Loathing

Spiritual strength and passion, when accompanied by bad manners, only provoke loathing.

In overeating nests sickness, and excess leads to loathing.

Be short in all religious exercises. Better leave the people longing than loathing.

Repentance is not self-regarding, but God-regarding. It is not self-loathing, but God-loving.

Art is the human disposition of sensible or intelligible matter for an esthetic end... The mind is arrested and raised above desire and loathing.

I seek not a fellow feeling in my misery. No sympathy may I ever find. When I first sought it, it was the love of virtue, the feelings of happiness and affection with which my whole being overflowed, that I wished to be participated. But now that virtue has become to me a shadow, and that happiness and affection are turned into bitter and loathing despair, in what should I seek for sympathy? I am content to suffer alone while my sufferings shall endure; when I die, I am well satisfied that abhorrence and opprobrium should load my memory. Once my fancy was soothed with dreams of virtue, of fame, and of enjoyment. Once I falsely hoped to meet with beings who, pardoning my outward form, would love me for the excellent qualities which I was capable of unfolding. I was nourished with high thoughts of honour and devotion. But now crime has degraded me beneath the meanest animal. No guilt, no mischief, no malignity, no misery, can be found comparable to mine. When I run over the frightful catalogue of my sins, I cannot believe that I am the same creature whose thoughts were once filled with sublime and transcendent visions of the beauty and the majesty of goodness. But it is even so; the fallen angel becomes a malignant devil. Yet even that enemy of God and man had friends and associates in his desolation; I am alone.

It is only by softening and disguising dead flesh by culinary preparation, that it is rendered susceptible of mastication or digestion; and that the sight of its bloody juices and raw horror does not excite intolerable loathing and disgust.

Never had he felt the joy of the word more sweetly, never had he known so clearly that Eros dwells in language.

It is indeed a tricky name. It is often misspelt, because the eye tends to regard the a of the first syllable as a misprint and then tries to restore the symmetrical sequence by triplicating the o- filling up the row of circles, so to speak, as in a game of crosses and naughts. No-bow-cough. How ugly, how wrong. Every author whose name is fairly often mentioned in periodicals develops a bird-watcher's or caterpillar-picker's knack when scanning an article. But in my case I always get caught by the word nobody when capitalized at the beginning of a sentence. As to pronunciation, Frenchmen of course say Nabokoff, with the accent on the last syllable. Englishmen say Nabokov, accent on the first, and Italians say Nabokov, accent in the middle, as Russians also do. Na-bo-kov. A heavy open o as in Knickerbocker. My New England ear is not offended by the long elegant middle o of Nabokov as delivered in American academies. The awful Na-bah-kov is a despicable gutterism. Well, you can make your choice now. Incidentallv, the first name is pronounced Vladeemer- rhyming with redeemer- not Vladimir rhyming with Faddimere (a place in England, I think).

A sweeter and a lovelier gentleman, — fram'd in the prodigality of nature, young, valiant, wise, and, no doubt, right royal, — the spacious world cannot again afford.

If a thing be really good, it can be shown to be such.

Jackie would go around telling people she was an inquiring photographer and she was my sister. I said, ‘She’s my half sister’s stepsister.’

The greatest pleasure when I started making money was not buying cars or yachts but finding myself able to have as many freshly typed drafts as possible.

A great age of literature is perhaps always a great age of translations.