25 Alfred Tennyson Quotes From The Poet Laureate

Express yourself more fully with our Alfred Tennyson quotes. 

Alfred Tennyson won the hearts of millions with his beautiful poetry

He is among the heavyweights of British poets. 

Learn more about this Poet Laureate with our Alfred Tennyson quotes. 

Who was Alfred Tennyson?

Alfred Tennyson was an English poet who ascended to the title of Poet Laureate during the reign of Queen Victoria. 

He wrote dramas, but most of his success came from his poetry. 

Some of Alfred Tennyson’s most well-known poems are:

  • Ulysses
  • Morte d’Arthur
  • The Lotos Eaters

Tennyson’s impact on language

You may have been quoting Alfred Tennyson your whole life and might not have known it. 

Tennyson is responsible for many phrases that are common in English today. 

All of the following phrases come from Tennyson’s poetry:

  • “Because my heart is pure.”
  • “Theirs not to reason why, theirs but to do and die.”
  • “Tis better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all.”

Even though he was a British poet, his impact also influenced American English.

From poet to Poet Laureate

The British Poet Laureate is an honorary position appointed by the King or Queen. 

The position dates back to 1616 and has been a tradition for generations. 

William Wordsworth was one of Britain’s most famous poets to hold the title. 

After Wordsworth’s death, Lord Tennyson earned the title in 1850.

He held the title until he died in 1892. 

Tennyson and politics

Tennyson wrote a substantial amount of political prose. 

His works political works are not as popular as his poetry.

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Nonetheless, he wrote with passionate conviction about the topics dear to him. 

He believed in gradual reform, not revolution. 

He did not fully embrace universal voting for all but believed voting should be bestowed upon people after they receive an education. 

To learn more, check out our Alfred Tennyson quotes below. 

Short Alfred Tennyson quotes about love

We begin with these short and sweet quotes from Alfred Tennyson.

1. “I am a part of all that I have met.” — Alfred Tennyson 

2. “Shape your heart to front the hour.” — Alfred Tennyson 

3. “But dream not that the hours will last.” — Alfred Tennyson 

4. “I fain would follow love if that could be.” — Alfred Tennyson 

5. “Tis better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all.” — Alfred Tennyson 

The top Alfred Tennyson quotes about death

Check out these spirited quotes about death from the master poet. 

6. “Call and I follow, I follow! let me die.” — Alfred Tennyson 

7. “I needs must follow death, who calls for me.” — Alfred Tennyson 

8. “Theirs not to reason why, theirs but to do and die.” — Alfred Tennyson 

9. “But oh! forget not those who mourn, because thou canst no more return.” — Alfred Tennyson 

10. “All things are taken from us and become portions and parcels of the dreadful past.” — Alfred Tennyson 

Famous Alfred Tennyson quotes about lies, stars, and mortality

Tennyson addressed deep themes in his poetry; here are some of his most famous lines. 

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11. “A lie that is half-truth is the darkest of all lies.” — Alfred Tennyson 

12. “I embrace the purpose of God and the doom assigned.” — Alfred Tennyson 

13. “A spirit of light, a living star! A holy and a searchless thing.” — Alfred Tennyson 

14. “Be thou as the immortal are, who dwell beneath their God’s own wing.” — Alfred Tennyson 

15. “If you don’t concentrate on what you are doing, then the thing that you are doing is not what you are thinking.” — Alfred Tennyson 

The best Alfred Tennyson quotes about hope and dreams

Check out these awesome quotes from the poet laureate. 

16. “Knowledge comes, but wisdom lingers.” — Alfred Tennyson 

17. “Dreams are true while they last, and do we not live in dreams?” — Alfred Tennyson 

18. “Words, like nature, half reveal, and half conceal the soul within.” — Alfred Tennyson 

19. “Let the great world spin forever down the ringing grooves of change.” — Alfred Tennyson 

20. “Hope smiles from the threshold of the year to come, whispering, ‘It will be happier.” — Alfred Tennyson 

Poetic Alfred Tennyson quotes about the divine feminine

We close our list with these beautiful lines devoted to the muses of the world. 

21. “Fairy changeling lay the mage.” — Alfred Tennyson 

22. “But there was heard among the holy hymns a voice as of the waters.” — Alfred Tennyson 

23. “She dwells down in a deep‐ calm, whatsoever storms may shake the world.” — Alfred Tennyson 

24. “It was my duty to have loved the highest: It surely was my profit had I known.” — Alfred Tennyson 

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25. “Ah my God, what might I not have made of thy fair world, had I but loved thy highest creature here?” — Alfred Tennyson 

Let your words speak your truth

You do not have to be as skilled as Alfred Tennyson to speak your truth. 

Let today be the day you forever speak your truth

What is your favorite Alfred Tennyson quote?

Let us know in the comments. 

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