A blog for the comprehensive understanding of Literature, Applied Linguistics and ELT

August 19, 2017

Quotations by John Quotes


“A thing of beauty is a joy for ever: Its loveliness increases; it will never Pass into nothingness; but still will keep A bower quiet for us, and a sleep Full of sweet dreams, and health, and quiet breathing.”  ~ John Keats, Endymion: A Poetic Romance

“Beauty is truth, truth beauty,—that is all
Ye know on earth, and all ye need to know”
~ John Keats, Ode on a Grecian Urn

 “Heard melodies are sweet, but those unheard
Are sweeter; therefore, ye soft pipes, play on;”
~ John Keats, Ode on a Grecian Urn

“… life is but a day;
A fragile dew-drop on its perilous way
From a tree's summit;…”
~ John Keats, Sleep and Poetry

“Dancing music, music sad,
Both together, sane and mad;”
~ John Keats, A Song of Opposites

“To Sorrow,
I bade good-morrow,
And thought to leave her far away behind;
But cheerly, cheerly,
She loves me dearly;
She is so constant to me, and so kind:
I would deceive her
And so leave her,
But ah! she is so constant and so kind.”
~ John Keats, Endymion

“And so he groan'd, as one by beauty slain.
The lady's heart beat quick, and he could see
Her gentle bosom heave tumultuously.
He sprang from his green covert: there she lay,
Sweet as a muskrose upon new-made hay;
With all her limbs on tremble, and her eyes
Shut softly up alive.”
~ John Keats, Endymion

“This living hand, now warm and capable
Of earnest grasping, would, if it were cold
And in the icy silence of the tomb,
So haunt thy days and chill thy dreaming nights
That thou wouldst wish thine own heart dry of blood
So in my veins red life might stream again,
And thou be conscience-calmed--see here it is--
I hold it towards you.”
~ John Keats, This Living Hand

“And when thou art weary I’ll find thee a bed
Of mosses and flowers to pillow thy head;”
~ John Keats, To Emma

“Touch has a memory. O say, love, say,
What can I do to kill it and be free”
~ John Keats, What can I do to drive away

“Anon his heart revives: her vespers done,
Of all its wreathed pearls her hair she frees;
Unclasps her warmed jewels one by one;
Loosens her fragrant boddice; by degrees
Her rich attire creeps rustling to her knees:
Half-hidden, like a mermaid in sea-weed,
Pensive awhile she dreams awake, and sees,
In fancy, fair St. Agnes in her bed,
But dares not look behind, or all the charm is fled.”
~ John Keats, The Eve of St. Agnes

“When I have fears that I may cease to be
Before my pen has glean’d my teeming brain,
Before high piled books, in charact’ry,
Hold like rich garners the full-ripen’d grain;
When I behold, upon the night’s starr’d face,
Huge cloudy symbols of a high romance,
And think that I may never live to trace
Their shadows, with the magic hand of chance;
And when I feel, fair creature of an hour!
That I shall never look upon thee more,
Never have relish in the faery power
Of unreflecting love!—then on the shore
Of the wide world I stand alone, and think
Till Love and Fame to nothingness do sink.”
~ John Keats, When I Have Fears that I May Cease to Be

“A thing of beauty is a joy for ever:
Its loveliness increases; it will never
Pass into nothingness; but still will keep
A bower quiet for us, and a sleep
Full of sweet dreams, and health, and quiet breathing.”
~ John Keats, Endymion: A Poetic Romance

“When by my solitary hearth I sit,
When no fair dreams before my “mind’s eye” flit,
And the bare heath of life presents no bloom;
Sweet Hope, ethereal balm upon me shed,
And wave thy silver pinions o’er my head.”
~ John Keats, To Hope

“Closer of lovely eyes to lovely dreams,
Lover of loneliness, and wandering,
Of upcast eye, and tender pondering!
Thee must I praise above all other glories
That smile us on to tell delightful stories.”
~ John Keats, Bright Star

“Darkling I listen; and, for many a time
I have been half in love with easeful Death”
~ John Keats, Ode to a Nightingale

August 3, 2017

Quotations by Jane Austen


“I do not think I ever opened a book in my life which had not something to say upon woman's inconstancy. Songs and proverbs, all talk of woman's fickleness. But perhaps you will say, these were all written by men." ~ Jane Austen, Persuasion

“It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife.”
~ Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice

“A lady's imagination is very rapid; it jumps from admiration to love, from love to matrimony in a moment.”
~ Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice

“Vanity and pride are different things, though the words are often used synonymously. A person may be proud without being vain. Pride relates more to our opinion of ourselves, vanity to what we would have others think of us.”
~ Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice

“I do not think I ever opened a book in my life which had not something to say upon woman's inconstancy. Songs and proverbs, all talk of woman's fickleness. But perhaps you will say, these were all written by men."
~ Jane Austen, Persuasion

“I declare after all there is no enjoyment like reading! How much sooner one tires of anything than of a book! When I have a house of my own, I shall be miserable if I have not an excellent library.”
~ Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice

“It is very often nothing but our own vanity that deceives us. Women fancy admiration means more than it does. And men take care that they should.”
~ Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice

“There is nothing I would not do for those who are really my friends. I have no notion of loving people by halves, it is not my nature.”
~ Jane Austen, Northanger Abbey

“The person, be it gentleman or lady, who has not pleasure in a good novel, must be intolerably stupid.”
~ Jane Austen, Northanger Abbey

“The more I know of the world, the more I am convinced that I shall never see a man whom I can really love. I require so much!”
~ Jane Austen, Sense and Sensibility

“A large income is the best recipe for happiness I ever heard of.”
~ Jane Austen, Mansfield Park

“There are few people whom I really love, and still fewer of whom I think well. The more I see of the world, the more am I dissatisfied with it; and every day confirms my belief of the inconsistency of all human characters, and of the little dependence that can be placed on the appearance of merit or sense.”
~ Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice

“I hate to hear you talk about all women as if they were fine ladies instead of rational creatures. None of us want to be in calm waters all our lives.”
~ Jane Austen, Persuasion

“Do not consider me now as an elegant female intending to plague you, but as a rational creature speaking the truth from her heart.”
~ Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice

“I could easily forgive his pride, if he had not mortified mine.”
~ Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice

“I am the happiest creature in the world. Perhaps other people have said so before, but not one with such justice. I am happier even than Jane; she only smiles, I laugh.”
~ Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice

“For what do we live, but to make sport for our neighbors, and laugh at them in our turn?”
~ Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice

“A girl likes to be crossed a little in love now and then.
It is something to think of”
~ Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice

“There could have been no two hearts so open, no tastes so similar, no feelings so in unison”
~ Jane Austen, Persuasion

“Know your own happiness. You want nothing but patience- or give it a more fascinating name, call it hope.”
~ Jane Austen, Sense and Sensibility

“You must learn some of my philosophy. Think only of the past as its remembrance gives you pleasure.”
~ Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice

“Had I been in love, I could not have been more wretchedly blind. But vanity, not love, has been my folly.”
~ Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice

“I certainly have not the talent which some people possess, of conversing easily with those I have never seen before.”
~Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice

“Were I to fall in love, indeed, it would be a different thing; but I have never been in love ; it is not my way, or my nature; and I do not think I ever shall.”
~ Jane Austen, Emma

“It is not every man's fate to marry the woman who loves him best”
~ Jane Austen, Emma

“An engaged woman is always more agreeable than a disengaged. She is satisfied with herself. Her cares are over, and she feels that she may exert all her powers of pleasing without suspicion. All is safe with a lady engaged: no harm can be done.”
~Jane Austen,  Mansfield Park


July 29, 2017

Quotations by Robert Herrick


“Tears are the noble language of eye;  And when true love of words is destitute,  The eye by tears speak, while the tongue is mute.” ~ Robert Herrick, Tears are Tongues

“Here we are all, by day; by night, we're hurled
By dreams, each one, into a several world.”
~ Robert Herrick, Dreams

“A sweet disorder in the dress
Kindles in clothes a wantonness
A lawn about the shoulders thrown
Into a fine distraction;”
~ Robert Herrick, Delight in Disorder

“Give me a kiss, and to that kiss a score;
Then to that twenty, add a hundred more:
A thousand to that hundred: so kiss on,
To make that thousand up a million.
Treble that million, and when that is done,
Let's kiss afresh, as when we first begun.”
~ Robert Herrick, To Anthea: Ah, My Anthea!

“Gather ye rose-buds while ye may,
Old Time is still a-flying;
And this same flower that smiles today,
Tomorrow will be dying.”
~ Robert Herrick, To the Virgins, to Make Much of Time

“Love is a circle that doth restless move
In the same sweet eternity of love.”
~ Robert Herrick, Love, What It Is

“If little labour, little are our gains:
Man's fortunes are according to his pains.”
~ Robert Herrick, No Pains, No Gains

“Thou art my life, my love, my heart,
The very eyes of me;
And hast command of every part,
To live and die for thee.”
~ Robert Herrick, To Anthea, who may Command him Anything

“And with our broth, and bread, and bits, sir friend,
You've fared well : pray make an end ;
Two days you've larded here ; a third, ye know,
Makes guests and fish smell strong ; pray go”
~ Robert Herrick, A Panegyric To Sir Lewis Pemberton, 1891

“Then this immensive cup
Of aromatic wine,
Catullus, I quaff up
To that terse muse of thine.”
~ Robert Herrick, To Live Merrily and to Trust to Good Verses

“Attempt the end and never stand to doubt;
Nothing's so hard, but search will find it out.”
~ Robert Herrick, Seek and Find

“HUMBLE we must be, if to heaven we go:    
High is the roof there; but the gate is low.”
~ Robert Herrick, Humility

“But here's the sunset of a tedious day,
These two asleep are; I'll but be undrest,
And so to bed. Pray wish us all good rest.”
~ Robert Herrick, Epitaph on the Tomb of Sir Edward Giles

“Fair Daffodils, we weep to see
You haste away so soon:
As yet the early-rising Sun
Has not attain'd his noon.

We have short time to stay, as you,
We have as short a Spring;
As quick a growth to meet decay
As you, or any thing.”
~ Robert Herrick, To Daffodils

“Tears are the noble language of eye;
 And when true love of words is destitute,
 The eye by tears speak, while the tongue is mute.”
~ Robert Herrick, Tears are Tongues

“Bid me to live, and I will live
Thy Protestant to be,
Or bid me love, and I will give
A loving heart to thee.”
~ Robert Herrick, To Anthea Who May Command Him Any Thing

“Bid me despair, and I'll despair,
Under that cypress tree;
Or bid me die, and I will dare
E'en Death, to die for thee.”
~ Robert Herrick, To Anthea Who May Command Him Any Thing

“Thus times do shift, each thing his turn does hold;
New things succeed, as former things grow old.”
~ Robert Herrick, Ceremonies for Candlemas Eve

“'TIS not the food, but the content
That makes the table's merriment.”
~ Robert Herrick, Content, Not Cates


July 27, 2017

Quotations by Robert Browning


“Out of your whole life give but one moment!  All of your life that has gone before,  All to come after it, – so you ignore,  So you make perfect the present, – condense,  In a rapture of rage, for perfection’s endowment,  Thought and feeling and soul and sense –”  ~ Robert Browning, Now

 “How good is man’s life, the mere living! how fit to employ     
All the heart and the soul and the senses forever in joy!”
~ Robert Browning, David Singing before Saul

“In this world, who can do a thing, will not;
And who would do it, cannot, I perceive:
Yet the will's somewhat — somewhat, too, the power —
And thus we half-men struggle.”
~ Robert Browning, Andrea del Sarto (1855)

“Ah, but a man's reach should exceed his grasp,
Or what's a heaven for?”
~ Robert Browning, Andrea del Sarto (1855)

“Who hears music, feels his solitude
Peopled at once.”
~ Robert Browning, Balaustion's Adventure (1871)

“God is the perfect poet,
Who in his person acts his own creations.”
~ Robert Browning, Paracelsus (1835)

“Progress, man’s distinctive mark alone,
Not God’s, and not the beasts’: God is, they are,
Man partly is and wholly hopes to be.”
~ Robert Browning, De Gustibus

“… what's the earth
With all its art, verse, music, worth —
Compared with love, found, gained, and kept?”
~ Robert Browning, Dîs Aliter Visum; or, Le Byron De Nos Jours

“Our interest's on the dangerous edge of things.
The honest thief, the tender murderer,
the superstitious atheist …”
~ Robert Browning, Bishop Blougram's Apology

“Open my heart and you will see
Graved inside of it, "Italy".”
~ Robert Browning, De Gustibus

“Out of your whole life give but one moment!
All of your life that has gone before,
All to come after it, – so you ignore,
So you make perfect the present, – condense,
In a rapture of rage, for perfection’s endowment,
Thought and feeling and soul and sense –”
~ Robert Browning, Now

“Heart, fear nothing, for, heart, thou shalt find her—
Next time, herself!—not the trouble behind her ”
~ Robert Browning, Love in a Life

“Each life unfulfilled, you see;
It hangs still, patchy and scrappy:
We have not sighed deep, laughed free,
Starved, feasted, despaired,—been happy.”
~ Robert Browning, Youth and Art

“This world's no blot for us,
Nor blank; it means intensely, and means good:
To find its meaning is my meat and drink.”
~ Robert Browning, Fra Lippo Lippi

“It is the glory and good of Art
That Art remains the one way possible
Of speaking truth - to mouths like mine, at least.”
~ Robert Browning, The Ring and the Book (1868-69)

“My whole life long I learn’d to love.   
This hour my utmost art I prove            
And speak my passion—heaven or hell?
She will not give me heaven? ’T is well!”
~ Robert Browning, One Way of Love

“Grow old along with me!
The best is yet to be,
The last of life, for which the first was made:
Our times are in His hand
Who saith "A whole I planned,
Youth shows but half; trust God: see all, nor be afraid!''”
~ Robert Browning, One Way of Love, Rabbi Ben Ezra

“A minute’s success pays the failure of years.”
~ Robert Browning, Apollo and the Fates (1887)

“Blot out his name, then, record one lost soul more,
One task more declined, one more footpath untrod,
One more devils’-triumph and sorrow for angels,
One wrong more to man, one more insult to God!”
~ Robert Browning, The Lost Leader

“I see my way as birds their trackless way.
I shall arrive,—what time, what circuit first,
I ask not; but unless God send his hail
Or blinding fire-balls, sleet or stifling snow,
In some time, his good time, I shall arrive:
He guides me and the bird. In his good time.”
~ Robert Browning, Paracelsus (1835)

“Ignorance is not innocence but sin.”
~ Robert Browning, The Inn Album (1875)

“Womanliness means only motherhood;
All love begins and ends there.”
~ Robert Browning, The Inn Album (1875)

“I find earth not gray but rosy;
Heaven not grim but fair of hue.
Do I stoop? I pluck a posy; Do I stand and stare? All's blue.”
~ Robert BrowningAt the 'Mermaid'(1876)

“What Youth deemed crystal,
Age finds out was dew.”
~ Robert BrowningJochanan Hakkadosh (1883)

“Take away love, and our earth is a tomb!”
~ Robert Browning, Fra Lippo Lippi

“If you get simple beauty and naught else,
You get about the best thing God invents.”
~ Robert Browning, Fra Lippo Lippi

“You should not take a fellow eight years old
And make him swear to never kiss the girls.”
~ Robert Browning, Fra Lippo Lippi

“The rain set early in tonight,
The sullen wind was soon awake,
It tore the elm-tops down for spite,
And did its best to vex the lake:
I listened with heart fit to break.
When glided in Porphyria; straight
She shut the cold out and the storm,
And kneeled and made the cheerless grate
Blaze up and all the cottage warm;”
~ Robert Browning, Porphyria's Lover

“All the breath and the bloom of the year in the bag of one bee:
All the wonder and wealth of the mine in the heart of one gem:
In the core of one pearl all the shade and the shine of the sea:
Breath and bloom, shade and shine, — wonder, wealth, and — how far above them —
Truth, that's brighter than gem,
Trust, that's purer than pearl, —
Brightest truth, purest trust in the universe, — all were for me
In the kiss of one girl.”
~ Robert Browning, Summum Bonum (1889)


July 8, 2017

Quotations by Ezra Pound


“Good writers are those who keep the language efficient. That is to say, keep it accurate, keep it clear. It doesn't matter whether the good writer wants to be useful, or whether the good writer wants to be harm.” ~ Ezra Pound, ABC of Reading

“The man of understanding can no more sit quiet and resigned while his country lets literature decay than a good doctor could sit quiet and contented while some ignorant child was infecting itself with tuberculosis under the impression that it was merely eating jam tarts.”
~ Ezra Pound, ABC of Reading

“Anyone who is too lazy to master the comparatively small glossary necessary to understand Chaucer deserves to be shut out from the reading of good books forever.”
~ Ezra Pound, ABC of Reading

“No teacher has ever failed from ignorance. That is empiric professional knowledge. Teachers fail because they cannot ‘handle the class’. Real education must ultimately be limited to men how INSIST on knowing, the rest is mere sheep-herding.”
~ Ezra Pound, ABC of Reading

“Good writers are those who keep the language efficient. That is to say, keep it accurate, keep it clear. It doesn't matter whether the good writer wants to be useful, or whether the good writer wants to be harm.”
~ Ezra Pound, ABC of Reading

“More writers fail from lack of character than from lack of intelligence.”
~ Ezra Pound, ABC of Reading

“A people that grows accustomed to sloppy writing is a people in process of losing grip on its empire and on itself.”
~ Ezra Pound, ABC of Reading

“The critic who doesn't make a personal statement, in remeasurements he himself has made, is merely an unreliable critic. He is not a measurer but a repeater of other men's results. KRINO, to pick out for oneself, to choose. That's what the word means.”
~ Ezra Pound, ABC of Reading

“A nation which neglects the perceptions of its artists declines. After a while it ceases to act, and merely survives.

“There is probably no use in telling this to people who can't see it without being told.”
~ Ezra Pound, ABC of Reading

“A great spirit has been amongst us, and a great artist is gone.”
~ Ezra Pound, Gaudier-Brzeska: A Memoir

“Why do you look so eagerly and so curiously into people’s faces,
Will you find your lost dead among them?”
~ Ezra Pound, Coda

“If a man have not order within him
He can not spread order about him;
And if a man have not order within him
His family will not act with due order;
And if the prince have not order within him
He can not put order in his dominions.”
~ Ezra Pound, Canto XIII

“And round about there is a rabble
Of the filthy, sturdy, unkillable infants of the very poor.
They shall inherit the earth.”
~ Ezra Pound, The Garden

“Let the gods speak softly of us”
~ Ezra Pound, Greek

“If a man have not order within him
He can not spread order about him;
And if a man have not order within him
His family will not act with due order;
And if the prince have not order within him
He can not put order in his dominions.”
~ Ezra Pound, Canto XIII

“And even I can remember
A day when the historians left blanks in their writings,
I mean, for things they didn't know,
But that time seems to be passing.”
~ Ezra Pound, Canto XIII

“Without character you will
be unable to play on that instrument”
~ Ezra Pound, Canto XIII

July 3, 2017

Quotations by William Faulkner


War is an episode, a crisis, a fever the purpose of which is to rid the body of fever. So the purpose of a war is to end the war.” ~ William Faulkner, A Fable

“The saddest thing about love, Joe, is that not only the love cannot last forever, but even the heartbreak is soon forgotten.”
~ William Faulkner, Soldiers’ Pay

“Memory believes before knowing remembers. Believes longer than recollects, longer than knowing even wonders.”
~ William Faulkner, Light in August

“War is an episode, a crisis, a fever the purpose of which is to rid the body of fever. So the purpose of a war is to end the war.”
~ William Faulkner, A Fable

“The phenomenon of war is its hermaphroditism: the principles of victory and of defeat inhabit the same body and the necessary opponent, enemy, is merely the bed they self-exhaust each other on.”
~ William Faulkner, A Fable

“That’s what they mean by the womb of time: the agony and the despair of spreading bones, the hard girdle in which lie the outraged entrails of events.”
~ William Faulkner, As I Lay Dying

“People to whom sin is just a matter of words, to them salvation is just words too.”
~ William Faulkner, As I Lay Dying

“…any live man is better than any dead man but no live or dead man is very
much better than any other live or dead man …”
~ William Faulkner, The Sound and the Fury

“Given the choice between the experience of pain and nothing, I would choose pain.”
~ William Faulkner, The Wild Palms

“The past is never dead. It's not even past.”
~ William Faulkner, Requiem for a Nun

“Love doesn't die; the men and women do.”
~ William Faulkner, The Wild Palms

“Memory believes before knowing remembers.”
~ William Faulkner, As I Lay Dying

“It takes two people to make you, and one people to die. That's how the world is going to end.”
~ William Faulkner, As I Lay Dying

“The reason you will not say it is, when you say it, even to yourself, you will know it is true.”
~ William Faulkner, As I Lay Dying

“The sun, an hour above the horizon, is poised like a bloody egg upon a crest of thunderheads; the light has turned copper: in the eye portentous, in the nose sulphurous, smelling of lightning.”
~ William Faulkner, As I Lay Dying

“I say money has no value; it's just the way you spend it.”
~ William Faulkner, The Sound and the Fury

“I'd have wasted a lot of time and trouble before I learned that the best way to take all people, black or white, is to take them for what they think they are, then leave them alone.”
~ William Faulkner, The Sound and the Fury

“… clocks slay time ... time is dead as long as it is being clicked off by little wheels; only when the clock stops does time come to life.”
~ William Faulkner, The Sound and the Fury

“It's not when you realise that nothing can help you - religion, pride, anything - it's when you realise that you don't need any aid.”
~ William Faulkner, The Sound and the Fury

“A man is the sum of his misfortunes. One day you'd think misfortune would get tired but then time is your misfortune”
~ William Faulkner, The Sound and the Fury

“She loved him not only in spite of but because he himself was incapable of love.”
~ William Faulkner, The Sound and the Fury

“Caddy got the box and set it on the floor and opened it. It was full of stars. When I was still, they were still. When I moved, they glinted and sparkled. I hushed.”
~ William Faulkner, The Sound and the Fury

“Because no battle is ever won he said. They are not even fought. The field only reveals to man his own folly and despair, and victory is an illusion of philosophers and fools.”
~ William Faulkner, The Sound and the Fury

“I suppose that people, using themselves and each other so much by words, are at least consistent in attributing wisdom to a still tongue...”
~ William Faulkner, The Sound and the Fury

“If you could just ravel out into time. That would be nice. It would be nice if you could just ravel out into time”
~ William Faulkner, As I Lay Dying

“Though children can accept adults as adults, adults can never accept children as anything but adults too.”
~ William Faulkner, Light in August

July 2, 2017

Quotations by James Joyce


“A man of genius makes no mistakes. His errors are volitional and are the portals of discovery.” ~ James Joyce, Ulysses

“A man of genius makes no mistakes. His errors are volitional and are the portals of discovery.”
~ James Joyce, Ulysses

“Pride and hope and desire like crushed herbs in his heart sent up vapours of maddening incense before the eyes of his mind.”
~ James Joyce, A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man

“Every life is in many days, day after day. We walk through ourselves, meeting robbers, ghosts, giants, old men, young men, wives, widows, brothers-in-love, but always meeting ourselves.”
~ James Joyce, Ulysses

“The movements which work revolutions in the world are born out of the dreams and visions in a peasant's heart on the hillside.”
~ James Joyce, Ulysses

“In woman's womb word is made flesh but in the spirit of the maker all flesh that passes becomes the word that shall not pass away. This is the postcreation.”
~ James Joyce, Ulysses

“Think you're escaping and run into yourself. Longest way round is the shortest way home.”
~ James Joyce, Ulysses

“Hold to the now, the here, through which all future plunges to the past.”
~ James Joyce, Ulysses

“People could put up with being bitten by a wolf but what properly riled them was a bite from a sheep.”
~ James Joyce, Ulysses

“Shakespeare is the happy hunting ground of all minds that have lost their balance.”
~ James Joyce, Ulysses

“It is as painful perhaps to be awakened from a vision as to be born.”
~ James Joyce, Ulysses

“To learn one must be humble. But life is the great teacher.”
~ James Joyce, Ulysses

“And then I asked him with my eyes to ask again yes and then he asked me would I yes and his heart was going like mad and yes I said yes I will yes.”
~ James Joyce, Ulysses

“Art is the human disposition of sensible or intelligible matter for an esthetic end.”
~ James Joyce, A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man

“The object of the artist is the creation of the beautiful. What the beautiful is is another question.”
~ James Joyce, A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man

“To discover the mode of life or of art whereby my spirit could express itself in unfettered freedom.”
~ James Joyce, A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man

“What's in a name? That is what we ask ourselves in childhood when we write the name that we are told is ours.”
~ James Joyce, Ulysses

“Her lips touched his brain as they touched his lips, as though they were a vehicle of some vague speech and between them he felt an unknown and timid preasure, darker than the swoon of sin, softer than sound or odor.”
~ James Joyce, A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man

“He wanted to cry quietly but not for himself: for the words, so beautiful and sad, like music.”
~ James Joyce, A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man

“His heart danced upon her movements like a cork upon a tide. He heard what her eyes said to him from beneath their cowl and knew that in some dim past, whether in life or revery, he had heard their tale before.”
~ James Joyce, A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man

“Welcome, O life! I go to encounter for the millionth time the reality of experience and to forge in the smithy of my soul the uncreated conscience of my race.”
~ James Joyce, A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man

“You made me confess the fears that I have. But I will tell you also what I do not fear. I do not fear to be alone or to be spurned for another or to leave whatever I have to leave. And I am not afraid to make a mistake, even a great mistake, a lifelong mistake and perhaps as long as eternity too.”
~ James Joyce, A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man

“Why is it that words like these seem dull and cold? Is it because there is no word tender enough to be your name?”
~ James Joyce, The Dead


July 1, 2017

Shaw’s Treatment of Love and War in “Arms and the Man”

The 19th century plays mostly centered on the idealistic aspects of life, frequently recounting the incredible deeds and exploits of the heroes. However, during the latter half of the very century George Bernard Shaw came forward and brought about an epoch-making change in the presentation of plays. His technique placed reason over emotion with a view to disillusion humanity of its cherished ideals. Hence, Shaw strongly liberated himself from the infatuation of romanticism and enacted his plays to reform the society. For this reason Shaw often regarded as an anti-romantic playwright.

George Bernard Shaw applied his anti-romantic technique most brilliantly in his 1894 play Arms and the Man. Shaw was realistic enough to ascertain that people hold an idealized notion about love and war since the society defines these from clichéd standpoint. Therefore, Shaw opted to define love and war from practical point of view, isolating all their traditional attachments or the romantic glamour.

In practical life, love is full of complexities and is not devoid of blemishes, such as inconstancy, carnality, etc. But in fairy tales or romantic stories the picture is quite the opposite. In such works love is portrayed ideally, i.e., from Platonic viewpoint, hence it lacks negative sides. On the other hand, in practical life, war stems from unavoidable circumstances and it entails violence, bloodshed, and atrocity. The warriors participated in war are made of flesh and blood like us, possessing all human qualities, especially hunger, fear, and an urge for preserving life. They only battle when it is essential and never exhibit courage unnecessarily. In fairy tales, however, war is a ground for the soldiers to showcase heroism. They are desperate in fighting and reckless in courage. In Arms and the Man, Shaw mainly focused on eliminating the fairy tale or romantic elements from the notions of love and war.

Arms and the Man

The opening scene confronts us with Raina, the heroine, whose thoughts and attitude are moulded greatly by romanticism since she hovers around the pages of Byron and Pushkin. As a result, her outlook on love and war is illusive.  To her, war is an act of heroism, a deed of glory and patriotism in which the brave soldiers risk their lives for the sake of their country. Her ideals get visible when she becomes a strong enthusiast of her fiancé, Sergius when she was informed about his cavalry charge in the battle at Slivnitza. The incident gives her a faith that the man she is going to marry will be brave and patriotic.

But very soon Shaw shatters Raina’s obsession with the romantic notion about war by introducing an antithetical character, Captain Bluntschli, a runaway Serb officer. With Bluntschli, Shaw has presented a realistic portrait of an average soldier who is of common stature, is ready to fight when he must and is glad to escape when he can. Bluntschli’s character also reveals the truth that a solder is not a superman, he suffers from hunger and fatigue and is roused to action only by danger.

However, observing Bluntschli’s concern about fear and death, Raina considers him to be a coward and proudly claims that in her country there are soldiers like Sergius who can lead to victory. But soon Bluntschli shatters her false ideals by revealing the fact that Sergius’ cavalry charge was not an act of bravery rather was a complete foolish and suicidal attempt. Bluntschli further clarified that Sergius made a heroic charge on the artillery of the Serbs Ignoring the orders of his Russian commander, thereby putting his entire brigade to fight. Pursuant to Bluntschli’s opinion, Sergius’ action was absolutely unprofessional and it was a so serious offence that he should be court-martialed for it. He and his regiment survived since the Serbs couldn’t shoot because of wrong ammunition:
He and his regiment simply committed suicide—only the pistol missed fire, that's all.
With this, Raina could understand that Bluntschli is not a coward, though he likes to save his life as far as possible. Thus Raina is moved by his realistic views on war and she determines to save his life. Afterwards, Sergius himself is also fully disillusioned about the glory of war when he finds that he has not been promoted for his bravery. Even though his country won the battle he still holds the rank of a major. Petkoff remarked that he should not be promoted to put in danger the whole brigade. Thus Sergius realizes that he won the battle by sheer of chance:
Soldiering, my dear madam, is the coward's art of attacking mercilessly when you are strong, and keeping out of harm's way when you are weak. That is the whole secret of successful fighting. Get your enemy at a disadvantage; and never, on any account, fight him on equal terms.
After war, Shaw concentrates on the misconceptions of love. Shaw proves that the higher love between Raina and Sergius is tinged with sentiment and deceit. Apparently they glorify each other and are blind to the faults of each other. On his return from the war Sergius calls her his “Queen” and “goddess” and she calls him her “King” and “hero”, which recalls the legend of the medieval knight. The medieval knight dedicated his life to his beloved and fought his whole life against injustice and evildoers. Like the knight, Sergius fights solely for Raina and risks his life to get applause. He is not ready to accept that someone else desires his beloved. But at the same time he is getting tired of dealing with this higher love which is full of failure, incompleteness, and emptiness:
… do you know what the higher love is? … Very fatiguing thing to keep up for any length of time, Louka. One feels the need of some relief after it.
Hence, Sergius wants a type of love that is compatible with practical life. So he rejects Raina and accepts Louka as his wife.

Coming in contact with Bluntschli, Raina could realize that her love for Sergius is nothing but an illusion. She doesn’t find Sergius fit for her as his character is full of incongruities and contrarieties. On the other hand she is amazed by Bluntschli’s practicality, wisdom, determination, and strong personality. Although Raina wants to keep her feelings secret, ultimately the fact is exposed to everybody. This love is heart-felt and is devoid of feigned sentiment.

In fine, Arms and the Man is an amazing anti-romantic play exposing the synthetic appearances of love and war. With great comic sense, in this play Shaw endeavours to make his readers aware of the impracticality of romantic ideals.

June 10, 2017

To His Coy Mistress as a Love Poem

Andrew Marvell (1621–1678) is a strong embodiment of the transitions that came over the English society in the course of the 17th century. Marvell is deemed by many as one of the greatest love poets and is praised extravagantly for his Metaphysical wit and finely balanced lyric verse. His love poems generally deal with the spiritual as well as the carnal properties of love. The following commentary attempts to undertake a critical inquiry into his attitude towards love along with a special reference to his most celebrated poem To His Coy Mistress.

To His Coy Mistress

Marvell’s romantic tour-de-force To His Coy Mistress is a rigorous representation of the spiritual and physical aspect of love.  It is a great poem on carpe diem tradition wherein we are confronted with a passionate speaker or lover who is requesting his beloved to forsake her shyness or modesty and submit herself to his embraces. The lover repeatedly offers a series of arguments in support of his proposition. With thoughtful wit and humour he justifies that human life is essentially short-lived and thus it is wise to gratify sexual passion while they still have time at their disposal. Hence, he appeals to his beloved to stop the lingering and expedite the pleasures of the flesh.

In the very beginning of the poem spiritual courtship is presented with a similar style and manner found in the poems of Petrarch. This is noted especially when the lover commends his beloved’s physical beauty. Just akin to a typical Petrarchan lover, the speaker praises the beauty of his beloved’s eyes and limbs in an extravagant manner:
A hundred years should go to praise
Thine eyes and on thy forehead gaze;
Two hundred to adore each breast,
 But thirty thousand to the rest;
Afterwards, the speaker’s spiritual love subsides and he tends towards physical relationship. This urge for physical love has been reinforced through the carpe diem concept. By presenting the images of death and decay the speaker tries to justify the futility of resistance towards carnal pleasure:
Thy beauty shall no more be found,
Nor, in thy marble vault, shall sound
My echoing song; then worms shall try
That long preserved virginity,
And your quaint honour turn to dust,
And into ashes all my lust:
The grave's a fine and private place,
But none, I think, do there embrace.
Through the above coarse imagery the speaker throws an implication towards his beloved to sacrifice her virginity to him rather than foolishly saving herself for the "worms" when buried. Then he also adds that after demise her virginity will be transformed into dust along with her body. He further adds that although the grave is a peaceful place none does make love there. Hence, death would definitely cease their opportunity to make love.

Then the lover draws a conclusion to his arguments by stating that they won't be young forever and thus should take advantage of it while they can. To emphasise the aforesaid statement he makes the following comparison which is quite animalistic and hints at his barely-controlled desires:
Now let us sport us while we may,
And now, like amorous birds of prey,
Rather at once our time devour
Here the lover becomes extremely impatient and passionately requests his beloved to “seize the day” and enjoy the present moment. The poet advises his beloved not to wait for death and urges her to gratify the pleasure of love like amorous birds.

Soon the lover moves away from all the negativities and reaches the zenith of his passion when he invites his beloved to have the pleasure of the flesh. He maintains that physical intercourse is the way to enter into another world, a way to break out of the confinement of time. He also feels that bringing the "strife" of life into the bedroom will enhance the sexual experience:
Let us roll all our strength and all
Our sweetness up into one ball,
And tear our pleasures with rough strife
Through the iron gates of life:
In the end of the poem the lover appears somewhat calmer since he admits that sex is a compromise. He also admits that sex cannot be employed to stop time but they can use it to make time go faster:
Thus, though we cannot make our sun
Stand still, yet we will make him run.
To conclude, Andrew Marvell did an outstanding job in presenting the heart-felt emotions of a passionate lover from both spiritual and physical point of view. Although certain images seem a bit coarse and vulgar, To his Coy Mistress is still able to receive the reader’s admiration due to the speaker’s intense devotion to his beloved. Thus it won't be an overstatement if we call it one of Marvell's best love poems.


June 3, 2017

Robinson Crusoe as an Allegory

The Eighteen century English novelist Daniel Defoe (c. 1660–1731) was part of a Protestant culture that was vigorously intellectual and energetically literary. Separated from the life of the upper classes and their erudite writers, he produced, amongst many pieces of commissioned writings, a series of purportedly true but actually fictitious memoirs and confessions, which made him one of the great masters of realistic narrative. His skillfully crafted fictions, presented by specific and well – chosen details create the illusion of exact truth, tricking the reader into suspension of disbelief.

Robinson Crusoe (1719) is an allegorical story of conversion employing metaphoric symbols readily recognisable to an audience familiar with a similar set of symbols found repeatedly in the sermons, tracts, and other religious writings of both Anglican and dissenting divines. Defoe’s novel does not simply chronicle a practical man’s continuous strife and struggle for adjustment of life on a deserted island; rather it is the record of a notable spiritual pilgrimage across the sea of life, from a lawless course of living to true Christian repentance.

Crusoe’s wandering in desolate and afflicting circumstances stresses the allegorical and figurative meaning of the novel. Crusoe’s journey advances through suffering, repentance and realisation. Finally, he finds atonement by exploring himself and God. Each adverse situation makes Crusoe realise that it is a punishment for him given by the God for his wicked deed of ignoring the good advice of his parents and defying his duty to God. Each time he promises and vows to God that he will not continue his journey and return to home. However, when he is saved from the danger, he forgets all his repentance and repeatedly makes the same mistakes. He learns almost nothing. His emotionally volatile mind entirely kept him aloof from becoming spiritually enlightened.

Eventually, under the stress of the hardships of life on the island, and more specifically under the severe strain of his illness, Crusoe realises his sin and undergoes a spiritual transformation. During his illness he sees a frightening dream in which a man, having descended from a cloud, threatens to kill him with a spear. This dream may be considered as a kind of divine warning or a divine guidance to him. On waking up from dream, Crusoe recalls the excellent advice which his father gave him at his desire to set out for the journey. But it is the irony of his fate that Crusoe did not pay any heed to his father’s advice. He now remembers that during the past eight years since he left home, he had not looked upwards to God with any sincerity of feeling even once. During these eight years he has been guilty of a certain ‘stupidity of soul’ without any desire for goodness and without any repentance of evil. Tears now begin to flow from his eyes, and he prays to God for help. This, Crusoe tells us, was the first prayer which he had ever addressed to God for many years. Here we have the turning point in Crusoe’s spiritual life. From this time onwards, his mind is essentially at peace and entirely free from spiritual apathy.

Thus, Robinson Crusoe allegorically treats the theme of transgression, punishment, and repentance. Crusoe suffers from his sin and he is salvaged through his repentance and prayer. In this way, the novel becomes essentially a religious tale. Crusoe ultimately possesses the infinite knowledge. He becomes spiritually enlightened by believing in God. Like the journey of the Christian hero in Bunyan’s The Pilgrim’s Progress, the journey of Robinson Crusoe in not merely a physical journey but a religious journey too.

Robinson Crusoe

May 29, 2017

Quotations by Daniel Defoe


“The soul is placed in the body like a rough diamond, and must be polished, or the luster of it will never appear.” ~ Daniel Defoe, The Education of Women (1719)

“The soul is placed in the body like a rough diamond, and must be polished, or the luster of it will never appear.”
~ Daniel Defoe, The Education of Women (1719)

“Thus we never see the true state of our condition till it is illustrated to us by its contraries, nor know how to value what we enjoy, but by the want of it.”
~ Daniel Defoe, Robinson Crusoe

“All evils are to be considered with the good that is in them, and with what worse attends them.”
~ Daniel Defoe, Robinson Crusoe

“It is better to have a lion at the head of an army of sheep, than a sheep at the head of an army of lions.”
~ Daniel Defoe, The Life and Adventures of Mrs. Christian Davies (1741)

“The best of men cannot suspend their fate:
The good die early, and the bad die late.”
~ Daniel Defoe, Character of the Late Dr. S. Annesley (1715)

“All our discontents about what we want appeared to spring from the want of thankfulness for what we have.”
~ Daniel Defoe, Robinson Crusoe

“And of all the plagues with which mankind are cursed, Ecclesiastic tyranny's the worst.”
~ Daniel Defoe, The True-Born Englishman (1701)

“Tis very strange Men should be so fond of being thought more wicked than they are.”
~ Daniel Defoe, A System Of Magick

“It is never too late to be wise.”
~ Daniel Defoe, Robinson Crusoe

“I have since often observed, how incongruous and irrational the common temper of mankind is, especially of youth ... that they are not ashamed to sin, and yet are ashamed to repent; not ashamed of the action for which they ought justly to be esteemed fools, but are ashamed of the returning, which only can make them be esteemed wise men.”
~ Daniel Defoe, Robinson Crusoe

“Nature has left this tincture in the blood,
That all men would be tyrants if they could.”
~ Daniel Defoe, The History of the Kentish Petition

“Thus fear of danger is ten thousand times more terrifying than danger itself when apparent to the eyes; and we find the burden of anxiety greater, by much, than the evil which we are anxious about : ...”
~ Daniel Defoe, Robinson Crusoe

“Man is a short-sighted creature, sees but a very little way before him; and as his passions are none of his best friends, so his particular affections are generally his worst counselors.”
~ Daniel Defoe, The Life and Adventures of Robinson Crusoe

“Those people cannot enjoy comfortably what God has given them because they see and covet what He has not given them. All of our discontents for what we want appear to me to spring from want of thankfulness for what we have.”
~ Daniel Defoe, Robinson Crusoe

“Redemption from sin is greater then redemption from affliction.”
~ Daniel Defoe, Robinson Crusoe

“Wait on the Lord, and be of good cheer, and he shall strengthen thy heart; wait, I say, on the Lord.”
~ Daniel Defoe, Robinson Crusoe

“If you have regard to your future happiness, any view of living comfortably with a husband, any hope of preserving your fortunes or restoring them after any disaster, never, ladies, marry a fool. Any husband rather than a fool. With some other husband you may be unhappy, but with a fool you will be miserable.”
~ Daniel Defoe, Roxana

“So possible is it for us to roll ourselves up in wickedness, till we grow invulnerable by conscience; and that sentinel, once dozed, sleeps fast, not to be awakened while the tide of pleasure continues to flow or till something dark and dreadful brings us to ourselves again.”
~ Daniel Defoe, Roxana

“If a young women once thinks herself handsome, she never doubts the truth of any man that tells her he is in love with her; for if she believes herself charming charming enough to captive him, 'tis natural to expect the effects of it.”
~ Daniel Defoe, Moll Flanders

“I had been tricked once by that Cheat called love, but the Game was over...”
~ Daniel Defoe, Moll Flanders

“But, he says again, if God much strong, much might as the Devil, why God no kill the Devil, so make him no more do wicked?
I was strangely surprised at his question, [...] And at first I could not tell what to say, so I pretended not to hear him...”
~ Daniel Defoe, Robinson Crusoe

“It is as reasonable to represent one kind of imprisonment by another as it is to represent anything that really exists by that which exists not.”
~ Daniel Defoe, Robinson Crusoe

“How mercifully can our Creator treat His creatures, even in those conditions in which they seemed to be overwhelmed in destruction! How can He sweeten the bitterest providences, and give us cause to praise Him for dungeons and prisons! What a table was here spread for me in a wilderness where I saw nothing at first but to perish for hunger!”
~ Daniel Defoe, Robinson Crusoe

“How frequently, in the course of our lives, the evil which in itself we seek most to shun, and which, when we are fallen into, is the most dreadful to us, is oftentimes the very means or door of our deliverance, by which alone we can be raised again from the affliction we are fallen into ...”
~ Daniel Defoe, Robinson Crusoe


May 28, 2017

Quotations by Alfred Tennyson


“Old age hath yet his honour and his toil;  Death closes all: but something ere the end,  Some work of noble note, may yet be done,  Not unbecoming men that strove with Gods.” ~ Alfred Tennyson, Ulysses

 “It little profits that an idle king,
By this still hearth, among these barren crags,
Match'd with an aged wife, I mete and dole
Unequal laws unto a savage race,
That hoard, and sleep, and feed, and know not me.”
~ Alfred Tennyson, Ulysses

“Old age hath yet his honour and his toil;
Death closes all: but something ere the end,
Some work of noble note, may yet be done,
Not unbecoming men that strove with Gods.”
~ Alfred Tennyson, Ulysses

“Knowledge comes, but wisdom lingers, and I linger on the shore,
And the individual withers, and the world is more and more.”
~ Alfred Tennyson, Loksley Hall

“I sometimes find it half a sin,
To put to words the grief i feel,
For words like nature,half reveal,
and half conceal the soul within,”
~ Alfred Tennyson, In Memoriam

“So runs my dream, but what am I?
An infant crying in the night
An infant crying for the light
And with no language but a cry.”
~ Alfred Tennyson, In Memoriam

“I hold it truth, with him who sings
To one clear harp in divers tones,
That men may rise on stepping-stones
Of their dead selves to higher things.”
~ Alfred Tennyson, In Memoriam

“Tis better to have loved and lost
Than never to have loved at all.”
~ Alfred Tennyson, In Memoriam

“Ring out the old, ring in the new,
Ring, happy bells, across the snow:
The year is going, let him go;
Ring out the false, ring in the true.”
~ Alfred Tennyson, In Memoriam

“The woods decay, the woods decay and fall,
The vapours weep their burthen to the ground,
Man comes and tills the field and lies beneath,
And after many a summer dies the swan.
Me only cruel immortality
Consumes: I wither slowly in thine arms,
Here at the quiet limit of the world,
A white-hair'd shadow roaming like a dream
The ever-silent spaces of the East,
Far-folded mists, and gleaming halls of morn.”
~ Alfred Tennyson, Tithonus

“Theirs not to make reply,
Theirs not to reason why,
Theirs but to do and die.”
~ Alfred Tennyson, The Charge of the Light Brigade

“When in the down I sink my head,
Sleep, Death's twin-brother, times my breath;
Sleep, Death's twin-brother, knows not Death,
Nor can I dream of thee as dead:”
~ Alfred Tennyson, In Memoriam

“Pray for my soul. More things are wrought by prayer
Than this world dreams of: Wherefore, let thy voice,
Rise like a fountain for me night and day.”
~ Alfred Tennyson, Idylls of the King

“T is not too late to seek a newer world.
Push off, and sitting well in order smite
The sounding furrows; for my purpose holds
To sail beyond the sunset, and the baths
Of all the western stars, until I die.
It may be that the gulfs will wash us down:
It may be we shall touch the Happy Isles,
And see the great Achilles, whom we knew.
Tho’ much is taken, much abides; and tho’
We are not now that strength which in old days
Mov’d earth and heaven, that which we are, we are:
One equal temper of heroic hearts,
Made weak by time and fate, but strong in will
To strive, to seek, to find, and not to yield.”
~ Alfred Tennyson, Ulysses

“Dear as remember'd kisses after death,
And sweet as those by hopeless fancy feign'd
On lips that are for others; deep as love,
Deep as first love, and wild with all regret;
O Death in Life, the days that are no more!”
~ Alfred Tennyson, Tears, Idle Tears

“She sleeps: her breathings are not heard
In palace chambers far apart.
The fragrant tresses are not stirr'd
That lie upon her charmed heart
She sleeps: on either hand upswells
The gold-fringed pillow lightly prest:
She sleeps, nor dreams, but ever dwells
A perfect form in perfect rest.”
~ Alfred Tennyson, The Sleeping Beauty

“She left the web, she left the loom,
She made three paces through the room,
She saw the water-lily bloom,
She saw the helmet and the plume,
She look'd down to Camelot.
Out flew the web and floated wide;
The mirror crack'd from side to side;
"The curse is come upon me," cried
The Lady of Shalott.”
~ Alfred Tennyson, The Lady of Shalott

“While he gazed
The beauty of her flesh abashed the boy,
As though it were the beauty of her soul:
For as the base man, judging of the good,
Puts his own baseness in him by default
Of will and nature, so did Pelleas lend
All the young beauty of his own soul to hers”
~ Alfred Tennyson, Idylls of the King

“The wind sounds like a silver wire,
And from beyond the noon a fire
Is pour'd upon the hills, and nigher
The skies stoop down in their desire;
And, isled in sudden seas of light,
My heart, pierced thro' with fierce delight,
Bursts into blossom in his sight.”
~ Alfred Tennyson, Fatima

“The old order changeth, yielding place to new,             
And God fulfils himself in many ways, 
Lest one good custom should corrupt the world.”
~ Alfred Tennyson, The Passing of Arthur

“In the afternoon they came unto a land
In which it seemed always afternoon.
All around the coast the languid air did swoon,
Breathing like one that hath a weary dream.”
~ Alfred Tennyson, The Lotos-eaters

“Let us alone. What is it that will last?
All things are taken from us, and become
Portions and parcels of the dreadful past.
Let us alone. What pleasure can we have
To war with evil? Is there any peace
In ever climbing up the climbing wave?
All things have rest, and ripen toward the grave
In silence; ripen, fall and cease:
Give us long rest or death, dark death, or dreamful ease.”
~ Alfred Tennyson, The Lotos-eaters


May 13, 2017

Katherine Mansfield Quick Facts

Katherine Mansfield

Katherine Mansfield, a New Zealand short story writer, who is regarded as a key figure in British modernism for developing modern short story.

Katherine Mansfield Quick Facts


  • Birth Name: Kathleen Mansfield Beauchamp
  • Married Name: Kathleen Mansfield Murry
  • Pseudonym: Katherine Mansfield
  • Date of Birth: October 14, 1888
  • Place of Birth: Wellington, New Zealand
  • Zodiac Sign: Libra
  • Death: January 9, 1923
  • Place of Death: Fontainebleau, France
  • Cause of Death: Tuberculosis
  • Ethnicity: White
  • Nationality: New Zealand
  • Place of Burial: Cimetiere d'Avon, Avon
  • Gravestone Inscription:
  • Father: Harold Beauchamp (1858–1938)
  • Mother: Annie Burnell Beauchamp (1863–1818)
  • Siblings:
  1. Sister: Vera Margaret Bell (c. 1885–1974)
  2. Sister: Charlotte Mary Perkins (1887–1966)
  3. Sister: Gwedoline Burnell Beauchamp (1890–1891)
  4. Sister: Jeanne Worthington Renshaw (1892–1989)
  5. Brother: Leslie Heron Beauchamp (1894–1915)
  • Sexual Orientation: Bisexual
  • Spouse:
  1. George Bowden (m. Mar 2, 1909)
  2. John Middleton Murry (m. May 3, 1918)
  • Partner: Ida Constance Baker (1888–1978)
  • Children: 1 stillborn daughter
  • Alma Mater: Wellington Girls’ College; Queen's College
  • Known for: noted for her short stories with themes relating to women's lives and social hierarchies as well as her sense of wit and characterizations.
  • Criticized for: her bohemian lifestyle and libertinism, which entailed affairs with many men and two women.
  • Katherine Mansfield was Influenced by: Anton Chekhov (1860–1904), George Gurdjieff (1866–1949), and Beatrice Hastings (1879 –1943)
  • Mansfield’s Works Inspired: Christopher Isherwood (1904–1986), and Aldous Huxley (1894–1963)


“Everything in life that we really accept undergoes a change. So suffering must become Love. This is the mystery. This is what I must do.”

Katherine Mansfield, The Journal of Katherine Mansfield (1927), Journal entry: 19 December 1920

Major Themes

  • The growth and self-consciousness of the female
  • The relation between men and women
  • Complexity of human emotion
  • Children’s innocence
  • Repressed sexuality
  • Bisexuality
  • Disappointment
  • Gender roles
  • The cruelty of the reality
  • Death

Notable Works

  • In a German Pension (1911)
  • "Prelude" (1918)
  • Bliss and Other Stories (1920)
  • The Garden Party and Other Stories (1922)
  • The Dove's Nest (1923)
  • Something Childish (1924)

Did You Know?

  • Katherine Mansfield was the third of the five children born to a financier and the chairman of the Bank of New Zealand, Harold Beauchamp.
  • She first published her stories in the Wellington Girls’ High School magazine and the High School Reporter.
  • Her short story "Prelude” was published by Woolf's Hogarth Press as a book in 1918.
  • Only three collections of her stories were published during her lifetime and most of her works remained unpublished till her death.
  • Most of Mansfield’s subjects were recollections of her family and her childhood spent in New Zealand.
  • Mansfield was an early practitioner of stream of consciousness technique.
  • When Mansfield settled in the United Kingdom, she became a friend of modernist writers such as D.H. Lawrence and Virginia Woolf.
  • Mansfield is thought to have contracted tuberculosis from D.H. Lawrence.
  • Apart from her literary career Mansfield is widely remembered for her promiscuous relationships with both, men and women, which partly led to her downfall.
  • At the age of nineteen she fell in love with Garnet Trowell, a young violinist. When the affair collapsed, she rashly married G.C. Bowden, a singing teacher and then abandoned him the day after the wedding to live with Ida Baker. She resumed her relationship with Garnet, became pregnant, and eventually had a stillborn child.
  • It is alleged that she had a love affair with a young woman artist, Edith Bendall.
  • In 1910 she became seriously ill with the effects of untreated gonorrhoea. An operation left her unable to have children.
  • In 1912 Mansfield met John Middleton Murry and began living together that culminated in their marriage in 1918, although she left him twice, in 1911 and 1913.
  • Katherine Mansfield died from a haemorrhage on January 9, 1923 at eleven 11 pm soon after the arrival of her husband, John Middleton Murry.
  • Mansfield willed her manuscripts, notebooks and letters to Murry, who published many posthumously, and contributed to the growth of her international reputation.
  • Ida kept many of Mansfield’s belongings, and all the letters that she and Mansfield had exchanged after 1915.
  • After Mansfield’s demise Ida looked after Murry. However, although needing to be looked after, Murry did not want to live with Ida. So the relationship did not work and Ida made a dignified exit.

Media Gallery

Katherine Mansfield in 1917

Katherine Mansfield and John Middleton Murry in 1920

Katherine Mansfield and John Middleton Murry in 1921

Katherine Mansfield and John Middleton Murry

Katherine Mansfield's Family




" Katherine Mansfield.” Wikipedia. 2017. Wikimedia Foundation Inc. 10 April 2017
< https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Katherine_Mansfield>.

May 12, 2017

Quotations by Jonathan Swift


“Satire is a sort of glass wherein beholders do generally discover everybody’s face but their own; which is the chief reason for that kind reception it meets with in the world, and that so very few are offended with it.”  ~ Jonathan Swift, The Battle of the Books, preface (1704)

“Satire is a sort of glass wherein beholders do generally discover everybody’s face but their own; which is the chief reason for that kind reception it meets with in the world, and that so very few are offended with it.”
~ Jonathan Swift, The Battle of the Books, preface (1704)

“I cannot but conclude that the Bulk of your Natives, to be the most pernicious Race of little odious Vermin that Nature ever suffered to crawl upon the Surface of the Earth.”
~ Jonathan Swift, Gulliver's Travels (1726)

“Difference in opinions has cost many millions of lives: for instance, whether flesh be bread, or bread be flesh; whether the juice of a certain berry be blood or wine.”
~ Jonathan Swift, Gulliver's Travels (1726)

 “We have just enough religion to make us hate, but not enough to make us love one another.”
~ Jonathan Swift, Thoughts on Various Subjects from Miscellanies (1711-1726)

“I never wonder to see men wicked, but I often wonder to see them not ashamed.”
~ Jonathan Swift, Thoughts on Various Subjects from Miscellanies (1711-1726)

“Laws are like Cobwebs which may catch small Flies, but let Wasps and Hornets break through. But in Oratory the greatest Art is to hide Art.”
~ Jonathan Swift, A Tritical Essay upon the Faculties of the Mind (1707)

“Every man desires to live long, but no man wishes to be old.”
~ Jonathan Swift, Gulliver's Travels (1726)

“Undoubtedly, philosophers are in the right when they tell us that nothing is great or little otherwise than by comparison.”
~ Jonathan Swift, Gulliver's Travels (1726)

“Proper words in proper places, make the true definition of a style.”
~ Jonathan Swift, Letter to a Young Clergyman (January 9, 1720)

“Judges... are picked out from the most dextrous lawyers, who are grown old or lazy, and having been biased all their lives against truth or equity, are under such a fatal necessity of favoring fraud, perjury and oppression, that I have known several of them to refuse a large bribe from the side where justice lay, rather than injure the faculty by doing any thing unbecoming their nature in office.”
~ Jonathan Swift, Gulliver's Travels (1726)

 “The tiny Lilliputians surmise that Gulliver's watch may be his god, because it is that which, he admits, he seldom does anything without consulting.”
~ Jonathan Swift, Gulliver's Travels (1726)

“For, in reason, all government without the consent of the governed is the very definition of slavery: but in fact, eleven men well armed will certainly subdue one single man in his shirt.”
~ Jonathan Swift, The Drapier's Letters, letter iv (13 October, 1724)

“... a wife should be always a reasonable and agreeable companion, because she cannot always be young.”
~ Jonathan Swift, Gulliver's Travels (1726)

“This made me reflect, how vain an attempt it is for a man to endeavor to do himself honor among those who are out of all degree of equality or comparison with him.”
~ Jonathan Swift, Gulliver's Travels (1726)

“The latter part of a wise man’s life is taken up in curing the follies, prejudices, and false opinions he had contracted in the former.”
~ Jonathan Swift, Thoughts on Various Subjects from Miscellanies (1711-1726)

“Good manners is the art of making those people easy with whom we converse. Whoever makes the fewest persons uneasy is the best bred in the company.”
~ Jonathan Swift, A Treatise on Good Manners and Good Breeding (1754)

“Poor Nations are hungry, and rich Nations are proud, and Pride and Hunger will ever be at Variance.”
~ Jonathan Swift, Gulliver's Travels (1726)
“The power of fortune is confessed only by the miserable; for the happy impute all their success to prudence or merit.”
~ Jonathan Swift, Thoughts on Various Subjects from Miscellanies (1711-1726)

“And surely one of the best rules in conversation is, never to say a thing which any of the company can reasonably wish had been left unsaid…”
~ Jonathan Swift, Hints Toward an Essay on Conversation (1709)

“A child will make two dishes at an entertainment for friends; and when the family dines alone, the fore or hind quarter will make a reasonable dish, and seasoned with a little pepper or salt will be very good boiled on the fourth day, especially in winter.”
 ~ Jonathan Swift, A Modest Proposal (1729)

“It is impossible that any thing so natural, so necessary, and so universal as death, should ever have been designed by Providence as an evil to mankind.”
~ Jonathan Swift, Thoughts on Religion (1765)


May 2, 2017

Quotations by E. M. Forster


“People have their own deaths as well as their own lives, and even if there is nothing beyond death, we shall differ in our nothingness.” ~ E.M. Forster, Howards End

“People have their own deaths as well as their own lives, and even if there is nothing beyond death, we shall differ in our nothingness.”
~ E.M. Forster, Howards End

“Adventures do occur, but not punctually. Life rarely gives us what we want at the moment we consider appropriate.”
~ E.M. Forster, A Passage to India

“Life is sometimes life and sometimes only a drama, and one must learn to distinguish tother from which…”
~ E.M. Forster, Howards End

“To trust people is a luxury in which only the wealthy can indulge; the poor cannot afford it.”
~ E.M. Forster, Howards End

“The past is devoid of meaning like the present, and a refuge for cowards.”
~ E.M. Forster, Maurice

“There is no harm in deceiving society as long as she does not find you out”
~ E.M. Forster, A Passage to India

“Those who prepare for all the emergencies of life beforehand may equip themselves at the expense of joy.”
~ E.M. Forster, Howards End

“At times our need for a sympathetic gesture is so great that we care not what exactly it signifies or how much we may have to pay for it afterwards.”
~ E.M. Forster, A Room with a View

“It isn't possible to love and part. You will wish that it was. You can transmute love, ignore it, muddle it, but you can never pull it out of you. I know by experience that the poets are right: love is eternal.”
~ E.M. Forster, A Room with a View

“When love flies it is remembered not as love but as something else. Blessed are the uneducated, who forget it entirely, and are never conscious of folly or pruriency in the past, of long aimless conversations.”
~ E.M. Forster, Maurice

“The crime of suicide lies rather in its disregard for the feelings of those whom we leave behind.”
~ E.M. Forster, Howards End

“Men were not gods after all, but as human and as clumsy as girls.”
~ E.M. Forster, A Room with a View

“A funeral is not death, any more than baptism is birth or marriage union. All three are the clumsy devices, coming now too late, now too early, by which Society would register the quick motions of man.”
~ E.M. Forster, Howards End

“We know that we come from the winds, and that we shall return to them; that all life is perhaps a knot, a tangle, a blemish in the eternal smoothness. But why should this make us unhappy? Let us love one another, and work and rejoice. I don't believe in this world sorrow.”
~ E.M. Forster, A Room with a View

“There's never any great risk as long as you have money.”
~ E.M. Forster, Howards End

“All a child's life depends on the ideal it has of its parents. Destroy that and everything goes - morals, behavior, everything. Absolute trust in someone else is the essence of education.”
~ E.M. Forster, Where Angels Fear to Tread

“Outside the arch, always there seemed another arch. And beyond the remotest echo, a silence.”
~ E.M. Forster, A Passage to India

“The kingdom of music is not the kingdom of this world; it will accept those whom breeding and intellect and culture have alike rejected.”
~ E.M. Forster, A Room with a View

“We cast a shadow on something wherever we stand, and it is no good moving from place to place to save things; because the shadow always follows. Choose a place where you won't do harm - yes, choose a place where you won't do very much harm, and stand in it for all you are worth, facing the sunshine.”
~ E.M. Forster, A Room with a View

“The tragedy of preparedness has scarcely been handled, save by the Greeks. Life is indeed dangerous, but not in the way morality would have us believe. It is indeed unmanageable, but the essence of it is not a battle. It is unmanageable because it is a romance, and its essence is romantic beauty.”
~ E.M. Forster, Howards End

“Do we find happiness so often that we should turn it off the box when it happens to sit there?”
~ E.M. Forster, A Room with a View

“It's not what people do to you, but what they mean, that hurts.”
~ E.M. Forster, The Longest Journey

“When I think of what life is, and how seldom love is answered by love; it is one of the moments for which the world was made.”
~ E.M. Forster, A Room with a View

“Life is easy to chronicle, but bewildering to practice.”
~ E.M. Forster, A Room With A View

“This desire to govern a woman -- it lies very deep, and men and women must fight it together.... But I do love you surely in a better way then he does." He thought. "Yes -- really in a better way. I want you to have your own thoughts even when I hold you in my arms.”
~ E.M. Forster, A Room with a View

“Let yourself go. Pull out from the depths those thoughts that you do not understand, and spread them out in the sunlight and know the meaning of them.”
~ E.M. Forster, A Room with a View

“What is wonderful about great literature is that it transforms the man who reads it towards the condition of the man who wrote.”
~ E.M. Forster, Two Cheers for Democracy

“Passion should believe itself irresistible. It should forget civility and consideration and all the other curses of a refined nature. Above all, it should never ask for leave where there is a right of way.”
~ E.M. Forster, A Room with a View

“While her lips talked culture, her heart was planning to invite him to tea”
~ E.M. Forster, Howards End

“A happy ending was imperative. I shouldn't have bothered to write otherwise. I was determined that in fiction anyway two men should fall in love and remain in it for the ever and ever that fiction allows, and in this sense, Maurice and Alec still roam the greenwood.”
~ E.M. Forster, Maurice

“I seem fated to pass through the world without colliding with it or moving it — and I'm sure I can't tell you whether the fate's good or evil. I don't die — I don't fall in love. And if other people die or fall in love they always do it when I'm just not there.”
~ E.M. Forster, Where Angels Fear to Tread

“She only felt that the candle would burn better, the packing go easier, the world be happier, if she could give and receive some human love.”
~ E.M. Forster, A Room with a View

“He had awoken too late for happiness, but not for strength, and could feel an austere joy, as of a warrior who is homeless but stands fully armed.”
~ E.M. Forster, Maurice

“One touch of regret- not the canny substitute but the true regret from the heart- would have made him a different man, and the British Empire a different institution.”
~ E.M. Forster, A Passage to India

“How indeed is it possible for one human being to be sorry for all the sadness that meets him on the face of the earth, for the pain that is endured not only by men, but by animals and plants, and perhaps by the stones?”
~ E.M. Forster, A Passage to India

“Society is invincible - to a certain degree. But your real life is your own, and nothing can touch it. There is no power on earth that can prevent your criticizing and despising mediocrity - nothing that can stop you retreating into splendour and beauty - into the thoughts and beliefs that make the real life - the real you.”
~ E.M. Forster, Where Angels Fear to Tread

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