Scoop

Scoop quotes

47 total quotes (ID: 525)

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Your action, and your action alone, determines your worth. Johann Gottlieb Fichte in The Vocation of Man [Die Bestimmung des Menschen] (1800), p. 94 : "You are here, not for idle contemplation of yourself, not for brooding over devout sensations — no, for action you are here; action, and action alone, determines your worth."


In the dying world I come from, quotation is a national vice. No one would think of making an after-dinner speech without the help of poetry. It used to be the classics, now it's lyric verse. The Loved One: An Anglo-American Tragedy (1948) Ch. 9

"We, Seth, Emperor of Azania, Chief of Chiefs of Sakuyu, Lord of Wanda and Tyrant of the Seas, Bachelor of the Arts of Oxford University, being in this the twenty-fourth year of our life, summoned by the wisdom of Almighty God and the unanimous voice of our people to the throne of our ancestors, do hereby proclaim. . ." Seth paused in his dictation and gazed out across the harbour where in the fresh breeze of early morning the last dhow was setting sail for the open sea. "Rats," he said; "stinking curs. They are all running away." Black Mischief (1932) First lines

"Was anyone hurt?"
"No one I am thankful to say," said Mrs. Beaver, "except two housemaids who lost their heads and jumped through a glass roof into the paved court." A Handful of Dust (1934) First lines

We cherish our friends not for their ability to amuse us, but for ours to amuse them.

Punctuality is the virtue of the bored. Diaries of Evelyn Waugh (1976)

It is a curious thing... that every creed promises a paradise which will be absolutely uninhabitable for anyone of civilized taste.

Professional reviewers read so many bad books in the course of duty that they get an unhealthy craving for arresting phrases.

The human mind is inspired enough when it comes to inventing horrors; it is when it tries to invent a Heaven that it shows itself cloddish. Put Out More Flags (1942) Ch. 1 : Autumn, § 7

One forgets words as one forgets names. One's vocabulary needs constant fertilizing or it will die.

Only when one has lost all curiosity about the future has one reached the age to write an autobiography. A Little Learning (1964) First lines

Art is the symbol of the two noblest human efforts: to construct and to refrain from destruction. Simone Weil, in The Pre-War Notebook (1933-1939), published in First and Last Notebooks (1970) edited by Richard Rees

There are no poetic ideas; only poetic utterances.

Manners are especially the need of the plain. The pretty can get away with anything.

Aesthetic value is often the by-product of the artist striving to do something else. Diaries of Evelyn Waugh (1976)