Quotes by Yukio Mishima

"True beauty is something that attacks, overpowers, robs, and finally destroys."

"What transforms this world is — knowledge. Do you see what I mean? Nothing else can change anything in this world. Knowledge alone is capable of transforming the world, while at the same time leaving it exactly as it is. When you look at the world with knowledge, you realize that things are unchangeable and at the same time are constantly being transformed."

"Dreams, memories, the sacred--they are all alike in that they are beyond our grasp. Once we are even marginally separated from what we can touch, the object is sanctified; it acquires the beauty of the unattainable, the quality of the miraculous. Everything, really, has this quality of sacredness, but we can desecrate it at a touch. How strange man is! His touch defiles and yet he contains the source of miracles."

"Perfect purity is possible if you turn your life into a line of poetry written with a splash of blood."

"Beauty is something that burns the hand when you touch it."


Books by Yukio Mishima

  • The Sound of Waves
  • 12,854 ratings
  • 2000 by Vintage Classics

    (first published June 10th 1954)

  • The Temple of Dawn
  • 3,679 ratings
  • March 11th 2001 by Vintage Classics

    (first published July 10th 1970)

  • Thirst for Love
  • 3,579 ratings
  • March 1999 by Random House Vintage International

    (first published June 30th 1950)

  • Patriotism
  • 3,060 ratings
  • 1995 by New Directions Publishing Corporation

    (first published January 30th 1961)

  • Forbidden Colors
  • 3,048 ratings
  • February 22nd 1999 by Vintage Books

    (first published 1951)

Yukio Mishima
  • Yukio Mishima

  • Date of birth: January 14, 1925
  • Died: November 25, 1970
  • Born: in Tokyo, Japan.

  • Description: Yukio Mishima (三島 由紀夫) was born in Tokyo in 1925. He graduated from Tokyo Imperial University’s School of Jurisprudence in 1947. His first published book, The Forest in Full Bloom, appeared in 1944 and he established himself as a major author with Confessions of a Mask (1949). From then until his death he continued to publish novels, short stories, and plays each year. His crowning achievement, the Sea of Fertility tetralogy—which contains the novels Spring Snow (1969), Runaway Horses (1969), The Temple of Dawn (1970), and The Decay of the Angel (1971)—is considered one of the definitive works of twentieth-century Japanese fiction. In 1970, at the age of forty-five and the day after completing the last novel in the Fertility series, Mishima committed seppuku (ritual suicide)—a spectacular death that attracted worldwide attention.