History of Sexuality Women's History Stella Browne Archival matters Books
Science Fiction and Fantasy
Interwar Progressives Random Links of Interest
Victoriana Quirky Stuff


Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec

Previous weeks' quotations 1999

Previous weeks' quotations 2000

Previous weeks' quotations 2001

Previous weeks' quotations 2002

Previous weeks' quotations 2003

Previous weeks' quotations 2004

Previous weeks' quotations 2005

Previous weeks' quotations 2006

Previous weeks' quotations 2007

Previous weeks' quotations 2008

Previous weeks' quotations 2009

Previous weeks' quotations 2010

Previous weeks' quotations 2011

Previous weeks' quotations 2012

Previous weeks' quotations 2013

Previous weeks' quotations 2014

Previous weeks' quotations 2015

Previous weeks' quotations 2016

Previous weeks' quotations 2017

Previous weeks' quotations 2018

Previous weeks' quotations 2019

Previous weeks' quotations 2020

Previous weeks' quotations 2021

Previous weeks' quotations 2022

Link to amazon.co.uk Link to amazon.com

Jan 2023

4th January

‘Be your strong and simple words
Keen to wound as sharpened swords,
And wide as targes let them be,
With their shade to cover ye.
  ‘Stand ye calm and resolute,
Like a forest close and mute,
With folded arms and looks which are
Weapons of unvanquished war,
‘And let Panic, who outspeeds
The career of armèd steeds
Pass, a disregarded shade
Through your phalanx undismayed.

Percy Bysshe Shelley, The Mask of Anarchy, Written on the occasion of the massacre at Manchester (1819)

11th January

There was nothing Algie enjoyed more than the apt quotation, whether delivered by himself or another. It gave him a momentary sensation that the world had come right; that some instant of perfect harmony had been achieved by two minds meeting, possibly across centuries.

Shirley Hazzard, 'Nothing in Excess', People in Glass Houses (1967)

18th January

'We are suited to each other - yes, notwithstanding the difference of age, and a thousand other differences, we are suited to each other. This possibility of a friendship between youth and age is one of the rewards Heaven grants to the early and late cultivation of the understanding and of the affections. Late as it is with me in life, I have not, thank God, survived my affections'.

Maria Edgeworth, Patronage (1815)

25th January

WICKES: If you were asked to compile a list of the books that have been most important to you, not only as a writer but also in your thinking, what would be the first half dozen?

LE GUIN: I tried to do it, and it goes on and on. It’s insufferably boring, because I’ve read all my life, and I read everything.

Ursula K. Le Guin, Interview by George Wickes and Louise Westling, Northwest Review, vol. 20, nos. 2 and 3 1982, in The Last Interview: and Other Conversations (2019)

Feb 2023

1st February

Little as Catherine was in the habit of judging for herself, and unfixed as were her general notions of what men ought to be, she could not entirely repress a doubt, while she bore with the effusions of his endless conceit, of his being altogether completely agreeable. It was a bold surmise... but... the extreme weariness of his company, which crept over her before they had been out an hour, and which continued unceasingly to increase till they stopped in Pulteney Street again, induced her, in some small degree... to distrust his powers of giving universal pleasure.

Jane Austen, Northanger Abbey (1817)

8th February

[T]he best art is like life. You need the dull bits to better appreciate the climaxes.

John Crace, Digested week The Guardian, 27 Jan 2023

15th February

Or must I be content with discontent
As larks and swallows are perhaps with wings?
And shall I ask at the day's end once more
What beauty is, and what I can have meant
By happiness? And shall I let all go,
Glad, weary, or both?

Edward Thomas, The Glory (1917)

22nd February

Was Mrs. Wilcox one of the unsatisfactory people—there are many of them—who dangle intimacy and then withdraw it? They evoke our interests and affections, and keep the life of the spirit dawdling round them. Then they withdraw. When physical passion is involved, there is a definite name for such behaviour—flirting—and if carried far enough it is punishable by law. But no law—not public opinion even—punishes those who coquette with friendship, though the dull ache that they inflict, the sense of misdirected effort and exhaustion, may be as intolerable.

EM Forster, Howards End (1910)

Mar 2023

1st March

Neither then nor afterwards did I fear anything so much as my own self. What that contained was a terror to me. Things of flesh and blood, brutal and murderous as they might be, could always be taken by the hand and fraternized with.... Dreams and visions exercised a far more potent spell. Nigh to them lay madness and utter impotence of self-control.

The Memoirs of John Addington Symonds: A Critical Edition (2016)

8th March

A murderous November’s day was trying to get under the door with hacksaw and icepick

Streets uttered the slurred speech of leaves torn from a madman’s diary

Passers-by were beaten up and iced by a wind that coughed like a devilish old thief, in rags and scampering on diamond toenails.

Rosemary Tonks, Opium Fogs (1963)

15th March

[I]t might well happen to most of us dainty people that we were in the thick of the battle of Armageddon without being aware of anything more than the annoyance of a little explosive smoke and struggling on the ground immediately about us.

George Eliot, Daniel Deronda (1876)

22nd March

[T]his world, Vinnie thinks now, is not English literature. It is full of people over fifty who will be around and in fairly good shape for the next quarter-century: plenty of time for adventure and change, even for heroism and transformation. Why, after all, should Vinnie become a minor character in her own life?

Alison Lurie, Foreign Affairs (1985)

29th March

To be a translator was to be a shadow, and if you were lucky, no one noticed you until your work was done, if at all. In that, the translator’s work was like that of the detective: You stayed one step behind the one who did it, the original author, gathering clues and collecting meanings, until you had the written body of evidence. Then you wove the words into a testimony of other words that created a new and watertight narrative.

Barbara Wilson, Love Dies Twice (2022)

Apr 2023

5th April

Just because something is positive or uplifting doesn’t mean that it doesn’t have depth or seriousness. You know, I think a lot of people might have trouble grasping that[.]

Marian Keyes, ‘We want to read about people falling in love’: Curtis Sittenfeld and Marian Keyes on the romcom revival, Guardian Saturday, 1 Apr 2023

12th April

Although the author does not write unkindly about men the reader is left wondering if they are really worthwhile companions for the heroines.

Margaret Crosland, Beyond the Lighthouse: English women novelists in the twentieth century (1981)

19th April

If I can’t be thin, I can at least be fit. It’s not a perfect solution. But then with age you learn that there really is no perfect.

Jay Rayner, These new weight-loss drugs are tempting - but here’s why I won’t use them The Guardian: Happy Eater 13 April 2023

26th April

Jane Cleveland was forty-one, an age that may bring with it compensations unsuspected by the anxious woman of twenty-nine

Barbara Pym, Jane and Prudence (1953)

May 2023

3rd May

To find unmet friends, one must be a reader, and not an infrequent one.... Reading.... is either an early acquired passion or not: there is no in-between about it, no catching up in one's later years.

Carolyn G Heilbrun, The Last Gift of Time: Life Beyond Sixty (1997)

10th May

I have no idea if this woman is really losing her looks... but she is certainly right in saying that I have no idea of what it is like. One of the few advantages to not being beautiful is that one usually gets better-looking as one gets older; I am, in fact, at this very moment gaining my looks.

Nora Ephron, Crazy Salad: Some Things About Women (1975)

17th May

Elinor agreed to it all, for she did not think he deserved the compliment of rational opposition.

Jane Austen, Sense and Sensibility (1811)

Jun 2023

Ju1 2023

Aug 2023

Sep 2023

Oct 2023

Nov 2023

Dec 2023


Link to amazon.co.ukLink to amazon.com


History of Sexuality Women's History Stella Browne Archival matters Books
Interwar Progressives Science Fiction and Fantasy Random Links of Interest
Victoriana Quirky Stuff