Saturday, September 29, 2018

My Victorian Year #37

This week I finished listening to Bleak House on audio. I began listening to Charles Dickens' Great Expectations on audio. I've also continued reading Louisa May Alcott's Little Men and Anthony Trollope's Small House at Allington. It's been a great week.

From Small House at Allington:
I enjoy a snooze after dinner; I do indeed; I like it; but then, when one comes to go to bed, one does it in such a sneaking sort of way, as though one were in disgrace!
And my sister, she thinks it a crime — literally a sin, to go to sleep in a chair. Nobody ever caught her napping!
Few liars can lie with the full roundness and self-sufficiency of truth; and Crosbie, bad as he was, had not yet become bad enough to reach that perfection.
But he was chiefly angry with himself for this, — that he had been a villain without gaining anything by his villainy; that he had been a villain, and was to lose so much by his villainy. 
There are deeds which will not bear a gloss, — sins as to which the perpetrator cannot speak otherwise than as a reptile; circumstances which change a man and put upon him the worthlessness of vermin.
“What are we to do to him?” said Bernard, after a while. “Treat him as you would a rat. Throw your stick at him, if he comes under your feet; but beware, above all things, that he does not get into your house. That is too late for us now.” “There must be more than that, uncle.”
From Little Men:
"Happy is the man who can put temptation in his pocket and learn self-denial from so sweet a little teacher!" added Mr. Bhaer.
Money is the root of all evil, and yet it is such a useful root that we cannot get on without it any more than we can without potatoes.
Daisy knew nothing about women's rights; she quietly took all she wanted, and no one denied her claim, because she did not undertake what she could not carry out, but unconsciously used the all-powerful right of her own influence to win from others any privilege for which she had proved her fitness.
Nan attempted all sorts of things, undaunted by direful failures, and clamored fiercely to be allowed to do every thing that the boys did. They laughed at her, hustled her out of the way, and protested against her meddling with their affairs. But she would not be quenched and she would be heard, for her will was strong, and she had the spirit of a rampant reformer.
"You must put swearing away in your fault-drawer, and lock it up; that's the way I do with my badness." 
"I play that my mind is a round room, and my soul is a little sort of creature with wings that lives in it. The walls are full of shelves and drawers, and in them I keep my thoughts, and my goodness and badness, and all sorts of things. The goods I keep where I can see them, and the bads I lock up tight, but they get out, and I have to keep putting them in and squeezing them down, they are so strong. I don't think there is a lock strong enough to keep my badness shut up. Any way my room is in such a clutter I don't know how to clear it up."

It is never too early to try and plant them [good principles] in a child, and never too late to cultivate them in the most neglected person.

© 2018 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

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