Quotes By The Professor

“I sought her eye, desirous to read there the intelligence which I could not discern in her face or hear in her conversation; it was merry, rather small; by turns I saw vivacity, vanity, coquetry, look out through its irid, but I watched in vain for a glimpse of soul. I am no Oriental; white necks, carmine lips and cheeks, clusters of bright curls, do not suffice for me without that Promethean spark which will live after the roses and lilies are faded, the burnished hair grown grey. In sunshine, in prosperity, the flowers are very well; but how many wet days are there in life--November seasons of disaster, when a man's hearth and home would be cold indeed, without the clear, cheering gleam of intellect.”


“In sunshine, in prosperity, the flowers are very well; but how many wet days are there in life—November seasons of disaster, when a man's hearth and home would be cold indeed, without the clear, cheering gleam of intellect.”


“That to begin with; let respect be the foundation, affection the first floor, love the superstructure.”


“Tact, if it be genuine, never sleeps.”


“Human beings -- human children especially -- seldom deny themselves the pleasure of exercising a power which they are conscious of possessing, even though that power consist only in a capacity to make others wretched”


“I know that a pretty doll, a fair fool, might do well enough for the honeymoon; but when passion cooled, how dreadful to find a lump of wax and wood laid in my bosom, a half-idiot clasped in my arms, and to remember that I had made of this my equal- nay, my idol- to know that I must pass the rest of my dreary life with a creature incapable of understanding what I said, of appreciating what I thought, or of sympathising with what I felt!”


“Monsieur, if a wife's nature loathes that of the man she is wedded to, marriage must be slavery. Against slavery all right thinkers revolt, and though torture be the price of resistance, torture must be dared: though the only road to freedom lie through the gates of death, those gates must be passed; for freedom is indispensable. Then, monsieur, I would resist as far as my strength permitted; when that strength failed I should be sure of a refuge. Death would certainly screen me both from bad laws and their consequences.”


“No man likes to acknowledge that he has made a mistake in the choice of his profession, and every man, worthy of the name, will row long against wind and tide before he allows himself to cry out, 'I am baffled!' and submits to be floated passively back to land.”


“Novelists should never allow themselves to weary of the study of real life. If they observed this duty conscientiously, they would give us fewer pictures chequered with vivid contrasts of light and shade; they would seldom elevate their heroes and heroines to the heights of rapture — still seldomer sink them to the depths of despair; for if we rarely taste the fulness of joy in this life, we yet more rarely savour the acrid bitterness of hopeless anguish.”


“I verily believe all that is desirable on earth--wealth, reputation, love--will for ever to you be the ripe grapes on the high trellis: you'll look up at them; they will tantalize in you the lust of the eye; but they are out of reach: you have not the address to fetch a ladder, and you'll go away calling them sour.”


“Pero cuando el dolor termina el recuerdo que queda a veces se transforma en placer”


“I'm a universal patriot...my country is the world.”


“Belgium! name unromantic and unpoetic, yet name that whenever uttered has in my ear a sound, in my heart an echo, such as no other assemblage of syllables, however sweet or classic, can produce. Belgium! I repeat the word, now as I sit alone near midnight. It stirs my world of the past like a summons to resurrection; the graves unclose, the dead are raised; thoughts, feelings, memories that slept, are seen by me ascending from the clods--haloed most of them--but while I gaze on their vapoury forms, and strive to ascertain definitely their outline, the sound which wakened them dies, and they sink, each and all, like a light wreath of mist, absorbed in the mould, recalled to urns, resealed in monuments.”


“I held a brief debate with myself as to whether I should change my ordinary attire for something smarter. At last I concluded it would be a waste of labour. "Doubtless," though I, "she is some stiff old maid ; for though the daughter of Madame Reuter, she may well number upwards of forty winters; besides, if it were otherwise, if she be both young and pretty, I am not handsome, and no dressing can make me so, therefore I'll go as I am." And off I started, cursorily glancing sideways as I passed the toilet-table, surmounted by a looking-glass: a thin irregular face I saw, with sunk, dark eyes under a large, square forehead, complexion destitute of bloom or attraction; something young, but not youthful, no object to win a lady's love, no butt for the shafts of Cupid.”


“A man is master of himself to a certain point, but not beyond it. -William Crimsworth”


“-Let respect be the foundation, affection the first floor, love the superstructure; Mdlle Reuters is a skillful architect.
- And interest?
-yes, no doubt; it will be the cement between every stone!”


“It was her pleasure, her joy, to make me still the master in all things.”


“Un hombre no puede olvidar la devoción que sentía por una mujer así, no debe ser, no puede ser”


“Qué terrible esfuerzo de dejar aquello que queremos”


“I gave, at first, attention close;
Then interest warm ensued;
From interest, as improvement rose,
Succeeded gratitude.

'Obedience was no effort soon,
And labour was no pain;
If tired, a word, a glance alone
Would give me strength again.

'From others of the studious band
Ere long he singled me,
But only by more close demand
And sterner urgency.

'The task he from another took,
From me he did reject;
He would no slight omission brook
And suffer no defect.

'If my companions went astray,
He scarce their wanderings blamed.
If I but faltered in the way
His anger fiercely flamed.”


“. . . still we are none of us perfect . . .”


“. . . for if we rarely taste the fulness of joy in this life, we yet more rarely savor the acrid bitterness of hopeless anguish; unless, strained, simulated, again overstrained, and, at last, destroyed our faculties for enjoyment; then, truly, we may find ourselves without support, robbed of hope. Our agony is great, and how can it end? We have broken the spring of our powers; life must be all suffering‐‐ too feeble to conceive faith‐‐death must be darkness‐‐God, spirits, religion can have no place in our collapsed minds, where linger only hideous and polluting recollections of vice; and time brings us on to the brink of the grave, and dissolution flings us in‐‐a rag eaten through and through with disease, wrung together with pain, stamped into the churchyard sod by the inexorable heel of despair.”


“...there were two gentleman seated by it talking in French;impossible to follow their rapid utterance, or comprehend much of the purport of what they said ...yet French, in the mouths of Frenchmen or Belgians (...), was as music to my ears. One of these gentlemen presently discerned me to be an Englishman - no doubt from the fashion in which I addressed the waiter; for I would persist in speaking French in my execrable South-of-England style, though the man understood English. The gentleman, after looking towards me once or twice ,politely accosted me in very good English; I remember I wish to God that I could speak French as well; his fluency and correct pronunciation impressed me for the first time with a due notion of the cosmopolitan character of the capital I was in, it was my first experience of that skill in living languages I afterwards found to be so general in Brussels.”


“He that is low need fear no fall.”


“I romanzieri non dovrebbero mai consentire a se stessi di stancarsi dell’indagine della vita reale.”


“Detesto l’ardire, l’ardire che appartiene all’arrogante e all’insensibile, ma amo l’audacia di un cuore forte, la passione di un sangue generoso.”


“Quando uma mulher sente desprezo pelo seu marido, o casamento passa a ser uma escravidão, e contra a escravidão toda a revolta é legítima. Ainda que a tortura seja o prémio da revolta, vale a pensa correr o risco de ser torturado; ainda mesmo que o caminho da luta pela liberdade fosse o caminho da morte, seria justo segui-lo. Eu resistiria tanto quanto as minhas forças o permitissem e, se elas por fim viessem a faltar, teria sempre certo esse refúgio. A morte livrar-me-ia das leis e das suas consequências.”


“Observe her when she has some knitting, or some other woman's work in hand, and sits the image of peace, calmly intent on her needles and her silk, some discussion meantime going on around her, in the course of which peculiarities of character are being developed, or important interests canvassed; she takes no part in int; her humble, feminine mind is wholl with her knitting; none of her features move; she neither presumes to smile approval, nor frown disapprobation; her little hands assiduously ply their unpretending task; if she can only get this purse finished, or this bonnet-grec completed, it is enough for her.”