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Anthony Burgess Quotes (61 Quotes)


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  • We can destroy what we have written, but we cannot unwrite it.
    (Anthony Burgess, "A Clockwork Orange")

  • I viddied that thinking is for the gloopy ones and that the oomny ones use like inspiration and what Bog sends. For now it was lovely music that came to my aid.
    (Anthony Burgess, "A Clockwork Orange")

  • Welly, welly, welly, welly, welly, welly, well. To what do I owe the extreme pleasure of this surprising visit?
    (Anthony Burgess, "A Clockwork Orange")

  • I was always on my oddy knocky.
    (Anthony Burgess, "A Clockwork Orange")

  • What I do I do because I like to do.
    (Anthony Burgess, "A Clockwork Orange")


  • Is it better for a man to have chosen evil than to have good imposed upon him?
    (Anthony Burgess, "A Clockwork Orange")

  • A perverse nature can be stimulated by anything. Any book can be used as a pornographic instrument, even a great work of literature if the mind that so uses it is off-balance. I once found a small boy masturbating in the presence of the Victorian steel-engraving in a family Bible.
    (Anthony Burgess, "A Clockwork Orange")

  • It may not be nice to be good, little 6655321. It may be horrible to be go?d. And when I say that to you I realize how self-contradictory that sounds. I know I shall have many sleepless nights about this. What does God want? Does God want goodness or the choice of goodness? Is a man who chooses the bad perhaps in some way better than a man who has the good imposed upon him? Deep and hard questions, little 6655321.
    (Anthony Burgess, "A Clockwork Orange")

  • And then, a bird of rarest-spun heaven metal, or like silvery wine flowing in a spaceship, gravity all nonsense now... I knew such lovely pictures.
    (Anthony Burgess, "A Clockwork Orange")

  • It seems priggish or pollyannaish to deny that my intention in writing the work was to titillate the nastier propensities of my readers. My own healthy inheritance of original sin comes out in the book and I enjoyed raping and ripping by proxy. It is the novelist's innate cowardice that makes him depute to imaginary personalities the sins that he is too cautious to commit for himself.
    (Anthony Burgess, "A Clockwork Orange")

  • And to all others in this story profound shooms of lip music brrrrrr. And they can kiss my sharries.
    (Anthony Burgess, "A Clockwork Orange")

  • It was like a bird of rarest-spun heaven metal or like silvery wine flowing in a spaceship, gravity all nonsense now.
    (Anthony Burgess, "A Clockwork Orange")

  • As we walked along the flatblock marina, I was calm on the outside, but thinking all the time - Now it was to be Georgie the general, saying what we should do and what not to do, and Dim as his mindless greeding bulldog. But suddenly, I viddied that thinking was for the gloopy ones, and that the oomny ones use like, inspiration and what Bog sends. Now it was lovely music that came into my aid. There was a window open with the stereo on, and I viddied right at once what to do.
    (Anthony Burgess, "A Clockwork Orange")

  • Now in those days, my brothers, the teaming up was mostly by fours and fives, these being like auto-teams, for being a comfy number for an auto, and six being the outside limit for gang-size. Sometimes gangs would gang up so as to make like malenky armies for big nightwar, but mostly it was best to roam in these like small numbers.
    (Anthony Burgess, "A Clockwork Orange")

  • But what I do I do because I like to do.
    (Anthony Burgess, "A Clockwork Orange")


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