O.Wilde, Preface to 'The Picture of Dorian Gray'

The artist is the creator of beautiful things. (...)
Those who find ugly meanings in beautiful things are corrupt without being charming. This is a fault.
Those who find beautiful meanings in beautiful things are the cultivated. For these there is hope.
They are the elect to whom beautiful things mean only Beauty.
There is no such thing as a moral or an immoral book. Books are well written, or badly written. That is all. (...)

No artist is ever morbid. The artist can express everything. (...)
All art is at once surface and symbol. Those who go beneath the surface do so at their peril.
Those who read the symbol do so at their peril.
It is the spectator, and not life, that art really mirrors.
Diversity of opinion about a work of art shows that the work is new, complex, and vital.
When critics disagree the artist is in accord with himself...

O. Wilde (1854-1900),
Preface to 'The Picture of Dorian Gray'

Friday, December 10, 2010

My favourite quotations

The studio  was filled  with  the  rich odour
of roses,  and when the light summer wind
stirred amidst the trees of the garden there
came  through  the open door  the  heavy
scent of the lilac,  or the more delicate
perfume of the pink-flowering thorn'
           Oscar Wilde, The Picture of Dorian Gray

         'It is a truth universally acknowledge that
          a single man, in possession of a good fortune,
          must be in want of a wife'
                                Jane Austen, Pride & Prejudice

                                                       'Listen to them - the children of the night -
                                                        What music they make!'
                                                                                       Bram Stoker, Dracula

'What a lark! What a plunge! For so it had always seemed to her when, with a little
squeak of the hinges.  which  she could  hear now,  she had burst open  the French
windows  and plunged  at  Bourton into the open air.  How fresh,  how calm, stiller
than this of course, the air was in the early morning;  like the flap of a wave;  the
kiss of a  wave; chill and sharp and yet solemn...'
                                                              Virginia Woolf, Mrs Dalloway

                                                 'It was on a dreary night of November
                                                 that I beheld the accomplishment of my  toils'.
                                                                                       Mary Shelley, Frankenstein

          'She sat at the window watching the evening
           invade the avenue''
                           James Joyce, Eveline

                               ' "Eustace! Eustace!"  Hilda's tones were always urgent;
                                 it might not be anything very serious'
                                                           L.P. Hartley, Eustace and Hilda

'Under certain  circumstances there are few hours in life
more agreeable than the hour dedicated to the ceremony
known as afternoon tea'
                                       Henry James, The Portrait of a Lady

                             'Mr Utterson the lawyer was a man of a rugged countenance 
                              that  was  never  lighted by  a smile;  cold, scanty  and 
                              embarassed in discourse; backward in sentiment;
                               lean, long, dusty, dreary and yet
                               somehow lovable'
                                                 R. L Stevenson, The Strange Case of
                                                                          Dr Jekyll & Mr Hyde

         'In vain have I struggled.  It will not do.
          My feelings will not be repressed.
          You must allow me to tell you
          how ardently I admire
          and love you.
                            Jane Austen, Pride & Prejudice

                                     'I want you to believe... in things that you cannot...'
                                                                                    Bram Stoker, Dracula

'One might put down the hot-water can quite composely.
The lustre had left her. Yet it was extraordinary to see
her again, older, happier, less lovely'
                                                      Virginia Woolf, Mrs Dalloway

                                    'The soul is a terrible reality. It can be bought, and sold,
                                     and bartered away. it can be poisoned, or made perfect'
                                                                          R. L Stevenson, The Strange Case of
                                                                                                   Dr Jekyll & Mr Hyde



1 comment:

  1. It was nice to read those quotations in the original language. My mother tongue is spanish. I think that something gets lost in translations. I enjoy them all. Angélica.