Study Guide

The Diary of Anne Frank (play) Quotes

  • Morality

    Act 1, Scene 1
    Miep Gies

    MIEP: Burn this? (She hands him a worn, velour covered book.) (1.1)

    Miep can't bring herself to get rid of the diary after the war. She knows it will be hard for Mr. Frank to look at, but it is important that he does.

    Act 1, Scene 2
    Mr. Jan Kraler

    MR. KRALER: This isn't the black market, Mrs. Frank. This is what we call the white market… helping all of the hundreds and hundreds who are hiding out in Amsterdam. (1.2)

    Mr. Kraler helps the Annex residents, even though he is risking his own life in doing so.

    Act 1, Scene 3
    Mr. Jan Kraler

    MR. KRALER: I know it's a terrible thing to ask of you, living as you are, but would you take him in with you? (1.3)

    Mr. Kraler asks Mr. Frank to take in Mr. Dussel. It's a lot to ask, to add one more person to the Annex, but turning him out would mean he could die.

    Mr. Van Daan

    MR. VAN DAAN: Did Mr. Kraler warn you that you won't get much to eat here? You can imagine… three ration books among the seven of us… and now you make eight. (1.3)

    Thanks Mr. Van Daan, that's super-helpful of you. Mr. Dussel will be treading on your game, but at least he'll be alive.

    Act 1, Scene 4
    Mr. Otto Frank

    MR. FRANK: There is so little that we parents can do to help our children. We can only try to set a good example… point the way. (1.4)

    Mr. Frank wisely tells Anne that he doesn't have all the answers. She's going to have to find her own way to being the person of character he knows she can be.

    MR. FRANK: You must build your own character. (1.4)

    Mr. Frank encourages Anne to better herself through constant practice. She will have to build upon her emotions and experiences if she wants to be a good person.

    Anne Frank

    ANNE: Oh Pim, I was horrible, wasn't I? And the worst of it is, I can stand off and look at myself doing it and know it's cruel and yet I can't stop doing it. (1.4)

    Anne throws her mom out after her nightmare and then confesses to her dad that she feels bad. She knows the right thing to do, but heck… she's a teenager.

    Act 2, Scene 1
    Mr. Dussel

    MR. DUSSEL: Everybody gets exactly the same… except Mr. Van Daan always gets a little bit more. (2.1)

    Mr. Dussel points out that Mr. Van Daan is a bit of a pig, even though he says he isn't.

    Act 2, Scene 3
    Mrs. Edith Frank

    MRS. FRANK: If my husband had any obligation to you, he's paid it, over and over. (2.3)

    In her righteous rage, Mrs. Frank gets bluntly honest with the Van Daans who are acting more and more selfish over the stolen food. She points out that the Franks don't have to be nice and let the Van Daans live in their hideout. They are doing it because it's the right thing to do.

    MRS. FRANK: We're all of us hungry! I see the children getting thinner and thinner! Your own son Peter… I've heard him moan in his sleep he's so hungry! And you come in the night and steal food that should go to them… to the children! (2.3)

    Mrs. Frank gets all up in Mr. Van Daan's face after he tries to steal some food. He's literally stealing from the mouths of children. Should he be ashamed? Edith Frank is telling it like it is.

    Margot Frank

    MARGOT: Oh no! No! We haven't sunk so far that we're going to fight over a handful of rotten potatoes. (2.3)

    Margot makes everyone realize that they are fighting amongst themselves for a very silly reason. She acknowledges the elephant in the room that everyone is starving and they need to recognize the reason they are arguing.

    MR. VAN DAAN: The only thing I feel… there's so little food as it is… and to take in another person… (Peter turns away, moving upstage, ashamed of his father.) (1.3)

    Mr. Van Daan just has to point out that there will be less food if Dussel moves in (face palm).

    MR. DUSSEL: Mrs. Frank divides things better. (2.1)

    The residents in the Annex like and respect Mrs. Frank because she is always fair, no matter what the situation. Even when they haven't had any cake in over a year, she makes sure everyone gets an equal portion.

  • Love

    Act 1, Scene 1
    Miep Gies

    MIEP: Don't stay up here, Mr. Frank. What's the use of torturing yourself like this? (1.1)

    Miep is such a sweet good-natured soul. She's terribly hurt that Mr. Frank has to come back to the Annex and relive the memories, especially after he's lost his whole family.

    Act 1, Scene 2
    Mrs. Van Daan

    MRS. VAN DAAN: It's all right… but be careful with it. My father gave me that the year before he died. He always bought the best that money could buy. (1.2)

    Mrs. Van Daan loves that fur coat. We're sure PETA would be after her if they could find her. But does she really love it because it reminds her of her dad or because it's a status symbol?

    Act 1, Scene 4
    Mr. Otto Frank

    MR. FRANK: It's fine to hear you tell me that you love me. But I'd be much happier if you said you loved your mother as well… She needs your help so much… your love… (1.4)

    Mr. Frank tells Anne to open her heart to her mother as well. Mrs. Frank is totally bummed her daughter isn't into being with her, especially during such a trying time.

    Anne Frank

    ANNE: I love you, Father. I don't love anyone but you. (1.4)

    Anne's attachment to her father is super-clear. He's there when she needs him the most.

    Act 2, Scene 2
    Anne Frank

    ANNE'S VOICE: Is there anything lovelier than to sit under the skylight and feel the sun on your cheeks and have a darling boy in your arms? (2.2)

    Aww… this simple scene of Anne and Peter has us just tickled pink for them. The precious moments they have together are so important because they never know how much time they have left together.

    ANNE: Oh don't think I'm in love, because I'm not. But it does make life more bearable to have someone with whom you can exchange views. (2.2)

    Anne's confession about Peter in her diary shows us this love's more about pleasant company rather than fiery passion.

    Then suddenly he grabs her arm and turning her around, holds her awkwardly in his arms, kissing her on the cheek. (2.2)

    Atta boy Peter! It's cute how Peter shows Anne that he cares, but that peck on the cheek might show us that he's not really as love drunk as he'd like to think.

    Anne Frank

    ANNE: Do you know Jopie deWaal?... Jopie's my best friend. (1.2)

    Anne's love for her friends is particularly apparent when she talks about Jopie.

    ANNE'S VOICE: I admit now that I'm glad the Van Daans had a son and not a daughter. (2.2)

    Anne's previous wish that the Van Daans had a daughter and not a son (so she could hang out with someone her own age and gender) has vanished. She now appreciates Peter for who and what he is.

    PETER: I think you're just fine… what I want to say… if it wasn't for you around here, I don't know. (2.1)

    Peter finally gives Anne the validation she needs. He wants Anne as a friend and a companion just as much as she wants him. He respects and admires her.

  • Warfare

    Act 1, Scene 1
    Anne Frank

    ANNE'S VOICE: Then things got very bad for the Jews. (1.1)

    Anne relates the background reasons why she and her family are hiding in the attic. With the advent of the Holocaust, it wasn't safe for Jewish people to live in most parts of Europe.

    ANNE'S VOICE: We had to wear yellow stars. (1.1)

    Anne tells us in her diary that Jewish citizens had to have the Star of David sewn on their clothes so they could be "identified" by the Nazis and have their rights taken away.

    Act 1, Scene 3
    Mr. Dussel

    MR. DUSSEL: Right here in Amsterdam every day hundreds of Jews disappear… They surround a block and search house by house. Children come back from school to find their parents gone. Hundreds are being deported. (1.3)

    Mr. Dussel describes the situation of the Jews in Holland. They are being kidnapped and taken to the concentration camps.

    MR. DUSSEL: They get their call-up notice… bring only what you can carry in a rucksack. And if you refuse the call-up notice, then they come and drag you from your home and ship you off to Mauthausen. The death camp! (1.3)

    Mr. Dussel tells the Annex residents what he's actually seen on the outside, and it's not pretty.

    Mrs. Van Daan

    MRS. VAN DAAN: The news sounds pretty bad, doesn't it? It's so different from what Mr. Kraler tells us. Mr. Kraler says things are improving… I like it better the way Kraler tells it. (1.3)

    Margot and Mrs. Van Daan discuss the news Mr. Kraler delivers (which has a positive spin on it) and the harsh reality of what Mr. Dussel describes. Mrs. Van Daan would rather have the fluffier version of reality.

    Act 1, Scene 5
    Mrs. Van Daan

    MRS. VAN DAAN: Putti, where's our money? Get our money. I hear you can buy the Green Police off, so much a head. (1.5)

    Mrs. Van Daan's attention to the rumor that Jews could buy the Green Police off, or bribe them with money not to arrest them, is a reality many people could not afford.

    Act 2, Scene 3
    Mr. Otto Frank

    MR. FRANK: We don't need the Nazis to destroy us. We're destroying ourselves. (2.3)

    Mr. Frank is saddened by the group's in-fighting and arguing. He compares this to how the Nazis treat the Jews.

    Act 2, Scene 4

    There is the sound of booted footsteps, then another door is battered through. (2.4)

    The Green Police eventually do find the Annex residents. They are described through stage directions only. Their brutal presence is heard and felt, rather than seen.

  • Youth

    Act 1, Scene 1
    Anne Frank

    ANNE'S VOICE: But somehow we children still managed to have fun. (1.1)

    Even though kids like Anne weren't allowed to go to their own schools, and couldn't ride their bicycles, they still remained children.

    Act 1, Scene 2
    Anne Frank

    ANNE'S VOICE: Mother is unbearable! She insists on treating me like a baby, which I loathe. (1.2)

    Anne's difficulties with her mom are pretty much what we all experience growing up.

    Act 1, Scene 3
    Mrs. Edith Frank

    MRS. FRANK: You complain that I don't treat you like a grownup. But when I do, you resent it. (1.3)

    Mrs. Frank gets real with Anne. Their relationship seems like a typical mother-daughter one.

    Anne Frank

    ANNE'S VOICE: I only want some fun… someone to laugh and clown with… After you've sat still all day and hardly moved, you've got to have some fun. (1.3)

    Anne's reaction to being cooped up in the Annex seems typical for a kid. She just wants to get out her restless energy and have some fun.

    ANNE: I'm going to be remarkable! I'm going to Paris… to study music and art… I'm going to be a famous dancer or singer… or something wonderful. (1.3)

    Anne's dreams of becoming something exotic and powerful show us that she still has a child's dreams and determination.

    ANNE: You are the most intolerable, insufferable boy I've ever met!... Why I had to get locked up with one like you! (1.3)

    Eww! Boy cooties. Anne's reaction to Peter at the beginning of the play is one of playful immaturity.

    MR. DUSSEL: Why is it that every grownup thinks he knows the way to bring up children? (1.3)

    Fact: Mr. Dussel would make an awful parent. It's interesting then how he consistently tells Anne how she should act and what she should go do with herself.

    Act 2, Scene 1
    Mr. Jan Kraler

    MR. KRALER: But the children…?
    MR. FRANK: What they'd imagine would be worse than any reality. (2.1)

    Mr. Frank isn't down with keeping the truth from the kiddos. He feels they have a right to know. The truth is less strange than fiction in his opinion.

    Anne Frank

    ANNE: We're young, Margot and Peter and I! You grownups have had your chance! But look at us… If we begin thinking of all the horror in the world, we're lost! We're trying to hold on to some kind of ideals… when everything… ideals, hopes… everything, are being destroyed! It isn't our fault that the world is in such a mess! We weren't around when all this started. (2.1)

    Anne, Peter, and Margot inherited a world torn apart by war. It isn't fair, as Anne claims, that they should pay the price. They haven't even begun their lives yet. Yes Anne. It's stupidly unfair.

    ANNE'S VOICE: There is one great change… A change in myself. I think that what is happening to me is so wonderful… not only what can be seen, but what is taking place inside. (2.1)

    It's time to show Anne that movie we all get to watch in sixth grade about the birds and the bees—oh, and the really embarrassing one about changing body parts. It's a good thing that Anne thinks it's the most magical time in her life.

  • Isolation

    Act 1, Scene 2
    Mr. Otto Frank

    MR. FRANK: To be perfectly safe, from eight in the morning until six in the evening we must move only when necessary and then in stockinged feet. We must not speak above a whisper. We must not run any water. (1.2)

    Mr. Frank lays down the rules for isolation in the Annex. No talking, moving, farting, etc. The Nazis will find you, and they will kill you.

    MR. FRANK: This is the way we must live until it is over, if we are to survive. (1.2)

    Come with me if you want to live. Actually, go with Otto Frank. He knows better than the Terminator how to survive a world war.

    MR. FRANK: I don't want you to ever go beyond that door. (1.2)

    The Annex is completely isolated. Anne has to listen to her dad and never go beyond the door that is hidden behind the bookcase in his former office.

    Anne Frank

    ANNE'S VOICE: I only know it's funny never to be able to go outdoors… never to breathe fresh air… never to run and shout and jump. (1.2)

    Anne doesn't really mean that it's funny—unless it's funny in that panicked, "I'm stuck inside these rooms and never coming out" way.

    Act 2, Scene 1

    ANNE: I feel that spring is coming. I feel it in my whole body and soul. (2.1)

    How sad for Anne! She can't even experience the changing of seasons. Rather she has to feel them coming on.

    Anne Frank

    ANNE: I can smell the wind and the cold on your clothes. (2.1)

    Anne is so sick of being trapped inside she wants to suck the smell of the outdoors right out of Miep's clothes.

    Act 2, Scene 5
    Mr. Otto Frank

    MR. FRANK: It seems strange to say this, that anyone could be happy in a concentration camp. But Anne was happy in the camp in Holland where they first took us. After two years of being shut up in these rooms, she could be out … out in the sunshine and the fresh air that she loved. (2.5)

    This just breaks our hearts. To be happy to be in a concentration camp means Anne definitely missed being outside. This sort of puts things in perspective about just how much Anne felt stifled in the Annex.

  • Fear

    Act 1, Scene 2

    ANNE: They'll arrest you if you go out without your star. (1.2)

    Jewish boys and girls were afraid to go out without the mandatory Star of David sewn into their clothes. Anne's so used to being afraid that it takes a while for her to remember she's hiding and doesn't have to wear it anymore.

    Mrs. Van Daan

    MRS. VAN DAAN: Something's happened to them. (1.2)

    Right away, Mrs. Van Daan proves she's a worrier. She's got pretty good justification too. The Green Police could've easily picked up Anne's family on their walk over to the Annex.

    Act 1, Scene 3
    Mrs. Edith Frank

    MRS. FRANK: I'm not afraid that anyone is going to walk all over you, Anne. I'm afraid for other people, that you'll walk on them. (1.3)

    Mrs. Frank fears that her daughter won't mature enough to realize how she treats others. Have no fear Mrs. F., Anne may be slow to get there, but she's truly one of a kind.

    Anne Frank

    ANNE: But you don't know how important it can get to be… especially when you're frightened. (1.3)

    Anne relates the daily schedule to Mr. Dussel. She tells him when he can use the bathroom and all that good stuff. Something as simple as scheduling can help to alleviate some of the fear.

    Mr. Otto Frank

    MR. FRANK: Peter's brave. He doesn't mind. (1.3)

    Peter doesn't mind being in the attic with the occasional rat. He's got his cat Mouschi to protect him.

    Act 1, Scene 4
    Anne Frank

    ANNE'S VOICE: Mr. Dussel wants to get back to his dentist's drill. He's afraid he's losing his touch. (1.4)

    Actually, Mr. Dussel's probably more afraid he'll never get to be a dentist again.

    ANNE: I'm a terrible coward… I think I've conquered my fear… I think I'm really grown up… and then something happens… and I run to you like a baby. (1.4)

    Anne's confession to her father about being afraid of the Nazis has us almost in tears. Conquering our fears is just one of the ways we have to grow up. Hers seems singularly understandable, though.

    Act 1, Scene 5

    there is a sudden crash of something falling below. They all freeze in horror, motionless. straining to hear. (1.5)

    Sounds from down below in the empty office make everyone nearly wet their pants. Is it the Nazis, the Green Police, or even something worse?

    Mr. Otto Frank

    MR. FRANK: The danger has passed… Don't be so terrified, Anne. We're safe. (1.5)

    Right—thanks Mr. Frank. We're totally not scared of the Nazis now. But we'll agree with you just this once.

    ANNE: Every time I hear a creak in the house, or a step on the street outside, I'm sure they're coming for us. (1.2)

    It's gut-wrenching panic, every single minute of every single day. Anne's terrified that the Nazis will come and take her away.

  • Perseverance

    Act 1, Scene 2

    MR. KRALER: Dirk… Miep's Dirk, you know, came to me just now. He tells me that he has a Jewish friend living near him. A dentist. He says he's in trouble. He begged me, could I do anything for this man—could I find him a hiding place? (1.2)

    The survival of many Jews during the Holocaust depended on the kindness and courage of others who were willing to risk their lives to hide them. Mr. Kraler is one of those heroes.

    Mr. Otto Frank

    MR. FRANK: Always remember this, Anneke. There are no walls, there are no bolts, no locks that anyone can put on your mind. (1.2)

    Mr. Frank's advice on how to escape the isolation and complete dreariness of being cooped up in the Annex makes a lot of sense. Actually, it's pretty fantastic advice for any situation.

    MR. FRANK: No trash must ever be thrown out which might reveal that someone is living here… not even a potato paring. We must burn everything in the stove at night. This is the way we must live until it is over, if we are to survive. (1.2)

    Mr. Frank's rules are meant to be followed… if everyone wants to live through this.

    Act 1, Scene 5
    Mr. Van Daan

    MR. VAN DAAN: Don't tell me! He gets fatter every day! Damn cat looks better than any of us. Out he goes, tonight! (1.5)

    It's survival of the fittest in Mr. Van Daan's eyes. Not even Mouschi the cat gets a free pass.

    Act 2, Scene 1
    Anne Frank

    ANNE: Our stomachs are so empty they rumble and make strange noises. (2.1)

    Beans for lunch, beans for dinner, beans, beans, beans—we guess having a tiny bit of food is better than no food. Too bad we can't tell Anne's stomach that.

    ANNE: It helps a lot to have someone to talk to, don't you think? It helps you to let off steam. (2.1)

    Sometimes just having an ally in your situation, someone who thinks just like you, can be the fuel you need to keep going. It's a good thing Anne has Peter to spout off to when she gets up some steam.

    ANNE'S VOICE: The Van Daans' "discussions" are as violent as ever. (2.1)

    And sometimes survival means the breakdown of good relationships. The Van Daans (who weren't really nice to begin with) start to get mean and nasty with each other. We can only wonder why…

    Margot Frank

    MARGOT: Sometimes I wish the end would come… whatever it is. (2.1)

    Margot's eerie thought makes us cringe. Sometimes survival means giving up completely. We can empathize with her, but it still makes us totally sad.

  • Goodness

    Act 1, Scene 4
    Anne Frank

    ANNE: I have a nicer side, Father… But I'm scared to show it. I'm afraid that people are going to laugh at me… So the mean Anne comes to the outside and the good Anne stays on the inside and I keep trying to switch them around and have the good Anne on the outside and the bad Anne on the inside and be what I'd like to be. (1.4)

    Anne's struggle with coming into adulthood shows when she confesses it to her father. She wants to grow up and do the responsible, more mature thing, but she's afraid.

    Act 2, Scene 3

    ANNE: I don't care about the food. They can have mine! I don't want it! (2.3)

    When the arguments about stolen food come to a head, Anne doesn't want to see anyone get thrown out on the streets. She volunteers her own food rations.

    All enmities are forgotten in the exhilaration of the wonderful news. (2.3)

    The residents may fight over things like stolen potatoes, but once the crisis is averted, they go back to their normal characters. Hearing that the allied invasion has begun sets everyone back on track.

    Act 2, Scene 4
    Anne Frank

    ANNE: I still believe in spite of everything, that people are really good at heart. (2.4)

    And that, Shmoopers, is the golden rule. Despite the persecution and threats to her life, Anne is able to see that good will win over evil.

    ANNE: When I think of all that's out there… the trees and flowers and seagulls… when I think of the dearness of you Peter… and the goodness of the people we know… Mr. Kraler, Miep, Dirk, the vegetable man, all risking their lives for us every day… When I think of these things I'm not afraid any more. (2.4)

    Anne's source of positive energy comes from thinking about just how much more good there is than bad. The helpers for the Annex residents triumph over the evils taking place in their world.

    ANNE: I think the world may be going through a phase, the way I was with Mother. (2.4)

    Anne sets the whole WWII thing in the terms of a teenager. The world is having a tantrum. It's awful, but it'll pass.

  • Faith

    Act 1, Scene 5
    Mr. Otto Frank

    MR. FRANK: I'm sure that God understands shortages. (1.5)

    Mr. Frank should save those Hanukah candles. There are supposed to be eight, but the group only has one to use for the menorah. Mr. Frank says that God will understand their particular situation and hand them a free pass.

    MR. FRANK: Have we lost all faith? All courage? A moment ago we thought that they'd come for us. We were sure it was the end. But it wasn't the end. We're alive, safe. (1.5)

    Mr. Frank tries to rally the troops, who resort to bickering and negative behavior. Keep steady and we'll survive, says he.

    Mrs. Edith Frank

    MRS. FRANK: I lift up mine eyes unto the mountains, from whence cometh my help. My help cometh from the Lord who made heaven and earth. (1.5)

    Mrs. Frank prays during the crisis with the thief. Her prayers are strangely accurate during their time of need.

    Mrs. Van Daan

    MRS. VAN DAAN: What kind of a Jew are you that you don't know Hanukah? (1.5)

    Mrs. Van Daan jokingly asks Mr. Dussel how he can know about St. Nicholas Day but not his own religious holiday of Hanukah. Maybe he missed the memo?

    MRS. VAN DAAN: Now please… this is Hanukkah! Hanukkah!… this is the time to celebrate!... what's the matter with all of you? (1.5)

    Mrs. Van Daan really wants to forget about their current situation (dire peril) for once and have a party for Pete's sake.

    Act 2, Scene 1
    Mrs. Edith Frank

    MRS. FRANK: Think how lucky we are! Think of the thousands dying in the war, every day! Think of the people in concentration camps! (2.1)

    Someone's always got it worse than you. It's a common positive way of thinking, one that Mrs. Frank is definitely concerned with passing on to the rest of her Annex crew.

    Anne Frank

    ANNE: If we begin thinking of all the horror in the world, we're lost! We're trying to hold on to some kind of ideals… when everything… ideals, hopes… everything, are being destroyed. (2.1)

    Anne's right. Stay positive, even when things are looking terminal; otherwise there's no hope left for anyone. It's a difficult situation, given the crisis she's referring to is WWII.

    Act 2, Scene 3
    Miep Gies

    MIEP: I'm going to tell Mr. Kraler. This'll be better than any blood transfusion. (2.3)

    Sometimes faith works better than any medicine. Miep's good news just might save Jan Kraler from his ulcers.

    Anne Frank

    ANNE'S VOICE: I have often been downcast myself… but never in despair. I can shake off everything if I write. (2.3)

    It's actually been proven that writing is a cathartic method—an escape plan from the worst pain and dire depression out there. Anne relies on this method to keep her hopes alive.

    Act 2, Scene 4
    Mr. Otto Frank

    MR. FRANK: For the past two years we have lived in fear. Now we can live in hope. (2.4)

    And sometimes, the end is just what you've been looking for. When faith fails you, and the bad guys are at your doorstep, hope is your only friend. Otto Frank just slays us with these insightful words of wisdom.

    MR. FRANK: If we wait patiently, I believe that help will come. (2.4)

    Mr. Frank, even when danger is staring him right in the face, continues to believe that things will turn out for the best. The Nazis may be knocking down his door, but he refuses to give up.

    Anne Frank

    ANNE'S VOICE: P.S. Please, please, Miep or Mr. Kraler or anyone else. If you should find this diary will you please keep it safe for me, because some day I hope… (2.4)

    Even after her death, Anne's faith remains alive. Her continuing faith made her diary available to others who might need a dose of that positive good stuff.

    ANNE: I know it's terrible, trying to have any faith… when people are doing such horrible… (2.4)

    You said it Anne. Having faith during the Holocaust is like asking a penguin to relocate to the Sonoran Desert. Still, it might be worth looking into—faith, that is… not Sonoran Desert real estate for chinstrap penguins.

    ANNE: I wish you had a religion Peter… Just to believe in something! (2.4)

    Anne remarks to Peter that faith is a powerful weapon. He shouldn't ignore it because it has the potential to save him.

  • Other

    Act 2, Scene 4
    Anne Frank

    ANNE: I wish you had a religion Peter… Just to believe in something! (2.4)

    Anne remarks to Peter that faith is a powerful weapon. He shouldn't ignore it because it has the potential to save him.