When First We Fall in Love, We Feel That We Know All There Is To Know About Life, and Perhaps We Are Right

Mignon McLaughlin? Apocryphal?

Dear Quote Investigator: First love is exhilarating. Infatuated lovers feel like they have acquired esoteric knowledge of the universe. This might even be true. The witty journalist Mignon McLaughlin made this point using a different phrasing. Would you please help me to find a citation?

Quote Investigator: In 1963 McLaughlin published “The Neurotic’s Notebook” which included the following item. Boldface added to excerpts by QI: 1

When first we fall in love, we feel that we know all there is to know about life, and perhaps we are right.

McLaughlin shared other insights about love and desire in her book: 2

Love, like money, is offered most freely to those in least need of it.

When desire has been satisfied, we can begin to think seriously about love.

Below are additional selected citations in chronological order.

McLaughlin’s quotation appeared in the 1996 reference “The New Beacon Book of Quotations by Women” compiled by Rosalie Maggio. 3

When first we fall in love, we feel that we know all there is to know about life, and perhaps we are right.
Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic’s Notebook (1963)

The quotation also appeared in Mardy Grothe’s April 18, 2021 newsletter called “Dr. Mardy’s Quotes of the Week”. 4

In conclusion, Mignon McLaughlin deserves credit for the remark about first love shown above.

Image Notes: Public domain image of the painting “Lovers Seated at the Foot of a Willow Tree” by Camille Pissarro circa 1901. The image has been cropped and resized.

Notes:

  1. 1963, The Neurotic’s Notebook by Mignon McLaughlin, Chapter 1: Love and Marriage, Quote Page 13, The Bobbs-Merrill Company, Indianapolis, Indiana. (Verified with scans)
  2. 1963, The Neurotic’s Notebook by Mignon McLaughlin, Chapter 1: Love and Marriage, Quote Page 9 and 13, The Bobbs-Merrill Company, Indianapolis, Indiana. (Verified with scans)
  3. 1996 Copyright, The New Beacon Book of Quotations by Women, Compiled by Rosalie Maggio, Topic: Love, Quote Page 412, Column 2, Beacon Press, Boston, Massachusetts. (Verified with scans)
  4. Email Newsletter: Dr. Mardy’s Quotes of the Week, Title: This Week’s Theme: “Your First Love Experience”, Newsletter author: Mardy Grothe, Date within email: April 18 to April 24, 2021, Description: Weekly email sent to a group of quotation enthusiasts. (Received April 17, 2021) link