Beware Stephen! There will probably be a magical combat of some sort. I daresay I shall have to take on different forms - cockatrice, raw head and bloody bones, rains of fire, etc., etc. You may wish to stand back a little!
("Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell")
More Quotes from Susanna Clarke:Well, Henry, you can cease frowning at me. If I am a magician, I am a very indifferent one. Other adepts summon up fairy-spirits and long-dead kings. I appear to have conjured the spirit of a banker.
It is curious and we magicians collect curiosities, you know.
And such a pinched-looking ruin of a thing now! I shall advice all the good-looking woman of my acquaintance not to die.
Yet it is true-skin can mean a great deal. Mine means that any man may strike me in a public place and never fear the consequences. It means that my friends do not always like to be seen with me in the street. It means that no matter how many books I read, or languages I master, I will never be anything but a curiosity-like a talking pig or a mathematical horse.
And all the nursemaids and kitchen maids I ever knew when I was a child, always had a aunt, who knew a woman, whose first cousin's boy had been put into just such a box, and had never been seen again.
Alexander of Whitby taught that the universe is like a tapestry only parts of which are visible to us at a time. After we are dead, we will see the whole and then it will be clear to us how the different parts relate to each other.
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