The popular novelist and poet who celebrated the power of love, Robert Louis Balfour Stevenson (1850-1894) wrote such classic adventures as Treasure Island (1882) and Kidnapped (1887). He was born on this day in Edinburgh, Scotland. His father was an inspector of lighthouses.
"We are all travelers in the wilderness of this world and the best that we find is an honest friend. He is a fortunate voyager who finds many. They are the end and reward of life," said Stevenson, a bedridden invalid who fought tuberculosis. "A friend is a gift you give yourself."
A student of law and engineering, in 1886 he penned the chilling horror tale The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. It took him just three days to write the tale after suffering repeated nightmares about working as a respected doctor during the day and roaming the back streets of Edinburgh at night.
"Man is not truly one, but truly two," he observed. He wrote over 10,000 words daily and created fascinating supernatural stories with themes of good versus evil, transformation, and control.
His poetry captured all the joy and magic of childhood. He dedicated the enchanting 66 poems in A Child's Garden of Verses (1885) to his childhood nurse.
"The best things in life are nearest," he said. "Breath in your nostrils, light in your eyes, flowers at your feet, duties at your hand, the path of right just before you. Then do not grasp at the stars, but do life's plain, common work as it comes, certain that daily duties and daily bread are the sweetest things in life."
More Robert Louis STEVENSON Quotations
With love you become indispensable.