Mikhail Lermontov: EIE (and possibly the famous figure I'm most similar to in personality)
"I'll hazard my life, even my honor, twenty times, but I will not sell my freedom. Why do I value it so much? What am I preparing myself for? What do I expect from the future? in fact, nothing at all."
"Whether I am a fool or a villain I know not; but this is certain, I am also most deserving of pity – perhaps more so than she. My soul has been spoiled by the world, my imagination is unquiet, my heart insatiate. To me everything is of little moment. I have become as easily accustomed to grief as to joy, and my life grows emptier day by day."
"My whole past life I live again in memory, and, involuntarily, I ask myself: 'why have I lived - for what purpose was I born?'... A purpose there must have been, and, surely, mine was an exalted destiny, because I feel that within my soul are powers immeasurable... But I was not able to discover that destiny, I allowed myself to be carried away by the allurements of passions, inane and ignoble. From their crucible I issued hard and cold as iron, but gone for ever was the glow of noble aspirations - the fairest flower of life. And, from that time forth, how often have I not played the part of an axe in the hands of fate! Like an implement of punishment, I have fallen upon the head of doomed victims, often without malice, always without pity... To none has my love brought happiness, because I have never sacrificed anything for the sake of those I have loved: for myself alone I have loved - for my own pleasure. I have only satisfied the strange craving of my heart, greedily draining their feelings, their tenderness, their joys, their sufferings - and I have never been able to sate myself. I am like one who, spent with hunger, falls asleep in exhaustion and sees before him sumptuous viands and sparkling wines; he devours with rapture the aerial gifts of the imagination, and his pains seem somewhat assuaged. Let him but awake: the vision vanishes - twofold hunger and despair remain!
And tomorrow, it may be, I shall die!... And there will not be left on earth one being who has understood me completely. Some will consider me worse, others, better, than I have been in reality... Some will say: 'he was a good fellow'; others: 'a villain.' And both epithets will be false. After all this, is life worth the trouble? And yet we live - out of curiosity! We expect something new... How absurd, and yet how vexatious!"
"I do not love you; the former dream
Of passions and torments has passed by;
But your image in my soul
Is still alive, although it is powerless;
Although I abandon myself to other dreams,
I still cannot forget it;
So an abandoned temple is still a temple,
A dethroned idol — still a god!"