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Page 70 - It is a pleasure to stand upon the shore and to see ships tossed upon the sea; a pleasure to stand in the window of a castle and to see a battle and the adventures thereof below; but no pleasure is comparable to the standing upon the vantage ground of truth (a hill not to be commanded, and where the air is always clear and serene), and to see the errors and wanderings and mists and tempests in the vale below; so always that this prospect be with pity, and not with swelling or pride.
Page 204 - But Art, — wherein man nowise speaks to men, Only to mankind, — Art may tell a truth Obliquely, do the thing shall breed the thought, Nor wrong the thought, missing the mediate word.
Page 140 - A drama must be shaped so as to have a spire of meaning. Every grouping of life and character has its inherent moral; and the business of the dramatist is so to pose the group as to bring that moral poignantly to the light of day.
Page 86 - ... It drives one almost to despair of English literature when one sees so extraordinary a study of English life as Butler's posthumous Way of All Flesh making so little impression that when, some years later, I produce plays in which Butler's extraordinarily fresh, free and futurepiercing suggestions have an obvious share, I am met with nothing but vague cacklings about Ibsen and Nietzsche, and am only too thankful that they are not about Alfred de Musset and Georges Sand.
Page 5 - I hope to be more fortunate with this: for, besides the usual and often recurrent desire to thank you for your work — you are one of four that have come to the front since I was watching and had a corner of my own to watch, and there is no reason, unless it be in these mysterious tides that ebb and flow, and make and mar and murder the works of poor scribblers, why you should not do work of the best order. The tides have borne away my sentence, of which I was weary at any rate, and between authors...
Page 24 - Then there's something wrong with England. CRICHTON. My lady, not even from you can I listen to a word against England. LADY MARY. Tell me one thing: you have not lost your courage? CRICHTON. No, my lady.
Page 207 - I have grown to believe that he, motionless as he is, does yet live in reality a deeper, more human and more universal life than the lover who strangles his mistress, the captain who conquers in battle, or 'the husband...
Page 46 - Laugh, John, laugh. Watch me; see how easy it is. (A terrible struggle is taking place within him. He creaks. Something that may be mirth forces a passage, at first painfully, no more joy in it than in the discoloured water from a spring that has long been dry. Soon...
Page 48 - That is the doctrine, simple, ancient, true; Such is life's trial, as old earth smiles and knows If you loved only what were worth your love, Love were clear gain, and wholly well for you: Make the low nature better by your throes! Give earth yourself, go up for gain above!