136 Inspiring Friendship Quotes

In this post I'd like to share the best friendship quotes I've found in the past 10+ years.

Because few things have such a huge impact on happiness and the enjoyment, depth and plain fun of life as the friendships we have.

It could be the friendships with our partners, family members, co-workers and the people we have known for a few years now or since we were kids.

Or even with people we have never even met at the other side of the world or the pets we love.

So I’d like to start this year by looking back and share some of the best advice on this topic from the people who have walked this earth over the past hundreds and thousands of years.

This is 136 thought-provoking, beautiful, sometimes poignant and sometimes funny quotes on friendship.

And if you want even more inspiration then I'd recommend this collection of quotes on self-care and this one filled with quotes on never giving up.

[Note: the original version of this post contained 74 quotes but it has now been updated with 60 additional quotes on friendship.]

136 Inspiring and Helpful Friendship Quotes

Inspiring Friendship Quotes

“A real friend is one who walks in when the rest of the world walks out.”
– Walter Winchell

“If you live to be 100, I hope I live to be 100 minus 1 day, so I never have to live without you.”
– Winnie the Pooh

“I like to listen. I have learned a great deal from listening carefully. Most people never listen.”
– Ernest Hemingway

Friendship Quote by C.S Lewis

“Friendship is born at that moment when one person says to another, ‘What! You too? I thought I was the only one.”
– C.S. Lewis

“True friendship comes when the silence between two people is comfortable.”
– David Tyson

“Sweet is the memory of distant friends! Like the mellow rays of the departing sun, it falls tenderly, yet sadly, on the heart.”
– Washington Irving

“There’s not a word yet for old friends who’ve just met.”
– Jim Henson

“A single rose can be my garden… a single friend, my world.”
– Leo Buscaglia

“Don’t make friends who are comfortable to be with. Make friends who will force you to lever yourself up.”
– Thomas J. Watson

Friendship Quote by Dale Carnegie

“You can make more friends in two months by becoming interested in other people than you can in two years by trying to get other people interested in you.”
— Dale Carnegie

“A friend is someone who understands your past, believes in your future, and accepts you just the way you are.”
– Unknown

“What you do not want done to yourself, do not do to others.”
– Confucius

Friendship Quote by Oscar Wilde

“Ultimately the bond of all companionship, whether in marriage or in friendship, is conversation.”
– Oscar Wilde

“How many slams in an old screen door? Depends how loud you shut it. How many slices in a bread? Depends how thin you cut it. How much good inside a day? Depends how good you live ’em. How much love inside a friend? Depends how much you give ’em.”
– Shel Silverstein

“A true friend never gets in your way unless you happen to be going down.”
– Arnold H. Glasgow

Friendship Quote by Plutarch

“I don’t need a friend who changes when I change and who nods when I nod; my shadow does that much better.”
– Plutarch

“In everyone’s life, at some time, our inner fire goes out. It is then burst into flame by an encounter with another human being. We should all be thankful for those people who rekindle the inner spirit.”
– Albert Schweitzer

“The real test of friendship is can you literally do nothing with the other person? Can you enjoy those moments of life that are utterly simple?”
– Eugene Kennedy

Friendship Quote by Arnold Glasgow

“A loyal friend laughs at your jokes when they’re not so good, and sympathizes with your problems when they’re not so bad.”
– Arnold H. Glasgow

“It is not a lack of love, but a lack of friendship that makes unhappy marriages.”
– Friedrich Nietzsche

“Friendship is the hardest thing in the world to explain. It’s not something you learn in school. But if you haven’t learned the meaning of friendship, you really haven’t learned anything.”
– Muhammad Ali

“If ever there is tomorrow when we're not together… there is something you must always remember. You are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think. But the most important thing is, even if we're apart… I'll always be with you.”
– Winnie the Pooh

“Growing apart doesn’t change the fact that for a long time we grew side by side; our roots will always be tangled. I’m glad for that.”
– Ally Condie

“One’s friends are that part of the human race with which one can be human.”
– George Santayana

Friendship Quote by Audrey Hepburn

“For beautiful eyes, look for the good in others; for beautiful lips, speak only words of kindness; and for poise, walk with the knowledge that you are never alone.”
— Audrey Hepburn

“Be slow to fall into friendship; but when thou art in, continue firm and constant.”
– Socrates

“One measure of friendship consists not in the number of things friends can discuss, but in the number of things they need no longer mention.”
– Clifton Fadiman

“Never idealize others. They will never live up to your expectations. Don’t over-analyze your relationships. Stop playing games. A growing relationship can only be nurtured by genuineness. “
– Leo F. Buscaglia

“In the End, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends.”
– Martin Luther King, Jr.

“Let us be grateful to the people who make us happy; they are the charming gardeners who make our souls blossom.”
– Marcel Proust

Friendship Quote by Charles Lamb

“Tis the privilege of friendship to talk nonsense, and to have her nonsense respected.”
– Charles Lamb

“If you go looking for a friend, you’re going to find they’re very scarce. If you go out to be a friend, you’ll find them everywhere.”
– Zig Ziglar

“You can always tell a real friend: when you’ve made a fool of yourself he doesn’t feel you’ve done a permanent job.”
– Laurence J. Peter

Friendship Quote by Mark Twain

“Keep away from those who try to belittle your ambitions. Small people always do that, but the really great make you believe that you too can become great.”
– Mark Twain

“Flatter me, and I may not believe you. Criticize me, and I may not like you. Ignore me, and I may not forgive you. Encourage me, and I will not forget you. Love me and I may be forced to love you.”
– William Arthur Ward

“No person is your friend who demands your silence, or denies your right to grow.”
– Alice Walker

“Friendship is the only cement that will ever hold the world together.”
– Woodrow T. Wilson


“Friends are those rare people who ask how we are and then wait to hear the answer.”
– Ed Cunningham

“Anybody can sympathize with the sufferings of a friend, but it requires a very fine nature to sympathize with a friend’s success.”
– Oscar Wilde

“Some of the biggest challenges in relationships come from the fact that most people enter a relationship in order to get something: they’re trying to find someone who’s going to make them feel good. In reality, the only way a relationship will last is if you see your relationship as a place that you go to give, and not a place that you go to take.”
— Anthony Robbins

“The most beautiful discovery true friends make is that they can grow separately without growing apart.”
– Elisabeth Foley

“There’s one sad truth in life I’ve found
While journeying east and west –
The only folks we really wound
Are those we love the best.
We flatter those we scarcely know,
We please the fleeting guest,
And deal full many a thoughtless blow
To those who love us best.”
– Ella Wheeler Wilcox

Friendship Quote by Oprah Winfrey

“Lots of people want to ride with you in the limo, but what you want is someone who will take the bus with you when the limo breaks down.”
— Oprah Winfrey

“Do not keep on with a mockery of friendship after the substance is gone — but part, while you can part friends. Bury the carcass of friendship: it is not worth embalming.”
– William Hazlitt

“A good friend can tell you what is the matter with you in a minute. He may not seem such a good friend after telling.”
– Arthur Brisbane

“Many a person has held close, throughout their entire lives, two friends that always remained strange to one another, because one of them attracted by virtue of similarity, the other by difference.”
– Emil Ludwig

“A good word is an easy obligation; but not to speak ill requires only our silence; which costs us nothing.”
— John Tillotson

Friendship Quote by Donald Miller

“When you stop expecting people to be perfect, you can like them for who they are.”
– Donald Miller

“Each friend represents a world in us, a world possibly not born until they arrive, and it is only by this meeting that a new world is born.”
– Anais Nin

“If you make friends with yourself you will never be alone.”
– Maxwell Maltz

Friendship Quotes by Bernard Meltzer

“A true friend is someone who thinks that you are a good egg even though he knows that you are slightly cracked.”
– Bernard Meltzer

“The greatest compliment that was ever paid me was when someone asked me what I thought, and attended to my answer.”
— Henry David Thoreau

“People are lonely because they build walls instead of bridges.”
— Joseph F. Newton Men

“Friendship is like a glass ornament, once it is broken it can rarely be put back together exactly the same way.”
– Charles Kingsley

Friendship Quote by Donna Roberts

“A friend knows the song in my heart and sings it to me when my memory fails.”
– Donna Roberts

“There is nothing better than a friend, unless it is a friend with chocolate. “
– Linda Grayson

“Sometimes being a friend means mastering the art of timing. There is a time for silence. A time to let go and allow people to hurl themselves into their own destiny. And a time to prepare to pick up the pieces when it's all over.”
– Gloria Naylor

Friendship Quote by Marlene Dietrich

“It is the friends you can call up at 4 a.m. that matter.”
– Marlene Dietrich

“There is magic in long-distance friendships. They let you relate to other human beings in a way that goes beyond being physically together and is often more profound.”
– Diana Cortes

“Someone to tell it to is one of the fundamental needs of human beings.”
— Miles Franklin

“It is not so much our friends’ help that helps us, as the confidence of their help.”
– Epicurus

“Whenever you’re in conflict with someone, there is one factor that can make the difference between damaging your relationship and deepening it. That factor is attitude.”
– William James


“Life is partly what we make it, and partly what it is made by the friends we choose.”
– Tennessee Williams

“The tender friendships one gives up, on parting, leave their bite on the heart, but also a curious feeling of a treasure somewhere buried.”
– Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

“Do I not destroy my enemies when I make them my friends?”
– Abraham Lincoln

“A friend is a person with whom I may be sincere. Before him I may think aloud. I am arrived at last in the presence of a man so real and equal, that I may drop even those undermost garments of dissimulation, courtesy, and second thought, which men never put off, and may deal with him with the simplicity and wholeness with which one chemical atom meets another.”
– Ralph Waldo Emerson

Friendship Quote by Ethel Barrymore

“The best time to make friends is before you need them.”
– Ethel Barrymore

“If it’s very painful for you to criticize your friends — you’re safe in doing it. But if you take the slightest pleasure in it, that’s the time to hold your tongue.”
– Alice Duer Miller

“In the sweetness of friendship let there be laughter, for in the dew of little things the heart finds its morning and is refreshed.”
– Khalil Gibran

“Things are never quite as scary when you’ve got a best friend.”
– Bill Watterson

“Truly great friends are hard to find, difficult to leave, and impossible to forget.”
– Unknown

Friendship Quote by Carl W. Buechner

“They may forget what you said, but they will never forget how you made them feel.”
– Carl W. Buechner

“Nothing makes the earth seem so spacious as to have friends at a distance; they make the latitudes and longitudes.”
– Henry David Thoreau

“A true friend is someone who is there for you when he’d rather be anywhere else.”
– Len Wein

“It is one of the blessings of old friends that you can afford to be stupid with them.”
– Ralph Waldo Emerson

“A friend is one who knows you and loves you just the same.”
– Elbert Hubbard

“Friendship marks a life even more deeply than love. Love risks degenerating into obsession, friendship is never anything but sharing.”
– Elie Wiesel

“We cannot tell the precise moment when friendship is formed. As in filling a vessel drop by drop, there is at last a drop which makes it run over; so in a series of kindnesses there is at last one which makes the heart run over.”
– Ray Bradbury

“Try to be a rainbow in someone's cloud.”
– Maya Angelou

“I cannot even imagine where I would be today were it not for that handful of friends who have given me a heart full of joy. Let’s face it, friends make life a lot more fun.”
– Charles R. Swindoll

Friendship Quote by Eleanor Roosevelt

“Many people will walk in and out of your life, but only true friends will leave footprints in your heart.”
– Eleanor Roosevelt

“One of the most beautiful qualities of true friendship is to understand and to be understood.”
– Seneca

“A man’s friendships are one of the best measures of his worth.”
– Charles Darwin

“Friends show their love in times of trouble, not in happiness.”
– Euripides

“Friends are people who know you really well and like you anyway.”
– Greg Tamblyn

“Friendship improves happiness, and abates misery, by doubling our joys, and dividing our grief.”
– Marcus Tullius Cicero

“True friendship ought never to conceal what it thinks.”
– St. Jerome

“I would rather walk with a friend in the dark, than alone in the light.”
– Helen Keller

Friendship Quote by Lois Wyse

“A good friend is a connection to life — a tie to the past, a road to the future, the key to sanity in a totally insane world.“
– Lois Wyse

“One of the tasks of true friendship is to listen compassionately and creatively to the hidden silences. Often secrets are not revealed in words, they lie concealed in the silence between the words or in the depth of what is unsayable between two people.”
– John O’Donohue

“A friend is someone who makes it easy to believe in yourself.”
– Heidi Wills

“Awards become corroded. Friends gather no dust.”
– Jesse Owens

“A friend is someone who gives you total freedom to be yourself — and especially to feel, or not feel. Whatever you happen to be feeling at any moment is fine with them. That’s what real love amounts to – letting a person be what he really is.”
– Jim Morrison

“Friendship is like money, easier made than kept.“
– Samuel Butler

“Friendship multiplies the good of life and divides the evil.”
– Baltasar Gracian

“Friends are the family you choose.“
– Jess C. Scott

“My best friend is the one who brings out the best in me.”
– Henry Ford

Friendship Quote by Henry David Thoreau

“The most I can do for my friend is simply be his friend.”
– Henry David Thoreau

“Friends are relatives you make for yourself.“
– Eustache Deschamps

“Blessed are they who have the gift of making friends, for it is one of God’s greatest gifts. It involves many things, but above all the power of going out of one’s self and appreciating what is noble and loving in another.”
– Thomas Hughes

“Friendship is always a sweet responsibility, never an opportunity.”
– Khalil Gibran

“A friend to all is a friend to none.”
– Aristotle

“A snowball in the face is surely the perfect beginning to a lasting friendship.“
– Markus Zusak

“Do not save your loving speeches for your friends till they are dead; do not write them on their tombstones, speak them rather now instead.”
– Anna Cummins

“We’re born alone, we live alone, we die alone. Only through our love and friendship can we create the illusion for the moment that we’re not alone.”
– Orson Welles

“When we honestly ask ourselves which person in our lives means the most to us, we often find that it is those who, instead of giving advice, solutions, or cures, have chosen rather to share our pain and touch our wounds with a warm and tender hand.”
– Henri Nouwen

Friendship Quote by Ella Wheeler Wilcox

“All love that has not friendship for its base, is like a mansion built upon the sand.”
– Ella Wheeler Wilcox

“Friends are the siblings God never gave us.”
– Mencius

“If we treated ourselves as well as we treated our best friend, can you imagine?”
– Meghan Markle

“Find a group of people who challenge and inspire you; spend a lot of time with them, and it will change your life.”
– Amy Poehler

“Only your real friends will tell you when your face is dirty.”
– Sicilian Proverb

“Don’t be dismayed at goodbyes. A farewell is necessary before you can meet again. And meeting again, after moments or lifetimes, is certain for those who are friends.”
– Richard Bach

“There is nothing like puking with somebody to make you into old friends.“
– Sylvia Plath

“Men kick friendship around like a football, but it doesn’t seem to crack. Women treat it like glass and it goes to pieces.“
– Anne Morrow Lindbergh

“Fate chooses your relations, you choose your friends.”
– Jacques Delille

Friendship Quote by C.J. Langenhoven

“Friends should be like books, few, but hand-selected.”
– C.J. Langenhoven

“Friendship is a wildly underrated medication.”
– Anna Deavere Smith

“Some people arrive and make such a beautiful impact on your life, you can barely remember what life was like without them.”
– Anna Taylor

“A good friend is like a four-leaf clover; hard to find and lucky to have.”
– Irish Proverb

“Where there are friends, there is wealth.”
– Titus Maccius Plautus

“True friendship is like sound health; the value of it is seldom known until it is lost.”
– Charles Caleb Colton

“A friend is one that knows you as you are, understands where you have been, accepts what you have become, and still, gently allows you to grow.”
– William Shakespeare

“Be slow in choosing a friend, slower in changing.”
– Benjamin Franklin

Friendship Quote by Henry David Thoreau

“True friendship can afford true knowledge. It does not depend on darkness and ignorance.”
– Henry David Thoreau

“Make new friends, but keep the old; Those are silver, these are gold.”
– Joseph Parry

“The holy passion of Friendship is of so sweet and steady and loyal and enduring a nature that it will last through a whole lifetime, if not asked to lend money.”
– Mark Twain

“A true friend stabs you in the front.”
– Oscar Wilde

“There is nothing on this earth more to be prized than true friendship.”
– Thomas Aquinas

“Wishing to be friends is quick work, but friendship is a slow ripening fruit.”
– Aristotle

“I value the friend who for me finds time on his calendar, but I cherish the friend who for me does not consult his calendar.”
– Robert Brault

“Things are never quite as scary when you have a best friend.”
– Bill Watterson

“If you have two friends in your lifetime, you’re lucky. If you have one good friend, you’re more than lucky.”
– S.E. Hinton

“The only way to have a friend is to be one.”
– Ralph Waldo Emerson

“The royal road to a man’s heart is to talk to him about the things he treasures most.”
— Dale Carnegie

“Don't walk in front of me; I may not follow. Don't walk behind me; I may not lead. Just walk beside me and be my friend.”
– Albert Camus

“To the world you may be just one person, but to one person you may be the world.”
– Brandi Snyder

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About the Author

Henrik Edberg is the creator of the Positivity Blog and has written weekly articles here since 2006. He has a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Gothenburg and has been featured on Lifehack, The Huffington Post and Paulo Coelho’s blog. Click here to learn more…

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Thank you for sharing this list. I enjoyed reading these heartwarming quotes. I am so grateful that I have found a best friend in my husband and I hope to build a beautiful friendship with my children.

  • I am by nature a positive person -‘ Strength Finders ‘ – as a leader and as a person, notes “Positivity” as my strongest strength. Never the less – I was once a Zig Ziglar ‘junkie’ and am a firm believer in motivational work needs to be daily. We are responsible to be good stewards of our gifts and talents in this world. …Now with all that said – as I continue to model positive friendships, I have some great quotes for signature lines on my correspondence – and I will also mention “the teacher does learn more than the student” so there is win-win for everyone involved.
    Thank you what you do –
    (Learning) Don’t make friends who are comfortable to be with. Make Friends with those who will force you to leverage yourself up. Thomas Watson ( thank you again – ) We can be internet friends.

  • Anonymous

    48.Each friend represents a world in us, a world possibly not born until they arrive, and it is only by this meeting that a new world is born.”

  • WONG


  • What a beautiful post. Thanks for sharing these wonderful quotes.

  • Amit Jaitly

    Great Quotes, I love them all!!!

  • anjum.killedar

    4.“Friendship is born at that moment when one person says to another, ‘What! You too? I thought I was the only one.”
    – C.S. Lewis

  • Pat

    I enjoyed all the quotes and they are great reminders of what true friends and friendships mean. Favorite is 11.“A friend is someone who understands your past, believes in your future, and accepts you just the way you are.”
    – Unknown

  • Peter Mc Lauchlan

    I read your quotes every morning when I wake up.
    Thank you.

  • “Truly great friends are hard to find, difficult to leave, and impossible to forget.”

    That unknown person truly understood friends and friendship for what they truly are and that only comes when you have had the experience of finding true friends and having to part ways with them.
    Hats off to the “unknown”, for putting it all together in one sweet sentence.

  • Loved these quotes. I tried to pick a favorite, but it’s absolutely impossible, they all seem to have their own nugget of wisdom :) But if I had to choose, #4 is absolutely 100% true.

  • Absolutely loved this list! I am blessed with having such one wonderful friend. Reading all these quotes remind me of my friend. I also would like to share one quote:

    “There is one mind, one heart and one soul acting into two different bodies called friendship.”
    Thanks Henrik for sharing this, loved your way of starting the new year!

  • Beautiful quotes!

    I love what we learn from friendship quotes. I’m always amazed by the dimensions and depth that a quotes collection provides on a topic.

    When I built my friendship quotes collection, I think the big thing that I learned is the wide variety of friends and how they can play very different roles in our life.

    I like so many friendship quotes, but one that I reflect on often is:
    “My best friend is the one who brings out the best of me.” — Henry Ford

  • Hi Henrik
    I love your positivity blog, it is so helpful and practical and this fabulous list about friendship is just one more of your emails that I’m going to keep.
    Thank you for your constant positivity, your uplifting emails and the practical ways you share to be positive.
    Have a fantastic week

  • Another great one by Ralph Waldo Emerson – The only way to have a friend is to be one.

    It tells so much about loving yourself, being your own best friend, only then we’ll be able to form great friendhips.