Evelyn Waugh, fully Evelyn Arthur St. John Waugh

Evelyn
Waugh, fully Evelyn Arthur St. John Waugh
1903
1966

English Novelist, Biographer and Journalist

Author Quotes

Other nations use "force"; we Britons alone use "Might.

So the two of them went to London by the early morning train. 'Let's surprise her,' said Nigel, but Cedric telephoned first, wryly remembering the story of the pedantic adulterer - 'My dear, it is I who am surprised; you are astounded.'

The best I can tell you in that way is that IÂ’m much more at ease with fellow-Catholics than I am with heathens or Protestants. One has so many basic assumptions in common that thereÂ’s so much that doesnÂ’t need saying, and when youÂ’re talking to even the most amusing and intelligent heathen you suddenly find that something youÂ’ve said has no meaning at all to them.

There is no ordinary run of mankind, there are only individuals who are totally different. And whether a man is naked and black and stands on one foot in Sudan or is clothed in some kind of costume in a bus in England, they are still individuals of entirely different characters.

We cherish our friends not for their ability to amuse us, but for ours to amuse them -- a diminishing number in my case.

No one will write books once they reach heaven, but there is an excellent library, containing all the books written up to date, including all the lost books and the ones that the authors burned when they came back from the last publisher.

Oxford, in those days, was still a city of aquatint. In her spacious and quiet streets men walked and spoke as they had done in Newman's day; her autumnal mists, her grey springtime, and the rare glory of her summer days - such as that day - when the chestnut was in flower and the bells rang out high and clear over her gables and cupolas, exhaled the soft airs of centuries of youth. It was this cloistral hush which gave our laughter its resonance, and carried it still, joyously, over the intervening clamor.

So through a world of piety I made my way to Sebastian.

The cream and hot butter mingled and overflowed separating each glucose bead of caviar from its fellows, capping it in white and gold.

There is nothing to be gained by multiplying social distinctions indefinitely.

We class schools, you see, into four grades: Leading School, First-rate School, Good School, and School. Frankly, said Mr Levy, School is pretty bad... (Part One, Chapter One)

No.3 Commando was very anxious to be chums with Lord Glasgow, so they offered to blow up an old tree stump for him and he was very grateful and said don't spoil the plantation of young trees near it because that is the apple of my eye and they said no of course not we can blow a tree down so it falls on a sixpence and Lord Glasgow said goodness you are clever and he asked them all to luncheon for the great explosion. So Col. Durnford-Slater DSO said to his subaltern, have you put enough explosive in the tree?. Yes, sir, 75lbs. Is that enough? Yes sir I worked it out by mathematics it is exactly right. Well better put a bit more. Very good sir. And when Col. D Slater DSO had had his port he sent for the subaltern and said subaltern better put a bit more explosive in that tree. I don't want to disappoint Lord Glasgow. Very good sir. Then they all went out to see the explosion and Col. DS DSO said you will see that tree fall flat at just the angle where it will hurt no young trees and Lord Glasgow said goodness you are clever. So soon they lit the fuse and waited for the explosion and presently the tree, instead of falling quietly sideways, rose 50 feet into the air taking with it ½ acre of soil and the whole young plantation. And the subaltern said Sir, I made a mistake, it should have been 7½ not 75. Lord Glasgow was so upset he walked in dead silence back to his castle and when they came to the turn of the drive in sight of his castle what should they find but that every pane of glass in the building was broken. So Lord Glasgow gave a little cry and ran to hide his emotions in the lavatory and there when he pulled the plug the entire ceiling, loosened by the explosion, fell on his head. This is quite true.

Perhaps all our lovers are merely hints and symbols; vagabond languages scrawled on gate-posts and paving stones along the weary road that others have trampled before us; perhaps you and I are types and this sadness which sometimes falls between us springs from disappointment in our search, each straining through and beyond each other, snatching a glimpse now and then of the shadow which turns the corner always a pace or two ahead of us.

So you never got to wherever it was. Weren't you terribly disappointed, Sebastian?

The fortnight at Venice passed quickly and sweetly-- perhaps too sweetly; I was drowning in honey, stingless.

There is something in the red of a raspberry pie that looks as good to a man as the red in a sheep looks to a wolf.

We could watch the madmen, on clement days, sauntering and skipping among the trim gravel walks and pleasantly planted lawns; happy collaborationists who had given up the unequal struggle, all doubts resolved, all duty done, the undisputed heirs-at-law of a century of progress, enjoying the heritage at their ease.

Art is the symbol of the two noblest human efforts: to construct and to refrain from destruction.

Conversation should be like juggling; up go the balls and the plates, up and over, in and out, good solid objects that glitter in the footlights and fall with a bang if you miss them. But when dear Sebastian speaks it is like a little sphere of soapsud drifting off the end of an old clay pipe, anywhere, full of rainbow light for a second and then - phut! vanished, with nothing left at all, nothing.'

From the earliest times the Welsh have been looked upon as an unclean people. It is thus that they have preserved their racial integrity. Their sons and daughters rarely mate with humankind except their own blood relations.

How ungenerously in later life we disclaim the virtuous moods of our youth, living in retrospect long, summer days of unreflecting dissipation. There is no candour in a story of early manhood which leaves out of account the home-sickness for nursery morality, the regrets and resolutions of amendment, the black hours which, like zero on the roulette table, turn up with roughly calculable regularity."

I haven't been to sleep for over a year. That's why I go to bed early. One needs more rest if one doesn't sleep.

If a thing's worth doing at all, it's worth doing well.

It may happen in the next hundred years that the English novelists of the present day will come to be valued as we now value the artists and craftsmen of the late eighteenth century.

Miss Runcible wore trousers and Miles touched up his eye-lashes in the dining-room of the hotel where they stopped for luncheon. So they were asked to leave.

Author Picture
First Name
Evelyn
Last Name
Waugh, fully Evelyn Arthur St. John Waugh
Birth Date
1903
Death Date
1966
Bio

English Novelist, Biographer and Journalist