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.
It is also true that his hair had a reddish tinge and, as everybody knows, no one with red hair can ever truly be said to be handsome.
To be more precise it was the color of heartache.
And such a pinched-looking ruin of a thing now! I shall advice all the good-looking woman of my acquaintance not to die.
It is curious and we magicians collect curiosities, you know.
Unfortunately, Childermass's French was so strongly accented by his native Yorkshire that Minervois did not understand and asked Strange if Childermass was Dutch.
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!
It is the contention of Mr Norrell of Hanover-square that everything belonging to John Uskglass must be shaken out of modern magic, as one would shake moths and dust out of an old coat. What does he imagine he will have left? If you get rid of John Uskglass you will be left holding the empty air.
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.
Bryon tilted his head to a very odd angle, half-closed his eyes and composed his features to suggest that he was about to expire from chronic indigestion.
It was a old fashioned house --the sort of house in fact, as Strange expressed it, which a lady in a novel might like to be persecuted in.
Well, I suppose one ought not to employ a magician and then complain that he does not behave like other people.
But now there were ten bells. And the bell for Lost-Hope was ringing violently.
It would need someone very remarkable to recover your name, Stephen, someone of rare perspicacity, with extraordinary talents and incomparable nobility of character. Me, in fact.
What nobility of feeling! To sacrifice your own pleasure to preserve the comfort of others! It is a thing, I confess, that would never occur to me.
But that is not to say that there might not be someone in the world - I do not say I have seen him yet - whom I would be a little afraid to look at sometimes - for fear that he might be looking sad - or lost - or thoughtful, or - what, you know, might seem the worst of all - brooding on some private anger or hurt and so not knowing or caring if I looked at him at all.
John Longridge, the cook at Harley-street, had suffered from low spirits for more than thirty years, and he was quick to welcome Stephen as a newcomer to the freemasonry of melancholy.
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.
But, though French, she was also very brave...
Lascelles threw himself into the carriage, snorting with laughter and saying that he had never in his life heard of anything so ridiculous and comparing their snug drive through the London streets in Mr. Norrell's carriage to ancient French and Italian fables where fools set sail in milk-pails to fetch the moon's reflection from the bottom of a duckpond...
For this is England where a man's neighbours will never suffer him to live entirely bereft of society, let him be as dry and sour-faced as he may.
Mr. Honeyfoot did not propose going quite so far --indeed he did not wish to go far at all because it was winter and the roads where very shocking.
For, though the room was silent, the silence of half a hundred cats is a peculiar thing, like fifty individual silences all piled one on top of another.
Mr. Robinson was a polished sort of person. He was so clean and healthy and pleased about everything that he positively shone - which is only to be expected in a fairy or an angel, but is somewhat disconcerting in an attorney.
He did not feel as if he were inside a Pillar of Darkness in the middle of Yorkshire; he felt more as if the rest of the world had fallen away and he and Strange were left alone upon a solitary island or promontory. The idea distressed him a great deal less than one might have supposed. He had never much cared for the world and he bore its loss philosophically.
Mr. Segundus began to suspect that they had an uneventful morning, and that when a strange gentleman had walked into the room and dropt down in a swoon, they were rather pleased than otherwise.
He understood for the first time that the world is not dumb at all, but merely waiting for someone to speak to it in a language it understands.
Oh, Mr Norrell! Such a noodle I am upon occasion!
Houses, like people, are apt to become rather eccentric if left too much on their own; this house was the architectural equivalent of an old gentleman in a worn dressing-gown and torn slippers, who got up and went to bed at odd times of day, and who kept up a continual conversation with friends no one else could see.
Perhaps I am too tame, too domestic a magician. But how does one work up a little madness? I meet with mad people every day in the street, but I never thought before to wonder how they got mad. Perhaps I should go wandering on lonely moors and barren shores. That is always a popular place for lunatics - in novels and plays at any rate. Perhaps wild England will make me mad.
A Nottinghamshire man called Tubbs wished very much to see a fairy and, from thinking of fairies day and night, and from reading all sorts of odd books about them, he took it into his head that his coachman was a fairy.
I have always heard that Italian women are rather fierce.
Sometimes you my graciously permit all the most beautiful ladies in the land to wait in line to kiss your hands and fall in love with you.
After two hours it stopped raining and in the same moment the spell broke, which Peroquet and the Admiral and Captain Jumeau knew by a curious twist of their senses, as if they had tasted a string quartet, or been, for a moment, deafened by the sight of colour blue.
I know magicians and I know magic and I say this: all magicians lie and this one more than most.
The old King is dead. The new King approaches! And at his approach the world sheds its sorrow. The sings of the old King dissolve like morning mist! The world assumes the character of the new. His virtues fill up the wood and world!
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.
I mean that two of any thing is a most uncomfortable number. One may do s he pleases. Six may get along well enough. But two must always struggle for mastery. Two must always watch each other. Te eyes of all the world will be on two, uncertain which of them to follow.
There was no one there. Which is to say there was someone there. Miss Wintertowne lay upon the bed, but it would have puzzled philosophy to say now whether she were someone or no one at all.
All these details took but a moment to apprehend yet the impression made upon Mr. Segundus by the two ladies was unusually vivid --almost supernaturally so-- like images in a delirium. A queer shock thrilled through his whole being his senses were overwhelmed and he fainted away.
In his madness and his blindness he was Lear and Gloucester combined.
Time and I have quarrelled. All hours are midnight now. I had a clock and a watch, but I destroyed them both. I could not bear the way they mocked me.
More Susanna Clarke Quotations (Based on Topics)
World - Woman - Sadness - Facts - Kings & Queens - Sense & Perception - Nobility - Time - People - Characters - Man - Idea - Friendship - Society & Civilization - Night - Confession - Mastery & Expertise - Angels - Hair - View All Susanna Clarke Quotations
More Susanna Clarke Quotations (By Book Titles)
- Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -