  a human relationship signifying mutual affection, respect, and trust.

Friendship is the golden thread that ties the heart of all the world.
John Evelyn

We come to love not by finding a perfect person, but by learning to see an imperfect person perfectly.

Let us be grateful to people who make us happy; they are the charming gardeners who make our souls blossom.
--Marcel Proust

This is the miracle that happens every time to those who really love; the more they give, they more they possess.
--Rainer Maria Rilke

The companions of our childhood always possess a certain power over our minds.
--Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley

Friendship takes time.
--Agnes Repplier

Real friendship is a slow grower.
--Lord Chesterfield

It is great to have friends when we are young, but indeed it is still more so when we are getting old.  When we are youn, friends are, like everything else, a matter of course.  In the old days, we know what it means to have them.
--Edward Grieg

As in the case of wines that improve with age, the oldest friendships ought to be the most delightful.

Wherever you are, it is your friends who make your world.
--William James

Friends are an aid to the young, to guard them from error; to the elderly, to attend to their wants; to those in the prime of life, to assist them to noble deeds.

If you want an accounting of your worth, count your friends.
--Merry Browne

Without friends no one would choose to live, though he had all other goods.

Many a friendship--long loyal, and self-sacrificing--rested at first upon no thicker a foundation than a kind word.
--Frederick W. Faber

The best mirror is a trusted, old friend.
Sephardic Saying

The firmest friendships have been formed in mutual adversity, as iron is most strongly united by the fiercest flame.
--Charles Caleb Colton

In prosperity our friends know us; in adversity we know our friends.
--John Churton Collins

Life is to be fortified by many friendships.  To love and to be loved is the greatest happiness of existence.
--Sydney Smith

Blessed are they who have the gift of making friends, for it is one of God's best gifts. It involves many things, but above all, the power of going out of one's self, and appreciating whatever is noble and loving in another." 
--Thomas Hughes
 False friends are like our shadow, keeping close to us when we walk in sunshine, but leaving us the instant we cross into shade."
I don't remember when I first began To call you "friend." One day, I only know, The vague companionship that I'd seen grow so imperceptibly, turned gold, and ran in tune with all I'd thought, or dared to plan. 
--Florence Steigerwalt 
The Christian surely means to be kind and considerate in Heaven! But why not here on earth and in these trying circumstances where perhaps his friends and neighbors need it most? 
--Bolton Jones 
Friendship, indeed, is one of the greatest boons God can bestow on man. It is a union of our finest feelings; a disinterested binding of hearts, and a sympathy of two souls. It is an indefinable trust we repose in one another, a constant communication between two minds, and an unremitting anxiety for each other's souls.
 --James Langdon Hill 
The language of friendship is not words, but meanings. It is an intelligence above language. Do not keep the alabaster box of your love and friendship sealed up until your friends are dead. Fill their lives with sweetness. Speak approving, cheering words while their ears can hear them, and while their hearts can be thrilled and made happier. The kind things you mean to say when they are gone, say before they go. 
--George William

Never cast aside your friends if by any possibility you can retain them. We are the weakest of spendthrifts if we let one friend drop off through inattention, or let one push away another, or if we hold aloof from one for petty jealousy or heedless slight or roughness. Would you throw away a diamond because it pricked you? One good friend is not to be weighed against the jewels of the earth. If there is coolness or unkindness between us, let us come face to face and have it out. 
Quick before the love grows cold. 
 The light of friendship is like the light of phosphorous, seen plainest when all around is dark. 
--Grace Noll Crowell
The friend who holds up before me the mirror, conceals not my smallest faults, warns me kindly, reproves me affectionately, when I have not performed my duty, he is my friend, however little he may appear so. But if a man praises and lauds me, never reproves me, overlooks my faults, and forgives them before I have repented, he is my enemy, 
however much he may appear my friend.
--Johann Gottfried van Herder 
If a friend of mine gave a feast, and did not invite me to it, I should not mind a bit. But if a friend of mine had a sorrow and refused to share it, I should feel it most bitterly. If he shut the doors of the house of mourning against me, I would move back again and again and beg to be admitted, so that I might share in what I was entitled to share. 
--Oscar Wilde 
Said Mrs. Browning, the poet, to Charles Kingsley, the novelist, "What is the secret of your life? Tell me, that I may make mine beautiful also." Thinking a moment, the beloved author replied, "I had a friend." 
There is a vast difference between putting your nose in other people's business and putting your heart in other people's problems. 
He who seeks a friend without a fault remains without one.
 People don't care how much you know until they know how much you care. 
Friendship is a cozy shelter from life's rainy days. 
A friend is a present you give yourself. 
--Robert Louis Stevenson 
It costs to be a friend or to have a friend. There is nothing else in life except motherhood that costs so much. It not only costs time, affection, patience, love, but sometimes a man must even lay down his life for his friends. There is no true friendship without self-abnegation, self-sacrifice. 
--Anna R. Brown Lindsay 
Friendship is the positive and unalterable choice of a person whom we have singled out for qualities that we most admire.
 --Abel Bonnard 
In the progress of personality, first comes a declaration of independence, then a recognition of interdependence. 
--Henry Van Dyke 
Constantly look for a new friend, a truly first-class person, one who has the courage to criticize, to demand your best self, a person who has different interests and different beliefs from yours, a friend for whom you can render a constructive service. Devote energy toward making such friends. Retain them, never let them go, and continue making new friends until you die.
 --William Terhune
 Friends should be chosen by a higher principle of selection than any worldly one. They should be chosen for character, for goodness, for truth and trustworthiness, because they have sympathy with us in our best thoughts and holiest aspirations, because they have community of mind in the things of the soul.
 --Hugh Black 
We do not make friends as we make houses, but discover them as we do the arbutus, under the leaves of our lives, 
concealed in our experience. 
--William Rader
 We cannot tell the precise moment when friendship is formed. As in filling a vessel drop by drop, there is at last a drop which makes it run over, so in a series of kindnesses there is at last one that makes the heart run over. 
--Samuel Johnson 
In the hour of distress and misery the eye of every mortal turns to friendship. In the hour of gladness and conviviality, what is our want? It is friendship. When the heart overflows with gratitude or with any other sweet and sacred sentiment, what is the word to which it would give utterance? A friend. 
--Walter Savage Landow 
It is possible for two people who have wide differences of preference and opinion, of habits, of teaching, of training, of background and belief to enjoy the company of each other in many ways. Indeed, a diversity of friendships is one of life's real enrichments. To learn of the goodness of those who are unlike--their worth, their sincerity, their good hearts, their good minds, their good company--is rich and rewarding. It is wonderful to have a wide range of choice friends who can be counted on, friends who can be enjoyed and loved and trusted. 
Such is the meaning of friendship. 
--Richard L. Evans 
It is a noble and great thing to cover the blemishes and excuse the failings of a friend; to draw a curtain before his weaknesses and to display his perfections; to bury his shortcomings in silence but to proclaim his virtues on the housetop. 
--Robert South 
The friend is the person whom one is in need of and by whom one is needed.
 --Arthur Christopher Benson 
Three men are my friends: he that loves me, he that hates me, and he that is indifferent to me. Who loves me teaches me tenderness. Who hates me teaches me caution. Who is indifferent to me teaches me self-reliance. 
--These Times 
Life is a sweeter, stronger, fuller, more gracious thing for the friend's existence, whether he be near or far. If the friend is close at hand, that is best; but if he is far away he is still there to think of, to wonder about, to hear from, to write to , to share life and experience with, to serve, to honor, to admire, to love.
 --Arthur Christopher Benson 
True friends are those who, when you've make a fool of yourself, don't think you've done a permanent job. 
It is smart to pick your friends--but not to pieces.
 A true friend is one who thinks you're a good egg even though you're half-cracked. 
Friendship, in its truest sense, is next to love the most abused of words. One may call many "friend" and be still ignorant of that sentiment, cooler than passion, warmer than respect, more just and generous than either, which recognizes a kindred spirit in another, and, claiming its right, keeps it sacred by the wise reserve that is to friendship what the purple bloom is to the grape, a charm which once destroyed can never be restored.
 --J. Alcott
A friend is one who incessantly pays us the compliment of expecting from us all the virtues, 
and who can appreciate them in us. 
--Henry David Thoreau 
A friend is one in whom we can confide. The secret chambers of our soul open to his touch on the latch. 
--J. E. Dinger 
A blessed thing it is to have a friend; one human soul whom we can trust utterly; who knows the best and worst of us, and who loves us in spite of all our faults; who will speak the honest truth to us, while the world flatters us to our face, and laughs at us behind our back; who will give us counsel and reproof in a day of prosperity and self-conceit; but who, again, will comfort and encourage us in days of difficulty and sorrow, when the world leaves us alone to fight our own battle as we can. 
--Charles Kingsley


background by Cathye
photo from The Innocence Collection
by Kim Anderson and Verkerke